In 2019, Retailers and Suppliers Will Need Each Other More than Ever
It’s no secret that many retailers and suppliers are facing serious challenges as they adapt to a quickly changing retail landscape. You have significant consolidation among both retailers and suppliers. Many companies have replaced seasoned professionals who knew how to achieve progress through collaboration with inexperienced folks who are forced to learn on the job, all in the name of cost-cutting and reducing headcounts.
Many retailers that were at one time among the most successful and respected in the industry no longer exist. They failed to adapt to new competition, new order fulfillment models, and new customer demands. Consolidation has made organizations on both sides larger, but the bigger they are, the harder they fall.
That said, retail is ripe with opportunity. Those who are willing to do the work to evolve and grow aren’t talking about survival. They’re talking about taking their success to new heights.
As we prepare for 2019, retailers and suppliers need each other more than ever. And RVCF membership creates more opportunities for collaboration than any organization in the industry.
This was evident at the 2018 RVCF Fall Conference. With more than 35 retailers in attendance, 30 educational sessions, more than 530 one-on-one meetings between retailers and suppliers, and peer-to-peer discussions about supplier relationship management and customer relationship management, collaboration was constant – and productive.
We plan to carry that momentum into 2019 and provide our members with the information, resources and collaborative opportunities they need throughout the year.
We’ll cultivate the concept of unified commerce in which there are no separate shopping channels with separate inventories and customer bases. Rather than brick-and-mortar commerce, e-commerce, mobile commerce, social commerce, etc., there is simply commerce. Unified commerce.
We’ll focus on the importance of data and how to use it. We’ll continue to look for ways to enhance drop ship strategies and develop best practices. We’ll advocate for the Perfect Order – on-time, in-full, damage-free, with accurate documentation.
Everything we do is designed to accelerate the error-free flow of goods through the supply chain, while controlling costs, and improving margins for both retailers and suppliers. RVCF members benefit from our initiatives, events and educational content, as well as our technology solutions and consulting services, throughout the year.
But you can’t sit on the sidelines. You have to get involved. You have to show up. You have to participate. You have to work with your peers and trading partners to find solutions and create competitive advantages instead of waiting for them to fall onto your lap.
2019 will undoubtedly be a rough year for some retailers and suppliers. For others, it has the potential to be the best year ever. What kind of year will it be for you?
I ask that question because I believe the answer is a choice, not a predetermined outcome. I hope you’ll choose success and become a member of RVCF to put your organization in a better position to succeed.
Please visit the RVCF website to learn more about membership, and feel free to contact any member of the RVCF team with questions or ideas about what we can do to better serve the retail community. Remember, RVCF exists to bring retailers and suppliers together to solve problems and grow profits. We hope you’ll join us.