Models of Inventory Management and Product Protection for Manufacturers and Retailers

manufacturer to retailer

Preventing theft in the retail space involves strong efforts and a viable working relationship between product manufacturers and retail loss prevention. Solutions to address theft and loss are often led from the retailer side of the partnership, but manufacturers, especially those in drug, food, and household product industries, do face responsibilities when it comes to product protection. In simpler terms: retail theft is not only retail’s problem.

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Contributing Writer Garett Seivold examines the responsibilities on both sides of the manufacturer-retailer equation in a feature article for the May–June 2018 issue of LP Magazine. In the article, existing models of inventory management and product protection put forth on the manufacturer side are considered:

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Certain manufacturers operate under heightened requirements for product protection due to consumer health and safety concerns. For these companies, product diversion is more than a nuisance—supply-chain risks are material to the business. One generic drugmaker­­­, for example, wrote in its annual mandatory 10-K filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, “Cargo thefts and/or diversions, and economically or maliciously motivated product tampering on store shelves may occur, causing unexpected shortages, which may have a material impact on our operations.” Because of the stakes involved, such companies have led the way in product serialization to increase supply-chain visibility.

Embedding security features into products as a selling point is also a possible trend as use cases for identification technology seeps into more product category niches. For example, manufacturers build technology by GearSecure, a mash-up of RFID and GPS, into musical instruments, which then allows end users like touring bands to keep tabs on their gear. Collaboration between wireless companies and makers of cell phones has led to increasing adoption of kill-switch technology. There is an anti-counterfeiting sewing thread. There are apparel makers that mesh RFID, NFC, and QR codes together for tags that capitalize on the benefits of each.

Learn what elements are needed for successful joint projects between manufacturers and retailers when it comes to models of inventory management and theft prevention in “Security at the Source.”

For more great LP content, visit the Table of Contents for the May–June 2018 issue or register for a free print or digital subscription to the magazine. [Note: if you’re already a logged-in subscriber, the previous link will take you to the current issue instead.]

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