Coles to improve supply chain transparency

Coles' supply chain needs more transparency, according to Managing Director Ian McLeod

Coles to improve supply chain transparency
Coles to improve supply chain transparency
By Sean Muir | May 31, 2012

Coles has flagged transparency as a key area for improvement in its bid to transform its supply chain.

In a presentation at Wesfarmers' strategy day in Sydney yesterday, Coles Managing Director Ian McLeod stressed the need for greater supply chain visibility.

"I think that it is something we want to improve upon," McLeod says.

"Particularly working more closely with our third party suppliers (3PLs) and understanding the full supply chain effects -
where lorries are between DCs (distribution centres), and where they are between the stores, and how we can optimise the efficiency of the fleet."

"We are looking at how we can flow inventory through more effectively and more efficiently."

McLeod says Coles is also working on improving its DC processes and has reduced stock handling by five days from 2009 to 2012.

"We are looking at our footprint in terms of our DCs and seeing if we can optimise our footprint,
and we are looking to integrate more products, flow them through our DCs to make sure we have a more efficient supply chain."

"There is a lot more we can do in terms of supply chain transformation and we are working through a program to deliver that."

McLeod says the next 12 to 18 months
will be
critical for Coles’ supply chain transformation.

"It’s an ongoing process -
we are certainly much further on now than we were this time last year, and I expect that we will be much further on again next year."

Meanwhile, about 80 truckies marched through Sydney yesterday, protesting against pressure
from Coles to drive too fast.

According to a Transport Workers Union survey 55 percent of drivers in the Coles supply chain believe they are pressured to drive too fast.

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