Regal Food Products
Speciality food processor Regal Food Products streamlines production with digital transformation from SI
Yorkshire based Regal Food Products has achieved substantial growth since it was founded in 2001. From its heritage in South East Asian bakery products now, with more than 300 SKUs, its diverse product range includes cakes, biscuits, savoury snacks, condiments, popcorn, and even juices.
Today, Regal’s products are sold in most leading UK supermarket chains and over 6000 convenience stores, a wide range of wholesalers and are also exported to more than 60 countries. With a strong leadership team at the helm since 2009, the business is focused on building upon its proven growth strategy, by expanding its product range and investing in expanding its infrastructure.
With production levels increasing in volume and complexity, Regal recognised that further strategic investment in its IT infrastructure would enable the company maximise production visibility and control, and embrace the benefits of digital transformation.
Regal Food Products selected food software specialist SI (Systems Integration) to realise its integration ambition. Commenting on the move Regal Foods’ Operations Director, Absar Younis said: “As we’re growing fast, the golden rule of scaleability is making sure that you always have enough stock to fulfil orders. But what you don’t want is to produce surplus products or have to increase costly warehousing space.
“Our ambition for the software integration project was to achieve more throughput, delivering greater efficiencies, right across our business processes.”
Stepping up to a live view of stock
“One of the biggest challenges facing our business was that we didn’t had a live view of stock. We needed a system that could deliver greater visibility across raw material, WIP and finished products, and provide real-time inventory control across all of our stock.
“We evaluated several ERP software suppliers, we felt that SI’s people, industry knowledge and food ERP stood out. Also, SI’s modular software approach was particularly important to us; functionality-wise, we could not risk any systems downtime.”
“We worked closely with SI to develop a ‘catch-all’ integrated solution; from supply chain and intake, production planning, batching products, manufacturing. SI took care to document our end-to-end processes and now, having completed the first phase of the integration, we can see all of this information in real-time.
“We’ve been particularly impressed with how well the implementation has been managed. Our SI project manager is really proactive; he has ensured that all the milestones have been met, and the integration project keeps moving forward to plan.”
Warehousing digitally controlled by SI’s WMS
As part of the infrastructure project, Regal has also invested in its estate. A new onsite warehouse is being built to accommodate up to 2,000 pallets, providing 18,000sq ft of extra space. Regal plans to convert its existing warehouse facilities into further factory operations, to expand its production lines.
As Absar explains. “When you have significant growth opportunities, you need to recognise how to best utilise space. So, as well as the new warehouse, we have also acquired a distribution centre that’s adjacent to our site, where we will be using SI’s WMS software.
“With SI onboard we can now concentrate on developing our business, safe in the knowledge that whenever we add more capabilities, the SI software will expand with us.
“Having the system running has already helped with scalability and allowed us to streamline our processes and practices, and plug any gaps that have been identified along the way. Essentially, we’re future proofing our business”.
Streamlining processes will provide “one version of the truth”
“But the biggest benefit has been the ‘one version of the truth’ SI gives us. We now have complete visibility; transparency of stock through the door, production planning, right through to despatch, allowing us to run even more smoothly.
“The past few months have been very challenging, planning-wise, as our product demand has increased three-fold during the COVID-19 crisis. We’ve had to increase both our production time and capacity just to keep up, and our suppliers have also stepped up to meet our raw material demands. It’s emphasised to us just how much the entire SI implementation will help once it goes live; with SI’s renowned “one version of the truth”, whenever a customer calls, we’ll know exactly what’s available to supply.
Software partner evaluation process
As part of the assessment process that Regal undertook before it started working with SI, Absar and his team spoke to some of SI’s customers and conducted an onsite visit to see the system in action. This was key to the business deciding to select SI as its integration partner.
As Absar explained: “We took time to evaluate other companies and software, and the visit really highlighted what we could expect from SI. Moreover, its food ERP modular solution really stood out as something robust, but flexible enough to grow with us.
“We also found that the SI team was also far more approachable and responsive to our needs. This responsiveness was reflected in the way its technical team documented our end-to-end processes and also identified additional areas that would be affected. Having our own SI project manager, ensured that the milestones on the agreed timeline were met, such as completing the product population stage.
Systems-wise, seeing is believing
“For us, if ever there was an element of doubt, meeting one of SI’s customers and seeing the system in action eradicated any concerns. In fact, we really related to the company we visited, in terms of what we wanted to achieve from the integration. We were impressed when we saw what the customer was achieving with the system, how it keeps them in check, and how fluid the processes ran with the software in place.”
Commenting on the project SI’s Sales Director, Richard Montgomery said: “SI’s delighted to be working with Regal Food Products on this ambitious project and it’s great to see how the implementation of our software is already reaping rewards for them. find out more about food ERP
“We are proud to partner with Regal Foods and, like we do for so many other well-established food manufacturers in the UK, SI is ready to support their business growth strategy through our food ERP software and industry expertise.”
With the first phase implementation completed, Regal Food Products is now moving onto the digital transformation of its QA traceability processes. “As we move up to paperless quality control, for further transparency, we’re also going to be implementing advanced, tailored reporting and analysis, visualised by SI’s real-time Active Dashboards,” explained Absar. “This means that whenever the auditors call, we’ll be ready; delivering results in a matter of a few minutes, not hours.
“Once complete, SI’s food ERP project will have integrated our entire infrastructure.”
Regal Food Products selects food ERP from SI (Systems Integration) after extensive evaluation of competitive systems. Bakery ERP and software systems.