Apparel Software Trends: What's Coming Next?April 23, 2013
NGC was pleased to participate in Just-Style's recent report, "Apparel Software Trends: The Outlook for 2013." If you're a fashion retailer or brand, you'll find this four-part series well worth your time, as it provides a summary of key fashion technology trends from a number of leading fashion technology vendors:
From NGC's perspective, we believe that several major fashion supply chain issues will be especially important in the coming months. These are already top-of-mind concerns for our customers, and we don't see them fading away any time soon. Here is a brief summary: [[more]]
Vendor compliance and factory safety. This continues to be one of the biggest concerns for fashion vendors, especially those who are shifting some of their production from China to Bangladesh. According to Sourcing Journal, a new McKinsey & Company report on sourcing in Bangladesh says "compliance challenges, illustrated vividly by the tragic fire in the Tazreen Fashion factory in Dhaka that killed 100 workers, continue to be significant if not insurmountable for some companies." NGC's recent white paper on vendor compliance provides more insight into these issues, as well as possible solutions.
Creating demand-driven supply chains. Brands and retailers continually make in-season adjustments in production in order to strike the right balance between supply and demand. This is nothing new, of course, but as selling seasons and production lifecycles continue to grow shorter, supply chain responsiveness becomes more critical. Companies have to quickly make adjustments in sourcing—for example, by accelerating the production of the top selling SKUs and making the right sourcing and logistics decisions to help speed replenishment. Conversely, companies need to put the brakes on slow-moving items, shifting materials and capacity to the items that are really selling. A demand-driven supply chain can be the key to ensuring that companies reach their profit goals for the season.
Integrating PLM and sourcing. Apparel companies continue to push for tighter integration between their PLM and SCM/global sourcing systems. Fashion PLM investments have continued to increase year-over-year, and companies are now focused on extending the benefits of PLM all the way through to sourcing and logistics. An integrated approach enables closer communication and accountability through the design/production lifecycle. It's also the key to managing cost, reducing lead times and improving overall quality.