SoftStock of National Institute of Business Management January



Shop without worrying about queues







Data Analysis and Online Ordering System for the cafeteria of National Institute of Business Management



January 22, 2018

Sapumanage T. C. B. D. (COBSCComp171P – 035)

Buddhika (COBSCComp171P – 014)

Karunarathne K. W. C. D. (COBSCComp171P – 010)

Hiran (COBSCComp171P – 009)

Supun (COBSCComp171P – 012)

Sahan (COBSCComp171P – (013)

Saparamadu D. D. G. A. Y. M.  (COBSCComp171P – 011)


It has been a decade since people started to use information technology in cafeterias for their tasks such as Billing, Calculating Order Price, Reordering Stocks, etc. and even offer e-commerce applications to facilitate their customers for convenience. However cafeteria in National Institute of Business Management (NIBM) does not offer such facilities resulting both students and members of the staff to wait in long queues wasting a significant amount their time (statistics will be analyzed to know the exact value), and this situation happen quite often in busy hours. In the side of the cafeteria, they run out of stock too often and students sometimes have to either buy something other than what they were planning to buy or wait in a queue for a substantial amount of time as there has not been any analysis about the quantities they should prepare due to the lack of data mining technologies been employed there. Thus, team SoftStock would like to propose a new Cloud Based Web Application that can have direct positive outcomes for both the cafeteria and its customers by using the newly introduced system.


To minimize or eliminate the waiting time in the queues for customers
Make sure the cafeteria will have the right quantity of food at right time
Minimize or eliminate the food wastage
Ensure the transparency in transactions and hence, improve the quality of the service
Provide Data Analysis tools for software users to see unseen patterns


Existing Systems

            Currently the cafeteria in National Institute of Business Management only offer a manual system hence, long waiting queues are anticipated in busy hours and the amount of food being wasted daily is a considerable amount. However, if the local cafeterias and food vendors taken into consideration and their use of modern Information Technology usage for their day-today tasks few major multinational companies can be found. They have built e-commerce to facilitate the customer to order food online and the food packages will either be delivered or the customer could pick it from the closest restaurant of theirs.  Multinational companies like McDonald’s, Gamma Pizzakraft Sri Lanka (PVT) ltd.  are such companies whom facilitate such options to their customers. However those systems have number of draw-backs if applied in the current context for practical reasons such as, pizza not being a product being ordered in daily basis, hence no data analysis can be performed making their customers to have wait times of a substantial amount of time varying from 15-30 mins per order, and that waiting time increased in festival days, even though the cost of the items are reduced by vendors. However, the proposed system does not have these drawbacks due to the context it is being applied and it will being a number direct positive impacts to the cafeteria in anticipating daily demand for each food item in regular days and the customers to shop without waiting in queue putting themselves for a trouble they can escape.

Implementation and New Features Steps (Work in Progress)

            Team SoftStock will be developing a Web Application which will be hosted in Azure Web Services allowing users to access it from anywhere, anytime thus, giving the users to ability to access the system and order food online few minutes before visiting the cafeteria premises.

            Moreover, it’ll employ a considerable about of data analysis not limiting to below options giving the cafeteria the direct benefits to predict the demand and make sure they can supply the right amount, at right time and minimize or eliminate the food wastage.

·         List of items ordered by customers and its quantities in hourly/daily basis

·         View the demand for different items in a given day from 7:00AM – 6:00PM

·         Items ordered and its quantities sorted from different sub groups (batches/staff/etc,)

·         Analysis on the sales report on daily/weekly/monthly basis

Note: In order to create an account in the system the users will have to possess an official email address offered by National Institute of Business Management (NIBM) which will end from .nibm domain to improve the transparency, accuracy and validity of a transaction

Next Steps (Work in Progress)

            This project could be extended to employ credit/debit-card payments with the support of a commercial bank, and to automatically reserve food based on Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies which this project scope does not cover due to limited time frame.







Activities involved with customers

Main Activities

·         The Customers (Students, NIBM Staff Members) can use their mobile devices/tablet PCs/Laptops or Desktop computers and access the shared URL, few minutes before going to the canteen and order food from the available items. A shopping cart will be generated with a unique ID number, and an electronic bill will be saved in your profile so that the user know what will be the cost. Few minutes later user will be notified when the package is ready to be collected with by means such as emailing the user and making the package status ready. Then all user has to do is pick the package, pay the pre-shared price and enjoy a happy meal.

·         Giving the opportunity for the students and staff of the members to order items the day before so that they can make sure next morning the cafeteria will have the quantities they ordered. (There orders are to be placed before 8:00 PM)

Other Activities

·        This software will be arranging facilitating users to cancel the order before it get confirmed and cancellations after the confirmation received from canteen will be charged a fixed percentage for every item based on the decision by the management of the cafeteria.

·        Give the ability to save their favorite order combination and save up to three of them. The project could be improved to add unlimited number of orders however this project does not cover such aspects due to limited time constrains.

·         Facilitate the users to view their order history from their first order to their economical purposes and to improve the transparency of the franchise 







Activities involved with Cafeteria Crew Members

Main Activities

·         Once a new order is placed by user the server-side machine in the cafeteria will be notified with its cost, items and their quantities. Then one crew member from the staff will start readying the package and ones the package is ready to be collected, it’s just a matter of clicking a button to notify the user to come and pick the package.

Note: Crew members of the cafeteria will have to update the quantities every day in-order to manage the stock properly.

·         The management staff of the canteen will have a set of exclusive data analysis tools listed below which will help the crew to anticipate the values.

o   View the average quantities of the items ordered by each batch and sort them by,

§  Day of the Week (Sunday, Monday, etc.,)

§  In a given date range

§  Days of the week in a given date range

o   View the demand for each item by each batch and sort them by

§  Days of the week

§  Demand for each item on hourly basis

§  Demand for each item by batch basis

Note: These values are taken based on statistics and these can be improved by applying machine learning algorithms which will not be covered due to limited time.

·         Giving the canteen to ability to set the percentage of fines in their dashboard.

·         Display the list of batches coming next day and predict the quantities needed. (The list of batches are to be filled from the Program Offices at National Institute of Business Management)

Other Activities and features

·         Give the ability for the users of the canteen to add foods, update food items and delete the food items without the support of a technical team

·         Give uses the ability add batches and delete them in the system.

Note: These actions can only be performed by the managerial level staff.

·         The payment method used in the system will be cash however the project could be extended to use credit card payments in the next steps.




Start-Date: January 17, 2018


Cost Name


Microsoft Azure Servers

Free – Student Subscription