OPERATIONS

Toys ‘R’ Us holiday hiring flat with last year

BY Dan Berthiaume

Wayne, N.J. – Toys “R” Us, Inc. plans to hire 45,000 employees to staff its stores and distribution centers nationwide for the upcoming holiday season. This number is basically flat from last year’s holiday staffing totals.

Hiring for positions in stores starts this week and will continue through December. Seasonal workers at Toys “R” Us stores fill a variety of positions ranging from sales associates to inventory replenishment employees, Additional seasonal jobs are available, including those designated specifically to help fulfill orders resulting from the company’s omnichannel offerings. Dedicated omnichannel teams work to ensure a seamless in-store and online shopping experience. Employment opportunities are also available at the company’s 10 distribution centers across the country, which began hiring in July and will continue through November.

Toys "R" Us widened its loss in the second quarter on lower sales at its stores in the United States and Europe. The company reported a loss of $113 million, compared with a year-earlier loss of $36 million.

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News

Staples introduces Staples Connect app

BY Dan Berthiaume

Framingham, Mass. – Staples is introducing Staples Connect, an offering that lets customers’ home or office technology interact and be controlled by a single app. With the touch of a button, Staples Connect lets customers shut down their office, turning off lights, lowering shades and locking doors, while at the same time turning on their lights and heat at home.

Staples Connect consists of a multi-platform app and universal hub that allow a multitude of devices to talk to each other. The Staples Connect Hub, powered by Linksys, will be available online and in a limited number of Staples stores for $99 this November. Staples Connect uses a platform developed by Zonoff Inc., which features a free, single app. Installation will be available through Staples EasyConnect and can also be performed by customers.

“Staples Connect gives consumers looking for a home or office automation solution a broad selection of products to choose from, featuring the top names in safety, lighting, heating and cooling,” said Mike Edwards, executive VP, merchandising, Staples. “Staples Connect uses products from the biggest and best brands, as well as innovative newcomers, like DoorBot wireless doorbells and the ivee Wi-Fi voice-activated assistant. Our app makes it easy for customers to control their entire home or office from their smartphone, tablet or laptop, wherever they may be.”

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SUPPLY CHAIN

David’s Bridal ensures timely order fulfillment

BY Dan Berthiaume

Atlanta – David’s Bridal is using omnichannel solutions from Manhattan Associates to ensure on-time and accurate delivery of customer orders from across its network. The company is using Manhattan’s order management solution to orchestrate both customer and store replenishment orders to ensure reliable fulfillment.

In addition, the software is used to pool and govern availability of inventory across David’s Bridal’s e-commerce and store distribution network to allow the retailer’s entire supply chain to service each customer’s needs. David’s Bridal uses Manhattan’s order management solutions as the hub of supply and demand across its network. This has allowed the retailer to move beyond visibility and instead use inventory availability information across all of its channels, allowing e-commerce, store and call center operations to work from a single view of the network. This, in turn, results in David’s Bridal being able to match available inventory across the network to an individual customer’s need.

"We are proud to be a long-standing partner with David’s Bridal as they further enhance the customer focus that has been the hallmark of their success,” said Eddie Capel, president and CEO, Manhattan Associates. “Like so many of our omnichannel customers, we’ve worked together to deliver successful projects to increase sales and improve service."

“Our business is founded on offering brides the widest variety of products always delivered on time for her big day, no matter how she chooses to shop with us: online, in our stores, or by phone. It’s critical that we have one system we can rely on to provide inventory availability and manage orders across our network,” said Caryn Furtaw, chief information officer, David’s Bridal. “With Manhattan’s solutions, we have a foundation on which we can continue to build out our omnichannel initiatives.”

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