Supply Chain – call for a holistic approach

Supplies and warehouse visibility are gaining priority, strictly followed by control over operations and keeping a close relationship with the consumer.

Not long before summer, Milkman Technologies published a study on supply chain disruptions that reported examples of how some major companies such as American Eagle and El Corte Ingles were applying new and different strategies to manage the supply chain crisis.

It is now autumn, but the supply chain challenges are still making the news. Only in the UK, according to a recent survey by Brightpearl, 85% of retailer businesses have been hit by supply chain issues in the last year. 

The future doesn’t look any brighter either, with Brightpearl CEO commenting: “We are in the worst supply chain crisis that any of us can remember and there is no sign of the problems easing before the end of the year.’’ Every business is taking its toll worldwide, not only in the UK, because of supply chain disruptions creating industry bottlenecks and the cost of living increase affecting purchase power. 

During the pandemic, most retailers had to adapt to eCommerce’s surge quickly and force-fit eCommerce operations into their traditional business. With the current crisis, this kind of ‘’quick fix’’ is not sustainable anymore. A more integrated strategy needs to be in place to maintain the focus on customer experience, fulfillment and last-mile. 

The principle is simple, you cannot sell what you don’t have, so orders, supplies, and warehouse visibility are gaining priority, strictly followed by control over operations and keeping a close relationship with the consumer by providing the right service levels. These are the drivers of the new strategies that are emerging in how retailers want to run their logistics operations to avoid any further and unnecessary interferences. 

Some are trying to develop in-house solutions, some are relying on third parties providers, and some are looking for new partnerships, all with a common goal: creating a holistic approach that can benefit the business by eliminating fluctuations, managing exceptions, and above all getting the products to the customer. Pulling too many strings from different directions though can easily lead to too complicated processes, difficulties in data sharing, and eventually unsatisfied clients.

The real holistic approach would be the one structured around one platform that guarantees visibility, cost control, capacity management, and better customer service and serve the retailers’ need to improve their logistics operations without stretching the business too much and applying many different systems.

With this in mind, Milkman Technologies has developed a platform that:

  • improves visibility and control with its interactive tracking page
  • offers choices with smart promises
  • builds flawless hyper-automation with the order management system 
  • uses unique team experience both as carrier and transportation optimisation 

To survive and keep growing in such unprecedented times, retailers need to focus on what they can do best, venturing into logistics management might mean investing a lot of time and resources in something that can be done properly by the specialists that have the right technology, knowledge and can give the right support to the business in a continuous focus on improving e-commerce operations and customer experience.

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