Are you looking for a new television for the Super Bowl?

January 17th, 2020

In the past, everyone was looking to get an HD television with 1080p resolution, but now we have 4k and 8k televisions!

 

 

Today’s post is by Troy Lowe; Vice President of Development at SafeSourcing.

Well it’s almost time for the Super Bowl and that means that a lot of people are starting to shop around for a new television to watch the big game. Back in the day, everyone was looking to get an HD television with 1080p resolution, but now we have 4k and 8k televisions. The higher resolutions provide more pixels on the screen creating a higher quality image. A 1080p television has 1,920 by 1080 pixels, a 4k television has 3,840 by 2,160 pixels and an 8k television has 7,680 by 4,320 pixels. So a 4k television will have 4 times the amount of pixels as a 1080p and an 8k television will have 16 times more pixels than a 1080p. Now that 8k televisions are available you may be asking yourself, do I need an 8k television, I just upgraded all my televisions to 4k not that long ago. The answer to that question is probably not. The 8k televisions are more expensive and there currently is almost no 8k media content available. So if you have a 1080p television the wise move for right now is to go with a 4k television.

It took video companies a few years to get 4k video standardized for streaming and physical media. So you can assume that 8k will not be available for a few years from now. If you are a cord cutter, then you may know that the over the air channels that you are receiving via an antenna are currently broadcasted in primarily high definition which is either 720p or 1080i. The over the air channels do not even support the 4k format currently and it may be a while for this to occur because most of the equipment is not capable of distributing the signals.

If you are looking to purchase a new television for the big game I would suggest looking into a 4k. If you are looking to purchase new television and would like help researching available options, feel free to contact SafeSourcing.   We can gather all the necessary information for you and help you decide which one meets your needs. If you would like more information on how SafeSourcing can help you, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service representative.  We have an entire team ready to assist you today.

 

 

 

Busting Myths About Milk

January 14th, 2020

At one time, buying milk was simple.

 

 

Today’s blog is by Gayl Southard, Administrative Assistant at SafeSourcing.

At one time, buying milk was simple. Your local dairy used to deliver it right to your doorstep.

Today, however, we have nonfat, low-fat or whole milk. There are also soy milk, almond milk, hemp, or oat milk. Do you want cow milk or goat milk? With or without lactose? Raw or pasteurized? Plain or flavored? There is controversy as to which drinks can even be called milk.

 Christopher Gardner, Ph.D., a Stanford Nutritionist Scientist, is working hard to clear up some of these myths.   Most of us grew up believing milk was good for us. It built strong bones! It was considered a source of calcium, a factor for good bone health. However, there are countries such as Japan and India where the country is predominately lactose intolerant and milk consumption is low and so is the rate of hip fractures. Many of these cultures also do more weight-bearing activities than Americans. Gardner advises that people are better off on relying on physical activity to build strong bones than consuming milk to strengthen bones. Gardner further advised milk can improve bone density, but whether it prevents bone fractures remains debatable.

Milk can be a healthier alternative to soda. The popular vanilla and chocolate plant-based milks are often laden with sugar. It is important to check the nutrition labeling. Gardner stated, “The nutrition label also allows you to compare the amount of fats, protein, carbs and vitamins in each type of milk. For example, the plant-based milks generally don’t have saturated fat like cow’s milk so they don’t raise LDL-cholesterol as much as dairy milk, but they do have about the same amount as calcium,’ he said. And soy milk has the same amount of protein as dairy milk, but almond milk has much less protein.”1

Another milk misconception is that 2 percent milk means 2 percent of calories are from fat, but it’s 2 percent of the weight (which is mainly water) and 35 percent of the calories. Whole milk has nearly 50 percent of calories from fat, and 1 percent milk has about 20 percent. The old belief was whole milk made you fat and skim milk helped you lose weight was refuted by Harvard in a study that followed over 100,000 nurses over 30 years including their dietary changes. The study revealed switching from whole milk and skim milk did not make any weight change.

For more information on how SafeSourcing can help your procurement efforts, or on our Risk

Free trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service Representative. We have an entire team ready to assist you today.

Citations:

1 Jennifer Huber, Stanford Medicine Scooe, 8/14/2918

 

Tis the Season

January 10th, 2020

That is until the Bowl Season and Superbowl Extended it! So it still Tis!

 

 

Today’s post is written by Ivy Ray, Senior Procurement Specialist at SafeSourcing Inc.

It is still that time of year again…‘tis the season for retail wars! The holiday time heightens the battle of brick-and-mortar stores vs online retail. Toys R Us is even making a comeback after closing its doors a couple of years ago. They have recently opened two permanent store locations, one in Houston and another in New Jersey, with plans to open 10 more store in 2020, complete with sensors in the ceilings that will monitor traffic patterns and shopper cadence.

I still enjoy taking a leisure trip to the mall during the holiday season, just to enjoy the decorations and do some window shopping. I may even purchase a few items if I find a good bargain or two. My primary shopping is done online and I’ve also taken advantage of purchasing online for in-store pick-up.

Some customers prefer brick-and-mortar shopping for the ability to physically interact with an item before buying, and for the immediate gratification of being able to take the purchases with you instead of waiting for them to be shipped. There are others who prefer online shopping because of the ability to compare pricing and find the best possible deals, as well as the added convenience of not having to drive, park, or stand in lines at the checkout counter.

The best of both worlds is the option to purchase online pick-up at the local store. This allows for price comparison and you are assured that the item is in stock before you drive to the retail location.

There are still deals to be had and sales to take advantage of. There is room for everyone and there are so many options available for shoppers to take advantage of whichever experience they prefer. Have a safe and enjoyable holiday season, and happy shopping!

For more information on how SafeSourcing can assist you in exploring your procurement solutions for your business efforts, or on our Risk Free trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service Representative. We have an entire team ready to assist you today.

We look forward to your comments.

 

 

Milk Industry

January 9th, 2020

The US Milk Industry has been struggling.

 

 

Today’s blog is by Margaret Stewart, Director of HR and Administration at SafeSourcing Inc.

The US milk industry has been struggling and two large milk companies have recently filed for bankruptcy. Borden Dairy Company recently filed bankruptcy and Dean Foods filed for bankruptcy in November 2019. Both companies have suffered losses and lower milk consumption from as far back as 2015 is believed to be the cause.

Many believe the decline in milk consumption comes from a better understanding of nutrition and the amount of other drinks available today that provide nutrients. Milk was once believed to be the healthiest drink and people were encouraged to drink several glasses every day. Now, people can get the same calcium and vitamin D from juices and many other drinks, like juice, protein shakes, and milk alternatives. In addition, many people turned away from milk due to the added growth hormones given to cows to increase their milk production. While the hormones are not used much anymore, it still led to many people becoming vegetarian or vegan, furthering the decline in milk consumption.

With these two recent filings from Borden and Dean, we can expect the cost of milk to rise as supplies go down. While other dairy products are still doing well, like yogurt and cheese, we may even see those prices rise, too. The dairy industry as a whole, though, will likely struggle unless milk consumption rises.

For more information on how SafeSourcing can help your procurement efforts, or on our Risk Free trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service Representative. We have an entire team ready to assist you today.

References:

  1. http://safesourcing.com/ContactUs/tabid/60/language/en-US/Default.aspx
  2. https://www.cnn.com/2020/01/06/business/borden-dairy-bankruptcy/index.html
  3. https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2017/05/16/528460207/why-are-americans-drinking-less-cows-milk-its-appeal-has-curdled

 

 

What’s in a name?

January 8th, 2020

Cheese is a dairy product derived from milk that is produced in a wide range of flavors….

 

 

Today’s Post is by Eli Razov, Senior Account Manager at SafeSourcing, Inc.

Cheese is a dairy product derived from milk that is produced in a wide range of flavors, textures, and forms by coagulation of the milk protein casein. It comprises proteins and fat from milk, usually the milk of cows, buffalo, goats, or sheep. During production, the milk is usually acidified, and by adding the enzyme rennet, causes coagulation. The solids are separated and pressed into final form. Some cheeses have mold on the rind, the outer layer, or throughout. Most cheeses melt at cooking temperature.

A lot of cheeses are named after their points of origin—Cheddar, Roquefort, and Colby are named after places in England, France, and Wisconsin, respectively. Other cheese names are a bit more complicated. Below are some of the more commonly known cheeses and their “origin stories”.

COTTAGE CHEESE

It’s the most familiar and commonly consumed form of cheese curds (at least in the United States). What are curds? Coagulated chunks of milk proteins that came together due to the addition or presence of an acid, such as rennet (which naturally occurs in sheep stomachs) or vinegar. Curd based cheeses date back to ancient times, but cottage cheese as we know it, in name and form, originates in 1830s England, when dairy farmers made curd cheese in their homes, or cottages, with dairy waste left over from making other products elsewhere on the farm, such as butter.

MONTEREY JACK

This mild, semi-hard white cheese is only partially named after its birthplace. In the mid-19th century, Franciscan friars stationed in central coastal California (near the settlement of Monterey) created the bland cousin of Cheddar. That’s when Scottish immigrant and entrepreneur, David Jack, entered the picture. He came to California in the 1840s to work as a military contractor (among other things) and got so rich that he bought up most of the land in Monterey County, including the dairies that were by that time producing the friars’ Monterey cheese. He decided to nationally market the cheese with his own name attached, first as Jack’s Cheese, and then the classier sounding Monterey Jack.

MOZZARELLA

Mozzarella is as Italian as the thing to which it most often contributes: pizza. In the Neapolitan dialect (as in from Naples, where pizza has a rich history) of Italian, mozza means “to cut.” That reflects how mozzarella is made. Cheesemakers mozza, or rather cut, curds and shape them into balls, which is how traditional mozzarella is sold.

CHEEZ WHIZ

This shelf-stable (before opening) cheese-like brick is a famous example of processed cheese. When it was first mass-marketed, Kraft named the melty, queso necessity “Velveeta” to imply that it was smooth and silky…just like velvet (but with a far more pronounced cheesy taste).

With so many different styles and origins of cheeses there is bound to be one that fits your tastes. With SafeSourcing’s online RFx Tool, we can help you source the cheese(s) you want!

For more information on how SafeSourcing can assist you or on our “Risk Free” trial program, please contact SafeSourcing  we have an entire team waiting to assist you today

Citation:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cheese

How can I reduce my chances of being hacked?”

January 7th, 2020

Recently there was a news story about a hacker taking over someone’s home security camera!

 

 

Today’s post is by Troy Lowe; Vice President of Development at SafeSourcing Inc.

Recently there was a news story about a hacker taking over someone’s home security camera and harassing them through the two-way talk functionality.   This is quite ironic considering we put cameras in place to help us feel a sense of security within our home or business. Although the odds of this happening to you are very slim, this type of hacking is something that can be done within minutes for an experienced hacker. There are numerous ways that a hacker can gain access to your camera. One of the most common ways hackers access the cameras is by connecting to the camera and trying the default username and password. When camera systems are shipped, they are commonly setup with a default username and password that should be changed during setup. A novice user setting up the camera system may not know the implications of not creating a new secure password for the default user, thereby leaving the system open to vulnerable attacks. Unfortunately it is very difficult to know if your system has been hacked, but one potential red flag could be sluggishness or degraded performance when using the system. If you are setting up a new camera system and want to protect the system from hacks, you can make it more difficult for a hacker by doing the following things:

  • Create strong password for all users – This can be done by making long passwords that        contain a mix of characters both upper and lowercase.
  • Secure your wireless network – This can be done by changing the default SSID, turning off guest networking and using encryption on the router.
  • Update the software – Software updates sometimes contain fixes and enhancements to help against vulnerabilities.
  • Close any unnecessary ports – The less ports available, the less vulnerable you are to attacks.
  • Test Your Security – You will want to test all of the setting changes and make sure that they have been saved correctly.

If you are looking to purchase new network devices and would like help researching available options, feel free to contact SafeSourcing.   We can gather all the necessary information for you and help you decide which one meets your needs.

If you would like more information on how SafeSourcing can help you, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service representative.  We have an entire team ready to assist you today and look forward to your comments.

 

 

 

 

 

The Importance of Double Checking Your Work

January 6th, 2020

We check your specifications to insure accuracy and offer advice more carefully than your own team might!

 

 

Today’s post is by Gayl Southard, Administrative Consultant at SafeSourcing, Inc.

Recently I was in the market to replace my two front tires. I had been to the tire store a year prior and was advised to replace two tires and rotate the other two tires. I was told that the new tires that were to be replaced were the going to be the same tires that were on my car. The work was done and I never gave any thought to the tires that had been replaced. Well it turns out, my car had run-flat tires and the two tires that were replaced were not! All four tires are both made by the same manufacturer.

When the gentlemen came out to look at my tires, he asked to see my spare. I opened the trunk and realized I had no spare because they were run-flats and a spare is not needed. He told me he noticed right away I had run-flats on the front and regular tires on the back. Thankfully, I never had an incident with a flat or a blow out before discovering that the tire store put the wrong tires on my car. How can the front desk person and the actual installer not notice that the wrong tires were sold to me and installed? I elevated my concern to the store manager and was given a significant credit for the two tires that were put on in error. I told him my concern was that two of his employees signed off on these tires – the wrong tires!

What is a run-flat tire? A run-flat tire is a pneumatic vehicle tire that is designed to resist the effects of deflation when punctured, and to enable the vehicle to continue to be driven at reduced speeds – under 56 mph – and for limited distances – generally between 10 mi to 50 mi, depending on the type of tire. Wikipedia

How would the average person be able to identify a run-flat tire? Identify run-flat tires by carefully inspecting the tires for specific markings. Turn on the flashlight. Scan the sidewall of the tire. Look for markings such as “ZP,” “RFT,” “SEAL” or an image of a flat tire with an arrow pointing away from it. Use the magnifying glass to pick out these indices, if necessary. Sounds pretty tricky if you ask me. I don’t think the average person would know to do this.

SafeSourcing strives to give excellent customer service. We check your specifications to insure accuracy and offer advice more carefully than your own team might.  If you would like more information on how SafeSourcing can help you, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service representative.  We have an entire team ready to assist you today.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The short answer: yes. Run-flat tires and regular tires that are the same numeric size will have the same physical dimensions, and can fit properly on the same wheels. … You should have some sort of roadside assistance that you can call if you have a larger puncture.Jul 29, 2014

 

 

SafeSourcing strives to give excellent customer service. If you would like more information on how SafeSourcing can help you, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service representative.  We have an entire team ready to assist you today.

Bargain Shopping

January 3rd, 2020

Have you found any great deals?

 

 

 

Today’s blog is by Margaret Stewart, Director of HR and Administration at SafeSourcing Inc.

If you are like many people today, when you shop, you try to find a good deal. For regular shoppers, we may even be able to tell you the best places to buy certain things. For example, milk is usually the least expensive at your local grocery stores while a car part may likely be cheapest finding online. Unfortunately, the only way to learn which places have the best prices is to check and check often. If one store typically has an item you need at a good price, it is important to regularly check other places because they could be having a sale or running a deal on that item. For instance, children’s shoes are something many parents buy pretty regularly. Typically someone may visit a few large retailers to see what they have and for what prices, but always being on the lookout can lead to finding a great deal you never expected.

This mode of bargain shopping – keeping an eye on the market and looking at multiple places – can also be applied to your organization. This is where SafeSourcing can help, too. If your business typically needs a lot of copy paper, it is a good idea to know what places you can buy from and obtain prices from those places. SafeSourcing can help, or in some cases take the lead, on finding the supplies or services your organization needs (especially finding which things most people are overpaying for), finding who can provide those things, obtaining pricing for those things, and presenting everything back to you quickly and clearly. This allows you to continue focusing on your business and can save a lot of money without exerting much time.

For more information on how SafeSourcing can help your procurement efforts, or on our Risk

Free trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service Representative. We have an entire team ready to assist you today.

 

2019 SafeSourcing Top 10 List

January 2nd, 2020

A look at 10 of SafeSourcing’s top moments in 2019

 

 

Todays post is from Dave Wenig, Sr. Vice President of Sales and Services at SafeSourcing Inc.

It’s the end of the year and that means many of your favorite entertainment and news sources are publishing their top 10 lists for the year. In that same spirit, I’ve pulled together a list of my Top 10 SafeSourcing moments in 2019. Let’s get right into the top 10.

10. SafeSourceIt™ Event View now features a graph view. Using this view, SafeSourcing customers have a powerful way to monitor their RFQ Events in real time at a high level that delivers valuable insights.

9. Bottled Water RFQ Events. SafeSourcing customers hosted many RFQ Events for bottled water savings between 16% and 23%. This represents an increase in category savings versus 2018.

8. Waste Removal continues its streak. Waste Removal has historically been a wildly successful category for SafeSourcing customer and that held true in 2019 with the average savings holding steady at about 35%.

7. Reruns won big. SafeSourcing customers that held rerun RFQs at the end of their contract terms beat expectations significantly. Typical expectations for rerun RFQs is about 50% of the savings from the initial RFQ Event.

6. Snow Removal and Landscaping. 2019 was a big year for customers hosting Snow Removal and Landscaping RFQ Events. Often overlooked as a competitive category, SafeSourcing’s customers saw between 16% and 42% savings. Wow.

5. Mobile Phones and Broadband were big. We noticed a huge increase in customers eager to explore their options for mobile service plans and broadband. Good for them, because each of them was very successful.

4. Flyer Distribution (Retailers). Nearly all of our larger retail customers throughout North America sourced their flyer distribution and uncovered savings. In some markets, customers often consider this impossible to source competitively and see it as a monopoly. We disagree and so do our customers who benefited from our assistance.

3. Incumbent margins. 2019 was a year full of focus on incumbent margins. We noticed a fantastic trend where incumbent vendors were awarded business after RFQs at a higher rate than is expected. This is a win for the incumbent who gets to keep their business at rates more in line with the market, and a win for the customer who gets the best pricing available and does not have to go through the process of changing vendors.

2. SafeSourcing in the Top 10. SafeSourcing was recognized as one of the world’s top auction application companies by CIO magazine. Link here.

1. Our customers and partners. We’re truly lucky to have some of the best customers and partners that any business could ask for. 2019 has been a fantastic year of working closely together with all of you. We’ve enjoyed the time spend and our visits and it has been our pleasure to work with you. If you’ve worked with us on a category named on this list, I’m sure you would agree on its inclusion. I look forward to working with all of our current customers and partners and can’t wait to make new connections in 2020. Thank you for an excellent 2019 and see you in 2020.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my picks for the Top 10 list. I’d be interested to hear what I missed and whether you agree with my ranking.

For more information, please contact SafeSourcing.

 

 

Twas the day after Christmas!

December 26th, 2019

If there is a poem for The night before Christmas, there has to be one for the day after. ENJOY.

 

Twas the day after Christmas

When all through the land

People were still smiling and happy

Because their holiday had gone just as planned

With malls to be visited and unwanted gifts to return

And exercise to be done and all those extra calories to burn

Most offices are still quiet as their staff s celebrate

While others rush to close out their years business before it’s too late

There’s a new year  coming full of lots of new stuff

We all hope with this congress life doesn’t get any more tough

For businesses public and private and individuals too

Who would all rather focus on what’s exciting and new

Like jobs and raises and a positive end of year review

So on Trump and Pelosi with congress hopefully in tow

Let’s get back to Washington

And end this year with some glow.

Happy Holidays from Safesourcing