Management Info Systems
Kohl’s is a former employer of mine, for which I have designed a system of organization to better help them with their inventory management. The problem Kohl’s is having lies in the back overstock rooms. There are so many products stocked back there, it can be very tough some days to help a customer find what they are looking for. Also, the other problem is that the employee does not know if the product is in the back room before even spending the time looking. The issue at hand is Kohl’s wants the customers to have a happy experience shopping and hopefully come back again. If the customer can’t find what they came into find, or have to wait for long periods of time while an employee looks, they aren’t going to leave happy. If they don’t leave happy, there is a good chance they won’t come back.
Technology can play a big role in the customer finding the products they want and also leaving happy. Technology can keep track of inventory in the back and also out on the floor. If a customer can’t find a product, the employee should be able to use a computer to check how what quantity is out on the floor and what quantity is stocked in back. Using this technology can keep the customers happy, and also help keep control of the messy overstock in the back, not to mention make the employees job a lot less stressful. This technology system must have the ability to track sales and available inventory, communicate with suppliers in near real-time and receive and incorporate other data, such as seasonal demand. It also must be flexible, allowing for a merchant's intuition. And, it must tell a storeowner when it's time to reorder and how much to purchase. Getting input from the people who will use the system is always smart to making sure it will suit everyone’s needs or think of things to enhance this system as well. I talked to three former co-workers that are still employed by Kohl’s. The first worker said the only issue she could think of was what if the system goes down and we lose all of the inventory counts from previous days? Yes, this would be a problem, but I would include in this inventory management system, a backup plan in case this was to happen. If Kohl’s computers stopped working for some reason, there would need to be a location that wasn’t at Kohl’s that would keep updated counts of inventory and sales. The second person works at the customer service desk in the back of the store, she said it would be so helpful to have multiple locations to assist the customers with their inventory questions. She said it gets very busy back at customer service at different parts of the year, so having the help from this system would be much appreciated. The third person I talked to was a department manager; he said it will add more work for the people in their department, as they will have to stop what they are doing multiple times a day to do inventory checks for customers. He also said he would rather them spend time doing this then losing their help on the floor for longer periods at a time when they are looking for product in the back. The organization has come up with their mission to make the company the best they can. If they are not doing the best they can, they will start to lose customers, and eventually a lot of money. Today, Kohl’s is one of the nation’s largest retailers, with almost 1,100 stores and more than 130,000 associates (Kohl’s Illinois, Inc., 2012). This big of a business means a lot of customers and with that means a lot of inventory. The mission statement is a way to show the customers what they are set out to do to bring in their business. Kohl’s mission statement is “To be the leading family-focused, value-oriented, specialty department store offering quality exclusive and national brand merchandise to the customer in an environment that is convenient, friendly and exciting” (Kohl’s Illinois, Inc., par. 1, 2012). Having an effective...