Skip main navigation

What’s an omni-channel supply chain?

We will be introducing you to the basics of what an omni-channel supply logistics chain is.
6.3
Today, omni-channels have given consumers more choices to shop. Let’s take a look at some of those options.
53.9
Hey, Apa. How are you? Where’s your food? Ah, speak of the devil. Pizza for Apa. Thank you.
67.3
This is an excellent example of how omni-channel is changing consumer behaviour. Here, we see two different individuals purchasing their meals using two different devices. And their meals are delivered in two different ways Omni-channel is gradually forcing retailers to re-organize their supply chains and logistics. In the case of the KFC, Sonja chooses to pick up her purchase, while Apa opts for delivery of her pizza. Although it is always good to provide customers with options, these options do affect how businesses would manage their supply chain. In the case of Sonja’s pick-up, businesses would need to stock adequate goods at the bricks-and-mortar stores for both offline and online customers.
128.1
It will also mean that retailers need to relay the customer’s order in a timely manner at the physical store. Inventory management must be re-calibrated in an omni-channel environment. Apa’s pizza appears to be a simple delivery. But it complicates the logistics operations. There is a trade-off for business in having delivery managed by a third party, rather than in-house. Some businesses incur the greatest costs in the final stage of delivery, also known as the ‘last mile’. For some, delivery costs may even outweigh the profit of the sale.
177.9
Anything, anytime, and anywhere may come at a cost for companies adopting omni-channel. However, this is the ultimate in customer service.
The rise of e-business has changed the face of supply chains forever. We’ve gone from the conventional supply chains that we all understood to omni-channel supply chains, which seem to be changing constantly to keep meeting customer expectations.

This week we introduce the main features of an omni-channel supply chain and key logistical challenges to manage a seamless retail omni-channel.

This article is from the free online

Business Futures: Understanding Omni-channel Retailing and Supply Chains

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Our purpose is to transform access to education.

We offer a diverse selection of courses from leading universities and cultural institutions from around the world. These are delivered one step at a time, and are accessible on mobile, tablet and desktop, so you can fit learning around your life.

We believe learning should be an enjoyable, social experience, so our courses offer the opportunity to discuss what you’re learning with others as you go, helping you make fresh discoveries and form new ideas.
You can unlock new opportunities with unlimited access to hundreds of online short courses for a year by subscribing to our Unlimited package. Build your knowledge with top universities and organisations.

Learn more about how FutureLearn is transforming access to education