Photo appears courtesy of Mike Mozart. This blog was written by Aurora EDI Alliance partner, Jim Gonzalez. This is a question all companies should be asking themselves as we are moving in the direction of purchasing all goods online through mobile devices. How often do you go to the store to pick up something you ordered online? Grocery stores are moving to ordering online with the local store delivering to your home. Some stores - Walmart and Target come to mind - allow you to order online and pick up at the local store to save on shipping. This is due to Walmart and other major entities moving into other sectors they weren’t historically known for. Walmart was the go-to retail store for discount items just a decade ago. Now they are pushing to also be your discount everything from tires to iPads to tomatoes, and even offer additional discounts for ordering online with store pick-up. To further meet consumer demand, they are offering more items that are either organic or sourced sustainably or both. Think about it, if you stay stagnant, you will quickly become irrelevant in today’s competitive environment.
As I sit at my desk for the last time this year ending a very busy year I think back to the late 1980s when I first got into EDI. I had gotten a taste of programming in communications, connecting computers to Telex machines, and companies were clamoring for technicians who could figure out Bisync modems. Walmart was requiring all suppliers to use them to receive orders and send invoices by EDI into the Walmart mainframes.
Enjoying a beer at my favorite brewery over the holidays, my neighbor at the bar told me that Amazon's largest revenue comes from their server space rentals. Who knew??? As consumers we have our eyes on all the products that they sell these days. There are actually people out there who buy virtually everything from the retail giant, from diapers to Xbox. How nice is it as consumers to order something Thursday night after talking to someone at a Thanksgiving dinner and have it on our door step Saturday? I have since learned that Amazon has been busy offering cloud services for more than a decade!
Photo appears courtesy of Morag Riddell. This blog was written by Karen Blood of GraceBlood LLC, a partner of the Aurora EDI Alliance. No surprise, today’s most successful supply chain companies are doing more and more business electronically. From a personal consumer perspective, aren’t we all? Industry leaders like Amazon, AutoZone and Walmart understand this and are driven from the boardroom to the warehouse to handle all aspects of business over proliferating electronic channels. Suppliers at each level up on the supply chain are finding it necessary to accommodate their down-channel customers’ end-customer’s desire for, and reliance on, real-time transactions and information. This has a challenging ripple effect on their suppliers, carriers and 3PLs, as well as their own operations.
Photo appears courtesy of Wendy. This week's blog was written by Karen Blood from Aurora EDI Alliance partner, GraceBlood LLC out of Baltimore, MD. Amazon recently announced a new type of chargeback that will initially impact Hardlines’ Vendor Central suppliers. While this might not seem to apply to you or your other trading relationships today, Amazon more and more (like Walmart in the past) is a bellwether when it comes to making demands on suppliers. The never ceasing effort to bring customers robust selection at competitive prices in a hurry puts the responsibility squarely on distributors and manufacturers to fill orders and maintain proper levels of inventory to support demand.