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Development of a supermarket system

The objective of the sum project is to develop a supermarket
electronic commerce software system which extends the
capability of current marketplace electronic commerce
systems to replicate the batching process of a retailer.

The objective of the project is to develop an electronic commerce Supermarket System which uses the potential of the global marketplace to replicate the batching process of a retailer to convert small orders into large manufacturing orders necessary for make-to-order products. This will enable manufacturers to sell all their products directly to the end consumer resulting in reduced costs to the customer and increased profitability to the manufacturer. This represents a fundamental shift in the application of e-commerce where currently it is being applied to strengthen the traditional manufacturer-retailer-supplier chain. The software has to be capable of generating high volume orders from single or low volume orders. To achieve this the methods of order intake need to include PCs, digital televisions and mobile phones. This will be achieved via the use of software interfaces to these modes of order input. The project will create and optimize supply chains of manufacturers operating via the Internet to sell make-to-order products. These chains will be optimized to reduce overall production cycle times and improve production flexibility and linked to changes in business practices, e.g. enhanced branding by manufacturers. At the present time the limitations in electronic commerce technology and business practices do not permit this option for all products. This limitation is currently acting as a barrier reducing the take-up of electronic commerce in some industries. The strategic business objectives of the software are: 1. To improve the profitability of manufacturing companies. This will be achieved by increasing the range of products a manufacturer can sell directly to the end consumer. 2. To improve the stability of manufacturing industry by reducing the dependence of manufacturers on a few large retailers. 3. Improved responsiveness to fashion changes. By selling directly to the end customer a manufacturer would be in a position to identify changes in fashion directly and immediately, inevitably improving the overall time taken in responding to fashion changes. 4. Reduced overall lead times. A chain of suppliers operating via the Internet will be in a position to automate their transactions to a higher degree than a chain of suppliers which is not fully operating via the Internet. The chain of suppliers is governed by the speed of its slowest component part and the move to fully integrated Internet market based manufacturing has the potential to reduce overall production times significantly. 5. Reduced seasonal variations. At the present time many industries are highly seasonal with two or three seasons a year. The sales volume at the height of a season is frequently four times the average. These seasonal variations place a strain on the supply chain since the entire chain has to react in relative unison for deliveries to be kept at an efficient level. Frequently one part or another of the chain is unable to react quickly enough resulting in sharp increases in late deliveries at the height of a season. However, as the sales volume via the Internet to manufacturers increases, this seasonal trend would reduce since it is summer in one part of the world or another all year round. From this should evolve a much sleeker, cost effective supply chain, less prone to supply jolts. 6. In addition it would become increasingly viable for manufacturers to fundamentally alter their design and marketing philosophies. Instead of changing season based upon the location of the manufacturer it will become increasingly viable to have continually open ranges for each season where the designs are altered to reflect fashion differences in each country and continent as each season moves around the globe. Keywords: software development, e-commerce, application.
Acronym: 
SUM
Project ID: 
2 754
Start date: 
02-06-2003
Project Duration: 
34months
Project costs: 
1 940 000.00€
Technological Area: 
Electronic Commerce, Electronic Payment, Electronic Signature
Market Area: 
Textiles (synthetic and natural)

Raising the productivity and competitiveness of European businesses through technology. Boosting national economies on the international market, and strengthening the basis for sustainable prosperity and employment.