Supply Chain World - Fall 2017 - 11

RETAIL

Omnichannel Technologies

customer wants while optimizing costs.
For example, drop-shipping allows
retailers to expand their product assortment and test new products without the
risk and cost of inventory overhead.
This is a more efficient model for
retailers because it results in inventory
moving less frequently, keeping transportation costs down. Dropship improves order-processing time, decreases
inventory carrying cost and risk and
delivers the product to the customer
faster, ultimately leading to growth. The
goal is to reduce complexity and cost
and increase agility.
Understanding how and when to fully
leverage a fulfillment center makes operations faster, scalable and more efficient.

Cross-Border e-Commerce
The uptick in cross-border e-commerce
offers great growth opportunities for

retailers. According to a report from
DHL Express, eCommerce merchants
are seeing revenue gains of 10 percent
to 15 percent by adding cross-border
selling. E-commerce has made selling to
global customers that much easier. As
that demand continues to rise, retailers
and brands must make sure they are
equipped to ship orders to the other
side of the world as quickly and easily
- and profitably - as possible. This can
be achieved by working with a tech and
operations partner who has proprietary
transportation solutions, a firm grasp on
international tax and tariff implications,
overseas fulfillment centers and customer support for multiple currencies.
The DHL Express report also found
customers in many markets say product availability, attractive offerings and
brand trust are the motivating factors for
shopping overseas.

Technology continues to change the
supply chain, and with e-commerce,
ensuring all points of the supply chain
are running smoothly and efficiently is
even more critical. Offering customers
the convenience of buying online and
picking up in store or speeding up delivery with ship-from-store is a feat that's
hard to master.
Investment in technology is now
required to provide a seamless and
personalized shopping experience. A sophisticated order management system
will know if an item should be shipped
from a distribution center or fulfilled
from the retail store around the corner. Not only does this help the consumer get their product faster, it helps the
retailer make a profit.
Many retailers' and brands' systems
are still coming up short when it comes
to inventory management, CRM, store
fulfillment, POS, etc. Using a centralized and scalable system with intelligent order routing makes integration
between order and delivery seamless.
This is essential for meeting consumers'
heightened expectations and ensuring
the retailer meets its business objectives. A centralized system ensures
purchases are delivered in the exact way
the customer wants while helping the
retailer maximize profitability.
Bottom line: consumers will continue
to expect more consistent, quality and
rapid delivery of online orders. E-commerce will continue to grow, and retailers and brands looking to stay ahead
must ensure they have the capability,
capacity and agility to do so.
Rick Elfman is a managing director at Sterling
Partners, a private equity firm that focuses on investing
growth capital in middle-market companies in the
business services and healthcare services industries. He
serves on the University of Chicago's Graduate School
of Business Council and its Graduate School of Business
Entrepreneurship Advisory Board. Elfman is also a
Trustee and sits on the Executive Committee of the
Chicago Zoological Society.

FALL 2017 Supply Chain World

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Supply Chain World - Fall 2017

Contents
Supply Chain World - Fall 2017 - Cover1
Supply Chain World - Fall 2017 - Cover2
Supply Chain World - Fall 2017 - 1
Supply Chain World - Fall 2017 - Contents
Supply Chain World - Fall 2017 - 3
Supply Chain World - Fall 2017 - 4
Supply Chain World - Fall 2017 - 5
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Supply Chain World - Fall 2017 - Cover3
Supply Chain World - Fall 2017 - Cover4
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