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Takealot Online (through their website Takealot.com) has fast become South Africa’s leading ecommerce website since launching in 2011, processing over 2.9 million transactions in the last financial year. A swift turnaround period from receiving incoming stock to dispatch is essential in maintaining their success in the ecommerce market.

The rapid growth of the business had put pressure on the existing manual input system, restricting the company’s development plans. The existing system required manual capture of all shipping notices from suppliers, and entry on the warehouse management system against the correct PO, resulting in huge amounts of time spent by warehouse staff processing each shipment.

In turn, this led to backlogs in receiving stock during peak times, with each item having to be opened, checked and individually scanned. Delays like this ultimately risked late deliveries to customers, and eroding consumer confidence. The warehouse also had no visibility of the stock arriving on any particular day, rendering them unable to plan for the receipt of large quantities or irregular deliveries from suppliers. Damages and short receipt of stock also could not be traced back to a particular delivery.

F4F Solution
Following a detailed system audit, F4F integrated Advanced Shipping Notifications (ASN) into Logfire, Takealot Online’s warehouse management system. The results have been significant, instantly enabling their system to liaise effectively with third parties, transferring to a process that is precise and monitored. By integrating ASN’s from various suppliers and systems, F4F has been able to reduce the manual capture time and error rates associated with this process all without significant cost or lengthy development time.

“Drawing on the integration expertise that F4F brought they were able to integrate directly with our WMS system, saving valuable development time and ensuring we were ready for the busy festive season.” Says Jaco Els – Head of Supply Chain Operations, “Automation of ASN’s has allowed the warehouse to step up to the next level in terms of efficiency, accuracy and turnaround times. The impact on the business is huge both in terms of customers satisfaction and identifying issues as well as staff productivity. F4F was able to turn this around quickly and efficiently which just validates our decision to partner with them even further”.

This solution has improved Takealot Online’s operational efficiency:

  • Faster booking processes and stock put away times, free of lengthy data entry or manually generating each ASN from the original order.
  • Improved reporting and visibility – all deliveries to the warehouse are now pre-loaded on the centralised system.
  • Automation of ordering and tracking of suppliers through simple dashboards.
  • Fewer reference numbers and checks allow a much faster unloading and turnaround time from door to door.
  • A single check-in of a consolidated load of purchase orders contained on an injected ASNs, instead of manual entry for each purchase order on the consolidated load.
  • Higher accuracy, less prone to human error as notifications are generated via the system.
  • Improved and centralised dashboard views.
  • Improved visibility of delivery inventory, allowing for better decision making and identifying inbound problems.
  • Allows for measuring and reporting on time taken and success rates in multiple processes on site.
  • Improved visibility on DC conformance by the vendors to enable better conformance management.

F4F has enabled Takealot Online to streamline and modernise their inbound shipping process, ensuring a faster turnaround and the ability to meet the high standards expected by their customers. Freed up from this bottleneck and alongside improved customer service, Takealot Online has now resumed its growth and extended its lead over competitors as South Africa’s largest ecommerce website.