Fréderique van Alfen-Las
Project Lead Campus and Facilities
24,000 students - 5,000 employees - 18 catering & food locations
Institutional Food Services
Product development, Procurement, Inventory, Production
With over 24,000 students, 5,000 employees and 18 catering outlets, the restaurant operation of Radboud University is an immense undertaking. The F&B management is centralized in Apicbase.
Radboud is the only university in the Netherlands to have the entire catering operation in-house. The institute is known for its high level of education.
Quality is key, that also counts for everything that goes on behind the scenes.
The ‘Food and Drink Support Department’, for example, is continuously engaged in process optimisation.
“We examine what works for us and continue to improve”, project leader Fréderique Van Alfen-Las says.
The team switched from a complex folder structure with outdated spreadsheets to Apicbase’s F&B management platform.
Apicbase calculates exactly what the teams have to order. I can't exactly say how many hours it saves us every week, but it's a lot.
Radboud realised that, if they wanted to make decisions based on actual data, they needed a solution that could process those numbers and provide insight into purchasing, inventory, food cost and sales.
An internal audit following a tender for F&B revealed Radboud was handling no less than 14 different suppliers, possibly even more. No one could tell for sure. Procurement actions and stock levels were unclear.
Project leader Fréderique Van Alfen-Las says: “It made us realise that if we wanted to base our decisions on actual data, we needed a system that could actually process the numbers.”
Radboud University manages F&B for 18 restaurant outlets in Apicbase—from recipe management to purchases.
The theoretical and actual inventory can be compared immediately. Inconsistencies and errors are noticed immediately rather than, as before, many weeks later after manually analyzing numerous invoices.
Thanks to user permissions for use and par-levels for orders, the management eliminates an entire range of possible human errors in advance.
There is an instant comparison of the theoretical and actual inventory levels.
Undue stock variances and purchasing errors are noticed immediately.
“We’ve considered various systems, Apicbase was the only one that met all the requirements”, Fréderique says.
“This includes the strict demands our IT department has when it comes to adding a new software to the already existing ecosystem.”
The IT team looked into how Apicbase would integrate with the existing infrastructure. After all, Radboud Uni isn’t a small snack bar. All the software solutions they deploy should be compatible.
“Apicbase is a powerful solution. It supports centralized management, provides actionable insight into the actual numbers and is easy to use. Having access to the real-time data in a no-hassle-way has had a massive impact on our business and operations.”
The Apicbase team consists of nice people who want to keep things moving forward all the time. They help find solutions and continue to optimize the system.
“We consider Apicbase more as a partner than a supplier.”
In the future, Radboud plans to implement more Apicbase modules. “We only need to add sales analytics to have the entire package.”
Radboud University monitors their entire catering operation using four off-the-shelve Apicbase modules.