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  • Woods Foodservice

    “Our entire operation is built on a highly responsive service which is impossible to provide without the right information. The reports from Swords are critical.”

Customers / Wholesale Distribution

Swords software has supported business growth and increased turnover for the wholesaler Woods Foodservice.

Wholesale Case Study – Woods Foodservice


Woods Foodservice caters for a highly demanding customer base, delivering dry food supplies to the top end restaurant trade in and around London. Superior service drives the business, together with Swords, the delivered wholesale solution from Sanderson. Woods is a long term user of Swords and has continually added new modules to meet evolving customer needs and take advantage of new business opportunities.

The business brief:

To offer unparalleled customer service levels, improve efficiency and remain competitive in a changing market, foodservice wholesaler Woods invested in Swords to lay the foundations for their future growth. Prior to Swords, Woods ran entirely on manual systems so the move to a new automated system was a major project, but it was to prove a great legacy. Woods saw its customer base change from hundreds of independent customers to three or four large firms. Without the Sanderson solution, Woods Foodservice would not have adapted to these market changes. “Swords helped us change the way we worked and gave us the means to develop and move in new directions,” says Managing Director Darren Labett.


“Swords helped us change the way we worked and gave us the means to develop and move in new directions.”

Click below to read the full case study or download it here. 


Our strategy:

In order to refocus the business for the future, Woods focused on offering unrivalled service to high end restaurants. Labett says, “We can’t compete with national suppliers on cost but we can beat them on service because we are flexible and willing to go the extra mile.” Woods Foodservice relaunched with a new service offering and new brand image, focused on the high end restaurants.

Delivering to London restaurants and the surrounding areas, many customers place orders in the early hours of the morning once their businesses have closed. Typically 150 orders are placed each night: the details are keyed into Swords and the required products immediately picked and en route to customers by 7am.

Fast turnaround like this relies on visibility, accuracy and confidence in the data. “We couldn’t manage without Swords and are confident we have the best solution for our company. Our business is built on service and we enjoy a good relationship with Sanderson who offer similarly high standards of service.”

Woods has continually added new system functionality as the demands of the business have evolved. A key addition was the email module. “This was a big breakthrough for us. It saved us an enormous amount of work: each customer has a statement every month, and previously this was produced manually, printed out and posted. It took over half a day to do them all – now we send statements three times a month at the touch of a button. It’s much faster and more efficient,” Labett says.

Woods relies on reports from Swords for information on stock levels, purchases and sales. “More than half our orders come in over night for immediate despatch; there’s no time to bring in more supplies for the client’s order. Our entire operation depends on accurate business information – the reports from Swords are critical.”

The results:

Summing up, Darren Labett said; For Woods Foodservice, Sanderson provides much more than business critical software. It provides full peace of mind. “Like us, Sanderson provides a superb service and great value for money. Sanderson often goes beyond what is contracted – and expected – to help us resolve a problem.”

Woods Foodservice has evolved to ensure continued success. And, combined with its outstanding products and exceptional service, Swords is a critical ingredient for profitable growth.

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