Adapting a WMS to the specific demands of retail outlets
For Decathlon Réunion stores, it takes six weeks for replenishment deliveries to arrive. To cope with these extended lead times, and unlike its premises in mainland France, stores on the island have stockrooms adjoining the sales floor: a 3,500 sq m stockroom for its 6,200 sq m store in Saint-Pierre, and an 800 sq m stockroom for its 3,000 sq m store in Sainte-Suzanne. Likewise, the new 5,000 sq m store—currently under construction—in Saint-Denis will have a 2,500 sq m stockroom. The island location, coupled with strong sales growth at both its Saint-Pierre and Sainte-Suzanne stores, prompted director Stéphane Lemaitre to embark on a project to computerize the subsidiary’s store stock management processes. In March 2015, Decathlon Réunion acquired Hardis Group’s Reflex WMS system and called in integrator Avenir Logistic Conseil to adapt the system to the retailer’s specific requirements. The system went live at the Sainte-Suzanne store just a few months later, in October 2015, with the Saint-Pierre store following suit in 2016.
From specific to standard: a logistics solution built with stores in mind
As well as deploying Reflex, the retailer also restructured its workforce, setting up a team of 30 logistics specialists to support retail operations. “The logistics team picks goods for sales-floor staff, who then arrange the products on the shelf,” said Lemaitre. “It’s an efficient way of working, and it frees up sales staff to look after customers.” The system, which has over 200 daily users, has delivered tangible improvements: staff have a comprehensive overview of store stock levels (sales floor and stockroom), while the application automates sales floor replenishments and optimizes order preparation processes. “Without Reflex, we wouldn’t have been able to cope with growing sales volumes,” explained Lemaitre.
Decathlon Réunion is now planning to switch from Reflex WMS to Reflex In-Store Logistics. “The system will improve interactions between the sales floor and stockroom,” added Lemaitre. “What’s more, it covers the full range of store logistics management features as standard, and it will be easier to upgrade and maintain.” The Sainte-Suzanne store will be the first to migrate to the new system.