Footwear brand and retailer Aerosoles has been operating as an omnichannel retailer for nearly a decade, but streamlining inventory is still a work in progress. And now, Aerosoles has pledged to create a single streamlined inventory program by housing all inventory functions in a single group by 2015.
Steve Siebel, Aerosoles VP of merchandising, spoke at the 2014 Retail Technology Conference about how the merging of retail, e-commerce and wholesale channels, and the linking of core functions including assortments, pricing, inventory control, warehouses and demand planning has impacted the retailer's omnichannel journey, reported RIS News.
"There is no single platform to solve," Siebel said. "But how systems will talk to each other and how to optimize and reorganize to accommodate that is where retailers must set their focus. The organization needs to realign to one customer service team and one allocation team to handle the new demands."
Aerosoles stores run at 70-80 percent of inventory capacity, he said. But the ratio is now being re-evaluated. "If our outlets are over-fueled and we're really pushing the limits – we realized we have to determine what the best level of inventory actually needs to be at each location," he said.
A single-silo approach right-sizes inventory and optimizes fulfillment across all channels: stores, websites, wholesale and direct.
Silos are everywhere within retail organizations and are increasingly being viewed as barriers to successful omnichannel strategies. Smart retailers are smashing these silos. Earlier this month department store chain Neiman Marcus reshuffled its entire executive and reporting structure to create a more channel agnostic chain of command.
-See this RIS News story
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