Tuesday 25th Oct 2016 - Logistics Manager

Supplier picking cuts lead times

Menswear retailer Speciality Retail Group has reduced lead times and lowered overall order cycle times, following the implementation of the Kewill Trade order fulfilment system which has allowed SRG to optimise warehouse space by moving from warehouse to supplier picking.

Previously supplier orders were generated by SRG in the Futura order management system, which were then authorised and amended manually as required by SRG. The orders were posted out to suppliers, many of which are based in the Far East, where they would in turn order fabric, manufacture and despatch the products to SRG.

SRG’s orders are now raised in its head office system, Futura, and sent to Kewill. Suppliers view orders via the web and declare availability. SRG then decides on allocation to stores in advance of delivery and notifies suppliers who can then schedule deliveries well in advance. Suppliers are also sent pick lists so that they are able to organise picking, packing, labelling and bar coding.

SRG’s IT director, Gareth Durban, says: “Because we are no longer picking stock ourselves, there is more space in the warehouse. We also know that orders are accurate, on time and visible, should any problems arise.”

The new processes have cut the supply chain cycle by nearly two weeks from over 20 weeks to 18 weeks.