COVID-19
Supply Chain Updates

Stay up-to-date with news and information related to the novel coronavirus and the impact on supply chain.

News and Resources

June 17, 2020

Private label prospects brighten as recession hits cash-strapped consumers

Private label offerings of pasta, sauces, granola, and other foods are surging with millions of Americans out of work due to the pandemic, but the specter of a prolonged recession could make the $90 billion-plus category even more attractive to consumers.
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June 16, 2020

Sam’s Club COO: What We Learned During The Pandemic’s Lockdowns

Lance de la Rosa, COO at Sam’s Club discussed the process of working with associates to ensure they have the tools needed to be successful. That process has kicked into high gear as consumers’ shopping preferences radically shifted toward online purchases almost overnight.
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June 15, 2020

Walmart looks to remove all cashiers from stores

Walmart is testing a store that will only offer self-checkout. The retailer is removing cashiers and standard conveyor belt lines at one of its popular superstores in Fayetteville, Arkansas, to see if checkout times are faster while limiting human interaction in the age of the coronavirus.
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June 15, 2020

Walmart teams with Shopify to grow its marketplace

Walmart and Shopify announced they are partnering to bring 1,200 sellers onto Walmart.com's third-party marketplace by the end of this year. The focus will be on "U.S.-based small and medium businesses whose assortment complements ours," Walmart Marketplace Vice President Jeff Clementz said.
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June 15, 2020

COVID-19 exposes retail’s supply chain shortcomings

A new study from the University of Warwick and supply chain software provider Blue Yonder, based on insights from 105 different retailers explored retail’s reaction to supply chain challenges created by the surge in demand for essential goods, store closures, social-distancing adaptations and significant shifts to online shopping.
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June 12, 2020

UNFI: Grocery supplier stockouts could last into the fall

Grocery suppliers are not likely to reach pre-COVID-19 stock levels again until the fall, said United Natural Foods (UNFI) CEO Steve Spinner on a Wednesday earnings call. "The fill rate is certainly the lowest that I've ever experienced by or seen by 1,000 plus basis points," said Spinner.
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Expert Answers

5 Key Metrics for Monitoring the Impact of Panic Buying on your Supply Chain

1. Replenishable Instock %

Replenishable instock shows the percentage of stores that currently have inventory vs. stores that should have inventory. In general, suppliers should try to keep this above the 98.5% goal. Due to panic buying and increased demand, many CPGs are slipping below this goal.

2. Forecast and Forecast Variance

To keep up with the current volatility, retailers are tweaking the "event forecast" frequently. It's a good idea to check your forecast multiple times throughout the week.

3. Supply Plan

The Supply Plan metric provides Walmart's best guess on how many units they expect to order from a supplier. If this isn’t something you normally utilize, this is a great time to start as it will help you plan for increased demand. Don’t get surprised with an order for 10,000 units when they normally order only 1,000 per week.

4. Deductions due to Partial POs

Walmart deductions can quickly add up and become overwhelming. While supply is low, CPGs will want to make sure they are not sending partial Purchase Orders while invoicing Walmart for the full PO amount. As a best practice, it is recommended that you request an updated PO for the amount you are currently able to fill.

5. Prepaid on Time % and In Full

If your supply chain is struggling to keep up with orders, it’s a good idea to pay extra attention to your OTIF scores. If you’re not able to keep up with demand, be sure that you are editing or cancelling PO lines with the correct reason codes to avoid OTIF accountability.

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