Stibo Systems Helps Leading UK Pub Chain Increase Efficiency, Improve Margins
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Stibo Systems Helps Leading UK Pub Chain Increase Efficiency, Improve Margins

Mitchells & Butlers is the UK’s leading restaurant and pub retail brand, operating 1,600 pubs and restaurants across 16 brands, including Harvester, O’Neill’s, Brown’s and All Bar One. Headquartered in Birmingham, UK, the company serves 125 million meals and 425 million drinks each year and is one of the largest operators within the UK’s £70 billion eating and drinking-out market.

Mitchells & Butlers manages 30 live menus, 1,300 live recipes and more than 80,000 items at any given time. There are more than 100 range changes per year, including changes in wine and beer ranges, which require constant updating and management. Mitchells & Butlers has seen a fivefold increase in food volume over the last ten years, coupled with increasing consumer expectations for innovative new menu items. Due to the company’s growth, Mitchells & Butlers’ supply chain has become increasingly complex, now including over 250 suppliers, 5,000 supplier items and 3,500 stock items. The company was using a legacy system, supplemented by Excel spread sheets, to manage product information— a less agile, less secure way of managing data which led to data silos, ultimately not providing the functionality Mitchells & Butlers needed.

Looking for a solution, Mitchells & Butlers reviewed four master data management systems and selected Stibo Systems, with a key deciding factor being the greater usability it offers non-IT specialists.

The company implemented Stibo Systems STEP strategic information management solution, which creates a single trusted source of strategic information by integrating departmental knowledge to produce an enterprise-wide asset. Its functional richness, strong data modeling, and powerful workflow capabilities enable a business to drive revenue, reduce costs, mitigate risk and enhance agility through more efficient gathering, managing and sharing of strategic operational information.

“Implementing STEP to manage product master data and our ingredient recipe management has provided our organization with more agility, transparent product development and better management processes,” says Alison Vasey, Head of Business Change at Mitchells & Butlers.

Since implementing the Stibo Systems solution, Mitchells & Butlers has discontinued at least 100 spreadsheets that were used for menu development, consolidating all data into the STEP platform. The food and drink teams sponsored the programme with support from the IT department. The company is now able to better manage the ingredients from suppliers and stock the items required for menu planning.

The system has improved visibility across all of Mitchells & Butlers’ brands so that one centralized system can show information on every bar and restaurant in the company. For example, since deploying STEP, many legacy processes have been removed to enable better visibility into retail and stocking policies, resulting in easier re-ordering of core items such as food and drinks. Headcount was immediately reduced due to the reduction in the need to re-key information into a data management system.

STEP also offers seamless integration with GDSN data pools, which enable GTIN identification for hard-to-mark products like fresh foods. This is key for a food and beverage retailer like Mitchells & Butlers, as standards carry identifiers such as serial numbers and lot numbers, making it more efficient to track product quality and effectiveness. Additional key benefits of STEP is that through the data pools the company now has a single, accurate and consistent source of product data provided by the supplier, reducing data entry internally and reducing errors.

Mitchells & Butlers are already leading the way on the provision of nutritional and allergen information for their menus using STEP. Allergen information is reviewed at the ingredient and total recipe level enabling publication with minimal manual input of this sensitive data, for which accuracy is absolutely key to guest safety. Nutritional data for ingredients and recipes can also be obtained and calculated through STEP.

“The scalability of the Stibo Systems strategic information management solution has also been a significant benefit,” says Vasey. “While we currently use it for food and drink, there is plenty of scope to expand the system to e-commerce, consumables, location data, and even information about building premises. STEP allows us to transform the customer experience in our outlets as we continue to publish data to multiple channels including our websites, mobile and tablets.”

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