TRU BUILDS CUSTOM INVENTORY SYSTEM FOR DIAGEO

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When you’re the world’s largest Spirits distributor, how you brand and market your products is everything. Promoting your products in the retail space in a way that accurately represents your brand and resonates with consumers according to the season or the time of year they’re shopping is not an option but a must. That is why POS items are imperative in the Spirits retail environment. Items like shelf-talkers, danglers, coasters, bar mats and rebate coupons are seasonal, and play a big part in the consumer buying influence process. They also just as quickly get placed on a shelf or on an end cap as quickly as they’re pulled to make space for the next promotion or season.

Diageo is the world’s leading premium drinks distributor boasting an outstanding collection of beverage alcohol brands across spirits, beer and wine. Diageo approached TRU with 3 goals in mind: 1) to procure a clean and airy physical warehouse space that was large enough to store close to 500 POS items for sales reps located in the Connecticut area 2) to give sales reps 100% visibility into the items available to them and 3) to provide them with an inventory system they could use to quickly and easily order the items they need and get them into the retail space as quickly as possible.

Diageo was previously keeping track of their POS inventory using an Excel worksheet. This worksheet was updated and distributed to the sales reps on a weekly basis. Diageo sales reps would also use this spreadsheet to browse what was available to them and order accordingly.

TRU facilitated the move from Diageo’s previous warehouse space to a 3,000 square foot space in our warehouse dedicated entirely to Diageo. The TRU team stored these items in an organized way to help expedite the process of pulling and storing new and existing inventory.

Taking the information Diageo provided on the spreadsheet, TRU, along with one of our strategic partners, designed and developed a comprehensive and intuitive system that included description, quantity, location, item type, brand name and seasonal information of each POS item. In addition to this core data, TRU photographed each item and included a picture of each sample in the online inventory to make it easy for sales reps to find what they need.

TRU trained Diageo sales reps on navigating the system, which works very similar to an online shopping site where users can browse the products that are available to them, search by brand type or quantity, add items to a cart and order what they need. For example, if a rep is looking for Bailey’s holiday shelf talkers, they can easily pull up the list of what’s available to them by simply selecting this criteria from the various picklists.

Upon ordering, sales reps can “check out” to complete the process and at this point, select whether they will be picking up the items themselves or if they would like them shipped to them or to a specific location. The TRU team handles the fulfillment of these orders. Diageo’s sales reps can browse and order items from the inventory using any tablet or PC so no additional software tools were needed. The inventory system works with the tools the Diageo sales reps already have.

In addition to providing Diageo with an easy and streamlined inventory system, TRU also built reporting functionality into the system so that Diageo management could pull an updated inventory list at any time and also keep track of the inventory items being pulled by sales reps.