City Harvest London Fights Hunger with Flowfinity

City Harvest Logo

Region: Europe
Industry: Non-Profit
Function: Delivery tracking, Scheduling


The Challenge

City Harvest London is a non-profit organization that offers food rescue services to help feed the hungry. The organization picks up surplus food from local restaurants, grocery stores, and other partners, and redistributes it to 150 charities across the city.

Previously, City Harvest relied on paper and spreadsheets to manage all food pickups and deliveries for drivers. When the non-profit started expanding quickly, these inefficient processes were no longer sustainable. City Harvest went looking for a way to digitally transform its organization to boost productivity, gain better field insight, and ultimately, feed more people.

The organization evaluated several basic mobile forms and spreadsheets apps but none had the right features or flexibility to meet their needs.

"There were a lot of out-of-box solutions for food rescue available, but they were not sophisticated enough to solve our problems," said Laura Winningham, CEO, City Harvest London. "We wanted software that could easily adapt to what we do, to support our rapid growth."

The Solution

City Harvest selected Flowfinity because it allowed them to build business applications, customized to everyday requirements. Now, the organization is effectively managing all of its food redistribution services. Drivers are looking up route information and entering all required information about food pickups and deliveries on their mobile devices. At the office, staff are accessing all the data in real-time for reporting and analysis.

Now, City Harvest is doubling food deliveries from 6 to 12 tons per week, and expanding operations faster than ever before. The organization even achieved a record-high 22 tons during Christmas week.

"Flowfinity has been instrumental in our growth," said Winningham. "The software enables us to regularly update our mobile apps and workflows to perfectly match what we do, day in and day out."

Flowfinity is a no-code software platform, which allows City Harvest to easily add more features and mobile forms through a point-and-click interface. Updates are made with one click, and instantly published to all users across every platform.

Fast user adoption

New technology in the workplace can be challenging, which is why City Harvest wanted a tailored solution. Flowfinity allows City Harvest to build each business application with the end user in mind and make changes easily based on user feedback, increasing user adoption. Now, drivers are efficiently and properly inputting data at the end of each day, and the resulting data is consistent, accurate, and reliable.

"Our drivers adapted to the mobile applications really quickly," said Winningham. "We now trust our data. The mobile apps are easily accessible and user-friendly which motivate our drivers to input data routinely. We went from nothing to a wealth of information."

Optimizing routes for efficiency

City Harvest frequently receives last-minute food donations from clients. Since all of the delivery activity is now updated in real-time, office staff can retrieve each driver’s current job status and make route adjustments as needed. Drivers are then notified directly through the mobile app and adapt right away. This ability is crucial for City Harvest as ad hoc tasks make up 20% of the driver’s day.

"We can easily optimize each driver’s route," said Winningham. "Changes are made on the fly so we can stay agile and accommodate more donations to expand our operations."

Gaining better insight about food impact

City Harvest is always proactively looking for new partners to help donate more food to the hungry. Previously when using paper and spreadsheets, it was more difficult to acquire new donors since City Harvest did not have an easy way to consolidate data and provide statistics about the impact of food donations. Now, reports are instantly produced from a centralized database that detail when and how much food got picked up, where it went, and how it was put to use. As a result, new partners are coming on board and existing ones are donating even more.

"Our donors are blown away by the information," said Winningham. "Not only are we collecting more accurate field data, we’re getting better use of it by showing donors where their food is going and the big impact they’re making."

 

The mobile apps are easily accessible and user-friendly which motivate our drivers to input data routinely. We went from nothing to a wealth of information.

Laura Winningham

CEO

City Harvest London

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