Supply chain the network that connects the company and the supplier in order to manufacture and distribute the product/service to the customers or the final consumer. The network includes people, process, information, technology, transportation and etc… There are new trends seen in SCM and they are as follows; outsourcing, pull-push SC, RFID, Drop shipping, Customer store pickups, and reverse Sc.
These new trends have helped the vendors in certain ways. Vendors are a term that is being used to describe any person/firm that supplies goods or services. The trends benefit vendors in the following ways. Primarily, it decreases the risk of loss. The reverse supply chain technique helps the vendor to minimize the loss incurred. They can return the good that customer returns due to damage or malfunction. This loss will be refunded to them from the centralized return center. Secondly, the customer store pick-up helps the vendor to eliminate the home delivery technique. This helps them to minimize their operating cost. Thirdly, Drop shipping is the method of retailers getting orders and letting vendors take the process. This helps the vendors to get exposed to real-time supply chain management. This improves their knowledge in the supply chain industry and they get exposed to modern technology. Fourth, RFID helps the vendor to track his employees in the transmission of orders to the customers. Fourth, the pull and push technique helps the vendors to forecast the supply and demand of the product and services. This helps the vendor to eliminate out-of-stock and overs-stock situations. Finally, the trend of outsourcing the supply chain process minimizes the workload of vendors.
Retail system refers to the integrated computer software application that carries a specialization in handling and performing several retail operations in selling of goods and services and works in every size of business. This advanced system facilitates managerial and critical-operational tasks of the retail business.
Universal product code (UPC) refers to the code that is printed at a retail object in order to identify the product. It carries two parts- machine-readable barcode and also the unique 12-digit number beneath the barcode.
This code enables manufacturers, distributors, and retailers in tracking merchandize throughout the supply chain in a way that UPC assists the manufacturers, distributors, and retailers in determining the quantity of products available with them in stock for sale. UPC carries a technology that gets registered over computer system and allows the retailer, manufacturer and distributor to get proper knowledge about product availability. This way the proper stock of products can be kept ready for further and one has the comfort of getting all the details about the stock of the products on a computer without counting them manually. This way UPC enables manufacturers, distributors, and retailers in tracking merchandize throughout the supply chain.
Cross-docking refers to the logistical practice wherein materials are unloaded from incoming trucks or trailers and are shifted to an outbound truck/trailer to distribute the products directly to the retailers without any storage in between.
The type of merchandise that is most likely to be cross-docked at retailers' distribution center are the perishable items like dairy products, fruits, vegetables, seafoods, etc. This is because these products have a very short shelf life and they have to be reached to the retailers within a specified time and within the products' shelf life so that the products can be moved ahead in the distribution chain and are made available to the customers. This way cross-docking is used for the distribution of perishable items carrying short shelf-life and which has to be reached with the retailers within reasonable shelf life.
This is often the case because perishable items cannot be stored for long with the distributors and they have to be moved quickly in the distribution pipeline to sale them in good condition and within their perishability. Unless, cross-docking will take place, the perishable items will not reach within a reasonable time and the products will deteriorate without reaching to the customers.