The Forrester Wave™: Order Management Systems, Q2 2023

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The wrong order management system can cripple multi-brand organizations. How can you avoid setbacks and scale profitably?

Acquiring existing brands—or even creating new ones—is a great way to unlock new growth within your organization. But, this is only true if done correctly. When new brands come on board, you want to improve margins. Increase profits. Accelerate growth.

But many retailers struggle to reach those goals. Why? They don’t have the right technology in place. Many may struggle to efficiently manage orders across multiple brands. You want to balance achieving economies of scale, yet allow for brand differentiation. If you are instead seeing increased operating costs and technical debt, something needs to change.

The key to driving growth across multiple brands is improving your technology. Specifically, your order management system.

Let’s dive in.

Your order management system can make or break multi-brand profit margins

The right order management system (OMS) can be a significant lever for improving your portfolio’s profitability. Your OMS ultimately impacts your customer’s experience and their lifetime value.

Consider the scenario: you are a multi-brand organization. Each of your brands—and their customers—have very different needs. How can you balance the unique needs of all your brands as well as your internal business demands and goals?

You’re trying to manage multiple brands are but running into problems

Most retailers managing multiple brands face unique challenges. Why? Rigid order management systems weren’t designed to support a ‘multi’ organization.

This creates chaos when managing brand-specific delivery requirements, carriers, and customer expectations.

You may have different distribution partners for each brand. Or you want to test a subset of your products under one brand but not another. Or you may need to enable each brand to create its own sourcing and fulfillment logic.

And where is your data stored? Often, the data is stuck in legacy systems, such as your ERP. That makes it more complex—not to mention time consuming—to get a full, accurate view of inventory for all your brands.

You want to quickly get a near real-time accurate view of stock. To configure fulfillment logic by brand. And to create reusable and customizable templates including rules, processes, and user permissions, so you can roll out new brands faster.

And if you do have the information to make these decisions? Legacy systems often mean it takes ages—and a lot of development resources—to make changes happen. As a result, multi-brand organizations are missing out on the advantages of a true cross-brand experience for their customers.

The old way of cobbling together different, clunky systems and slow development timelines will no longer work.

The new standard? Using a distributed order management system designed to tackle these challenges.

Using distributed order management as a growth lever

Your technology shouldn’t act as a barrier to multi-brand growth. It should enable you to accelerate. At scale.

Ecommerce has evolved. As have consumers. Your technology should evolve too. Top retailers know that growth comes in many ways. But when it comes from launching new brands, or acquisitions, you need to have the right technology in place to reap the benefits.

If your legacy systems are holding you back, a band-aid won’t fix it. Inventory will still be siloed, and internal teams will have to work harder, longer, to achieve results.

With the right distributed order management system in place, it becomes your ‘availability master’. Your single source of truth. And the visibility gained will allow you to unlock new growth opportunities that could not be achieved with your legacy system.

How Does Fluent Order Management Work?

Fluent Order Management is a powerful, cloud-native platform. Unlike traditional, legacy systems, Fluent Order Management is made to fit your omnichannel fulfillment strategy—and not the other way around. With a flexible API-first architecture, you can scale as needed anywhere around the globe, and be confident in your ability to handle new brands.

Don’t let the complexity of multi-brand management stop you from growing. Fluent Order Management can be tailored to each brand. Allow for cross-brand experiences.

And with Fluent Order Management Experience (OMX), it’s even easier. It’s the low-code platform for order management. OMX lets you easily configure and extend both the business logic and the User Experience (UX) using libraries of pre-built rules and components, and SDKs that let you create new ones. Which means it is easy to use, rapid to implement, and seamlessly integrates with other tools. This flexibility enables users to make changes quickly as market conditions ebb and flow.

Another key advantage? Templates to help you accelerate expansion. With Fluent Order Management you can create a reusable set of templates for business rules and processes that serves as the base fulfillment logic for each new brand. Even better, it can be modified to meet specific brand requirements. That way you can accelerate rollout and bring on new brands—in a matter of weeks. Now, technology is no longer a barrier to your growth, but an accelerator.


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