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TECHNOLOGY & SOFTWARE


Take Control


Mark McCarthy, CFO at Caternet investigates how eProcurement is reducing pressure and boosting efficiency in care homes.


The care home sector is a financially challenging environment at the best of times; add to that the turbulence of the past year or so, and it is no surprise that many are still navigating the impact of continued budget cuts, staff shortages and the burden of increasing legislation. To make matters worse, outdated processes are still placing considerable pressure on care home managers in terms of paper-based admin, growing supply chain issues and managing cost control.


For many, using the right kind of technology, such as an eProcurement system, can be helpful not just in terms of saving money but also in saving time and reducing the pressure on already stretched staff. eProcurement systems tend to store operational data in one central place, removing the need for numerous paper-based processes, which oſten take time to collate and decipher. This gives care homes the visibility of the volume of products they are buying and also how much they are spending – at their fingertips, thereby allowing them to react more quickly and efficiently.


EXPANDING PURCHASING RANGE TO


BOOST NEGOTIATION When it comes to managing catering operations, staying on budget while sourcing high quality, local ingredients can be


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a challenge for care homes. Most care providers like to use local suppliers to support their community and while this may be good for the local economy, it can sometimes lead to higher prices and inconsistencies in the quality of products or services.


eProcurement technology seeks to broaden that supply chain by expanding the purchasing range and providing a full product purchasing list in one place with live pricing. This information also helps care homes to consolidate the products they buy, while care home managers also have more clout to negotiate better prices with local suppliers without compromising on quality. The same applies to non-food items such as maintenance and cleaning services.


THE ALLERGENS MINEFIELD


Catering for residents brings with it a multitude of considerations from a health and safety perspective too, many of which can be time intensive to manage. Whether it is allergens, meeting dietary requirements, managing intolerances or keeping on top of general nutrition, ensuring that the food that is prepared and served, meets the needs of residents, is paramount. Allergies in particular can be a minefield for catering teams and chefs but many eProcurement


www.tomorrowscare.co.uk


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