May 2012 management briefing: Apparel software trends in the year ahead
In this month's management briefing, just-style canvasses the views of software experts on the biggest challenges facing the global apparel supply chain in 2012 and the ways technology can help tackle some of these issues. We also ask where firms should be focusing their investments now if they want to remain competitive into the future.
After the turmoil of 2011, the biggest challenges facing the global apparel supply chain in 2012 continue to include rising costs, political and economic uncertainty in both consumer and sourcing markets, the changing role of China, increased competition at retail, pressure to integrate supply chains and the shift towards faster fashion cycles. Against such a background, the ability to quickly adapt to changing conditions and pressures will separate the winners from the losers.
Faced with a significantly more challenging and competitive market, what else is likely to be topping brand and retail supply networks this year? Firms would be wise to watch ways of maximising investments, doing more with less, true collaboration, accurate material forecasting and planning, and 'cloud' technologies, the experts say.
Where should apparel firms be focusing their software investments now if they want to remain competitive into the future? According to industry experts consulted by just-style, technology agendas should include tools that better integrate all data between supply chain partners and offer end-to-end visibility.
Faced with a raft of challenges across the apparel supply chain, how can software help tackle the key issues? Tools that connect all trading partners, streamline the end-to-end process, and give industry leaders the flexibility and time to address everything from new opportunities to unexpected events can all contribute to a competitive edge.
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