Articles

Retail

Curtis Greve

Why Every Manufacturer Needs a Reverse Logistics Solution

The average manufacturer spends nine to 14 percent of total sales on product returns each year, according to an Aberdeen Group study. Yet an estimated 45 percent of manufacturers do not have a reverse logistics solution. They rely on retail or wholesale partners to deal with customer returns, recalls, and seasonal overstocks. Until the mid-1990s, […]

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Dr. Matthew Waller

Innovation in Business Processes from Northwest Arkansas

Northwest Arkansas is a hotbed for innovations in supply chain management, the effects of which span the globe. Although some argue that various aspects of these innovations started elsewhere, they have, at the very least, been perfected and rolled out broadly in Northwest Arkansas. Though these innovations have been in areas of data science and […]

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Bob McKee

Optimizing the Fashion Supply Chain

The debate in fashion over inventory as an asset or a liability may never see an end. Only a few years ago, the CEO of one the largest fashion retailers in the United States said, “I’d rather lose sales than carry (risky) inventory.” What an incredible statement. The head of a major retailer willing to […]

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Paul A. Myerson

Lean Retail: It’s About Time – and Money

Thanks to forward-thinking retailers such as Walmart and OfficeMax, Lean thinking is spreading in a variety of manufacturing sectors, including consumer goods, apparel, and food and beverage. These retailers have dramatically changed how products are ordered, moving inventory rapidly through their distribution centers to stores by gathering and sharing point-of-sale data with suppliers, and using […]

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Trends—May 2014

Trends—May 2014

TOTO Plumbs the Benefits of Green To gain favor among ethically conscious customers, retailers and manufacturers continue to put a marketing spin on sustainability. Greenwashing has many shades. Often it surfaces in buzzwords such as eco-friendly and recycled. Sometimes it reveals itself as trust in a brand, or the type of ingredients found in a […]

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Trends—April 2014

Trends—April 2014

Shopping for Retail Trends The National Retail Federation (NRF) drew a record 30,000-plus attendees to its January 2014 BIG Apple Conference to "touch and feel" the latest hot trends and innovations in the retail industry. For some attendees, like Mark Ledbetter, global vice president for SAP Retail, the reality is even more compelling. Ledbetter, who […]

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Curtis Greve

How to Profit from Outsourcing

More companies outsource the reverse logistics function than any other part of the supply chain. In fact, most Fortune 1000 retailers and consumer goods manufacturers outsource part or all of their reverse logistics processes, and experts expect this trend to continue growing globally over the next 20 years. Why do companies such as Walmart, Dell, […]

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Global—February 2014

Global—February 2014

Serving Returning Customers In a fickle economy, retailers want consumers to be less discreet about their discretionary spending. One way they can encourage that is to make it easier for customers to return impulse buys or unwanted holiday gifts. But returns can add significant costs, especially when it involves cross-border business. Take, for example, online […]

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Keith Biondo

Visions of Customer Service

Tighter links are being forged between customer service and logistics in the retail supply chain. As competition between traditional and online shopping choices heats up, expedited transportation offerings and blended supply chain networks play a pivotal role. Simply put, delivery speed and logistics agility provide the customer service levels needed to win. The main advantage […]

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