Crombie, which currently has 21 outlets in the UK of which 12 are concessions in House of Fraser, underwent somewhat of a cultural revolution with the implementation of Futura’s retail management system, which has been in active use for around two and a half years now. Everyone agrees it has been a great success, both in-stores at the POS and at head office.

Daily reporting of sales figures back to head office and the feedback of this information into replenishment and reordering modules ensure that Crombie’s stores are continually re-stocked with the right products at the right time.

Crombie’s reaction time to prevailing sales conditions has improved immensely with information on sales transmitted back to head office on a daily basis. Futura’s ability to target allocations/replenishments to stores where specific items sell well historically ensures that stock moves through the business at optimum rates. Simple and effective in-store IBT creation “on-the fly” also helps to ensure that stock is made available to stores as necessary. At sale times, historic sales information can also be used to set optimum discount levels.

According to Adrian Roe, IT Manager, Crombie: “Our merchandiser’s buying plans for core items are supported by Futura’s reordering recommendations, which are constantly re-evaluated by the system with reference to current and historical sales. Other management decisions are also well supported by Futura’s statistical database; which is great for quick and accurate reporting both at the summary and detail level. Link this to Futura’s ability to record who bought what, where and when and you have a very powerful analytical toolset.”

Roe adds: “Crombie has seen significant improvements in all KPIs over the last two years since we implemented Futura. While we cannot put all our increased success down to software alone, Futura has had significant influence as stock holding has been dramatically reduced and visibility has increased. Futura’s integrated stock inventory processes have enabled us to carry out stock counts more regularly and more accurately than ever before with hand-held scanners and transmission of branch inventory data back to head office via the POS, making the whole process very straightforward. Sales and margins continue to improve and Futura will be supporting Crombie’s growth as new stores and sales channels come on-line.”

To ensure Crombie’s customers are able to purchase the products they want, when they want them Futura’s allocation/replenishment tools are used to great advantage. Additionally enabling staff to capture customer details at the POS gives Crombie the ability to target individual customers with details of special promotions or new products that they may be interested in.


Future Plans

Adrian Roe says: “Futura continue to develop the software and new features are always business process related rather than just cosmetic. So far, all Crombie’s “can it do?” type questions have been answered with a positive “yes”. It’s also rock solid in terms of reliability, which is a major plus for any SME with limited in-house IT resources.”

Crombie recently implemented a new accounting system and Futura deployed their interface software to allow sales transaction information to be quickly transferred for further processing. They are also using Futura tools for exporting stock/product data to the website and reporting and planning tools to operate and support the web site as with any other store.

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