The Backorder: May 1, 2024

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In this special International Workers’ Day edition of The Backorder:

  • New environmental initiatives from the US, UK, and Australia
  • The simple 3-step recipe for ordering the perfect amount of stock
  • Founder of home furnishings brand shares ecommerce tips
  • Job opportunities from Jetstar, Bandai Namco, and more

In supply chain headlines

  • US Government rolls out $1.5B zero-emissions freight initiative. The Biden Administration announced federal funds will support decarbonisation projects such as electric truck charging infrastructure and the electrification of ports, writes Larry Avila.
  • Dorset firm launches UK’s first sustainable brick production line. Albion Stone, a South West mining company, will produce one million low-carbon bricks per year, supported by a £450,000 asset finance package from Lloyds Bank.
  • New procurement policy to drive Australian environmental benefits and job-creation. The federal government has launched the new Environmentally Sustainable Procurement Policy which be phased in from July, reports AuManufacturing.

How to order the perfect amount of stock

You need to order enough stock to meet demand. . .  but not so much that it gets stuck on the shelves for months and months. . . and it needs to arrive on time. . . Sound familiar?

Fear not, Reader – here’s our 3-step secret recipe for optimal purchasing:

1) Collect the right data. Whether you’re using software or manual calculations to predict sales, you need accurate data to work from. Implement sales analytics tools and inventory management software to start tracking customer demand trends, seasonal fluctuations, and supplier lead times.

2) Establish safety stock levels and reorder points. Safety stock acts as a buffer against unexpected shifts in supply or demand. A reorder point helps you replenish stock at the right time. Once you have a few months of historical data in your back pocket, use it to calculate safety stock levels and reorder points for each of your stocked items.

3) Implement an effective demand planning strategy. Demand forecasting software is highly effective for determining optimal min and max stock levels. However, you can further improve your sales forecast accuracy with the right demand planning techniques. These include collaborative forecasting with key suppliers, trend and seasonality analyses, and scenario planning

Rugs reimagined – Meet Zach Dannett

zach dannett

We recently spoke with Zach Dannett, Co-Founder of Tumble in Los Angeles, California, to hear what life’s like for an ecommerce home furnishings company in 2024. Here’s what he had to say.

What is Tumble, and why does it exist?

“Tumble is an ecommerce brand that sells spill-proof and machine-washable rugs. We started Tumble to bring a fresh, customer-centric approach to the home furnishings industry, which has hardly evolved in centuries. As furniture industry veterans – and more importantly, homeowners – we saw firsthand that there was a need for products that are beautifully designed, thoughtfully crafted, and offered at attainable prices.”

What makes Tumble unique?

“Unlike traditional rugs, Tumble rugs are folded, not rolled. We ship them in boxes so they’re less bulky and easier to handle. Customers also save on shipping. Tumble rugs come with a non-slip rug pad so they stay nice and flat.”

What has been your biggest challenge so far?

“The biggest challenge would be increasing competitors entering the industry. Differentiating our products has become more and more difficult. To overcome them, we had to rely on creating engaging content that people will relate to and share that through our social media platforms. We use short-form, user-generated content from actual customers to show how our rugs are spill-proof and machine-washable.”

Do you have any book or podcast recommendations for our readers?

“I highly recommend The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg. Even the smallest tweaks in your life can mean success or failure in the business. Learning how to use that to your advantage can make or break your career.”

What’s your top tip for building a successful business?

“Give your team the recognition and value they deserve. Host celebrations of their achievements; host a lunch for them. Give them more incentives or breaks. I really believe that your team is your most valuable asset in the business, and if you value their contributions, they will reciprocate that with better performance in their jobs.”

Is there a particular business app you’ve been using lately?

“We mostly use for project management and managing our timelines. It really helps with keeping every team member aligned with their responsibilities. We can visualize our workflow and work out on adjustments in real time.”

On the lighter side…

warehouse meme

Who’s hiring?

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Oliver Munro - Unleashed Software
Oliver Munro

Article by Oliver Munro in collaboration with our team of specialists. Oliver's background is in inventory management and content marketing. He's visited over 50 countries, lived aboard a circus ship, and once completed a Sudoku in under 3 minutes (allegedly).

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