What steps can you take to optimize your inventory? Retail Connected partners and their customers discussed this during a Round Table about stock optimization with 20 leading retailers. During the discussions, experiences were shared about planning, budgeting and keeping stock overviews. We briefly summarize the three most important conclusions about the future of stock optimization.

The role of supply chain employee is changing

The complexity of ordering processes was discussed during the round table discussions. The role of supply chain is changing very rapidly. The duties of a planner are not only operational, but also increasingly tactical. This also changes the profile of a supply chain employee. This requires more social, communication and analytical skills than before.

Blokker solved this by separating the existing supply chain functions. This has the additional advantage that employees are happier in their new role because they work within their own field of competence. This means there are career opportunities for supply chain employees, which means they can stay with the organization longer. The supply chain department has also been given more powers within the store chain, which means that planning can be optimized. The supply chain employees work on a project basis and increasingly focus on POS data (cash register).

Will the job of supply chain employee still exist in the future? Many of the current duties of a supply chain employee will be digitized in the future. However, this will lead to other tasks: the supply chain employee in 2025 is probably more of a supply chain engineer.

Automated planning makes the difference

During one of the round table sessions, Zeeman said that their turnover and the result show an annual growth. The textile super notices that sharp budgeting, tight monitoring of turnover and margin and managing stock makes the difference between profit or loss.

To be able to do this properly, more and more algorithms and advanced planning programs are used, such as Darwin Retail planner. If you want to steer well on stock level and margin, then the use of excel is too cumbersome, time-consuming and error prone. Zeeman has gained more up-to-date insight through the use of Retail planning. This allows the financial and commercial budgets to be aligned more closely. Moreover, it can be measured each time whether the merchandise is in line with store growth.

Insight into the entire chain from ordering to delivery is crucial

Retailers notice that it is becoming increasingly important to have good insight into the entire chain, from ordering from stores to delivering the goods. Up-to-date sales information and insight into store inventory is crucial. Different retailers therefore select apps for employees on the shop floor. This provides insight into how many items are present in the store in a certain period.

Because omnichannel is becoming increasingly important and therefore store stocks must also become more reliable, it is important to also close the final step in store supplies. Retailers notice that receipt registration in the store and periodic stock counts play a major role in this. But also clear procedures for store employees how to deal with stock has an influence. For example, a cashier no longer needs to apply a general article code to non-scannable articles. In addition, identified losses must be registered as quickly as possible.

Stock optimization

The above conclusions come from the round table discussions that Retail Connected conducted on October 3, 2019 with 20 retailers. Because there were many different companies present, professional discussions arose where everyone could learn from each other.

Would you also like to participate in a round table discussion? Let us know which topic you would like to see on our agenda. Mail to retailconnected@broadhorizon.nl

Would you like to know more?

Do you want to talk about optimizing store inventory? Then contact Bianca van der Woude: +31(0)6 5710 5903