Executive Briefings

Annual Report Highlights Digital Challenges, Trends of Retail Supply Chains

Auburn University's Center for Supply Chain Innovation and the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA), in partnership with DC Velocity, have released their seventh annual "State of the Retail Supply Chain" report. The report provides analysis of the front-burner issues facing America's retail supply chains, according to RILA. It also highlights tools and leading practices to compete in an evolving marketplace.

This year's study is the culmination of research derived from industry hot topics, executive input, and emergent issues. The report sought participation from organizations with annual revenues above $1bn, omnichannel capabilities and broad geographic activity. The Auburn University research team gathered insight through interviews and online surveys with America’s top retail supply chain executives, as well as industry analysis.

"2017 is a banner year for the retail supply chain and this report provides a tremendous benchmarking opportunity for today’s supply chain leaders," said Lisa LaBruno, senior vice president of retail operations for RILA. "As retailers focus on innovation and moving their supply chains into the future, this report provides the insight and tools to help prioritize investment and increase marketplace competition.”

“Adapting to the hyper-competitive landscape requires supply chain capabilities that attract customers and grow the business,” noted Brian Gibson, executive director of Auburn University's Center for Supply Chain Innovation. “Supply chain executives must integrate operations across multiple channels, use analytics to drive supply chain decisions, and monetize supply chain capabilities. Our report provides extensive discussions of these initiatives.”

Additionally, the report details the top three supply chain capabilities that revolve around the digital transformation of the retail industry as driven by the evolving consumer: enhancing order fulfillment capabilities, incorporating extensive use of stores for fulfilment and end-to-end supply chain planning.

“As retailers seek to find balance between omnichannel costs and revenue growth, they realize that the supply chain is the key to profitably serving customers,” the report says. “To achieve success, the supply chain team must continue to excel at its primary fulfillment role, figure out how to best utilize stores that were never designed for large scale fulfillment, and develop strong capabilities in areas previously managed by other groups. Supply chain success will enhance retailers’ financial vitality and outlook.”

Source: Retail Industry Leaders Association

This year's study is the culmination of research derived from industry hot topics, executive input, and emergent issues. The report sought participation from organizations with annual revenues above $1bn, omnichannel capabilities and broad geographic activity. The Auburn University research team gathered insight through interviews and online surveys with America’s top retail supply chain executives, as well as industry analysis.

"2017 is a banner year for the retail supply chain and this report provides a tremendous benchmarking opportunity for today’s supply chain leaders," said Lisa LaBruno, senior vice president of retail operations for RILA. "As retailers focus on innovation and moving their supply chains into the future, this report provides the insight and tools to help prioritize investment and increase marketplace competition.”

“Adapting to the hyper-competitive landscape requires supply chain capabilities that attract customers and grow the business,” noted Brian Gibson, executive director of Auburn University's Center for Supply Chain Innovation. “Supply chain executives must integrate operations across multiple channels, use analytics to drive supply chain decisions, and monetize supply chain capabilities. Our report provides extensive discussions of these initiatives.”

Additionally, the report details the top three supply chain capabilities that revolve around the digital transformation of the retail industry as driven by the evolving consumer: enhancing order fulfillment capabilities, incorporating extensive use of stores for fulfilment and end-to-end supply chain planning.

“As retailers seek to find balance between omnichannel costs and revenue growth, they realize that the supply chain is the key to profitably serving customers,” the report says. “To achieve success, the supply chain team must continue to excel at its primary fulfillment role, figure out how to best utilize stores that were never designed for large scale fulfillment, and develop strong capabilities in areas previously managed by other groups. Supply chain success will enhance retailers’ financial vitality and outlook.”

Source: Retail Industry Leaders Association