With over 280,000 employees worldwide covering 32 countries and 180 nations, Metro Group Buying needs to increase the productivity and efficiency for their international quarterly sample meeting.
Each quarter, MGB operates a large-scale international buyer meeting in Germany which lasts for several days. Merchandisers from all around the world meet up at the meeting to make purchase decision and place orders on-site on over hundreds of thousands items ranging from toys, apparels, home appliances, electronics, furnitures to all non-food merchandise imaginable.
MGB Catalog has one key objective, which is to transform the heavily paper-reliant buying process into a one-stop mobile procurement solution.
Merchandising process is now significantly facilitated. From browsing product catalogue to placing order, The iPad successfully switches the buying process into a paperless environment, streamlining the procedure to move thousands of transactions for each buyer in each sample meeting.
At each buyer meeting, over 100 buyers use MGB Catalog for their orders with great improvement seen in the following areas:
1. speeding up the order placement
2. greatly reduce data input error
3. greatly reduce shipment delay
1. Cloud Content Management System (CMS) for Product Cataloging
The whole inventory in one hand. Although the buyer meeting space is massive, there is still physical limitation in terms of displaying the full inventory of hundreds of thousands of items. With the cloud content management system, MGB Catalog seamlessly links up the whole inventory database with the iPad used by buyers.
Reduce information error. Even during the meeting, product information can be easily updated in one place and instantly delivered to all buyers, making sure everyone has the correct set of product information. This is solving one major problem caused by ordering by paper.
2. On-Site Buying and Order Placement Facilitation with iPad
Each iPad for every buyer. MGB provides each attending buyer an iPad as a mobile ordering terminal. With an assigned username and login, buyers can access the full product information, inventory status and place secured order.
Scan and find. No more flipping back and forth in the big pile of order form, by just scanning the barcode on an item, its product details, availability and delivery information can be retrieved right away.
Merchandise display strategy. With MGB Catalog, managers can now access live data of order status during the meeting, which used to be only available after closing when all orders were taken and input. Monitoring and analyzing the live data allows managers to quickly respond with corresponding merchandise display strategy.
3. Automation of Order Taking and Processing
Instead of filling in paper forms or clumsily making order changes, buyers can now place and edit orders directly inside the application. Orders are then confirmed and sent directly for processing without manual input by additional manpower. This increases order accuracy and shorten shipment delay.
MGB Buyer also makes instant update of inventory status possible. Sales performance of each item during the meeting can be tracked, which assists management to make quick on-site decision. This additional operational value was only made possible by the introduction of the iPad solution.
Since day one, our team worked closely with the client to understand all operational details, knowing the logistics and work flow of all buyer meetings and chief developer of this project was flown to Germany for the staff training and on-site technical support for MGB Catalog launch.