Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

What’s in a name?

Wednesday, January 8th, 2020

 

 

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?”

Tuesday, January 7th, 2020

 

 

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

Monday, January 6th, 2020

 

 

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.

Twas the day after Christmas!

Thursday, December 26th, 2019

 

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

We wish you all a very Merry Christmas 2019 and the hope for Peace on Earth.

Wednesday, December 25th, 2019

If you can indentify these folks below, We hope they grant you and yours all of your wishes.
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Happy Thanksgiving Weekend 2019 from SafeSourcing. Who were the Pilgrims?

Thursday, November 28th, 2019

 

Todays post is by Ronald D. Southard, CEO at SafeSourcing Inc.

According to the Mayflower Society, as history has evolved, any of the 102 Mayflower passengers who arrived in Plymouth on the Mayflower and survived the initial hardships is now considered a Pilgrim with no distinction being made on the basis of their original purposes for making the voyage.

The Mayflower Pilgrims and their fellow travelers were authors of the first true governing document created in a New World colony. The Mayflower Compact is considered to have set the stage for the Constitution of the United States.

These were the same pilgrims that were responsible for the holiday we celebrate today called Thanksgiving.

We wish you and yours a peaceful and happy extended holiday weekend.

Buying Ahead

Tuesday, October 15th, 2019

 

 

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

Timing matters when it comes to buying the things you need or want. For instance, the hottest week in the summer may have some of the highest prices for air conditioning repair or the week after Halloween is often a low cost time to buy candy. There are some items that take a bit more research than the seasonal ones mentioned above, though. Following stock prices, market trends, and global to local news often provides the best insight into what prices may do. For example, if a region of the country that yields high amounts of corn has been devastated with drought or floods, their yield will likely not be as high as initially expected. Even further than that, if the yield is lower or the quality is lessened, every product that uses that corn will be affected. This can include things like feed, which can in turn affect livestock. One product’s price greatly affects all those other products reliant upon it.

Determining the right time to buy something doesn’t always have to be so complicated. For instance, you can buy your kid’s Christmas presents throughout the year as you happen to see a good deal (which I highly recommend) and you can not only have your shopping done ahead of the season and avoid the crowds and the rush of people, but also can spend less than you might had you waited. For more complex products and the ideal time to purchase, try using a procurement professional, like SafeSourcing. They likely have already sourced the product or service you are looking for and already know the ins and outs of it, helping you not only save time, but spend less money and less effort.

While there normally is no guarantee that you are receiving the best pricing, this is actually something SafeSourcing can do. We can guarantee that through us you can save more money on the things you already purchase or you don’t pay us (Risk Free!). No matter what items or services you are looking for, we can save your more. We can even help you determine which categories and items would bring in the most savings and when the right time to source them is.

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.

 

 

 

A Sourcing Diatribe you should read!

Wednesday, September 11th, 2019

 

 

Todays post is by Ron Southard, CEO at SafeSourcing Inc.

Here’s the diatribe to tell you why they don’t.

Example: Your finance department in reviewing current costs looks at your waste management costs and discovers that they have gone up significantly over the last two years. They call your Category Manager (if you have one) in order to ask why? The answer they get back is that in discussions with your current vendor, their costs have gone up significantly. Your finance department representative asks for examples. The answer he/she gets, is as follows, “I don’t know, but I’ll reach out and ask”.

Alternative Example: Your finance department in reviewing current costs looks at your waste management costs and discovers that they have gone up significantly over the past two years. They call your Sourcing provider SafeSourcing Inc. (if they are) in order to ask why? The answer they get back is that in discussions with your current vendor, their costs have gone up significantly. Your finance department representative asks SafeSourcing for examples. The answer he/she receives is as follows.

There are several reasons. The first is that 2 years ago the Chinese were the largest importers of recycled materials, specifically plastics and papers. At the time they were importing approximately 15M metric tons. Today they are importing approximately 7M metric tons. This has gone from a revenue producing opportunity for suppliers to a cost. Additionally, there is a shortfall of drivers in the US that has caused demand for their skills to increase accordingly. As a result, all freight hauling focused companies have experienced a shortfall of drivers and an increase in costs for the drivers that they do hire.

Additionally, diesel prices in 2017 were lower than they are today. While these prices have eroded somewhat (about 6%) between 2018 to 2019, they are still not at the low levels they were in 2017. There are additional areas to also consider like new equipment that are also higher based on demand. Now can I provide you with a strategy as to how we (SafeSourcing) can mitigate these costs going forward and maybe even rain them in some?

I know all executives have had these types of frustrating conversations internally as well as with your suppliers. I also know that SafeSourcing regularly provides these types of answers and reviews across hundreds of categories for our customers. It is the precise reason that our average savings across all categories during the last 2 years is greater than 24%.

While the above is a specific example, what can you tell me about your freight costs, supplies costs, commodity costs, construction costs, equipment costs, items for resale costs etc. Probably not as much as SafeSourcing can tell you. Give us a call and find out.

For more information regarding SafeSourcing and how we can help you with your sourcing, or regarding our Risk Free Trial Programplease contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service representative, you’ll be glad you did! We have an entire team ready to assist you today.

We look forward to and appreciate your comments.

Banning the Ban

Wednesday, August 21st, 2019

 

 

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

It’s been almost a year since my previous blog, “Zero Waste Initiative”, in which I discussed the move by several retailers to begin phasing out their plastic bag use. Now, in addition to the global concerns about the impact of plastic on the oceans and ecosystems, there is a new plastic crisis regarding plastic’s contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions and climate change.

According to the Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL), in 2019 alone, the production and incineration of plastic will add more than 850 million metric tons of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere which is equal to the pollution from 189 new 500-megawatt coal-fired power plants. The CIEL report Plastic & Climate: The Hidden Costs of a Plastic Planet, states that if plastic production and use grow as currently planned, by 2050, these emissions could reach 2.75 billion metric tons of CO2e from plastic production and incineration.

In the “Micro-bead Free Waters Act of 2015” the federal government banned the sale and use of rinse-off cosmetics that contain plastic microbeads. Washington, D.C., has enacted a bag fee to incentivize consumers to bring reusable bags when shopping. California was the first state to ban the use of plastic. New York and hundreds of municipalities across the U.S. ban or fine the use of plastic in some way. In seventeen other states there are those who argue that it is illegal to ban plastic items and are enacting old policy to place a ban on the ban of plastics.

Matt Seaholm, Executive Director of the American Plastic Bags Associations (APBA) says that the ban on plastics hurts the smaller businesses making it more costly for them to comply. The APBA proactively promotes and leads numerous public policy initiatives that serve as the frontline defense against plastic bag bans and taxes nationwide. Without universal laws across the country for plastic use, retailers with stores in multiple jurisdictions would find it difficult to adhere to different processes in multiple locations. According to Seaholm, more energy is used to produce replacement paper or cloth bags and that a ban will do little to impact overall litter and waste.

National Geographic hosts a multiyear effort to raise awareness about the global plastic trash crisis, “Plastic or Planet” which is very informative on the environmental impact of plastic, and challenges the community to find ways to reduce the amount of single-use plastic in their lives.

Plastic has become such an entrenched part of our lives, it is nearly impossible for us to live 100% free of plastic. It will be a long slow process that will involve a global effort in order to come to a resolution.

SafeSourcing has sourced plastic bags, paper bags, and reusable bags for our clients. Find the product that works for you, but remember to reduce, reuse, and recycle.

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.

References ……………………………………………………………………

  1. https://www.ciel.org/news/plasticandclimate/
  2. https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/2019/08/map-shows-the-complicated-landscape-of-plastic-bans/
  3. https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/planetorplastic/

Procure and purchase Part II of II

Friday, August 16th, 2019

 

 

 

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

In part I of todays post we discussed our process. Today we discuss the purchasing process

The Purchasing Process

Purchasing is just part of the entire process. Think of it as the final piece to the puzzle. You have figured out what you want, who to get it from, what they will charge you, and now you just need to obtain that good or service. The simplified steps to that final piece can be seen below:

  • Purchase Order Acknowledgement
  • Advance Shipment Notice
  • Goods Receipt
  • Invoice Recording
  • 3-Way Match
  • Payment to Supplier

Often times companies will allow the General Manager or head of that location decide on where to go for what is needed. This can increase costs up to three times more than if the company combined its buying power. This can also be avoided by implementing the procurement methods explained above.

Because purchasing is part of the procurement process, both procurement and purchasing are often used interchangeably. In the business world, the practice of using similar terminology in either conversation or printed materials is routine, although it is often confusing and should be avoided.

Purchasing:

The activity of acquiring goods or services to accomplish the goals of an organization.

The major objectives of purchasing are to maintain the quality and value of a company’s products, minimize cash tied-up in inventory, maintain the flow of inputs to maintain the flow of outputs, and strengthen the organization’s competitive position.

Procurement:

The act of obtaining or buying goods and services. The process includes preparation and processing of a demand as well as the end receipt and approval of payment.

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 and References:

  • http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/purchasing.html
  • http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/procurement.html