Blue Yonder won the prestigious IGD Award for Supply Chain Innovation, for its work with Morrisons. The IGD Awards ceremony boasted an attendee list of more than 600 senior executives to raise a glass to the food and industry’s achievements over the last 12 months.
Blue Yonder received the industry accolade with client Morrisons for demonstrating true supply chain innovation, which has been critical to its growth and business turnaround. To improve on-shelf availability, the artificial intelligence specialist, Blue Yonder, implemented a fully automated ordering system (Replenishment Optimisation software) in Morrisons supermarkets. Working across 26,000 SKUs in 491 stores, the new system has generated up to 30% reduction in shelf gaps and two to three days’ decrease in stockholding in-store.
IGD is an education and training charity for the food and grocery industry that undertakes research for the benefit of the public. The winners of the IGD Awards were selected by a panel of industry experts, including representatives from IGD and companies from across the food and grocery supply chain.
Stuart Smith, Operations Director for Morrisons, said: "We are very pleased that Morrisons and Blue Yonder’s work on the Morrison’s Ordering system has been recognised for the way it has improved availability and the customer offer, as well as reducing costs and stock levels."
Prof. Dr. Michael Feindt, particle physicist, ex-CERN scientist and founder of Blue Yonder said: “With the Replenishment Optimisation software, we have been able to save staff time, cut stock issues and manage this all from a simple to use platform. Our work with Morrisons to create an automated system has made a pioneering change for the food and grocery sector, and we hope that we will continue to lead the way in such practices.”
Susan McGeorge, Supply Chain Director, UK & Western Europe at Kimberly-Clark, said: “Morrisons partnered with Blue Yonder to implement an impressive supply chain solution, using AI and cloud technology, that has improved a key business metric – on-shelf availability. The solution was developed with the customer firmly at the heart and the judges were particularly impressed by the boldness of the timelines. Having identified the business need, Morrisons’ innovative approach has helped it move from design to implementation very quickly, delivering impressive results for the business.”
Joanne Denney-Finch, IGD Chief Executive, said: “For more than 25 years, the IGD Awards have celebrated the achievements of our truly world-class industry. These are hotly contested awards and this year the bar was set as high as ever. Yet again we received a very large number of entries, which is testament to the innovative, high-quality work taking place across our industry. We’re living through challenging times, yet our industry never fails to impress in its determination to continue surprising and delighting shoppers. Many congratulations to all our winners and finalists.”
Blue Yonder’s Replenishment Optimisation software’s demand-planning and forecasting capabilities will become even more effective over time, being able to detect and respond to changing customer demand patterns through AI and machine learning. The project has been so successful that Morrisons will soon be introducing Replenishment Optimisation across all product groups starting with Fresh, following a successful trial before Christmas.