Magazine Article | September 23, 2012

In-Stock By Popular Demand

Source: Innovative Retail Technologies

October 2012 Integrated Solutions For Retailers

By Matt Pillar, editor in chief

The closer you can align the mechanics of your replenishment effort with channel-specific points of demand, the fewer stock-outs you’ll suffer.

The battle for in-stock consistency is as old as retail itself. In the brick-and-mortar world, expensive safety stock was once the path of least resistance to out-of-stock avoidance. Then, just as demand-driven replenishment models began to hit their stride, the game forever changed. Now, as inventory management systems evolve to accommodate the multitouch point, omnichannel consumer mentality, the challenge of managing sales and inventory visibility to maintain a positive in-stock position becomes even greater. Here, we discuss the renewed importance on inventory visibility and omni-channel in-stock positioning with RedPrairie VP of product strategy Tom Kozenski.

Recent research from the Grocery Manufacturer’s Association found that shoppers have only a 52% chance of fulfilling a ten-item shopping list without encountering a stock-out. Why such a poor percentage?

Kozenski: The most common cause of out-of-stocks is the challenge retailers face in understanding consumer demand and the time it takes to get replenishment stock to the store. Retailers have tried different types of demand replenishment models for years with varied success.

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