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How to get commerce ready and maximise supply chain profitability and scalability

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Manhattan Associates President and CEO Eddie Capel revealed two key essentials for companies aiming to get commerce ready and maximise the profitability and scalability of their supply chains for today’s dynamic market.

Speaking at the Manhattan Associates Momentum 2014 conference, Capel said the two key essentials, ready to sell and ready to execute, build on the theme of Momentum 2014, ‘Get Commerce Ready’, and complement Manhattan’s vision of Supply Chain Commerce. Supply Chain Commerce is the new role that supply chains play in the evolving world of digital commerce.

Capel explains commerce ready supply chains are ready to sell and ready to execute any way, anytime, anywhere – all the time. In a market where peaks have become more extreme and cycle times have accelerated, Capel believes companies cannot simply build a distribution centre that can handle maximum conditions year round. To be operationally and financially viable, networks need to dynamically flex in response to today’s changeable demand.

Ready to Sell

To be ready to sell, enterprises must evolve from just fulfilling products across multiple channels to offering the right products to the right customer at the best margin even before the sale is made. According to Capel, the challenge in today’s market is how to differentiate between inventory visibility and inventory availability. If companies wait until after an order is captured to figure out what merchandise makes sense to offer, it’s too late.

To help companies optimise decisions on what inventory to sell prior to taking an order, Capel outlined Manhattan’s Available to Commerce vision, new ways to view and adjust the availability of inventory across channels and more efficiently leverage store fulfilment, which can contribute to higher operating margins and better execute omni-channel strategies.

Ready to Execute

Ready to execute supply chains must be scalable and dynamic, and incorporate Flexible Fulfilment in order to adapt to market dynamics. Capel describes Flexible Fulfilment as an approach that helps companies quickly respond to fluctuations in demand and strategically fulfil customer orders from the optimal source such as a specific distribution centre or within the store’s existing inventory. This establishes a scalable infrastructure to help supply chains respond to the highly seasonal, highly variable nature of demand; ultimately getting the customer whatever they need, whenever they need it in a profitable manner.

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