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The challenge

  • Replace a time-consuming and inefficient food safety management and labelling system
  • Reduce the time spent by floor staff and managers ensuring compliance and boost focus on customer service

The solution

  • A cloud-based stock management tablet app and an integrated, robust label printer
  • Stock rotation records that can be accessed remotely to allow regular updates from anywhere
  • Tap-and-go label creation

The results

  • A boost to customer service as employees have more time to spend on core tasks
  • Improved compliance and reduced risk of mistakes, cutting the need for manager oversight and intense staff training

“I absolutely love our new Navitas and Brother solution. I can access and update records wherever I am, which has saved me a huge amount of time and stress”

Suzanne Baynes, operations manager at Subway® franchise Subz for You

The company running two Subway® franchise stores in Basingstoke, decided it needed to upgrade its food labelling system, which was creating bottlenecks and impacting customer service

The ageing printers the stores used previously, combined with laborious and poorly-integrated stock-rotation software, was a significant drain on staff time and often meant employees resorted to handwritten labels.

This was compromising the restaurant’s ability to comply with both government food safety regulations and Subway®’s own hygiene rules and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) policies.

A business-critical process

The restaurants need to label all products at three different stages in the process. Each store serves around 300 customers a day, so hundreds of labels need to be created daily.

Labels need to be printed every time a product is removed from the freezer to defrost, then again when it has been prepped for consumption. Any cooked products require a further stage of labelling to indicate their four-hour shelf-life once they have been heated up.

Updating an arduous process

The in-built complexity of the labelling system meant that it was poorly designed, difficult for new staff to learn, and time-consuming even for experienced employees.

Whenever an employee wanted to create a new label or batch of labels, they had to look up a code in a database, which then needed to be manually typed into the printer, along with the person’s initials and the number of labels required. The printer then created the relevant labels based on an internally stored database.

The impact of this time-consuming approach on staff’s ability to focus on customer service was exacerbated by the poor reliability of the printer, which would frequently fail, requiring staff to resort to hand-written labels – something that falls short of the brand’s high food-safety standards.

By upgrading to an app-based stock management system built by Navitas, staff in the stores now have a user-friendly image-based interface that allows the appropriate labels to be selected with a few taps of a tablet screen. 

The ultimate integrated food safety solution

The robust and highly portable TD-2120N label printer ensures fast, high-quality labels every time. No more hand-written information, no more smudging, no more mistakes.

View the TD-2120N label printer

Subway sandwich with ham, cheese, lettuce and tomato

Each store serves around 300 customers a day, so hundreds of labels need to be created daily

Tap-and-go label creation

The seamless hardware integration of the Brother TD-2120N label printer means that the labels can now be sent directly to print. The speed with which this process can be carried out has removed the bottlenecks that would develop at the printer as a result of the laborious manual code-input system.

The result is less time spent waiting for and using the label printer, and more time preparing food and serving customers.

End-to-end efficiency

The cloud-based system has also saved significant management time by allowing product data to be updated at any time and remotely from any location.

To keep the menu exciting for customers, Subway® tends to introduce new products every few months, and sometimes more frequently than this during periods of re-branding. Naturally these need to be added immediately to the stock management system so that staff can create the relevant labels.

Whereas the previous approach meant updating a poorly-designed database before connecting it to the label printers by a cable, the cloud-based software makes the process quick, easy and user-friendly, and any updates can be rolled out to all stores at the touch of a button.

“With the old system, it was so easy to select the wrong code and generate the wrong label. The risk meant we had to invest a lot more time in double-checking everything to make absolutely sure that no mistakes slipped through – something that had an impact on efficiency and productivity” said Suzanne Banes, operations manager at Subway® franchise Subz for You.

The highly user-friendly nature of the new system also means it is much easier to bring new employees up to speed.

“We’ve benefitted from removing the risk altogether, rather than investing time in training and monitoring to manage it. If you can avoid the potential for human error you can save a lot of time, which ultimately boosts productivity and customer service.”

Find out more about stock rotation solutions from Brother.

Download your copy of the Subz for You case study

What was achieved?




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