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“We have been able to boost availability across our entire assortment by over 8%.”

Richard Czarnopis

Supply chain Manager | Coach House

Coach House designs a stronger supply chain with Slimstock

As a business at the forefront of the British home décor industry, Coach House have specialised in importing and selling design-led furniture and homewares for over 40 years. To maintain the rate of growth, the business turned to Slimstock to help modernise its approach to inventory management.

From humble origins dealing antique furniture from an old barn in Yorkshire, Coach House has grown to become UK’s largest wholesale and trade only furniture and giftware supplier. Today, the business boasts a state-of-the-art facility encompassing 60 themed showrooms in Lancashire and over 600,000 square feet of warehousing.

To gain greater visibility and enable the Buying team to make more informed purchase decisions as the business continues to grow, the furniture specialists took the strategic decision to implement Slimstock’s advanced inventory optimisation solution, Slim4.

Increased product availability

Dedicated to offering customers the best products at competitive prices, Coach House’s extensive assortment is sourced from across the globe. With over 27,000 active lines to manage, Richard Czarnopis, Supply chain Manager at Coach House highlights the impact this sourcing strategy has on the planning team: “To cater for the long supplier lead times, our team needs robust demand forecasts they can use to plan inventory requirements many months in advance.”

In the past, Coach House utilised their existing ERP System to manage inventory levels: “Although our in-house IT team had worked hard to customize the existing ERP system to support our inventory management needs, as the complexity of our businesses we needed more advanced functionality in the area of inventory planning and stock control.”

Following the successful implementation of Slim4, Richard and his team now utilise Slim4’s powerful forecasting capability to drive significant improvements in availability: “Slim4 takes into account the specific demand profile of every item within our assortment to automatically create the best possible forecast.”

Now that the business is better positioned to anticipate future demand, the team at Coach House can plan their inventory requirements with much greater confidence. “Slim4 allows us to forecast with a far higher degree of accuracy. As a result, we have been able to boost availability across our entire assortment by over 8%.”

Greater efficiency

In addition to providing the team with more robust insights, Slim4 has also helped Coach House to drive efficiency gains across the business.

“In the past, our team simply did not have enough time to review every item within our growing assortment. However, with Slim4, we no longer feel like we are firefighting.”

Highlighting how Slim4 has helped to optimise the workload of the planning team, the supply chain manager adds: “Given that Slim4, focuses the team’s attention on the items that really need it, our inventory management process is now more structured. This means we have more time to use all the information available to us to fine-tune purchase orders. As a result, risk of out of stock has been significantly reduced while stock turn has remained stable.”

Optimised end to end process

Happy with the results so far, Richard explains the business’ inventory priorities going forward: “Slim4 has opened our eyes to what is possible. As we continue to explore new opportunities for further optimisation, we are now taking steps to simplify our operation as well as building stronger relationships with both customers and suppliers.”

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