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Case study

Transforming a retail supply chain through partnership, collaboration and technology

This Polish retailer offers a range of products for children aged 0-14 including clothing and footwear, toys and accessories. With more than 260 owned shops across Poland, Romania and the Ukraine and coverage in 20+ other countries in Europe and Asia through online shops and partners, this customer is a major retailer in central Europe with complex supply chain requirements.

Having worked with their existing provider for 10+ years, in 2018, this retailer sought a new provider with proven capabilities at partnering with organisations to realise supply chain transformation. Impressed by our retail expertise and level of cooperation with customers, Ligentia was selected as their new supply chain management provider following a successful tender bid.


The Solution: a re-engineered supply chain model for greater visibility and enhanced supplier management

The customer came to us with several key requirements for their new solution:

  • Greater visibility of their supply chain – the ability to pinpoint issues more quickly and better supply chain data to know exactly what has caused the issue
  • With limited internal capacity internally and a huge number of vendors, the customer was looking for solutions to optimise and improve their ways of working into more of a procedural manner so they could manage their vendors and vendor information in the best way possible

The engagement started with an intensive discovery period to ensure that our internal team fully understood how the supply chain was being run today in order to optimise it effectively. There was little documentation to leverage from the existing provider, so discovery was achieved through in depth weekly sessions with the retailer’s internal team.  Key outcomes from these collaboration sessions included:

  • Changing the way the PO was issued: POs needed to be unique so later we were able to effectively track any issues that arise
  • A re-engineering of their standard operating procedures , including distribution to suppliers
  • Agreeing to one cargo handover date per week
  • The definition of new milestones through the supply chain allowing us to achieve greater efficiency, for example, focussing in on the quality inspection process in China to ensure we have just the right amount of time to manage this aspect the supply chain.

These milestones were then programmed into the Ligentix supply chain platform to ensure that the system was able to flag any issues as soon as they arise.  We also worked with the customer to organise integration with their ERP platform.  Each day, the ERP system posts information about new or changed POs into Ligentix and from there, the Ligentia team takes over and manages these orders to ensure the goods arrive on time in destination.

Focusing on supplier management and compliance

At the time of onboarding, one of the most significant challenges was managing suppliers in Bangladesh, who are responsible for approximately 40% of the customer’s annual shipping volume. A main benefit of the solution was the vast improvement in the quality of supplier data which was achieved through digitalising the booking in of supplier shipments as well as onboarding suppliers into the new standard operating procedures to ensure understanding and maximise adherence.
To hone in on the challenges that were being faced in Bangladesh, the Ligentia team developed KPIs that aligned with the new standard operating procedures. From here we were able to provide regular and detailed reports that were able to provide insight into the root causes of their challenges as well as help them to address these.

Impact: Efficient and cost-effective supply chain operations

Four years has passed since the initial solution was developed. Today, the retail customer benefits from:

  • A fully managed import service and customs management from suppliers across China and Bangladesh to Central Europe
  • Item level visibility of shipments within Ligentix Connect, including ERP integration
  • Fully revised, re-engineered and standardised supply chain operating procedures
  • A unique incentive scheme programme developed to ensure customer is able to realise cost savings as a result of supplier compliance
  • Innovative LCL programme that ensures the optimised cost per shipment without any departure delays and with full supply chain control (cargo handled via Ligentia warehouses in China and Poland).

We are incredibly proud of the partnership that we have developed with this customer since 2019, particularly given the significant disruption that was endured as a result of the pandemic, and more recently with the geo-political situation in Ukraine.