A Major Convenience Store Operator in Japan – Logistics Improvement Programme

Our client, a major Japanese retailer, delivers twice daily to over one thousand stores throughout Japan. The client recognised that there were opportunities for improvement in their warehousing and transport operations. They decided to look at European ‘best practice’ and to seek out the most prominent expertise available to advise them on appropriate strategies and the implementation of change. The company contacted The Logistics Business and asked us to undertake an initial review of operations in Japan. This allowed us to identify a number of areas for improvement and to propose a programme of analysis and development.

Our consultants made a number of trips to Japan over a period of more than a year to initiate and manage the programme, and to support the Japanese retailer’s management team. We guided them through a process whereby the team collected data on all aspects of the company’s operations and then helped them to measure current performance based on a number of key performance indicators (KPIs). This established a base-case, demonstrating the performances achieved and the associated business costs. We then supported the team through a continuous improvement plan where initiatives were put in place to reduce costs and improve service.

Using the data captured during the key performance indicators (KPIs) exercise our work was prioritised for maximum benefit: this included better use of the delivery fleet by increasing vehicle fill and reducing delivery miles, layout and process improvement within Distribution Centres, and a strategy to optimise the order and stock levels held within the Supply Chain.

The company has subsequently contracted The Logistics Business to continue working with them on an ongoing ‘maintenance consultancy’ basis. This will expand on the benefits they have already realised by changing the way in which they approach and implement change within their supply chain.