- Neiman Marcus is outsourcing its data distribution, in an effort to create better visibility and collaboration between the retailer and its suppliers, according to a press release.
- The retailer is adopting SKYPAD, a software as a service (SaaS) application developed by Sky IT Group, to track inventory data and deliver that information to its brands. Many of its suppliers, including Prada, Jimmy Choo and Marc Jacobs, already use the service.
- The program tracks data on product attributes, time dimension and geolocation, Jay Hakami, president and CEO of Sky IT Group, told Supply Chain Dive.
Accurate inventory forecasting starts with access to data. With both suppliers and retailers having access to the data, they can communicate which color or size of a product is selling better at a particular store. "It enables a much more intelligent conversation between the buyer and seller," Hakami said.
On the retail side, the data can help fill the holes left by out of stock products, he said. "Gucci calls up Neiman Marcus and says, 'I see that we're out of those shoes in store number 156. Why don't we ship them, because I have some in my warehouse?'"
That's a plus for brands as well, allowing them to ship sitting inventory out of the warehouse and on to the shop floor. By reducing inventory, suppliers will likely see fewer markdowns on their products.