With the daffodils starting to appear and Easter round the corner it’s time to look back at Christmas 2014 to see what lessons we can learn.
Firstly the Christmas peak is getting later and later, consumers are ordering from multiple devices, at any time of day and expecting delivery immediately. If your customers don’t have confidence you can deliver as promised they will go to your competitors. The size of the peak is also growing, it is normal to see order volumes in December that are 2-3 times September volumes, however popular retailers may see nearer 4 times.
In order to fulfil these orders some warehouses are having to operate 24×7 to meet demand. Any delay in getting orders out of the door will lead to a snowball effect as more orders build up and the delays increase. You could end up throwing money at the problem by hiring temporary staff or you could end up shutting your doors to sort out the backlog as one delivery company infamously did last year.
The key to a successful Christmas 2015 is planning and investment. John Lewis MD Andy Street spoke recently about how their investment in IT had grown from 15% to 37%. Co-incidentally John Lewis had a successful festive period with sales increasing and their IT investment allowing them flexibility to deliver in the changing retail environment.
Your warehouse, and the warehouse management system (WMS) that runs it, is a vital area to invest in. You can have a wonderful, snazzy website able to take orders from any device but if inefficiencies mean orders take too long to pass through your warehouse then you will lose out to your competition.
A new WMS can seem an enormous undertaking so it’s beneficial to work closely with a specialist; one who can help you assess the warehouse you currently have and the warehouse you will need in the future.
A good specialist will use this in-depth analysis to guide you to the right solution for your business leaving you with a flexible, accurate, efficient warehouse.
Our software has been developed over 30 years, alongside our community of customers suggesting best practices, resulting in a best of breed WMS.
Speak to Proteus on stand 123 at IntraLogisteX to find out more about our solutions and long-term relationships with leading companies.