News: BakePlan Software launches to focus on supermarket sector after RedBlack Software restructure

With M&S rollout and trials at other retailers, BakePlan forecasting solution gets life of its own.

SEPTEMBER 20, 2017, YORK, ENGLAND – RedBlack Software today announces a restructure that splits the company into two distinct corporate entities, RedBlack Software Ltd and BakePlan Software Ltd.

RedBlack Software Ltd will continue its mission to serve the independent craft bakery sector with its market-leading range of Cybake bakery management solutions. BakePlan Software’s focus is on the retail grocery and convenience store sectors across Europe with its BakePlan production forecasting system for in-store bakeries.

Jane Tyler, managing director of both companies, explains that the corporate restructure was prompted by a fork in the development of their software solutions. This became apparent during a successful project to improve availability and reduce waste at M&S’ in-store bakeries throughout the UK and Ireland.

Jane Tyler says: “It became plain that the needs of the large modern retail grocer diverged considerably from that of RedBlack’s core craft bakery customers. We therefore decided to give our BakePlan supermarket solution a life of its own. As well as attracting interest from outside investors, BakePlan is already undergoing trials with potential new users in this sector.”

BakePlan tells in-store bakery staff the best combination of products to bake at the right times during the day via tablets or mobiles. Using advanced data analytics and machine learning, BakePlan adjusts its suggestions according to the day’s trading patterns. At the same time as increasing availability, the system cuts waste and increases bakery section sales.

Jane Tyler, who is also the vice chair of the British Society of Baking industry association, says that major grocery retailers have large, complex systems that do not always cater well for the very specific needs of bakery departments that have a bake-off operation.

She says: “We find that there is rarely any provision for multi-wave planning to support a little-and-often baking model nor any practical means of capturing information about what has actually been baked. BakePlan is an easy way grocers can tackle availability and freshness, which are big differentiators in consumers’ minds, at the same time as working towards their commitments to cutting food waste.”

For more info, see the BakePlan website.

Jane Tyler
Jane Tyler

York software rolled out to all M&S in-store bakeries

A York-based software developer has cooked up a coup with the news that Marks & Spencer is to use its innovative system for predicting sales in all of its 534 in-store bakeries in the UK.

[Read more…]

Andrew Hitchon, The Press, 27/6/16

Marks & Spencer to cut bakery waste using predictive ordering software

Sales-based predictive ordering solution Cybake Instore will appear in all 534 of Marks & Spencer’s instore bakeries in the UK. Cybake Instore tells bakery staff the best combination of products to bake at the right times of the day…

[Read more – subscription required]

Planet Retail, 21/06/16

M&S rolls out Cybake Instore from RedBlack Software to over 500 in-store bakeries

M&S rolls out Cybake Instore from RedBlack Software to over 500 in-store bakeries

 JUNE 17, 2016, YORK, UK – M&S is rolling out RedBlack Software’s Cybake Instore sales-based predictive ordering solution to all of its 534 in-store bakeries in the UK.

Cybake Instore cuts waste and increases revenue by telling in-store bakery staff the best combination of products to bake at the right times of the day. The move follows successful trials in a selection of M&S stores last year.

Cybake Instore is cloud-based and integrates with M&S’s SAP ERP system. Instore takes historical sales data from M&S’s EPOS systems to calculate production waves throughout the day in a way that is not practical manually. Staff assumptions about consumer preferences are corrected and each production wave is optimised for potential sales.

As well as reducing waste in line with M&S’s Plan A commitments to sustainability, this ensures that high standards of freshness and quality are maintained and improved upon.

Lance Bennett, senior IT project manager at M&S, says that the retailer chose RedBlack Software because of its bakery sector expertise and agile approach to development.

Bennett says: “Following the proof of concept in five stores, we worked with RedBlack Software to enhance and extend Cybake Instore to a 28-store trial before starting a rollout to all stores.

“RedBlack have repeatedly proven themselves to be responsive and adaptable to our changing needs, including the rapid development of a mobile solution after changes to our hardware strategy.

“We have seen benefits in product availability and waste levels equal to or exceeding our business case across most stores and are now in the process to extending the solution to all of our in-store bakeries.”

M&S is widely acknowledged as an innovator in mobile technology. After trialling a number of options, M&S’s digital stores team chose ruggedised PDAs as the best devices for bakery staff to use Instore.

Cathy Paine, an M&S bakery specialist managing the rollout to its South London stores, says: “Instore is easy to use for our bakers on the PDAs. After a very small amount of time, even the less tech-savvy bakers were fully up to speed and using the solution without issues.”

Cybake Instore is part of RedBlack Software’s Cybake suite of bakery management software solutions. Bakeries and confectioners throughout the UK and Ireland rely on Cybake to control production and link their back offices to their shop floors, their stores, their deliveries and beyond.

Jane Tyler, managing director of RedBlack Software, says: “M&S has a clear strategy to make the very best use of its big data sets. Cybake Instore is a perfect example of an application that exploits this data to produce tangible benefits pretty much straight away.”

Tyler, who is also an executive committee member of the British Society of Baking, explains that RedBlack originally developed sales-based planning and ordering with its larger bakery chain customers.

She says: “Since we launched Cybake Instore as a stand-alone cloud application at April’s Foodex, it has sparked some heavyweight interest. I believe that’s partly because it applies to both in-store bakers that bake from scratch and to those that bake from frozen.

 “By guiding in-store bakeries through the day’s peaks and troughs in demand it means, for example, that staff don’t bake too much in the morning wave, so products are fresher throughout the day.”

M&S is using Cybake Instore to cut waste and improve product availability

For more information about Cybake Instore, see: http://cybakeinstore.co.uk

For more information about Cybake, see: http://cybake.co.uk