The UKs leading processor of frozen green vegetables, Christian Salvesen Foods, has just implemented the mobile auditing software solution Quickfire in order to minimise the time needed to undertake the enforced assessments and meet the standards set by the government and retailers.
Produced by Muddy Boots Software Limited, Quickfire is the first auditing software that can be uploaded onto a laptop or hand-held device so inspectors can record data as they complete the assessment. This saves valuable time, as the information can then be automatically transferred via the web.
Christian Salvesen Foods process, pack and distribute 95,000 tonnes of vegetables a year to the retail, food service and food manufacturing industries. Over 250 growers harvest up to 30,000 acres every season in the UK and during peak periods this can reach 2,250 tonnes of product per day; stringent audits must be undertaken on every crop produced.
Sarah Pettitt, Agricultural Technical Manager for Christian Salvesen Foods said; The sheer volume of vegetables we deal with on a daily basis means our auditing procedure needs to be efficient and to the highest standard. Muddy Boots has provided us with a solution that compacts the assessments into a one hit, one capture system, which is fantastic from the auditors point of view.
The old paper based system caused many problems for the company, auditors had different styles that meant there was no consistency in the results, handwriting was difficult to read which caused problems as the office based workers inputted the data, resulting in the whole process taking a considerable amount of time. After recording, the data would be pulled into a report and a list of corrective actions would be identified for the producer, which all together took over 40 or 50 per cent longer.
Sarah continued; The Quickfire software has allowed us to have a system that we feel takes a realistic period of time for this routine procedure, especially now with the help of modern technology that is available.
Quickfire can be pre-programmed with a selection of answers so results are standardised, therefore, different audits can be compared. In addition, all the necessary guideline information is held on the system for the auditors quick and easy reference, increasing the efficiency of the inspection.
Christian Salvesen Foods distributes to the leading UK retailers including Tesco, Sainsburys, Waitrose, Somerfield and Co-operative Retail. These retailers each have a set of specific standards that demand tough controls in order to find a point of difference from their competitors, however this provides a vast quantity of work for the auditors.
Many of the retailers individual standards cross over and are repetitive, Quickfire not only allows for parallel auditing, where more than one audit can be completed at the same time, but is also looking to combat this problem further by creating bolt-on audits, which are additional shorter assessments that only include questions that are different from the initial standard audit. This enables suppliers to concentrate on producing high quality food rather than spending days answering auditors questions.
Sarah further added; Our employees are really enthusiastic about coming into the 21st century and using modern technology that enables them to complete audits quicker, therefore, creating more time to fulfil their other duties.
Jonathan Evans, Managing Director for Muddy Boots commented; The Quickfire software was developed in response to an increasing demand from suppliers such as Christian Salvesen Foods, for a system that enables them to meet the various audits required by retailers in a more streamlined and efficient manner.
Suppliers as well as retailers are keen to demonstrate that its products are of excellent quality and meet the highest standards. The repetitive nature and quantity of audits was proving to be a strain on the producers, Quickfires solution of compiling the audits together has proven to save both time and money.