As per the industry classification benchmark, this industry sector includes the following subsectors –
- Apparel Retailers – Retailers and wholesalers specializing mainly in clothing, shoes, jewellery, sunglasses and other accessories.
- Broadline Retailers – Retail outlets and wholesalers offering a wide variety of products including both hard goods and soft goods.
- Home Improvement Retailers – Retailers and wholesalers concentrating on the sale of home improvement products, including garden equipment, carpets, wallpaper, paint, home furniture, blinds and curtains, and building materials.
- Specialized Consumer Services – Providers of consumer services such as auction houses, day-care centers, dry cleaners, schools, consumer rental companies, veterinary clinics, hair salons and providers of funeral, lawn-maintenance, consumer-storage, heating and cooling installation and plumbing services.
- Specialty Retailers – Retailers and wholesalers concentrating on a single class of goods, such as electronics, books, automotive parts or closeouts. Includes automobile dealerships, video rental stores, dollar stores, duty-free shops and automotive fuel stations not owned by oil companies.
Applications in Retail Industry – Good improvement projects are feasible in most processes in Retail industry including the following.
- Reducing Inventory Cost
- Waste reduction
- Enhancing stock replenishment
- Improving barcoding effectiveness
- Enhancing Transportation Efficiency
- Improving repacking effectiveness
- Managing returns
- Reducing turnaround times in queues
As a strategic move, a paint company decided to offer home painting services as a new retail approach. The idea was received well by customers during surveys. However, it was noticed that the customers perceived the service to be costlier than the one provided through local contract painters. This perception was ill founded as the local painters cut corners by using lesser quantities than specified leading to reduced life. However, it was not easy to educate customers in a large scale. There were also cases of sabotage by local painters that led to rumours and ill-will being propagated through unfair means.
The company decided to address the challenge via a re-engineering effort. QFD (quality function deployment) was used to study the priorities of customers. This included longevity of interior paint. Competitor analysis was included in QFD.