Today’s retailers are more adept than ever before of ensuring that any new software has to integrate seamlessly with existing systems, be future proof and above all deliver a rapid Return On Investment.
Many retailers today planning process have evolved by using spreadsheets. The investment is not customer facing it is not immediately visible on the shop floor or the ecommerce website.
Therefore, it is not always seen as the highest priority, but in reality investment in merchandise planning software brings so many benefits and can be implemented quickly with relatively little disruption to the business.
Key benefits of implementing Merchandise Planning Software include:
Reduced Stock holding
Having full transparency of stock across all channels and across all merchandise departments means suddenly there is nowhere to hide and means that stock issues can be addressed and managed effectively within the business.
Reduction in manual effort
It’s not unusual for the merchandise departments to save anything from days to even weeks of manual effort in pulling together manual spreadsheets and reports.
Quicker reaction to trends & faster decision making
With reduced manual effort comes speed of reaction to trends to get in and out of stock.
Strategic & Detailed view
The flexibility that comes with a merchandise planning system is not easily replicated within manual spreadsheets. The ability to look strategically across the business and then drill across channels, hierarchies and attributes and pivot the information based on what is important to the business. To create top down and bottom up plans.
It’s a no brainer! System automatic updates as opposed to manual updates means that data integrity is definitely one of the key benefits for implementing a new merchandise planning system.
Focus of the open to buy in the right areas
Ultimately knowing you have the right data which is received quickly means that the retail teams are able to focus the open to buy in the right areas which can only increase sales and reduce markdowns!