How to manage a vending business simply and with less time and without going crazy
There are two operators Atul and Swati. Atul has 12 machines and Swati has 6 machines to run.
Let me describe you Atul’s day. Atul is a vending machine operator and has 12 vending machines within a radius of 15km at 15 different offices and colleges. After filling his van from the warehouse (which is now his house’s basement). He starts his day at 8am as soon as the college opens to fill his machine number 1. He takes out the cash, and other items which he feels isn’t being sold much. He even cleans the machine in and out and makes a note on his diary about the products he has refilled. It takes him roughly 15min.
He reaches his next stop at around 8.45 and does the same in Machine number 2, which is located at a BPO, which works 24×7 and finds the machine to be almost empty with just 2 packets of namkeens. He feels sad seeing it as he must have lost sales due to unavailability of items in the vending machine. It repeats the process of taking out cash, cleaning the already cleaned machine and runs to the next machine which is 3km away. He is surprised to find the machine 90% filled. The office had an off day and now his next destination is 5km away and thus he goes to all 15 machines, check them fill them and returns back home around 8 pm, unloads his van and rests for the day.
Can include: One machine had issues and Atul came to know about it after visiting and got his time wasted to get hold of the mechanic.
On the other hand, Swati has 16 machines within a radius of 15km at 16 different offices and colleges. She starts her day by opening her dashboard and checking for inventory status of each of her machines. She found that 8 machines had enough inventory for the day and do not need to refill them. She plans her route for the rest of the machines, avoiding all needless destinations. After loading the required items in her van from the wholesaler, whom she had ordered as soon as she knew how much will she be requiring today. She reaches the first machine around 9 am, checks the demand of items in her dashboard and refills what sells faster. As her machine is cashless- she already knows how much she has earned and the money has been deposited in her bank account automatically. She leaves in 5min and reaches the next destination to refill her products. After completing her work, she reaches home around 1 pm having the rest of the day for her other work as the vending machine is passively generating business for her.
Can include: Swati got notification as soon as one of her machines was down and got it fixed instantly with her dealer, as the machine could be remotely controlled
Operations of the vending machine operator can be huge if all in done manually. We can drastically ease off with inventory management and cashless solutions.