FTS specialise in the tendering of food and associated catering goods used within the UK’s education sector with a particular focus on the Independent School market. We are experts is the unique requirements of modern school food purchasing and look to negotiate, through a stringent competitive tender exercise, the very best prices which are fixed for a 12 month period providing you with the ultimate budgeting control in this increasingly important area.
With the potential of continuing tough economic times ahead and food inflation outstripping fee increases every school is looking at ways that it can either reduce costs or improve value without affecting quality.
FTS has been launched to address these requirements and is the only company that specialises solely in impartial advisory food tendering within the education sector.
Our philosophy is simple; 'let us do all the specialist hard work for you whilst you simply enjoy the benefits of the savings we generate'.
Our support, commitment and expertise will ultimately provide you with complete peace of mind that you are receiving the best produce and products at the best possible prices.
You will save money without affecting quality; in fact in many cases our tender specifies better quality products!
You can demonstrate financial best practice due diligence to your Governing Body in this high purchase volume budget line.
We will save you weeks of work in this complex and specialist area; we do all the groundwork and organise the entire tender exercise on your behalf, including visiting supplier premises.
We know what 'good prices' look like from other tender exercises.
You can risk transfer food inflation increases through having fixed prices for a 12 month period.
We provide easy to evaluate tender outcome summaries making supplier selection as simple as possible.
We monitor prices, product quality, service delivery and liaise with suppliers throughout the term of the agreement.
We set tough supplier contractual terms that guarantee that you receive the prices, quality and service that is agreed at the tender stage.
You reduce the possibility of fraud as all prices are set and agreed through the tender.
FTS is the only impartial consultancy company in the market providing this service.
Having spent the last 5 years working with independent schools we have been asked on numerous occasions to benchmark their food prices.
Through these exercises it quickly became clear that not only were many schools paying greatly inflated food and sundry prices but that there was no formal impartial advisory company in the marketplace to negotiate the best possible prices on behalf of the school.
An interesting trend soon appeared... schools would be charged many different prices by the same supplier for the same product dependent on how proactive the school Catering Manager was on price awareness, price monitoring and negotiation. Prices for identical products can sway and vary significantly between schools by upwards of 20%.
Liz Milverton wished to address this area and genuinely support schools with saving money by negotiating and fixing the best possible prices for their food. We have a significant presence in the market place and we can also ensure fairness or pricing across the sector.
Liz is the driving force behind the mechanics of the food tendering service and has many years of experience in this discipline.
Liz Milverton has supported the education sector for over eight years as a specialist in food procurement using EU Competitive Tendering, which follows all OJEU rules and regulations for food contracts.
A member of the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply, Liz most recently worked as the Food Team Contracts Manager at The Consortium and previously held the role of Contracts and Purchasing Manager at SCS, the catering and cleaning arm of Somerset County Council.
With no prior systems in place, Liz set up all of the food contracts for SCS through the EU Open Procedure Tendering process. Following the successful award of the contracts, Liz ensured delivery of best value and quality using robust contract management systems.
Liz’s hands-on operational experience includes the senior role of Business Manager at SCS. Along with her team of Area Managers, Liz was responsible for multi-site catering and cleaning contracts covering a large geographical area in Somerset and Bristol.
We are confident that the cost of our support will be self funded many times over within the savings that formally tendering your food supplies for the first time will generate. In fact we are that confident that if they aren’t then we will not charge you for our support.
To discuss our terms please call Liz Milverton on 07944 198100 to make a free no obligation appointment, or alternative email Liz on firstname.lastname@example.org or complete our online enquiry form. Please be assured of our absolute confidentiality in all matters at all times.
How confident are you that the following isn't happening at your school?
What are your terms and conditions with your current suppliers? Can they just increase their prices at any time without even informing you?
We come across this issue and others regularly including suppliers changing product pack sizes or product codes, or charging for split case items and/or minimum delivery charges after agreeing core prices which often go unnoticed and lead to unforeseen cost increases.
On occasion we have also encountered fraudulent activity directly between school suppliers and the school caterer. This form of fraud can be difficult to detect as back payments off invoice, reward points or products go directly to employee’s accounts or homes and never pass through the school's books.
By tendering your food supplies annually, combined with our regular monitoring you will have the reassurance that these practices never happen.
If you don't find the answer to your question below then do please call our office on 01743 246040
Q: Can we keep our current suppliers?
A: Yes - FTS can invite your existing suppliers as well as inviting new suppliers to tender. After analysis of each tender catagory, we will recommend the suppliers who offer the best value for money without compromising service or product quality.
Q: Can we choose suppliers to invite to tender?
A: Yes - FTS engage with its clients at all times to ensure that they are happy with the chosen suppliers prior to inviting them to tender.
Q: Can we invite local suppliers?
A: Yes - FTS works with local, regional and national suppliers to ensure the product offering meets our clients specific needs.
Q: How can I be sure the suppliers used will offer value for money?
A: FTS will monitor prices and the quality of the supplier products and serivce to ensure that they remain competitive throughout the contract period, giving our clients piece of mind knowing that the tendered prices remain competitive throughout.
Q: How do we know that our food will be safe?
A: We will only recommend suppliers who are accredited and have passed the FTS Supplier Quality Audit process.
Q: What food categories do you cover?
A: All the food and sundry items required to run a busy school kitchen including Groceries & Provisions, Chilled, Frozen, Fresh Meat, Fruit & Vegetables, Bread & Milk, Fish & Seafood.
Q: How long do we have to sign-up for with FTS?
A: You will not be tied into a lengthy contract, we enter into a 24 month agreement to ensure that all tenders provide our customers with value for money by monitoring price and quality against the tender specification.
Q: Can I just commission a competitive tender and not the monitoring?
A: FTS manages the competitive tendering and on-going monitoring service as a package to ensure that our clients are protected from price increases introduced by suppliers post tender. We will, as part of our monitoring service, ensure that any products supplied under your contract meet the quality of products specified in the tender document, that delivery windows are adhered to and that the service is not compromised in any way.
Q: What happens if the chosen suppliers don’t deliver to the tender specification? (i.e. poor quality products or constant late deliveries)
A: Each supplier will be assessed and monitored against the Service Level Agreements detailed in the tender specification. FTS monitor supplier performance against this SLA and have set procedures in place for regular poor performance or breach of contract.
Q: Do you provide a free no obligation first meeting?
A: Yes; from this first initial meeting we will provide you with a proposal detailing all aspects of the service. Our charges are transparent with no hidden costs.
FTS Document Portal
Return deadline for this tender is midday Friday 0000000 2018.