Retail Supply Chain Warehouse Consulting
I) Challenges faced in Warehousing & Supply Chain
#1 Instant Gratification
With the same day and next day deliveries becoming the golden standard, the biggest challenge lies in fulfilling customer orders. While variety has its benefits, proliferation of products and channels is enhancing operational complications. While retailers refine their omni-channel strategies as a ticket to play, additional operational complexities directly impacts warehouse operations, working capital and operational costs.
Further, 100% productivity is available to fulfill customer orders for delivery in numerous formats like inter-store-transfers, home delivery and alternative site collections through a cost-efficient approach for distribution. Retailers can use technologies to automate replenishment of stocks and minimize lost sales at their distribution centres. For this, SOPs need to be in place to mitigate stock wastage while limiting exposure to higher inventory levels, securing the supply base and using source products to arrive at the supply chain right in time. Data sourced from within the extended value chain further analyze events and scenarios to prevent sourcing risks and create alternative strategies to mitigate supply chain disruption.
#2 Emphasis on Transparency
Looking into the future, supply chain products will require financial infrastructure, enhancing operational efficiency, adding to the buyer-supplier association and build stronger supply chain partnerships. Commercial discussions offering fairness and transparency to all parties yield maximum benefits. Suppliers win, because there is clarity in terms of the invoicing procedure and amount due. For the retailer, it can provide better cash forecasting systems and processes.
As cost of finance widens between weak and strong credit, this will boost better funding. Sophisticated reconciliation processes, improved cash flow predictions and simplified terms of payment offer back-office benefits as well. Suppliers with stable liquidity can also work on commercial advantage. For streamlining operations, an SOP proves invaluable in this context.
#3 Last Mile Delivery Process Efficiency
With the emergence of e-commerce channels, along with existing channels, time for order processing can be a real challenge in multi-channel retail supply chain and logistics. Customers placing an online order seek immediate delivery. On the other hand, batch orders by brick-and-mortar stores for in-stock takes an average of 2 to 7 days for last mile delivery from their distribution centre. New problems emerge when peak seasons come about, because it becomes difficult to process orders and give an assurance regarding delivery times. To overcome this, warehouses need to have well-defined processes for every channel, building enough process checks to ensure order processing in time, with a 100% capable WMS system to help managers check on order processing times and order fulfillment. For this, an SOP that lays out the components of effective WMS systems is essential.
#4 Structuring Picking Processes
In multi-channel retail logistics, D2C selling order volumes have risen, rendering conventional picking methods useless. A one-size-fits-all picking process cannot work, on account of this; warehouse managers must adopt different picking methods for bigger batch stock holding units as against the smaller ones.
#5 Best Packaging Systems in Place
Retailers need to have an understanding of how their products are optimally packaged before delivery when operating through multiple channels. The experience and expertise of multi-channel retail logistics partners becomes really important. It is essential to have consistency in the packaging method utilized at warehouses for products to make these more presentable to the end buyer.
#6 Layout & Workflow Optimization
Distribution centers need to rapidly process orders during peak demand seasons or hours. A well designed layout will ensure the timely delivery, especially during peak hours and efficient manpower productivity. Thus, a warehouse system design supporting the SOPs and WMS is of utmost importance and generally neglected while planning the layout infrastructure, wherein here a Warehouse Layout Expert from YRC can be the right decision.
#7 Advent of Warehouse Automation Technologies
Warehouse automation has become critical. But this is easier said than done. Bringing it all together and training the workforce is just the first step. SOPs for implementation of automation technologies are essential, too. Mechanization can bring certain implementation and procedural concerns to the surface. Resources employed in warehousing operations must be engaged with the right training and guidance, contributing to the development and making operations simpler. This will boost warehouse operations efficiency.
II) Why YRC offers the Best Warehouse Consulting Services
Strengthening multi-channel logistics is the key to fulfilling the demand of end customers. Changing trends in the industry, different behavior patterns of buyers, government regulations etc, all concerns the industry. To overcome the challenges, inventory management consultant and supply chain management consulting services provider Your Retail Coach is your trusted choice. Warehouse operations consultant, YRC excels at retail inventory management and is among the premier inventory management consulting firms.
Warehouse space planning consultant team at YRC will meet your every requirement in the field of warehouse, supply chain and inventory management. Warehousing remains one of the most critical connections in multi-channel retail logistics and experts can get hands on expertise in this domain. YRC’s team of supply chain experts have tackled the hardest supply chain issues and obstacles. We combine unmatched expertise, critical analysis and cutting-edge SOPs to facilitate change management and ensure retail companies deliver sustained results across time.
III) About Retail Supply Chain Warehouse Consulting
The warehouse management process is complex, given the way this industry is expanding. The warehousing and logistics services have experienced further disruption through digital technologies. Emerging alternative business models and changing consumer trends add to the mix. Sustained and profitable growth is becoming challenging. To address the challenges of today and tap the opportunities of tomorrow, every retailer needs a warehouse management system (WMS) consultant they can rely on. Operating a supply chain at peak efficiency is not enough. In today’s business ecosystem, customer expectations have become more complex. Fragmentation of chains and shortened cycle times necessitate that supply chains should be agile to successfully respond to business pressures and global trends.
Demand for products is becoming more fragmented, complex, volatile and diverse. It is happening just as companies are facing more economic and technological pressure, as business markets and manufacturing locations are constantly shifting. Due to increased interdependency at each level, supply chain networks are susceptible to disruptions. Supply chains need to be more adaptive for determining company’s success. In fact, supply chain and warehousing strategies must support the overall business strategy. The most effective, adaptive supply chains are responsive, smart and resilient.
KPMG estimates that by 2021, leading retailers will shift from on-the-shelf availability to on-demand, providing 100% product availability for fulfilling customer orders. A company with on-demand supply chains can grow sales by 4%, cutting operating costs by 10% and inventory reduction by 30%, according to KPMG. Supply chain warehousing is set to touch new heights of innovation, as retailers have improved store clustering and customer segmentation through Big Data analysis and advanced clustering techniques. This supports better optimization of the mix of products, as well as the pricing, promotion, launch, planning and marketing spend. Effective inventory management using new warehousing technologies is on the anvil.
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