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22 Oct 2019

FatFace drive Multi-Channel growth and expansion with JDA Warehouse Management Solution

About FatFace

FatFace was founded in 1988 by two keen skiers, inspired by their favourite black mountain run in Val d’Isère, La Face. Today, FatFace is a successful multi-channel retailer with over 230 stores, an award-winning store design, and a fast-growing e-commerce website. The company places high value on customer satisfaction, ensuring a fantastic experience wherever they engage with the brand.

Background

Since the launch of the first store in 1992, FatFace has experienced continuous growth. By 2001, they had reached 40 retail outlets across the UK and www.fatface.com was launched.

In the same year, they selected the JDA Warehouse Management Solution to manage warehouse operations at the distribution centre.

With the rapid increase in multi-channel fashion retailing, FatFace has expanded to a new purpose-built national distribution centre (NDC) in Dunsbury, not far from their original facility. The distribution centre services 230 stores across the UK, Europe and USA, as well as fulfilling orders from their online ecommerce site and from partners.

Challenge

FatFace uses multiple systems in conjunction with JDA, from purchasing through to receipt and delivery to stores. JDA is crucial to this end-to-end process, providing a key link in the supply chain.

With a new NDC on the way, FatFace needed to upgrade from an older, highly customised version of JDA, while maintaining service levels across the two sites and preparing for the next phase of expansion.

Strict time and budgetary constraints meant that the project needed to be completed efficiently, without affecting Business As Usual for any stores or online customers. The brand develops six season lines a year with a very short turnover, so new fashion stock needs to move from manufacturing to stores via the NDC within as short a time as possible, while the ecommerce site offers next day delivery direct to customers.

Key Issues

  • Implementing system upgrade from a bespoke version to a more standard set up
  • Running system across two sites before new NDC facility came fully online
  • Speed of delivery: minimising impact on delivery to FatFace stores or ecommerce customers

Solutions Delivered

FatFace selected Socius24 to carry out the upgrade, implementing the system across the two distribution centres while FatFace transitioned operations to the new site. Socius24 was chosen for their deep product knowledge of JDA, and no-nonsense approach to project management. Socius24 carried out the entire project management process at each site and continue to provide ongoing support to ensure that the project achieved the required outcomes.

“There is no point having a state-of-the-art NDC if you don’t have the best-of-breed WMS solutions. Equally, you need to work with a solid team who invest the time to understand our ambitions and can deliver the growth improvements our customers deserve – that’s Socius24!”

Steve Webb, Senior Operations Manager, FatFace

1. Upgrade to JDA at original Havant distribution facility

Socius24 initially upgraded the original Havant distribution facility to the then current version of JDA. Processes were simplified and customisations removed to improve the efficiency of the operation.

2. Install JDA at Dunsbury National Distribution Centre

Once the new version was successfully installed and tested, the system was rolled out to the brand new £5,000,000 state-of-the-art NDC at Dunsbury.

3. Configure eCommerce Parcel Pack and Ship with Socius24 User Service Portal (USP)

Socius24 worked with FatFace to make key software developments in the area of mobile repacking, developing a streamlined method for eCommerce parcel Pack and Ship within their User Service Portal (USP) application.

4. Training Workshops, system configuration and process improvements

In addition to the software upgrades, Socius24 provided training workshops and implemented new process improvements, as well as supporting the configuration for new service integrations

Outcome

JDA WMS and Socius24’s USP now run the entire warehouse operation at FatFace’s NDC. Since the upgrade, FatFace has experienced sustained growth throughout the business.

THE BUSINESS

Technology and automation have supported FatFace’s bricks and mortar expansion (from 100 stores in 2005 to over 230 around the world today) and their increasing ecommerce business.

OPERATIONS

Completing the project on time and within budget, Socius24 helped FatFace improve its warehouse operations. Streamlined processes have increased their capacity to meet demand, with improved speed and reliability in picking, packing and dispatch, which in turn has allowed growing eCommerce sales to be delivered faster and error free.

THE CUSTOMER

Despite the complexity of upgrading the WMS at the same time as physically moving operations to new site, with Socius24’s support FatFace was able to carry on business as usual with no impact to customer deliveries and overall improvement in service.

FatFace won Warehouse Initiative of the Year, at the Supply Chain Excellence Awards 2017 and are already working with Socius24 to add further extensions and improvements to the WMS.

JDA Warehouse Management System

JDA is one of the most recognisable and implemented solutions in the world.

Socius24’s expertise comes from our involvement in the design and development of the original RedPrairie solution, which enables us to fast-track deployment and ensure that our clients use its capabilities to the full. This reduces the cost and risk of deployment, leveraging a broad set of pre-built templates and plug-ins, allowing our customers to quickly gain the functionality they require.

USER FRIENDLY INTERFACE

A user-friendly interface that is tailored to your business with extra functionality available as

you grow at a national or global level.

 TRACEABILITY

Traceability is critical for some industries, so you will know where your stock is from and information about serial numbers, expiry dates. This all helps particularly if there is a need for a batch recall.

 INCREASED VISIBILITY

Increased visibility of your inventory from the moment it enters your warehouse or is manufactured to the point of sale.

Quotes:

“Investment in software solutions are a must-have in fashion; they enable business to maintain forward motion and gain commercial advantage in a fast-paced customer-driven market. We have recently made our single biggest investment to date in building our new distribution centre, so we need the best technology solutions to maximise the potential in our resources and assets”

Steve Webb, Senior Operations Manager, Fatface

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