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Keep the Goal in Sight and Seven Other Lessons from The Container Store's Replenishment Project

In a major victory, The Container Store's 49 retail locations saw out of-stock items fall from nearly 20 percent to less than 5 percent.

(Boonton, NJ, July 8, 2010) — Two years ago, The Container Store faced several inventory management obstacles. The DC was crammed nearly full, but store shelves too often were empty.

To improve the efficiency of its operations, The Container Store embarked on a demand-based replenishment system that improved forecasting, increased visibility, and optimized inventory replacement at stores.

In a major victory, The Container Store's 49 retail locations saw out of-stock items fall from nearly 20 percent to less than 5 percent.

And while the project has paid off, it required plenty of collaboration and communication, says Christy Parra, director of logistics systems at The Container Store.

The July issue of industry newsletter Distribution Center Management, provides Parra's seven lessons for successfully navigating such big projects. Including the unexpected Lesson 6: Make it fun.

The Container Store hosted employee parties as they achieved certain goals. In one instance, the company hosted a bowling party where workers dressed as their favorite cartoon characters. "We wanted to make it memorable, and not just another pizza lunch," Parra says.

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