Streamlining the planning, merchandising, and ordering process through seamless real-time collaboration between retail trading partners
A leading designer and marketer of an extensive range of women’s and men’s fashion apparel and accessories ranging from casual to dressy.
It is critical for an apparel manufacturer to collaborate effectively with retailers, gaining visibility into the retailers’ buying plans to ensure that its internal assortment and financial plans are compatible with the retailer’s buy plans. Absence of synchronization of the assortment and financial planning processes between the trading partners results in inefficiencies in the supply and demand chains which might lead to excess inventory, lack of product availability or excessive response times.
After a comprehensive analysis of the business problem, Visionet Systems Inc proposed the development of a Demand Planning System enabling buyer and seller to work in a collaborative real time environment with 2-way sharing of information. The system provides the client with visibility into buyer plans early in the cycle, allowing it to optimize inventory and production. The system simplifies the selling process by ensuring order commitments early in the process and allowing door planning/micro merchandizing.
The users of the system include Merchandisers and Account Executives at manufacturer’s end, and buyer’s representatives. The system seamlessly integrates with the manufacturer’s internal Assortment/Financial Planning and ERP Systems. Reporting capabilities of the system include Door Summary/Detail, Product Segment Summary/Detail, Color Summary/Detail, Body Type Summary/Detail, Order Summary/Detail, Booked Account Summary/Detail, Booking Summary/Detail by Group/Account, and ATS Summary/Detail by Group/Account Reports.
A high level description of the process flow is provided below:
Description of Steps:
- Product related data received from Assortment/Financial Planning System. Corporate data received from ERP System
- Merchandiser creates imports overall Assortment Plan which serves as a template to create worksheet for other buyers
- Merchandiser finalizes/approves overall Assortment Plan
- AE organizes Doors in regional and account groups/clusters
- AE creates buyer specific copies of overall Assortment Plan approved by merchandisers and edits worksheet of each buyer according to buyer specific planning
- AE shares buyer specific worksheet with buyer for his input
- Buyer may edit shared worksheet according to his own planning and enter OTB month value. He can also request a new style if it is not currently available
- AE and buyer may edit the worksheet again and again in a loop until finally approved by AE.
- Worksheet orders are approved and POs are assigned.
- Approved orders are sent to ERP system in 850 format. Change in orders are sent in 860 format.
Enhanced overall profitability through better planning and optimized production and inventory levels.