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“Slim4 has been an asset during this difficult time.”

Pete Hundleby

Supply Chain Director | Global Chair Components

Global chairs find the perfect component to prosper amidst major disruption

Over the last 25 years, Global Chair Components has established a solid reputation as the UK’s leading trade-only supplier of chair components and contract furniture. To support future growth, the office furniture specialist joined forces with the inventory experts at Slimstock to help manage the increasing complexity of its supply chain.

Focused on modernising the businesses’ approach to inventory management, Global Chair Components kicked off a major supply chain optimisation initiative in 2019.

Pete Hundleby, supply chain director at Global Chair Components explains: “To provide our customers with the most up-to-date and versatile products, we work closely with manufacturing partners across the globe. However, as the business scaled, we had started to outgrow our existing demand planning methods. To remain responsive to the market, we needed a new solution that could that provide greater insight and control over our complex operation.”

The right partner for inventory success

After reviewing several vendors, Pete and his team decided to move forward with Slimstock’s inventory optimisation solution, Slim4. “Although all of the vendors we explored could have added significant value to our business, Slimstock offered more than just a software solution. Their team of experts clearly understand the dynamics of our extensive supply chain. Given that Slimstock also shares our cultural values, they were a clear fit for our business,” adds Pete.

Pain-free implementation

As part of the structured implementation process, the consultants at Slimstock worked closely with the planning team at Global Chair components: “Although we encountered several hurdles during the implementation process, Slimstock were always on hand to support us. Furthermore, thanks to Slimstock’s milestone approach, the project had great momentum while allowing us to ensure each step was completed in the right way.”

In addition to successfully implementing Slim4, Pete was also keen to enrich the wider business’ knowledge around supply chain management. “To take our inventory management processes to the next level, we must ensure our statistical forecasts are overlayed with the latest market intelligence. However, to make this possible we need an effective S&OP process which both aligns and engages the whole business.”

Tackling disruption head-on

Despite the successful implementation of Slim4, within just a few weeks of going live, Global Chair’s operations were severely disrupted by the impact of Covid-19. Explaining how the unexpected turmoil in both supply and demand affected the business, Pete explains: “Slim4 has been an asset during this difficult time. I am not sure how we would have coped with our old spreadsheet-based models.”

Amidst the extreme volatility, Pete and his team utilised the insight provided by Slim4 to take proactive steps to mitigate the disruption. “Thankfully, Slim4 makes all of the data we needed far more visible. Furthermore, the what-if functionality allowed us to test different scenarios. This analysis has proved invaluable during the pandemic,” states Pete.

Accelerating growth

Keen to further optimise the inventory management process, Pete explains the business’s plans going forward: “Slim4 has already had a transformational impact on our business. As we pursue further growth, we are excited to take full advantage of Slim4’s advanced demand planning functionality.”

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