Clarks invests in JDA’s supply chain solutions

Clarks has invested in new planning and fulfilment technology as part of a strategy to boost the efficiency of its supply chain.

The UK footwear brand, which recently announced it has starting to make shoes in the UK again after a ten-year absence, has chosen JDA Software’s retail planning and intelligent fulfilment tools.

Through the partnership with JDA, Clarks is hoping to create a global planning process that aligns the company’s central and regional operations in order to drive sales and increase consumer satisfaction.

It comes after a turbulent period for the business, which has seen a change in senior team and a round of job losses in its head office in Somerset.

In 2015, both CEO Melissa Potter and CFO Robin Beacham left Clarks, alongside a round of redundancies and a dramatic drop in full-year profits. Former Karen Millen CEO, Mike Shearwood, has since taken on the reigns, and has recently brought in Paul Kenyon to lead the finance department.

The new supply chain investment is set to play a key role in the business’s transformation under new leadership.

“Being able to forecast, plan, source and fulfil orders in a much more intelligent manner will enable us to increase customer satisfaction and further our growth, ensuring that we remain at the forefront of shoemaking,” explained Shearwood.

“JDA’s strong heritage in retail and wholesale, along with its best-in-class technology, gives us huge confidence in achieving this goal and will help us become a more agile and efficient business.”

Clarks trades across 100 countries with more than 23,000 distribution points stretched across retail, joint-venture, franchise, wholesale and digital operations.

JDA retail planning is set to help the brand build localised assortments for stores and targeted assortments for key accounts and regions, while the fulfilment solution is expected to help the company better understand omnichannel demand.

Franck Lheureux, senior vice president for the EMEA region at JDA, commented: “In the footwear sector especially, a failure to provide the right product at the right time to the consumer can result in a lost sale.

“Using data science and state-of-the-art technology, Clarks will be able to better segment and serve its customers globally across all channels in today’s highly competitive retail market.”