If you’ve ever felt that navigating the complex procurement process for hotel furnishings and equipment has been overwhelming – you're not alone. Keeping track of data from multiple suppliers all at once can easily lead to confusion. But with the right purchase order software solution by your side, tracking FF&E (furnishings, fixtures & equipment) and OS&E (operating supplies & equipment) orders doesn't have to be a hassle. Here's how you can use your PO software to provide control over the entire process.
1. Connect your FF&E and OS&E library to your PO software.
Keeping a detailed list of FF&E and OS&E items is already daunting: Besides the usual product information like material, color, and size, you’re also keeping track of health codes and ADA standards.
Hooking it up to your PO software – with all the supplier information such as name, address, phone number, and ordering method – is even more intimidating.
However, it’s worth it considering how the combined data makes order tracking and purchase order management so much simpler.
Luckily, that’s not even a consideration when you use Fohlio. With our purchase order management system-slash-materials library, everything is in one place and all the data you need is at your fingertips.
2. Establish clear methods of communication with suppliers to ensure timely delivery.
Effective communication with suppliers entails discussion of timelines, expectations, detailed instructions, and any other fine details necessary. It can mean the difference between a smooth opening and some frantic last-minute scrambling.
Pro tip here: Make a list of questions, stipulations, and requests. Writing them down is documenting them, and it’s better to over communicate rather than be caught flat-footed. And finally, documenting communications keeps everyone on the same page and accountable.
Fohlio provides a platform where you can see all the necessary order tracking details. Making sure suppliers have access to relevant fields helps keep timelines and schedules regularly updated.
Bonus: Because your order management system is centralized, everyone knows where to go to find timely information. If you ask us, the fact you no longer have to dig through massive email chains or waste time with superfluous back-and-forth phone calls is worth the price of admission.
Learn more: Get Control and Flexibility Over External Collaborations
3. Set up a system to regularly track and update the status of each order (and see everything at a glance).
Installing a reliable purchase order management system – one that can track in-flight FF & E and OS&E orders – is a great way to ensure that everything arrives on time, and within budget. This system should be set up early so progress can be tracked from the start, with regular updates highlighting any areas of concern or inconsistency. With an effective order tracking system in place, you can be sure that each item ordered will arrive as expected and ready to install.
Fohlio allows you to do all this and more. Your purchase orders essentially act as your central source of truth, because it contains information like order status, tracking number, number of shipments, and more.
This can be set up in a dashboard so you can see everything at a glance, instead of opening each PO one by one.
4. Schedule regular check-ins with suppliers to confirm order details and delivery timeline.
So you have your tools and systems in place – the next step is to establish a regular schedule for checking in.
We can tell you all day about how a super-advanced piece of software like Fohlio can simplify procurement workflows and automate a bunch of repetitive tasks – but nothing replaces getting on the horn and talking to the people you’re relying on to deliver your materials on time.
Check-ins should include verifying order delivery details from both sides; the purchaser ought to review their own purchase order management system regularly, keeping in touch with the supplier if something seems out of place or incorrect.
At the same time, suppliers can keep the purchaser updated regarding manufacturing timelines and other important notes related to FF&E and OS&E orders. It takes collaboration between both sides to stay organized - but setting up routine check-ins makes it much easier!
Plus, these personal interactions give you a chance to keep your relationships strong: It’s the strongest intangible asset you can rely on when things get tough.
5. Anticipate and plan for potential delays, and communicate any changes to relevant parties.
To ensure a successful ordering process, it's important to plan ahead and anticipate possible delays. Investing in the right equipment and resources, like best-in-class order management software (*cough* Fohlio *cough*), can help streamline the FF&E and OS&E ordering process while keeping your stakeholders up-to-date on potential changes or unexpected delays. Being proactive and well prepared can reduce stress down the line and lead to a smoother procurement process overall.
A good purchase order software will be able to immediately show you as soon as things turn (read: deliveries get behind schedule), so you can pivot if necessary. This could mean the difference between being able to reschedule work crews and rental equipment, versus having them turn up and have nothing to do because the materials aren’t there.
6. Keep track of split shipping effortlessly.
If a single purchase order needs to be split into multiple shipments, the process can quickly become chaotic without proper order tracking. That's why you need specialized purchasing software to manage orders and split shipping. Doing so ensures smooth delivery for both you and your customer by providing delivery visibility as well as notifications about expected arrival times.
Fohlio allows you to mark partial deliveries so you know exactly what has already arrived and how much more is expected.
Learn more: How to Manage Multiple Shipments in One Purchase Order
All in all, purchase order management solutions can save you a lot of time and energy by helping to streamline the procurement process for hotel furnishings and equipment. If you're looking for an easy-to-use solution that will help make your life a little bit easier, we recommend giving Fohlio a try. With our PO system software, you'll be able to keep track of all your FF&E and OS&E orders in one place – so you can focus on what's important: running your business.
Start managing FF & E and OS&E deliveries with Fohlio today.
Learn how to:
- Save days of work with faster specification
- Create firm-wide design standards
- Automate and centralize procurement
- Keep your whole team on the same Page
- Manage product data
- Track budget against cost in real time.
- Prepare for asset valuation
Published Jan 31, 2023
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