October 2012 Integrated Solutions For Retailers
By Kim Zablocky, founder and principal, Vendor Compliance Federation
The retailer’s challenge is to manage global sourcing with an enterprise view.
To meet the ever-changing lifestyle needs and requirements of their consumers, retailers and their trading partners are under increased pressure to create a more synchronized and streamlined supply chain to ensure quick inventory replenishment and product availability.
Consumer demand has created a “retail revolution” that has dramatically affected vendors. Vendors are now pressured to meet numerous, complex compliance requirements in order to ensure quick inventory turns, store stock changes every six weeks, on-the-spot product availability, and delivery accuracy. Old industry models emphasizing the four P’s — product, price, place, and promotion — have been replaced by the four C’s — consumer, cost, convenience, and communication. This represents a shift in focus to what the consumer wants and how to market to them. This movement makes trading partners more dependent than ever on one another through the use of software products designed to handle vendormanaged inventory, warehouse management, and supply chain management. Vendors are now required to automate their entire manufacturing process and provide work-in-process milestones back to the retailers in real time. The competitive advantage lies in the ability to execute globally.