In an increasingly complicated, fast-paced fashion marketplace, increasing numbers of fashion businesses are investing in Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems to help provide that all-important competitive advantage. With their ability to uncover new depths of business insight, paving the way for real efficiency savings right across the organisation, the right ERP solution for fashion & apparel can transform businesses into agile, responsive and effective organisations, capable of securing sustainable business growth even in the most challenging of markets.
With this in mind, how can fashion businesses ensure they’re investing in the right solution and what should they be looking out for when selecting an ERP system? We’ve spoken to three different fashion businesses to see which key features of their ERP systems have yielded the biggest benefits for them.
Alpargatas USA Inc – Managing product complexity
For Alpargatas USA Inc, the New York based business that distributes Havaianas flip-flops, espadrilles and sneakers across the USA, it was a case of looking for a solution that could deal with a high level of product complexity. Responsible for up to 3,000 product variations at any one time, reflecting different styles, colour, accessories and sizes, and with new collections released every season, the business faced a significant challenge in trying to efficiently manage this extraordinary amount of products.
To meet this challenge head-on, Alpargatas invested in an ERP system that enabled the business to analyse its stock quickly and effectively, providing automated, accurate, real-time insight into inventory levels without the need for time-consuming manual intervention. The business chose a solution that’s specifically designed to cater for the needs of the footwear and apparel industry, one that provides detailed reports not only about stock levels but stock characteristics, too.
This access to comprehensive, in-depth inventory information has meant that Alpargatas has seen a reduction in errors, eliminating problematic stock-out situations, while delivering a faster, more responsive, higher quality service to its customers.
Jacobo D Kattan – Analytics excellence
Jacobo D Kattan, Kattan Group’s commercial division, which manufactures and exports garments across the Americas and Europe, was looking for a solution to not only better manage operations and inventory, but to improve forecasting. The business chose a solution designed to meet the specific needs of the footwear and apparel industries, and has benefited from automated processes that have streamlined administrative processes, reducing employee workload and enabling staff to focus on more value-add activities. At the same time, centralised data and real-time analytics help the team tailor their plans to match consumer demand, as well as enabling management to make faster, more informed decisions, with better financial reporting improving planning and reducing risk.
Like Alpargatas, Jacabo D Kattan has seen real improvements in inventory management, realising a 15% reduction in inventory levels, as well as a 18% reduction in factory production errors due to better control over production orders. The system is fully scalable, too, meaning it will grow alongside the business, supporting the organisation’s expansion plans.
Redfoot Shoes – A single, centralised solution
Redfoot Shoes, the own-brand footwear division of Bacup Shoes, was looking for an ERP solution to unite processes and departments right across the business. Again, it chose a solution designed specifically for the footwear and apparel industry, which improved access to business information across all departments, including design, production, logistics and accounts. This has led to increased efficiencies across the business, reducing manual tasks, improving workflows and streamlining accounting processes. And, access to live stock reports, sales figures, in-depth management information and gross profit margins provides a real-time picture of the financial health of the organisation for more robust, fact-based decision-making and strategic planning.
As we can see, three very different businesses are all benefiting from an ERP solution designed to meet the specific needs of the footwear and apparel industries. For more information on how we can ensure you pick the right solution for your business, get in touch today.