Many retailers are taking a closer look at all aspects of their operations in order to significantly improve their offering and customer experience, while also cutting costs and enhancing the bottom line.
Across all segments and markets, retailers may benefit from conducting an end-to-end review of their operations, from the factory where raw materials are processed to the final product in the consumer’s hands. End-to-end operations include labor management, customer service, and total loss reduction plus in-stock, inventory, supply chain, and delivery—all of which present opportunities to improve efficiency and lower costs. The bottom-line impact of holistically rethinking operations can be dramatic, and this approach also enables retailers to significantly improve the customer experience.
For example, omnichannel fulfillment used to be a discretionary option for retailers; today, it is a baseline requirement. Customers want to order anytime, anywhere, and from any device. They want to make their purchases in the store, at a separate delivery location, or through home delivery. They want to determine their own delivery or pick-up windows to fit their busy schedules. And they want to be able to return items at any of the store’s retail locations, hassle-free.
Thriving in an omnichannel-retail environment requires a host of new fulfillment capabilities. Retailers must design and execute the best possible customer service across all retail channels, build the infrastructure needed to ensure consistent pick-up and return processes, and continually capture and analyze the data needed to understand customers’ expectations so that they can improve their stocking and flow strategies.