Executive Briefings

Retail Supply Chain Experiences Seismic Shift

Retail organizations are facing a seismic shift in the markets they serve - from multiple channels to international expansion. But are the systems in place to fulfill orders and manage returns across this altered and highly complex landscape?

In recent years, supply chain execution has become significantly more complex. For retailers in particular, the growth in channels to market, the trend to sourcing of products from distant locations and the expansion of retail operations overseas have converged as strategic influences on execution and, as a result, have radically changed the game plan for the way companies must manage information to cost-effectively serve their markets.

"The trend is for change - and change in retail is all about trying to find new markets. So it's about how do we fulfill efficiently in overseas markets? How do we find distributors for our products? How do we find other channels and other routes to market? And how do we capitalize on the continued growth of the internet?" said Craig Sears-Black, managing director at Manhattan Associates.

He points out that the challenge retailers face is in addressing this need for radical change. "If you look at most supply chains, they have grown up over the years with an evolution of systems, through either a number of packages that have been acquired and integrated together or that are "˜home grown' and these are coming to the end of their viable life because they cannot adapt to change."

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In recent years, supply chain execution has become significantly more complex. For retailers in particular, the growth in channels to market, the trend to sourcing of products from distant locations and the expansion of retail operations overseas have converged as strategic influences on execution and, as a result, have radically changed the game plan for the way companies must manage information to cost-effectively serve their markets.

"The trend is for change - and change in retail is all about trying to find new markets. So it's about how do we fulfill efficiently in overseas markets? How do we find distributors for our products? How do we find other channels and other routes to market? And how do we capitalize on the continued growth of the internet?" said Craig Sears-Black, managing director at Manhattan Associates.

He points out that the challenge retailers face is in addressing this need for radical change. "If you look at most supply chains, they have grown up over the years with an evolution of systems, through either a number of packages that have been acquired and integrated together or that are "˜home grown' and these are coming to the end of their viable life because they cannot adapt to change."

Read Full Article