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Supply Chain Management Software...so many choices!

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Cravin' Cajun?

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Posted 17 February 2016 - 06:01 PM

The food manufacturer I work for is mid-size (~ 100 employees) and produces a dry, shelf-stable product (mostly breadings/coatings and rice entrée mixes).  We are looking for a supply chain management system (software) and it is overwhelming how many choices there are :silly:


Can those of you that have already purchased software to help manage your supply chain documents please give me some feedback regarding the pros and cons...I could really use some assistance!



Philip @ Safefood 360°

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Posted 19 February 2016 - 11:32 AM

Hi Cravin'Cajun!


(Full disclosure: I work for a Software Company :ninja:  but I have tried to keep my response as helpful and impartial as possible.)


You are correct that there are many software options out there to help with your Supply Chain Management / Supplier Quality Management requirements. In addition to obtaining feedback from others on the pros and cons, I suggest that you also define a list of your needs from such a system. Here’s something you could start with (and phrase it in the first person as it is easier for you).


I need a system which allows me to;

  • Manage my database of Suppliers including basic address, telephone and contact information.
  • Manage my database of Materials/Ingredients including country of origin, hazards, identity preservation information.
  • Conduct Risk Assessment on my Suppliers and the Ingredients they supply me.
  • Complete Assessment Questionnaires on my Suppliers and the Ingredients they supply me.
  • Conduct onsite Audits on my Suppliers.
  • Conduct annual Reviews on my Suppliers and the Ingredients they supply me.
  • Create and assign Complaints to Suppliers.
  • Create and assign Corrective Actions to Suppliers.
  • Provide secure access to a Portal through which my Suppliers can complete assessments, address corrective actions and upload specifications.
  • Fully manage and maintain the system even when the Portal is not used by the Supplier.
  • Conduct incoming goods inspections on the ingredients my Suppliers are sending me.
  • Have all of my Supplier Documentation neatly organized in my Documents module, no matter how it enters the system.
  • This Documents module should be searchable and have full versioning, review, approval and audit logging built-in.
  • Ensure that the system will prompt the Supplier to upload a new GFSI Cert or any other expiring document at the appropriate time.
  • Approve Suppliers and their Ingredients which will show up on my ASL.
  • View all of my Suppliers on a world map with their approval status so that I can quickly see my geographic exposure.
  • Pull down a number of reports and easily export my data for further analysis.
  • Provide secure access to a Portal through which my Customers can see Supplier documentation, particularly if I am a broker.
  • Capture all communications with my Suppliers within the SQM system itself.
  • Ideally have my Supplier Control fully integrated with my broader Food Safety Management System so that I don’t end up with a number of disconnected systems.
  • Be supported by a software vendor which specializes in the food industry and therefore understands my needs possibly better than I do.


Furthermore, I understand that;

  • Supplier Quality Management is an involved and complex process and software is not a magic potion which will suddenly make it all go away.
  • However I expect software to make the whole process far more organized for me, and ultimately allow me to run my SQM system more effectively.
  • Many suppliers will not want to use the Supplier Portals that I give them access to, because they will not want to take the time to figure it out and will continue to send me documentation by email, fax, snail-mail.
  • I understand that the burden placed on my Suppliers is significant and they already have dozens of different portals to contend with, so I will be patient with my Suppliers when it comes to interacting with the system.
  • Introducing a Supplier Quality Management software solution should be considered a long term investment and not a quick fix.


You can then document your needs into an Excel/Word spreadsheet and send it out to a select number of vendors for a response. Most vendors should be able to provide you with a Proof of Concept so that you can see the system working before you make any commitment.


Hope the above is of help.




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Posted 24 February 2016 - 04:41 PM

Good morning Cravin' Cajun,


I would highly recommend Safefood 360!! The software is so user friendly. If you have a personnel at your facility who is dedicated to implementing the software and you utilize Safefood 360 professional services, your programs that you setup will literally be running within months.

Our small/medium size flavoring company, was committed and dedicated to implementing Safefood 360 (because, if your company is going to make a huge software investment then you also need to invest the time to make it happen by utilizing what Safefood 360 offers to their customers and that is the professional services and out of this world Customer service).


With that said, we had amazing training from Chris who supported, guided and lead us to full implementation of Safefood 360 into our facility. We started in October with Chris and it is now February and our facility is fully Safefood 360 implemented.

On a side note, we just had our first SQF Desk audit and Safefood 360 allowed me to click away to get whatever information (documents, forms,records etc) right away versus running for the paper trail in binders stored who knows where). I know, that we will always be audit ready and GFSI compliant with Safefood 360 on our side :0)


My recommendation, is request a demo and see for yourself. I guarantee you will be so impress with all its capabilities and software user friendliness!!


Safefood 360 is one of the best investment we have made for our small/medium size flavoring company.


I hope that helps you out in making your decision,


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