SUPPLY CHAIN

Study: Luxury brands excel in holiday shipping

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

Luxury brands seems to be going the extra mile this holiday season.

This is according to “2016 Holiday Shipping,” a report from Kurt Salmon, part of Accenture Strategy, that analyzed orders with 84 retailers across a broad range of categories on Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2016. The study analyzed online orders that were shipped to consumers, as well as those collected in-store, to measure shipping speed, accuracy and cost.

Luxury brands topped the list when it came to providing a speedy delivery. Coach led the pack, with the fastest delivery time: two days, followed by American Eagle Outfitters, Burberry and Kate Spade (three days).

“Luxury retailers took the lead in delivering excellent customer service around fulfillment this Cyber Monday, with the fastest retailers delivering goods in an average of 3.5 days,” said Steve Osburn, managing director, Kurt Salmon, part of Accenture Strategy.

Not far behind these top retailers, many more stepped up their shipping games. For example, 17% of retailers delivered within the first week of Cyber Monday, and the vast majority (94%) delivered packages within two weeks, compared to 82% in 2015. Overall delivery times improved to 8.3 calendar days, compared to 8.7 in 2015. Furthermore, only 12% of orders encountered an error – such as a cancelled, missing or incorrect item – compared to 15% in 2015, the study said.

To ensure their buy online, pick-up in store (BOPIS) service was efficient, retailers were smarter about what they offered on Black Friday, with many offering a limited selection. While the percentage of late orders changed minimally from 2015 to 2016, there was an improvement in the number of cancelled items. In 2016, 26% of orders had a cancelled item, compared to 34% in 2015. Just over half (55%) of retailers delivered all orders correctly, compared to just 30% in 2015, data revealed.

While 92% of retailers offered a way for customers to get free shipping, 2016 saw more retailers (39%) add a minimum spend for free shipping. The percentage of retailers offering a BOPIS or reserve in-store option remained flat compared to 2015, with 52% of retailers offering an in-store pick-up option, the study said.

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WORKFORCE

More retailers eliminate on-call scheduling

BY CSA STAFF

Aeropostale, Disney Store, Pacific Sun, and Zumiez joined the growing list of retailers that have stopped using the controversial practice of on-call scheduling for store employees.

"On-call shifts are not a business necessity and should be a thing of the past,” said New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman in a statement, reported the Washington Post. "People should not have to keep the day open, arrange for child care, and give up other opportunities without being compensated for their time. “I am pleased that these companies have stepped up to the plate and agreed to stop using this unfair method of scheduling.”

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DEVELOPMENT/REDEVELOPMENT

Michigan town seeks developer for $350 million mixed-use project

BY Al Urbanski

Officials from the city of Troy, Michigan, made the rounds of the New York Deal Making show looking for a partner to help them erect a proposed $350 million town center.

They told The Oakland Press that they received positive feedback from developers at the show on their plans for a large public town square surrounded by residential space, retail, and restaurants. A hotel is part of the long range plan, which emerged after 18 months of fact-finding and surveys of Troy residents.

“This will fill a void in our local community and create a dynamic, walkable, live-work-play environment unavailable anywhere in Troy today,” said city manager Brian Kischnick.

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