JDA Software Group is leveraging its collaboration with IBM Commerce to help companies process orders more intelligently and profitably across multiple sales channels in real-time.

Its new integrated fulfilment capabilities combine JDA Intelligent Fulfillment and Labor Productivity solutions with Order Management solutions from IBM Commerce – and should help address the fact that just 16% of companies are able to serve multiple channels profitably, in part because their order fulfilment systems are not integrated with other key systems.

“The convergence of physical and digital retail has changed how you need to deliver on the customer buying experience,” notes Wayne Usie, senior vice president of retail at JDA.

“The customer is the new boss and they want their product, at their moment, at their price, delivered their way. As a result, companies need to offer a personalised, differentiated customer experience while delivering the order as promised.”

Retailers have traditionally made fulfilment decisions without a holistic view of inventory, labour and transportation availability and costs – sacrificing profit margins to deliver customer satisfaction.

The new release helps bridge that gap by integrating with IBM to provide the necessary visibility in execution to labour and demand impacts – allowing companies to begin improving profitability with each omni-channel order.

“Many retailers force shoppers to choose between convenience, product selection and price as they shop across channels,” adds John Mesberg, general manager, Offering Management and Strategy, IBM Commerce. “In fact, some shoppers that select the ‘pick up in store’ option might need to visit multiple store locations to fulfil their entire order, which ultimately tarnishes their brand experience.”

Included in the latest JDA release ‘Click and Collect’ ordering lets shoppers select their preferred pick-up or delivery time and location, with JDA and IBM integrating the order management, warehouse management and transportation management systems to fulfil each order profitably.

‘Rescue the Return’ minimises the cost of product returns by alerting the warehouse management system of expected returns – and including returned items as part of available inventory. And destination-driven demand shows the true source of orders by giving insight into each customer’s omni-channel order details, enabling more accurate forecasting and replenishment of stores.

“As omni-channel retailing continues to advance, we believe that integration between physical and digital channels is vital, as is tighter integration between e-commerce, order management and all elements within the supply chain,” says Peter Swann, operations director, at UK department store retailer Debenhams. “This will be key to driving better customer service through increased responsiveness and at the same time, improve business efficiency.”