When high-profile global fashion brand Superdry sought better carrier efficiencies and full visibility of parcels across all platforms, multi carrier shipping software specialist Consignor stepped up to the plate.
Superdry is one of the UK’s most recognisable fashion retailers, with 515 branded locations and 21 websites selling its own manufactured clothes to over 100 countries.
Bricks-and-mortar stores, ecommerce and a wholesale business are all part of the overall distribution channel package; seamless delivery experience via great customer service and a hassle-free returns policy are core to its ethos. Those promises make fast and reliable multi-carrier shipping software absolutely vital.
In 2018 the company decided to look at further optimisation of its goods movement and delivery management process, to keep up with fast-changing customer needs.
“We had a business requirement to track parcels across all of our channels rather than just ecommerce,” explains Superdry Business Transformation and Logistics Director, Gordon Knox. “At the time, we weren’t tracking any of our wholesale, retail or offline products. We were after a system that tracked every single parcel that moved from the DCs, so we could have full track-and-trace visibility of all parcels.”
End-to-end supply chain visibility is now a must-have. “We have a system that sees a product through the manufacturing process, we have a freight management system that sees the bulk movement of product from origin or from manufacturing country into our distribution network. We’ve then got our warehouse management system that looks after the movement of the product through the DC. We wanted to have that track-and-trace visibility of the product for every order. Getting full visibility of anything that moves within the Superdry network and where it sits in our supply chain, is also very important.”
The company started to speak to the market when a business requirement change allowed them to look at different systems. A key requirement for Gordon Knox and his team was finding a partner who could bring flexibility and fast onboarding of carriers to the operation. “A growing international business such as Superdry needs to be able to put carriers onto our platform very quickly. Meanwhile, some of our third-party websites require us contractually to use specific carriers. If that carrier wasn’t on our platform, then we needed to get it added into our platform quickly.
After speaking to all potential partners within the delivery management space, Superdry selected Consignor, a delivery management software specialist founded in 1997 and with the largest carrier library in the world on its books. “It was very important to our decision that they matched our outlook on life, that their work ethos matched ours, while their ability to move quickly and flexibly was vital,” he says.
Dedicated teamwork between Consignor and Superdry meant that in just under four months a completely new integration between Consignor and Superdry’s WMS provider, Blue Yonder, was established at Superdry’s DCs in the UK, Europe and within another three months the USA for retail, wholesale and ecommerce channels, enabling more than 40 carrier services in the process, with many more to follow.
“The Consignor guys went over and above in order to make sure that that process was very smooth,” enthuses Gordon Knox. “The new system ticks a lot of boxes. Our wholesale, customer service, logistics and ecommerce teams all use it and it’s a one-stop shop.”
Further benefits have included faster onboarding of carriers in new countries, and improved quality of reporting. “Previously, the reporting was not as accurate as it needed to be, so it was very difficult to challenge the carrier with the data that we got from our manager. The data from Consignor is more accurate and more usable and we’re now working with their team to develop AI and more machine learning capabilities.”
Excellent communication continues. “It’s so important to get a partner that you can really trust and can work quickly. We have regular meetings with the account team at Consignor to ensure that they’re fully abreast of our plans, developments and what areas we’re moving into.”
Gordon Knox has no doubts that his team made the right call. “Consignor is the right fit for our business, as they are agile and able to respond to our brand’s ever-changing business needs, provide a stable and scalable solution with access to the carriers that we want to work with. Moreover, Consignor has the appetite to develop new concepts and ideas with us. These are all important factors for us, as our strategy is to become a global digital brand through digital supply chains and operational excellence.”
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"Consignor is the right fit for our business, as they are agile and able to respond to our brand’s ever-changing business needs, provide a stable and scalable solution with access to the carriers that we want to work with. Moreover, Consignor has the appetite to develop new concepts and ideas with us. These are all important factors for us, as our strategy is to become a global digital brand through digital supply chains and operational excellence"
Gordon Knox , Business Transformation and Logistics Director at SuperDry