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For decades, retailers and their suppliers have left billions of dollars on the table as they’ve struggled to make meaningful progress to keep stores in-stock for increasingly demanding shoppers. This is especially important for retailers today as they want to leverage the merchandise in their stores for Buy Online and Pick up in Store (BOPIS) strategies.

We are seeing great progress in the areas most significantly impacting On Shelf Availability (OSA), with meaningful progress being driven by a handful of people, teams, and technologies that are working hard not only to develop solutions to the problem, but to democratize them so every stakeholder can participate.

The biggest challenge continues to be inventory accuracy at the store level. The impact of on-hand accuracy is clear, causing major out of stocks and too much inventory in the wrong location.

RFID provides a platform to move on hand accuracy from 50-60% to 95%+. It is moving from an apparel only play into the general merchandise categories like electronics, Automotive, Sporting Goods, toys and Lawn and Garden.

Food retailers are now looking at RFID for not only on hand accuracy but also date coding products for markdown and food spoilage purposes.

Many podcasts on Conversations on Retail highlight the use of RFID in retail to drive on hand accuracy.

See our links on RFID to our COV site.

About Mike Graen
With 40 years of experience working for Procter & Gamble, Walmart, and CROSSMARK, Mike Graen has seen the retail industry from every conceivable angle. From helping develop what would become Retail Link to investigating and leveraging the potential of shelf-scanning robots and RFID tech in stores, Graen has made a career out of using technology to solve business problems.

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