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Food & Beverage

Tanamera Coffee: Crafting a Culture of Empowerment and Collaboration

Since its inception in 2013, Tanamera Coffee has dedicated itself to promoting Indonesian specialty coffee, now boasting over 30 locations across Indonesia, Singapore, and Malaysia. While expanding its operations, Tanamera faced typical hurdles like disjointed communication between headquarters and outlets, siloed data, and slowing processes. However, by using Lark, Tanamera not only enhanced its operational efficiency but also reaped the benefits of increased transparency and an empowered workforce.

George Purba

General Manager, Tanamera Coffee Indonesia

Lark makes it easy to adopt new technology. I have Directors in their 40s who are resistant to change and skeptical of technology for the sake of it. But Lark made it so simple for them to adopt. It's a great achievement!

Company Profile

Tanamera was established to introduce Indonesia's specialty coffees to the world. Since its founding in 2013, Tanamera has won 51 awards, including the Champion International Roaster Award at Melbourne's International Coffee Expo. Boasting 23 outlets in Indonesia, 8 and counting in Singapore and 1 in Malaysia, Tanamera has been steadily and successfully expanding its niche regionally.

Industry

Food & Beverage

Company Size

300+

Location

Southeast Asia

Tanamera's mission is to bring Indonesian flavours to the region, from specialty coffee beans to sambal chili. But opening and managing outlets in an archipelago like Indonesia presents unique challenges due to the distance between islands. For instance, when Tanamera Coffee opened a new store in Sulawesi, it took three weeks to transport coffee beans from its base in Jakarta, even though both locations were in the same country. Expanding internationally adds an additional level of complexity.

Bridging geographical distance is often a smaller issue. Bridging language, cultural, and communication barriers among frontliners, headquarters, and partners such as farmers in daily interactions becomes mission-critical for a growing coffee chain. From seeking approvals on bean quality or supplies to tracking tasks, teams spent a substantial amount of time on communicating back-and-forth, across multiple apps like email and WhatsApp just to get things done or clarify what was taking time.

Source: https://tanameracoffee.com.sg/


Challenges

  • Limited transparency on operations across outlets and roles: Management at the head office wanted to stay on top of the tasks assigned to outlet managers to ensure that decisions were converted to action on the ground. Frontline staff at the outlets wanted to ensure that defects reported and supplies requested reached the right people at the headquarters and were responded to in a timely manner.

  • Fragmented communication across outlets, cities, and countries: Communication was fractured among email threads and innumerable WhatsApp groups. Information was scattered across apps, making it difficult to systematically derive insights and efficiently monitor execution.

  • Inefficient and slow contract management: The Human Resources team manages hundreds of contracts at any time, monitoring contract renewal timelines and payment due dates. Compiling contract details on Google spreadsheet was unwieldy and inefficient without an automated system to notify them ahead of key dates.


Source: https://tanameracoffee.com/

Solutions


Unprecedented transparency, empowered frontliners with Lark Base

In the past, whenever frontliners reported an issue, say a request for more coffee beans or a faulty coffee machine, they had limited transparency into how the issue was being resolved. Often, they would message colleagues to figure out the PIC and seek status updates via text. Miscommunication was common, especially when staff from different cities were involved, often delaying resolution time from days to weeks.

With Lark Base and Tasks, the process was completely transformed. With Lark's mobile-first frontline plan, Tanamera's outlet staff could simply use their phones to report issues. The issues would get centralized on Lark Base, and allow the staff to see assigned PIC and status, empowering them to get notified on a daily basis, without having to chase their colleagues just for information. Lark Base's advanced permissions allowed leadership to selectively disclose outlet-specific information to the staff involved.

Centralizing and aggregating information such as issue, status, and PIC balanced by selective, need-to-know-basis disclosure definitely saved time on a daily basis, for both frontline and head office staff. But more than that, it empowered 120 frontliners to become proactive in improving Tanamera. "In my 8 years of operations experience, this is one of the biggest leaps in operational process improvement that I have seen", said George Purba, General Manager, Tanamera Coffee Indonesia.


X-ray vision into store operations with task manager

Similar issues blocked the management team. To keep a pulse on the operations, the management team would receive reports and on-the-ground updates via email. But visualizing progress with email is painful. Emails with internal updates often get crowded out by communication from external stakeholders or other urgent matters. Moreover, emails do not present an intuitive way to manage execution, making it difficult to take stock of PICs, task status, and blockers-critical ingredients for ensuring impeccable execution.

Centralizing task management gave management an X-ray vision into stores' operations. The management was able to ensure that decisions translated into action items, that were in fact executed on time. Having this level of visibility also motivated a stronger culture of accountability and ownership among the frontline staff.

"We say with Lark we can do magic. Lark is efficient and easy to use; most of all, it has a simple user interface. We have created a handy task window that neatly summarizes everything you need to do." - Oscar Tambunan, Head of Human Resources


Unifying communication across outlets, cities, countries

As a specialty coffee brand, Tanamera has very high standards when it comes to sourcing coffee beans. The roastmaster at the headquarters gets involved in the weeds, almost literally, by keeping a closed feedback loop with the farmers. Typically, farmers send their batch of coffee beans and request the roastmaster to approve the quality.

Before Lark, the farmers would send WhatsApps and emails to the head office. From the farmer's perspective, it was not always clear who the approver was. From the headquarters', emails would often get buried and missed, resulting in slow approval processes.


With Lark Messenger, communication was unified across the company, including with the farmers. For approvals specifically, Lark Approvals streamlined the process. Approvers were automatically assigned, notified, and reminded. Farmers and other requesters had visibility over approvers and approval status. Using Lark, approval processing time reduced from up to a week to just hours.


Managing contracts with accuracy and speed

In the course of daily operations, the Human Resources team has to manage contracts. Specifically, they need to keep track of contract parties and terms to ensure payments and renewals are completed on time. Before Lark, the HR team would painstakingly record contract details on a spreadsheet, but there was no way to send automatic reminders when a contract was due for renewal or a commitment was due for completion. The team had to sort and filter by due date or payment time, check and update contracts acted on. The team would spend up to half an hour every day.


With Lark Base, the team has centralized and automated contract management. Lark Base empowered business owners, such as the HR team, to easily set up no-code automations to send notifications before a due date. Base also made it efficient and effective to collaborate cross-functionally: tasks are automatically created and tracked whenever a team member is involved in reviewing or editing a contract. Not only did Lark Base's automation save up to 50% of the time, it also gave the HR team a sense of reassurance that they would not have to worry about missing an important date.


Conclusion

By switching to Lark, Tanamera Coffee reaped the usual benefits of digital transformation: increased operational efficiency and workplace productivity. But more than that, transforming how information is collected, centralized, and shared has created a culture of transparency and empowerment - where everyone, from the storeroom to the boardroom, felt energized to make Tanamera Coffee better every day.

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Lark, bringing it all together

All you need is the Internet and Lark.

Trusted by fast growing companies from 125+ countries

Trusted by fast growing companies from 125+ countries

Lark, bringing it all together

All you need is the Internet and Lark.

Trusted by fast growing companies from 125+ countries

Trusted by fast growing companies from 125+ countries