Innovative Retail Technologies

SEP-OCT 2016

Innovative Retail Technologies (formerly Integrated Solutions For Retailers) is the premier source for innovative yet pragmatic technology solutions in the retail industry.

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boxes tailored to the size of the items in the order using CubiScan technology, which measures merchandise and sends those di- mensions to Packsize, which determines the optimally sized box for the item. "It made a lot of sense to have the box made for specific orders versus having a multitude of boxes at every pack station," says Roberts. "We needed to get the orders out the door, in the right box, and with the least amount of void fill." The resulting smaller-sized boxes allow more to be loaded on each truck, saving on transportation costs. They also require less corrugated material and filler, making the story a "green" one. In fact, since implementing Packsize, the company has realized a 22 percent cube reduction. And, as every supply-chain-brained profes- sional knows, you can't get more efficient than just-in-time inventory. The same is true of the boxes in which that inventory is shipped: making them on-demand is more cost-effective than buying, stocking, and retrieving them. Cabela's also benefits from a simpler, faster training process that trims two weeks off previous training periods — amounting to a 30 percent reduction in training hours. Cabela's now ships the same volume with fewer workers, which is important in the Wheeling area, where extra staff can be hard to find in peak seasons. "Because our direct channel workforce doubles during peak sales periods, the new system's ability to increase order throughput with less labor was especially attractive," says Roberts. Removing the burden of box-size decision making has contributed to a 31 percent improvement in overall productivity at the Cabela's DC. Positive Customer Service Impact A brand like Cabela's can't afford to play games with its reputation. Any major change to its fulfillment process would have to pass the customer experience test, and Roberts says Packsize certainly did just that. "Packsize and UPS modeled what the new output would look like via time studies, which showed current output versus output with right-sized packaging. Throughput sped up, which was critical to our decision to implement," he says. In fact, Roberts says the DC has improved from about 28 cartons per hour to nearly 40 per hour a year later. When customers receive their orders, the efficiently pack- aged merchandise doesn't go unnoticed or unappreciated. "When we pack ammu- nition, for instance, if the shipping box is too big and not enough void fill is packed, the product is highly likely to be damaged upon delivery," says Roberts. "With Packsize, those problems are eliminated, and we've seen a significant reduction in damaged deliveries as a result." 11 Sept-Oct 2016 A Retail Management Education For Those Who Expect More American Public University can help you prepare for success in the competitive retail world. Learn strategies from faculty with experience in your field. APU offers 190+ career-relevant online degree and certificate programs including: • B.A., Retail Management • B.A., Transportation and Logistics Management • B.A, and M.A., Management • Security Management with a concentration in Loss Prevention Management Get started today at We want you to make an informed decision about the university that's right for you. For more about our graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed each program, and other important information, visit Packsize and UPS modeled what the new output would look like via time studies, which showed current output versus output with right-sized packaging. Throughput sped up, which was critical to our decision to implement. Tim Roberts, operations director, Cabela's

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