Today, the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) and Auburn University's Center for Supply Chain Innovation released the sixth annual State of the Retail Supply Chain Report. The report provides in-depth analysis of the biggest questions facing supply chain leaders and reveals best practices for retailers to compete in a changing marketplace.
This year's study is the culmination of research gathered from industry publication analysis, a targeted online survey, and interviews with 24 senior executives from a wide range of top retailers. The report details the top four supply chain capabilities that keep retailers on the leading edge of retail supply chain innovation: supply chain strategy, demand planning, store-based fulfillment, and returns management. The report also explores what's on the horizon for the retail industry.
"In addition to tackling the critical issues facing the retail supply chain today and presenting actionable takeaways, this report provides a tremendous benchmarking opportunity for supply chain leaders," said Lisa LaBruno, RILA's senior vice president of retail operations. "By understanding the big picture industry state of play, retailers can begin to take an internal audit of their capabilities, prioritize future investments accordingly, and maintain competitiveness with their peers."
According to the report:
Not surprisingly, omni-channel is a major concern, strategic opportunity, and investment priority for retailers. They are trying to synchronize supply chain processes to promote convenience, speed, and a superior customer experience.
The report concludes:
As we look at 2016 and beyond, integration will be the key word. Retail supply chain executives need to pursue further alignment with merchant and store professionals to cost-efficiently enhance demand planning, inventory sharing, fulfillment excellence, and customer satisfaction.
The complete report can be viewed here.
RILA is the trade association of the world's largest and most innovative retail companies. RILA members include more than 200 retailers, product manufacturers, and service suppliers, which together account for more than $1.5 trillion in annual sales, millions of American jobs and more than 100,000 stores, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers domestically and abroad.