Haphazard order taking to the information mix-up, hassles of billing to the intricacy of delivery management, the apparent simple-looking online tiffin service business can actually bear a lot of nuisance in its order management process. Let us have a look at what they can be.
The noble idea of delivering home-cooked healthy meals to those who don’t have the provision of regular cooking or cannot do so due to constraint in time is the very foundation of the tiffin service businesses. And as goes with the concept, many tiffin providers start their business from the home set-up and with limited manpower. Also due to the popularity of the service, they soon bag up several orders and it is then when the real challenges come. Managing orders, especially the subscription orders as per the demand of this business model, can be really hectic. There can be several scopes of errors when handled manually and which in turn gradually start dwindling the order numbers.
PROBLEMS OF MANUAL ORDER MANAGEMENT IN TIFFIN BUSINESSES
Haphazard order registering- Generally, the tiffin businesses begin their journeys by providing meals to the known contacts who place orders simply via messages and phone calls. Registering two, four, six orders, in the beginning, seems quite easy and manageable, but the problems arise when the order numbers increase. Several people place orders at several different times and also via different modes of communication. Accumulating them in one place is actually another task and needless to say a very meticulous one. Any small mistake in taking down the order from one place to another can result in massive mishaps like delivering at the wrong time or at the wrong place or to the wrong person. And remember, tiffin services are meant to provide the actual meal of the day and not a fancy ordering from a restaurant. So in case of a mix-up, the customer can actually end up having no meal for that time of that day.
Information mix-up- A corollary of the previous point, the information mix-up can result in a mix-up with order deliveries. And that’s an unforgivable mistake, though for all services, but definitely for the tiffin services because of the very basic reason for their service to provide regular meals at doorsteps. However, a manual mistake in jotting down information is not so uncommon. And basically when a business runs with limited manpower and has several other tasks to look after, a wrong pick-up or wrong putting down of information cannot be blamed much.
Non-verified orders- This is a very ugly hassle, truly. An order is placed but while delivering the customer refuses to accept the same claiming that s/he hasn’t placed the order in the first place. It can be a very dishonest act or a down-graded joke played by someone else but the situation can be very uncomfortable for both the parties. Especially the small businesses who generally agree with delivery before payment stand a chance of such risks. Unverified orders can leave a sour taste in the mind of the person towards the tiffin service provider and also can be a discouraging event for the business owner.
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Hassles of billing and invoicing- Billing and invoicing is a specially difficult area for the tiffin businesses mainly because of its subscription-based business model. In this model, the order is generally booked for a longer period of time with advanced payments. Now since this is a regular food ordering, it needs to be taken into consideration that a customer can cancel his order for a day or more days or numbers of meals in a day, etc. There can be several permutations and combinations possible in which orders can get canceled which need to be either adjusted by increasing the order end date or by refunding to the wallet. Again, a customer’s taste can alter for a day and he can ask for a different meal type of either higher or lower price for a day or more days which again needs to be adjusted accordingly. Now think this whole scenario with respect to 30 customers. Am I able to come clear to my point of calling billing and invoicing a hassle for tiffin businesses?
Multi-location delivery– An important part of order and tiffin management software is delivery. And again this may not be a very easy deal for a tiffin business much unlike any restaurant or cloud kitchen. But why is it so? At tiffin, business is primarily committed to serving regular meals to the customers. A customer can eat his lunch at the office and dinner at home. Some other customers can take both at the offices. Some customers can actually subscribe for 4 meals a day to be delivered to four different locations. Managing this with a sizable customer base is not really an easy deal. Alternately, a business may never grow big and increase customers because of their incapability of handling orders and deliveries.
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If you run a tiffin business, do share with us your experience and journey in the comment section below. We would love to hear your inspiring story!