Customer Service Improved and Sales Increased

Client: Stewart Foodservice

Stewart Foodservice is a medium size food distributor owned by industry veteran Aubrey MacMillan. He started out in the food business 47 years ago working his way up through deliveries, sales, and management to owner.

Aubrey bought Stewart Wholesale in 1996, then a struggling tobacco and confectionary wholesaler. Within a few years, Aubrey and his management team had transformed it into a modern, customer-driven full-line food distribution company.  With revenues over $50 million they have set a goal to reach $100 million in the next five years.

Stewart Foodservice has been a client of Food Decision Software Inc. since 1997. They upgraded their 25-user system to WinFDS version 5.0 to compliment an existing mix of technology investments to fuel further growth.  Stewart Foodservice used previous versions of the WinFDS system by Food Decision Software prior to the upgrade.

Stewart had adopted a Customer Centric sales/service model early on enabled by an expansion to seven WinFDS installed order desks. This gave Stewart a platform to service their customers more effectively by ensuring quick and efficient order handling and customer care. The expanded order desk capacity has also allowed field sales representatives to focus on generating new business instead of just being order takers.

Stewart Foodservice maintains an impressive fill rate of greater than 98% for their customers with skilled buyers utilizing the WinFDS purchasing system to maximize efficiencies in inventory replenishment. Stewart invested in a telephone management system to efficiently route telephone calls from their customers to their WinFDS installed order desks. This has greatly enhanced their order desk service capability.

Another leap in technology was the implementation of a GPS delivery tracking system. This system uses a cost effective mobile device the driver carries on the truck. The truck location information is uploaded through GPS satellites and is integrated to the WinFDS system. The Order Desk and customer care staff have delivery tracking information readily available should a customer inquire.

Stewart’s commitment to customers is demonstrated on their website where they use language like “people who are devoted to our customer’s success” and ‘Your partner in success” This messaging is validated by their investments in people, processes and technology such as the WinFDS food distribution specific software system which helps Stewart to be truly customer-driven.

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