They believe that the outlets of tomorrow are being shaped not only by economic, product and industry trends, but also by shopper behaviours, needs and demands. Add to that an increasing focus on operating fairly and compliantly and it’s clear that now more than ever, retailers rely on a robust, responsive and progressive supply chain to ensure they are equipped to meet the demands of an ever-demanding public.
As shoppers become more aware of the role of ethics in the retail space, they are also more ready to scrutinise the businesses from which they are buying – and this extends to their supply chain. A compelling 78% of consumers say they would recommend a company they believe to be ethical, putting greater emphasis on retailers to instil appropriate values and standards throughout their supplier network, ensuring that any efforts to maintain a ‘generous’ reputation truly stand the red face test.
Compliance solutions, such as the Altius platform, make a significant difference in turning an ethical ambition into a reality. The platform can be tailored to capture individual organisational requirements, whether that’s specific environmental procedures or evidence of an anti-modern slavery policy. Our compliance team go on to assess supplier documentation in detail to make sure that each potential partner adheres to retailers’ exacting requirements, giving peace of mind that they’ll only work with suppliers that uphold their standards.
Reputation is everything, particularly in the retail market where corporate values can really make the difference for retailers looking to differentiate from their competition. By demonstrating a commitment to the values that are important to retailers, your business too can stand out from the crowd. With the retail environment undergoing so much change – and so quickly – suppliers that can demonstrate a willingness to progress, adapt and support retailers are the ones that stand to thrive. In a world where consumers demand more, to be adaptable is to survive. Responding quickly to new requirements ensures that you remain in the pool of trusted suppliers, enabling retailers to operate with peace of mind that they are catering appropriately for the needs of their customers, stakeholders and shareholders.
As Mitchell Goosen, Head of Programme Office for Property at M&S, puts it:
“The [Altius] platform ensures our supply base are competent and fit-for-purpose; this married with the platform’s ability to evolve with ever changing business needs is integral to achieving the fast pace of change required to compete in the rapidly shifting retail environment. Altius is the essential cog in maintaining legislative compliance across an expansive M&S supply chain.”
As the world of retail evolves, it’s likely that retailers will look to suppliers more than ever before to provide effective support – whether that’s in proving their generosity, shortening their fulfilment timescales, finding new ways to engage consumers or adhering to new regulations.
To learn more about the key trends facing the retail sector, download our report. And to learn more about how your business could better prepare itself to support the sector, providing new opportunities to work with some of the UK’s biggest brands, get in touch with our in-house retail experts.