Gartner Research

Improving On-Shelf Availability for Retail Supply Chains Requires the Balance of Process and Technology

Published: 26 May 2011

ID: G00212969

Analyst(s): Mike Griswold


Utilizing availability measurement processes and more mature store-level inventory management, retailers can deliver a one-to-three basis-point improvement in on-shelf availability, without raising inventory targets.

Table Of Contents
  • Overview


  • Out-of-Stocks Force Consumers to Competitors
  • Operational Complexity and a Changing Marketplace Erode On-Shelf Availability
  • Force a Consumer to Make a Decision and Risk Losing the Sale
  • Connect Merchandise Planning and Store Execution to Improve On-Shelf Availability
  • Proactive Availability Management Requires Robust Root-Cause Analysis
  • Understand the Trade-Off Between Lost Sales and Service Level
  • Is It Possible to Collaborate on the Reduction of Out-of-Stocks?
    • The Balance of Power Has Shifted to the Consumer (and, by Default, the Retailer)
    • The Gap Between Retail Aspirations and Capabilities Is Too High
    • New Problems Are Arising, and Execution Accountability Is Lacking
  • Four Critical Factors to Improving Your On-Shelf Availability
    • Recognize That Sales and Demand Are Different
    • Accurate PI Is Essential
    • Allocate the Appropriate Shelf Space for Fast Movers
    • Understand Store Planogram Compliance, and Enforce Shelf Maintenance Disciplines
  • Recognize That Improving Availability Requires a New Paradigm

©2021 Gartner, Inc. and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Gartner is a registered trademark of Gartner, Inc. and its affiliates. This publication may not be reproduced or distributed in any form without Gartner’s prior written permission. It consists of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization, which should not be construed as statements of fact. While the information contained in this publication has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, Gartner disclaims all warranties as to the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of such information. Although Gartner research may address legal and financial issues, Gartner does not provide legal or investment advice and its research should not be construed or used as such. Your access and use of this publication are governed by Gartner’s Usage Policy. Gartner prides itself on its reputation for independence and objectivity. Its research is produced independently by its research organization without input or influence from any third party. For further information, see Guiding Principles on Independence and Objectivity.

Already have a Gartner Account?

Become a client

Learn how to access this content as a Gartner client.