National retailer

A well-known supermarket approached us when they wanted to cut wastage and increase on-shelf availability.

The Challenge

With over 500 stores nationwide, stocking over 35,000 products, our client already had systems and processes in place to ensure that dairy, fruit and
vegetables along with other short-shelf items could be forecasted and delivered to their stores.

In the cut throat world of retail where small margins really matter, our client recognised the need for a real-time view on sales so they could maximise
product on shelf availability and reduce waste.

What we did

Phase one of our delivery involved the setting-up of a three-week pilot covering one third of our client’s stores and around 8,000 of their dairy and fresh products.

We collected sales data from the till systems and, by combining this with product data, provided users with the ability to filter and focus on the products that were relevant to them or their team.

The sales data was aggregated throughout the day and we used predictive analytics tools to give a live estimate of the expected sales for each product for the remainder of the day. These sales predictions were then correlated against the sales that the supply team had forecasted.

We created a dashboard to present the data to the supply team in a visual way and by using RAG (red, amber, green) flags their attention could be drawn to the areas that were showing a significant discrepancy between the forecast and actual sales at the national, distribution centre and store level.

 

  • A hand holds out a credit card
  • Mature woman shopping at supermarket selecting vegetables

Dave Laycock, Head of Data Practice, said “Our client needed data quickly to make decisions on how much stock to send from the central depots on to the distribution points and from there on to the individual stores. Splunk was an obvious choice of technology. I haven’t come across a product that’s quicker to load data into than Splunk and when it comes to operational intelligence, it gives actionable insight quickly, and powerfully.”

As a result of our work the teams were able to receive actionable insight and make decisions within minutes of a sale in any of the pilot stores.

Having seen and used the pilot our client’s Head of Supply Chain wanted to roll it out to all the stores in their estate. Our client also asked us to include all of their products in the project.

We completed the full project within a few weeks providing additional, easy to use dashboards and enhanced reporting for the supply team.

Dave explains, “Effectively we prioritised the work of the supply team members by highlighting those products or groups of products where action was needed in order to avoid over or under supply to the stores or the distribution centres.

“In addition to meeting our client’s need to reduce wastage and maximise on-shelf availability, we also were able to increase the efficiency with which the supply team operated.”

 

Benefits

Increased margin

Better decisions

Customer satisfacton

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