STORES Magazine - April 2011 - (Page 30)

SUPPLY CHAIN & LOGISTICS / VISIBILITY Sponsored by along the supply chain or tracking them from beginning to end. Instead, it’s about generating and analyzing high quality data that can minimize risks and disruptions impacting global supply networks. In food, it is also about the condition of temperature-sensitive products at every point from farm to shelf. It’s about upstream and downstream traceability of individual products and ingredients, the ability to perform targeted recalls and, at the center of it all, improving data flow between trading partners. To a degree, the need for greater visibility in the supply chain is a natural consequence of globalization. “We don’t compete as individual businesses anymore,” Martin Christopher, emeritus professor of marketing and logistics at Cranfield School of Management in England, wrote in a recent article for online research journal knowledge@wharton. “We compete as supply chains.” The winners, he notes, aren’t necessarily the companies that have the best products and services, but the ones that have the most efficient supply chains. Connecting the dots “Everyone wants the nirvana of a single view of inventory across their extended network,” says Tom Kozenski, vice president of product strategy for RedPrairie. “But you need to connect the dots to get everything in one spot, and that requires collaboration and integration.” Some new order fulfillment models focused on “omni” or all-channel retailing make it “essential to have inventory visibility across the entire network,” he says. “Also, we have a number of retailers sourcing product overseas and they have a keen interest in monitoring it as it moves forward to domestic sites. They also want to influence what their suppliers are making based on changes in consumer demand. Seeking complete transparency “You can’t do any of this without some understanding of throughout the supply chain what inventory you have positioned at every point in the supply chain,” Kozenski says. BY LEN LEWIS Another major initiative may be taking place in the apparel industry where leading retailers, manufacturers’ trade associaetting product from Point A to Point B as quickly tions and technology providers are collaborating to improve and cheaply as possible remains the principal supply chain visibility through item-level RFID technology. goal of most logistics managers. But knowing A number of high-level retailers have extolled the virtues of what happens between those two points — RFID for boosting inventory accuracy and reducing out of achieving end-to-end visibility — has become the stocks. Cynthia DiPietrantonio, COO of The Jones final frontier of supply chain management. Group, notes, “It’s all about speed-to-market today, “Having especially in the apparel and footwear industry accurate, real-time Strict new food safety laws that focus on with its seasonality and trends. Having accurate, inventory views means traceability, global economic and social conreal-time inventory views means that suppliers that suppliers and retailers flicts, labor disputes and fragmented conand retailers can provide customers with the sumer demand are just some of the factors can provide customers with the right products in the right stores and at the right that are making supply chain visibility a right products in the right stores time.” and at the right time.” business imperative. Food chain visibility was highlighted in the Meanwhile, visibility is no longer just FDA Food Safety Modernization Act, which be— Cynthia DiPietrantonio, The Jones Group about locating products at different points came law in January. A major provision calls for A Clear Goal G 30 STORES / APRIL 2011 WWW.STORES.ORG http://WWW.STORES.ORG

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of STORES Magazine - April 2011

Stores Magazine - April 2011
Editor’s Page
President’s Page
Retail People
Chain of Uncertainty
Digital Couponing
Energy Management
Social Media
Cross-Channel Metrics
Broadband Bonding
Workforce Management
Alternative Payments
Divisional Update
NRF News
Point of View
Retail Industry Calendar
End Cap

STORES Magazine - April 2011