Paul Oakley, Supplier Relationship Manager
On Wednesday 16 March, some of the FFBS team visited our supplier The Furnishing Service (TFS) at their new warehouse in Stockport. Since beginning our work together in 2018, TFS have opened three new depots to enable fast and efficient nationwide delivery to FFBS customers. Stockport has been open since September 2021 so we were excited to see the new premises and how TFS are going above and beyond to deliver to those in need.
Paul Oakley (Supplier Relationship Manager), Jill Wheeler (Managing Director), Mary Alcock (Head of Client Relationships) and Nicola Kennedy (Supplier Performance Analyst) at the TFS warehouse.
Seeing the products in person
After an excellent round of tea and biscuits, the serious business of product inspections could begin. Our core range of furniture that TFS supplies is durable and cost effective for most households. However, recently we have been hearing feedback from clients, particularly in the Housing sector, that something different is needed to provide suitable items for different types of tenancies and supported living situations. As customers are at the heart of everything we do, we knew we had to work with TFS to expand the range available, and ensure our clients get what they need for the people they serve.
Cue me flexing my job description to include quality control for the day! As you can see, I was very keen to ensure the new divan-style beds and mattresses were robust and comfortable, as well as looking more stylish than our classic divan bed thanks to a quality fabric headboard (one of the key features of our expanded range is a wider selection of furniture styles to suit different properties). We certainly liked this option and we hope to be able to offer this more widely to our customers soon. Other items we reviewed on the day include multiple sofa options, coffee tables, wardrobes, and chests of drawers, all with a stylish, high quality wood finish. Roll out beds were also tested for stability and ease of use.
We work closely with TFS, and our other suppliers, to make sure the items they provide are suitable and high quality so it was great to be able to finally see some of the main items in our range in person to see the standard for ourselves. Big thanks to David and Alex at TFS who built all of the furniture and got it ready for us to review.
TFS’ work in the community
As well as reviewing the new range of products, it was also a good opportunity to hear about the recent work that TFS has been doing to help those in need, in particular their support to those facing food insecurity during the pandemic. In the Glasgow area, TFS has supported the charity Fair Share to deliver quality surplus food to those in need. By utilising their delivery vans, TFS has been able to collect the food and deliver it to the recipient along with their ordered furniture items, making it easier for them to put food on the table (often very literally).
All in all, it was a fantastic visit and we look forward to more opportunities to meet with our suppliers in person. Keep your eyes peeled for more information on our new furniture options, which we are sure will be a brilliant addition to FFBS portfolio.
TFS are part of our supplier network that help us offer a range of thousands of products and services to our customers, selected by us for their suitability, quality and value for money. Get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.