CHE13/04: Chess Enhances Empirica To Meet Strategic IT Changes At Radley (3 June 2013)

Issue Date: 3 June 2013
Ref: CHE13/04


Chess Logistics Technology has made recent enhancements to the Empirica Warehouse management system used by Radley & Co as a result of changes created by the introduction of a new IT architecture. The strategic Radley IT changes have been put in place to help manage increasing volumes of online Web and mobile sales. This involved upgrading the previous Radley website with a brand new version to provide online and mobile versions for both Radley and Tula, its partner brand.

Behind deployment of the architecture for the new website and supporting e-commerce platform was the desire to improve the company’s ‘online proposition’ in order to develop growth of orders from online and mobile applications. The new web application also makes online ordering options available to a wider international community. Another advantage of the new system is that products can now be ordered and paid for online and then collected by buyers from a local store.

As a result of these new facilities extra functionality was required of the Empirica WMS. Orders received by Radley’s system are confirmed by Empirica, which after picking and issuing with a carrier label, then confirms a consignment number back to the website to be used for customer advice. Special labelling programs, required to produce labels for store collect deliveries, and overseas invoice documentation needed for customs approval are now generated by the Empirica system using data interfaced by Radley’s fashion merchandising system. The result of the two-way integration is improved cross system order status visibility.

Due to expected growth in online retail sales, extra features have also been added to Empirica for the handling of returned goods. The system now facilitates full identification of returned items with a single barcode scan, advising operators of appropriate action to take for returning to stock.

The Empirica WMS has been used by Radley & Co since 2005 when the company opened its distribution centre at Milton Keynes. The 45000 sq feet (4200 sq metre) distribution centre is equipped with over 14,000 pallet and shelf locations and handles stock movements for wholesale and retail deliveries as well as increasingly for online orders. The Empirica WMS operates using wireless handheld devices throughout the warehouse and is integrated with Radley’s central ERP solution.