Assortment and Item Planning Implementation

Design of new, integrated planning processes and configuration of an assortment and item planning system to deliver the desired future state capabilities

The Client

A $1.4B international retailer operating in direct, retail, and B2B channels with a large product assortment, featuring women's, men's, and children's apparel as well as home accessories.


The Challenge

The client used a variety of legacy assortment and item planning tools as well as spreadsheets, creating a challenge at getting plans easily rolled up across all countries and channels. This myriad of disparate tools was preventing them from effectively managing a global assortment. Adding to the planning challenges, the client was going through a multi-year systems transformation, changing core merchandising and purchasing functions and adding significant complexity to the key integrations to planning.


The Parker Avery Solution

With client business and IT partnership, The Parker Avery Group designed new, integrated planning processes and configured an assortment and item planning system to deliver the desired future state capabilities. The project encompassed assortment planning with recommended customer choice counts, retail store clustering, assortment eligibility by retail cluster, item planning, SKU projections, and end-of-lifecycle product management, all integrated to the merchandise financial plan.

Parker Avery led and participated in the following activities and deliverables:
• Detailed and end-to-end business process design
• Functional designs for system integrations
• Functional designs and mockups for reports to be implemented on a new BI tool
• Solution, integration, and user acceptance testing
• Change management strategy including impact assessment, communication plan, organizational structure, and training plan
• Development and delivery of over 120 hours of training for global end-users, including merchants and planners
• Application configuration, implementation, and support
• Agile design, build, and test project approach


The Result

The client is now able to create and manage an efficient and detailed global assortment that links to financial targets and ultimately produces purchase orders that are balanced at the SKU level.

Additionally, the client expects to achieve the following benefits:
• Enhanced product planning, management, and analytics capabilities
• Standardized tools and processes with consistent data driving increased collaboration, productivity, and transparency
• Improved sales, margin, and inventory utilization

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