Collaborative material management key to profits in retail

05 Jan '13
2 min read

ecVision, the leading supply chain collaboration platform provider for retail, announced that it will discuss collaborative material management best practices for retailers at the National Retail Federation Big Show in January 2013. Raw material pricing, availability and location are of the highest concern to retailers that responded to a Gartner survey released in December 2012.

ecVision Suite's Collaborative Material Management Best Practice helps brands, retailers and suppliers work closely together to deliver more innovative products, manage the sampling and testing process, as well as plan, forecast and reserve raw materials. All of these processes are included in this application that also features functional and reporting tools to get the job done with greater ease.

The benefits derived from this Best Practice allow sourcing teams to:
-Collaborate with suppliers on design concepts to deliver innovative products that sell-through
-Buy material early in the product planning stage to lock-in prices when they are optimal
-Provide material manufacturers with visibility into the anticipated needs to optimize cycle time
-Reduce sampling, testing and adoption processes by collaborating electronically
-Move to a Reserve Early/Purchase Later methodology that ensures production stays on course while delaying financial liability
-Track committed quantities versus actual orders placed to accurately determine utilization, minimize material liability and reduce costs

"Every product is only as good as the components used to build them and the cost of raw materials is the largest factor in an FOB price. Inflation of these costs is a financial concern to many manufacturers and retailers," said Jenny Roman, Product Manager for ecVision.

"Collaborating with raw material suppliers at the start of a product lifecycle is the most effective way to keep costs down and gain competitive advantage. But collaborative material management is a complex task given a retailer's international organizational structure and current infrastructure. By standardizing product development processes across diverse organizational teams and the international supply chain, best practices can be implemented to maximize efficiency, while reducing costs and time-to-market."

According to a Kurt Salmon survey of retailers in the US released in August 2012, 42% of the respondents feel raw material purchasing/consolidation is a cost savings strategy that can dramatically effect sourcing operations. Such strategies can significantly reduce the development cycle for new styles and speed up the replenishment cycle for existing styles.

ecVision

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