Supply Chain Savvy

The supply chain spans all movement and storage of  raw materials, inventory and finished goods from point of origin to point of sale. As competition in retail grows, retailers are responding by increasing the variety of their products and number of channels, becoming more price-competitive and striving for customer-centricity.

These responses make managing the supply chain more complex than ever. With a vast number of products offered through physical stores, catalogs, websites and the quickly developing m-commerce channel, retailers are utilizing advances in technology to improve supply chain efficiency.
This month’s Vendor Landscape focuses on supply chain platforms that touch upon all or some aspects of the supply chain, including order management, inventory visibility, transportation management and warehouse management. RIS lists some of the major supply chain vendors and highlights some recent retailer deployments and best practices.

Driving In-Stocks
When The Vitamin Shoppe had challenges  precisely managing its inventory, the company implemented 4R Systems’ Profit Optimized Inventory solution. “4R helped us drive in-stocks from the low 90s to 96.8% while simultaneously increasing turn from 3.1 to over 3.65,” says Tony Truesdale, president of The Vitamin Shoppe. “The service-based solution gave us an unprecedented level of connection between our inventory management decisions and their impact on our business.”

Inventory Reduction
Ace Hardware needed a replenishment solution to support time-phased demand forecasting and multi-tier planning. The retailer implemented JDA Enterprise Architecture and reduced inventory by $27 million, including  reducing import inventory by $11 million due to redeployment of safety stock and a planned reduction of $16 million in domestic safety stock.

BETTER In-Store Service
With Logility’s Demand Planning and Inventory Planning, Saks, Inc. increased in-stock merchandise by 4.1% at its Parisian store. Parisian experienced increased average sales per SKU by 11% and improved service levels for basic merchandise by 35%.

Mobilizing Supply Chain
Manhattan Associates announced that 35 customers are on its Supply Chain Process Platform, with 50 more in process in 2011 including Starbucks, Michael Kors and Chanel. With the number of customers adopting the solution steadily increasing, Manhattan recently released the mobile-enabled Store Commerce Activation solution to support in-store pickup processes and ship-from-store options.

GLOBAL Communication
Aeropostale selected NGC Software’s Supply Chain Management software to instantly deliver international orders and revisions to global vendors. The solution scales as needed as the company expands internationally.

Real-Time Visibility
Wine retailer Soutirage selected RedPrairie’s solutions to automate operations, streamline the barcode process and serialize inventory, providing real-time supply chain visibility.

Easy Integration
Weis Markets integrated Retalix Demand-Driven Replenishment to optimize its overall in-stock position and reduce excess inventory and out-of-stocks in its stores.

Optimize Inventory
Delhaize America implemented SAF USA’s RetailSuite Store in 1,500 stores to automate orders using an approach based on forecasted sales and current inventory levels. “RetailSuite enables us to optimize our inventory on a store-by-store basis and helps provide value across our entire supply chain,” says Scott Harrison, CIO of Delhaize.

THE Supply  Chain is Good
Clothing retailer Life Is Good (LIG)  improved ordering, delivery and prediction analytics by using SAP Supply Chain Management. LIG chose SAP for the business intelligence rules and processes embedded in the solution, requiring no customization.


The chart below is a comparison guide of product specifications and functionalities in a specific category to help retailers begin their search for vendors in the RFP process. The chart is not a comprehensive resource. Please visit vendor web sites for further information.
Company Name/Web Site
Solution Description
Key Clients
4R Systems
Profit Optimized Inventory Solutions provide a fast, efficient and proven way to align inventory and supply chain execution to deliver profitability. Right Buy calculates order quantity and store allocation for a product’s initial buy, and IPMax maximizes inventory productivity and profitability. • Crate & Barrel
• The Vitamin Shoppe
• Family Dollar
Supply Chain Visibility Along with Sourcing & Global Trade Management, Vendor Management, Enterprise Collaboration, Total Cost Management, Quality Assurance & Compliance, solution provides visibility, intelligence and collaboration tools for retailers. • JCPenney
• Staples
• Home Depot
Xpress Commerce This fully-integrated web-based suite engages the entire supply chain by creating direct, efficient connections among product development, procurement and suppliers, supporting better cost management throughout the product lifecycle process. • Victoria’s Secret
• Nordstrom
• Bon-Ton
GXS Supply Chain Visibility Solution offers real-time visibility into all orders across multiple ERPs. Over 600 data validation rules for shipping and receiving allow companies to track international shipments from suppliers’ loading docks to their back door. • Liz Claiborne
• Best Buy
• Big Lots
Supply Chain Visibility & Collaboration Product Suite Analytical suite delivers visibility, intelligence and aids decision-making, enabling retailers to shorten their cash-to-cash cycle. Equipped with industry-specific business content in the form of KPIs, metrics and data models that span across sourcing, inventory, services, logistics and finance business functions. •
• Neiman Marcus
JDA Enterprise Architecture Solution serves as the underlying foundation for JDA’s business solutions’ master and operational data, security, exception management, workflow, analysis and reporting. Platform supports advanced process coordination and optimization for improved response and agility. • Macy’s
• Ace Hardware
• Lowe’s
Voyager Solutions This comprehensive, best-of-breed supply chain management suite for mid-size to large enterprises features integrated performance management and monitoring capabilities to increase supply chain visibility and productivity across operations. • Ashley Furniture
• Tiffany & Co.
• Saks, Inc.
Manhattan Associates
Manhattan SCOPE Portfolio of software solutions and technology leverages the Supply Chain Process Platform to provide single, shared application architecture for all Manhattan SCOPE solutions, enabling companies to use common business services and transaction data to accomplish tasks shared among all of its supply chain optimization solutions. • Whirlpool
• Under Armour • Home Depot
NGC Software
NGC Global Sourcing/Supply Chain Management Web-based solution enables retailers to manage production through the global supply chain. Automatically creates alerts based on exception management and workflow calendars and enables real-time collaboration with global trading partners. • VF Corp
• JoS. A. Bank
• Casual Male
Commerce in Motion Solution connects brands and consumers by managing the supply chain from raw materials to finished products in the hands of consumers. Ensures visibility, collaboration and velocity between manufacturers, distributors, retailers and customers. • Container Store
• Giant Eagle
• Sheetz
Retalix Power Enterprise Comprehensive supply chain management suite maximizes automation, efficiency, visibility and control over retailers’ and distributors’ enterprise, warehousing, transportation and delivery operations. Applications include ERP, WMS, TMS, CRM and transportation optimization. • Delhaize Group
• Tesco
• Toys ‘R’ Us
RetailSuite Store and RetailSuite Warehouse Solutions automate orders using a demand-chain management approach based on forecasted sales and current inventory levels. Forecasting factors include seasonal effects, promotions and price changes to provide cost-effective, accurate orders. • Winn-Dixie
• Delhaize America • SAP
SAP Supply Chain Management Application automates customer-centric business processes across and beyond enterprise-wide operations. Supports end-to-end processes, delivering great depth of functionality. • Cat Logistics
• Colgate Palmolive
• Sauer-Danfoss
Sterling Commerce
IBM Sterling Selling and Fulfillment Suite Comprehensive, fully integrated solution provides visibility and control over sales, orders, sourcing, distribution and fulfillment processes across all channels. Suite enables management of the collaborative process with customers, suppliers and logistics partners. • Best Buy
• Cabela’s
Aprimo Demand Chain Manager Solution employs bottom-up consumer demand to develop sales forecasts of each item weekly and daily by location. Forecasts recognize history and respond automatically to latest trends, and are then combined with inventory and replenishment strategies. • JCPenney
• Home Depot
• Saks Fifth Avenue
TradeCard Platform SaaS delivery model connects thousands of trade partners worldwide through a Web browser. Collaborating allows transaction parties to improve margin, cash flow and supply chain visibility. • Abercrombie & Fitch
• Rite Aid
• Wolverine World Wide
This ad will auto-close in 10 seconds