Come, gather near to the fire, friends, and let us tell you a story that will chill your bones…
There was once a confectioner and baker, well known and loved throughout the land. He was famous for his inventive and delicious cakes, and would always bake a special treat for children (and a few grown-ups too) at festive times of the year. One year, not very long ago, the baker planned a special cake to celebrate Halloween. As all Hallows approached, he carefully stockpiled sugar, colourings, and tasty flavours – everything he needed to ensure the treats were ready on time. Then, as the clock struck eleven, the wind rattled the windowpanes, and the fire grew cold in the grate, the baker realised with horror that there were no purple sprinkles. Colour drained from his face as he pictured the disappointed children, the tutting parents, and the other bakers laughing at him. “Oh, the horror!” the hapless baker moaned, “I should have paid better attention to stock planning!”
We don’t write Halloween stories at Reflex Planning, and that’s probably just as well. What we do is help businesses accurately plan their stock for festive and seasonal product launches, where the details really do matter.
This story is based on the experience of a major UK confectionery business from last year (2018). They genuinely did forget to order purple sprinkles for a key Halloween product. Fortunately the story had a happy ending, as they were able to expedite the supplies much later than planned and still meet their deadline.
However, this positive outcome did involve additional transport costs, and could have ended very differently.
The Moral Of The Tale…
The message of this story is that it is easy to overlook small but important details when planning stock. This has a knock-on effect throughout the supply chain, and can easily lead to missed deadlines, lower margins, wasted time and disrupted inventory management.
It’s not that this business was incompetent – they are an extremely successful and profitable household name. It’s simply that a lot of factors go into seasonal product planning, with plenty of scope for human error.
Inventory management software can help you avoid a fright when planning Halloween products – by giving better control and visibility over your stock. Our Reflex Planning solution is easy to implement and lets you plan stock requirements, forecast demand and optimise your inventory from one intuitive dashboard.
Trick Or Treat?
For a free treat this Halloween, please download our Inventory Management Software Guide, or call 01889 508 075 to chat with one of our advisers about how to save time and money on stock planning. Happy Halloween!
Image source: Pixabay