For monitoring stock levels, we developed a tool called Inventory and Availability, which responds to the question, “how much product do you have?”. The answer to this question is obtained by collecting, in the field, information related to stock: the average, minimum and maximum amount of product held by each player in the supply chain, in a chosen time interval. This can be compared with a target value defined by the user, in order to measure the efficiency of the distribution system.
The data required for performing the analysis and obtaining the previously described performance include the selection of a player in the supply chain to be examined, a time range to monitor and one or more GTINs under study.
While the Availability module provides an overview of current availability (filterable for individual references or in one or more locations, with the possibility of introducing additional groupings for the display of output), the Inventory module shows the evolution of stock availability over time through a series of snapshots. These snapshots can be conducted at a frequency defined a priori, in the stock of one or more locations and carried out for each reference or for specifically chosen groupings.
In retail environments, it is fundamental that products remain present in the sales area. Despite this, sales areas are often left devoid of products that are available in the back shop. The possibility of tracking stock in the sales area and stock in the back shop is a prerogative of RFID technology. However, a Business Intelligence system is required which, on the basis of data from the field, signals which items to replenish and when.
Specifically catering for the retail sector, the replenishment module of the RSA-Dashboard has been designed precisely to meet this need. It suggests items to restock in the sales area, simultaneously evaluating aspects of back shop availability and advanced sales performance metrics such as “dry” sales in a range, sales/average shelf display time, sales/average number of products on display.
The result is that products are always available in the sales area, thereby increasing shop sales.
[Under development] Flow Time Management: How Long?
A new module called Flow Time Management is currently being developed. It is the BI tool that will answer the question: “How long did the process last?”. With this tool, it is possible to gather information about the time spent passing through the supply chain, for each EPC or for an entire category of products that have been processed within a particular time interval. Through the Flow Time Management module, it is also possible to establish the overall time required at each EPC for crossing the supply chain.
The results obtained make it possible to identify the most critical processes that have required an abnormally long time, or above a target value defined for the optimal performance of the supply chain, thus paving the way to greater efficiency throughout the supply chain.
Any ad-hoc modules can be integrated by adapting existing ones or by developing them from greenfield according to customer requirements.