Leveraging data in retail sector collaboration
As is the case with other industries, large sector-wide challenges are best solved when industry members work together, sharing knowledge, data and insights. Collaboration between organizations has a great impact on increasing efficiency, streamlining processes, accelerating innovation and solving industry challenges, such as low margins or sustainability. In many organizations, business units often contain data that is siloed off from one another, resulting in a lack of visibility across business departments. It can be even more difficult for data to be shared externally amongst partners. As John Fernie and Leigh Sparks suggest in Retail Logistics: Changes and Challenges, perhaps the most critical element in retail supply chain transformation has been the ability to collect, disseminate and use data throughout the supply chain and supply chain partners. Suppliers and retailers began sharing data in the 1990s, allowing retailers to sell data on store sales or market share with suppliers to improve the efficacy of sales forces, promotions and pricing.