This week we dig deeper into Best Business Practices and focus on fabricators and protein processors. These businesses require special techniques to ensure the correct item is be processed and delivered.

You processors have very specific ways to produce items. At $15.00/lb you better make sure you’re doing it right.


Is this the correct item?

There are several workflows where processors have special needs.

When you cut an item it is very important to know how the customer requires their cut. These requirements are known as specifications, and a customer can have multiple specifications for a single item.  The rationalization I'll frequently hear is, "I have it memorized, I know how they take it.” which is fine if you don't plan on taking vacation, being sick, growing old (and getting a memory like mine), or growing your business.

When an order is placed it is crucial that the order taker is prompted with the customer's specification options.  If only one specification is assigned then you know it will never be missed, if multiple options exist the order taker is prompted immediately to clarify which specification the customer requires.

Cutting Report:
Now that you have properly entered the customer's order communicating the specifications to the cutting room is the next critical step.  The format that works best for most processors is a listing of items to be cut, organized with individual pages by area (table or room), with the required quantities for each unique specification.

Thinking back to last newsletter's idea of 'internal customers', your order takers need to deliver a clear document to their customers in the production area.  Your production team now needs to delivery correctly prepared product to their customer, the packaging / labeling team.

The packaging team is responsible for labeling the product, often with a catch weight from the scale.  Even though mislabeled product is the number one cause of recall, many continue to ask their staff to perform miracles.  Expecting a human to pick the right label from hundreds of pre-printed labels, then manually writing thousands of weights on a box. then having someone copy those weights on a sheet, then copying from the sheet to invoice, without dozens of errors every day is just not realistic.

In order for the packaging team to reliably deliver the right product and information to their customers (the truck drivers and the invoicers) they should be working with a system that is integrated with the scale to print the correct label including specification and customer information while applying the information to the invoice.  As the packaging team makes the last internal delivery to the truck driver they're now providing all the information the driver needs to match against their delivery confirmation sheets.  These investments protect your internal customers so they can make the best delivery to your final customer.


Issue 631 - Turn and Earn, we need a reminder.

Being that a lot of vacations are happening right now I thought it would be a good time to re-publish our turn and earn issue that we did back in 2005. Although it's an older News Letter it's one that shows you how good your inventory is doing from a profitability standpoint.

Read more ...