Making Lemonade out of Logistics

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At Chewse, lunch time is game time. Planning and delivering meals to offices all over town takes a lot of work, and most of the time, things are smooth like butter. Our awesome team of Chewselings work hard to make the whole process work like a charm, but we’d be lying if we said that things were always perfect.

Working with hundreds of restaurants means that we can serve our offices a killer variety of breakfasts, lunches, and dinners. If you want South African, Belgian, and Vietnamese in one week, we’ve got your back. Raw fish, then potatoes, then fried chicken? No problem. Offering this kind of variety is what makes Chewse such a great service, but it also means we’ve got much less control than we would if we cooked all the food ourselves.

But hey, we got ourselves into this crazy business because we believe in the power of food. And so does Azalina. Azalina is one of our newer vendor partners and she cooks fresh, seasonal, and crazy beautiful Malaysian food day in and day out.

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After a few successful Azalina’s orders, we knew we had uncovered a true gem. We’re talking pineapple tea leaf salad, braised tofu with peanut sambal, and curries like you wouldn’t believe. Drooling, much?

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As you can image, we were pretty stoked to send her order after order. So we did. But when we got a call from Azalina one afternoon about a 200-person order that hadn’t been picked up, we were shocked. Our system showed that this 200-person menu was in ‘demo’ mode – created to show a potential client what they might expect from a Chewse meal. Azalina, however, received the order like it was any other.

In case you’re not following, Azalina cooked food for two-hundred people who never requested it. This was a big mistake. And worse, a big BIG waste of food. As a tech company, we rely on our (you guessed it) tech to keep the peace. When it doesn’t? Well, shoot…

Luckily, together we were able to find a solution. We donated the food Azalina made to two great non-profits. Half of it went to a nearby shelter called Mother Brown and the rest was picked up by Food Runners, a volunteer-run organization that picks up excess food from restaurants and delivers it to neighborhood food programs. Albeit a big mistake, we’re looking at the bright side.

Because of what happened, we were able to feed two-hundred hungry people nourishing and delicious food. On top of that, we learned a big lesson about our product – one which will not only inform an immediate bug fix, but also inspired conversation about how to make Chewse better and better as we grow bigger and bigger.

The point is, these things happen. We’re extremely proud of the meals we send our customers, and as we continue to grow and share more delicious food with offices all over the place, it only makes sense that we’ll run into some bumps. No matter how big or small that bump may be, it’s important that we do the right thing. In this case, Azalina’s food didn’t go to waste, 200 hungry people were fed, and we learned a valuable lesson. Last week’s mishap was a big ol’ lemon, but instead of getting sour, we made Lemonade!

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One Trackback

  • By An Open Love Letter on March 22, 2016 at 10:57 am

    […] you to delete your Tinder account or anything. It’s just that we want every office to experience Azalina’s California-Malaysian food, every working soul in San Francisco to taste one of Bini’s momos. Why should only some teams get […]