Magazine Article | January 23, 2014

Supply Chain Execution 2014: Making Any-Channel Retail Fulfillment Profitable

Source: Innovative Retail Technologies
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February 2014 Integrated Solutions For Retailers

Omni-channel is evolving and maturing. Retailers are turning from envisioning the future of digitalenabled shopping toward making that vision a reality. However, for all the work that has been done, one particular function of the retail business has been held apart: the supply chain.

Changing the supply chain is time consuming, resource intensive, expensive, and risky. And though most retailers have grappled with how digitallyenabled consumer shopping behaviors are changing, most have responded with a thin layer of omni-channel veneer and a supply chain unchanged — isolated and protected at all costs.

Like a pressure cooker locked down too tight, however, the forces acting on supply chain are only building greater pressure, from shifting consumer behaviors to demands for omni-channel service. And those forces won’t be easing up anytime soon. While the retail supply chain has been designed and refined to serve one channel only — stores — most retailers are looking to other channels, digital channels that only increase retailers’ need to become more seamlessly omni-channel, like mobile.

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