Omni Assortment Planning and Item Planning (APIP) Implementation

Leading the implementation of an APIP solution to deliver desired future state capabilities, resulting in improved business efficiencies and better overall visibility into the planning processes

The Client

A leading, privately-owned brand featuring fly fishing gear, sportswear, innovative pet products, fine gifts, home furnishings, luggage, and travel accessories. 


The Challenge

Founded as a mail-order business, the client had expanded to retail stores and digital channels. However, they relied on antiquated catalog planning processes, which limited the ability to create effective assortment strategies across all channels. Additionally, there was minimal reconciliation by channels between the merchandise financial plans (MFPs), assortment plans, and item plans. The client also wished to reduce SKU count, but there was limited visibility to the number of items in the assortment. They had selected a cloud-based assortment planning and item planning (APIP) solution and wanted to stay as close to the ‘out-of-the-box’ solution as possible.


The Parker Avery Solution

Parker Avery led the client business team through the ‘out-of-the-box’ solution to identify business critical configuration changes to deliver the desired future state APIP capabilities and processes. The Parker Avery team also worked with IT to establish and train batch protocols. Further, Parker Avery delivered and led all testing and training activities—including materials—and continued support after go-live.

Major project activities included:

  • Project leadership including guiding both high-level steering committee and detailed core team decisions
  • Business process design including the end-to-end assortment and item planning process
  • Clearly defined responsibilities for omni merchants, channel merchants and item planners
  • Application configuration, implementation, and support
  • Solution, integration, and user-acceptance testing
  • Change management leadership/client partnership
  • End user training for merchants and item planners

The Result

The client now has a seamless end-to-end APIP process that produces pre-season style/color and style/color/size plans which can be updated in-season based on business trends. The client expects the following benefits:

  • Visibility to merchants’ top-down assortment plans compared to item planners’ bottom up plans
  • Reconciliation of assortment and item plans to MFPs
  • Reduction in SKU count
  • Improved timing of transitioning from merchants to item planners and better visibility to changes being made during the planning timeframe


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