So just what is benchmarking? Benchmarking, simply put, is the process of comparing the performance of a procurement function against its best competitor and is a vital process for any catering operation, allowing you to understand how you’re performing against budgets and KPIs and how your costs are impacting these.  

What are the benefits?

There are many benefits to benchmarking but mostly the process will highlight potential cost savings between current suppliers and others available. It’s also a great motivator for your purchasing department and provides them with insight to drive performance improvements by identifying gaps, strengths, opportunities, and best practices that will improve your procurement function.

With today’s ever-changing and volatile market, having a procurement partner that can use their knowledge, expertise, and extensive network of supply chain partners to complete a benchmarking exercise for you has never been more important.

So, how does it work?

There are some basic stages to procurement benchmarking which are to:

  1. Plan: what are we going to benchmark? for e.g., processes, price paid, cost, supplier performance
  2. Analyse: who are we going to benchmark against? who is the leader in the industry, what can we gain from them.
  3. Develop: Based on the outcome from stage 2, identify performance objectives, standards, and processes
  4. Enhance: Implement and integrate the action plans gathered from stage 3 to form the basis of your new procurement plan
  5. Monitor: closely watch the results via a reporting system that can communicate the progress and savings and your end goals

So, the questions to ask yourself initially are:

  • How well is my procurement function currently performing?
  • What are my objectives?
  • What should I benchmark?
  • When was the last time I did a benchmarking exercise? 
  • Who should we benchmark against?

Here at EF-group, our sales team will work with you to gain as much information as possible such as, volumes, product lists, spend, frequency and most importantly what you are currently purchasing and at what cost.

After the information has been gathered our Purchasing Team take control, they work with the data provided to analyse current buying lists and compare that against our own supply chain price files. Once the data wizardry is complete, they export the information and share it with our sales team who come back to you with the findings.  

As part of the process, we will review your product list and look to identify further cost savings by swapping products such as brand-named beans for supplier own brand beans, which can have a significant impact on cost.

With a large supply chain of over 2,000 UK suppliers and over £1.4BN in purchasing power we combine the power of our network with the capability of our Freshmarkets, total purchase-to-pay solution to greatly enhance how your procurement function performs.

If you’d like to know more or arrange a FREE benchmarking exercise on your current purchasing, get in touch with our Group Sales Director Steve Walker, or call him directly on 07837 212719.