DMSRetail's High-Tech, High-Touch
Inventory Planning Service
Effective use of a good Inventory Plan is the first step
to prosperity, growth and the path to recognize and exploit opportunities. The
Inventory Plan is the template that a retailer uses to guide the many decisions
that lead to that desired prosperity.
DMSRetail Invent team members are proud of their process and the solutions they bring
to clients. That is why we are willing to share these ingredients of how our
Inventory Planning has generated success for our client base. Our passion and our
commitment is to drive our client's businesses profitably and create growth in
Many retailers / category managers / buyers are able to recognize and buy great
merchandise. Retailers, generally speaking, are also great sellers due to their
knowledge of the merchandise and their ability to create great relationships
Inventory planning provides the additional know-how and forecast
to bring everything together. Inventory plans are the link for budgeting, buying
the right amount of merchandise, landing merchandise at the right time, managing
cash flow, balancing inventory levels, and managing the flow of merchandise to
make more efficient use of cash flow and customer satisfaction.
An important part of Retail Success is about making the right buying decisions
in the present to satisfy the demand in the future. We have found that
predicting the future accurately can most effectively be done at the category
level. While fashions change and lines come and go, the category structure
provides consistency from one season to the next. With that consistency comes
the ability to identify current trends and forecast their demand into the
future. That is important for making the right decisions to grow the business.
Professional Inventory Planners are schooled in the balance between the high
tech metrics and the high touch feel. The high touch aspect raises awareness and
provides the means to make important improvements to the final plan. Often a
retailer’s in-house planners are influenced far too much by the input from
owners, managers and local staff. A term for this is “group think” where the
peer pressure and expectations of senior staff unduly influences the
conclusions. An impartial third party professional planning can impart the
objectivity needed to give the valuable high touch insights their true value in
In the final analysis, the keys to effective planning consist of finding the
right category structure; nailing the right sales forecast in each category;
identifying the proper stock to sales level in each category each month;
generating the right reports; identifying the correct analysis of the
information to arrive at and implement the best action plan. All must be based
on current and future market trends at the store level and not Last Year.
Why DMSRetail Invent?
A huge benefit and reason to use DMSRetail Invent Planning Process is that it
provides a professional Inventory Plan to add both discipline and expertise to
the ongoing process of evaluating the new reality that is created in your retail
business every month. As the situation evolves and new information is gathered,
the forecast changes.
If two heads are better than one, think of what 4 heads can provide. Every plan
that we produce is critiqued from several perspectives. First is the data
analysis that the computer model and statistical trending methodology produces.
We first take a client’s data and put it through our proprietary computer model.
That is the first perspective that is devoid of bias or prejudice.
That plan is then reviewed by a professional Inventory Planner with years of
experience reviewing thousands of categories and merchandise plans for hundreds
of clients. That perspective comes with a bias based on what he or she is
learning from evaluating many stores across the spectrum. The input from an
industry professional is important to improve the value of the forecast and
recommendations in the plan. The plan is often reviewed by another senior
merchandise planning professional to add perspective and quality control.
The plan is then sent to the DMSRetail Invent Client Consultant who is familiar
with the client's retail business and has been trained in reviewing the plans
and interpreting them to glean the meaningful information and recommendations.
This adds the third perspective from the store perspective. This is important to
make sure that the right decisions are being made based on the data and plan
Finally, client's senior management / category management / buyers are presented
with the plan. Their feedback and input is important too. A meaningful
discussion to reach the right consensus at this level has two benefits:
1. It improves the forecast and action plan
2. It facilitates communication and ownership of the action plan assuring that
the right actions will be implemented
We certainly don’t have a 100% accuracy level on our predictions but working
with a proven computer model, professional planners, trained and certified
consultants as well as dedicated clients to reach the right consensus, we are confident
we have the best direction and guidance available in the industry. The
methodology we have developed over the past 20+ years does provide the platform
for meaningful communication both ways.
+1 (312) 239-0919