In a previous blog post, we discussed how demand planning is crucial during a crisis. Demand planning is the stabilizing anchor in a volatile supply chain. Demand planning may sound like old technology, but it is the foundation of a profitable supply chain. However, not all solutions are created equal.
So what demand planning solution is right for you? It depends. There are a number of factors to consider before making a decision. While researching the various options, you should evaluate solution providers to see how they perform and compare the results. At a minimum, each solution provider should offer a pilot or trial so your retail company can see estimated profit improvement before making any final decisions. Once a trial is conducted using your stores’ data, you can see what actual results would be for each solution provider to determine value.
Do demand planning solutions help recover after a period of downturn?
Demand planning is a foundational function of the supply chain. Since shopper behavior seems unpredictable, should you scrap your demand planning structure? In short, no. Demand planning is the anchor in a volatile supply chain.
Even though the supply chain hasn’t kept up with the demand for every SKU, you can still leverage existing data to adjust your demand planning. Eventually, the supply chain will catch up to consumer demand. At the same time, demand spikes for high-value items will decrease. True Demand Planning not only looks at what is selling, but also what could or should have sold if the appropriate stock was on hand. [Read more…]
Get in on the Secret
Every day comes with announcements of another retailer in trouble… bankruptcy, store closings, executive changes, and more. It can get depressing for those working in the retail world. But if you look closely, weaved into those cautionary tales there are some successes, believe it or not. Many companies are opening more stores, e-commerce companies are opening brick and mortar locations and stores are celebrating successful holiday sales. So, what gives? What is it that the successful retailers are doing and how can we get in on the secret?
Looking at the list of thriving retailers, there are some glaring commonalities. [Read more…]
At this point in time, trying to live without technology is easier said than done. Technology has so greatly impacted our lives, that it is almost inescapable. In retail, you will be run over without properly utilizing technology. However, interacting with people is a core function in retail environments. This begs the question of how much technology is too much technology? How do you maintain a balance between human and machine?