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Leveraging Low Code Platforms for Retail and Inventory Management

Managing stock flow can be an issue for retail and logistics, especially if you’re using an outdated or analogue system. Creating a program often requires a large, costly development team, and licensed software won’t always hit the mark. So, how do you acquire bespoke inventory management programs at a low cost?

Low code platforms are a simple way for retail and logistics businesses to see explosive results in their operational efficiency. At FWF, we provide insight and implementation for these types of digital technologies. In this article we’ll discuss the features, benefits, and use-case for low code programs in retail and inventory management.

Interested in finding out more? Contact us today to find out just how easily you can enhance your business with a low cost, low code solution.

What is a Low Code Platform?

A low code platform is a type of visual coding system. Using a drag-and-drop interface, with minimal coding required, low code platforms provide an intuitive and straightforward way to develop a range of programs that are crucial for the optimisation and digital acceleration of supply chain management systems for retail businesses.

While a low code platform runs off high code languages like Python and Java, they don’t require an equivalently high level of understanding when trying to make a simple application run smoothly. This means low code platforms are accessible for a range of skill levels, from subject matter experts and stakeholders to full teams of professional developers.

With concepts that can be defined by decision makers and then further refined and optimised by developers, low code platforms allow for co-developed solutions that incorporate the skillsets of technical and non-technical team members.

Some core examples of places that are perfect for leveraging low code platforms are:

For retail management, low code platforms offer the ability to adapt to market requirements and optimise existing systems. This streamlines supply chain management, minimising stock errors and programming costs while maximising customer experience and increasing the potential returns.

Looking at the other levels of coding platform can offer further insight into why low code platforms can be the ideal solution for retail and inventory management systems.

High Code, Low Code, and No Code Platforms

A high code platform, also known as a traditional coding platform, is a text-based system that requires a high degree of skill and understanding to create programs with. This often requires a full team of developers, project managers, QAs, and more, in a time-consuming and expensive process.

No code platforms are visual coding systems that do not involve any code input at all. This means they’re incredibly simple to pick up and can be used by anyone, regardless of programming ability. However, their capabilities are likewise limited.

Low code platforms offer a combination of these benefits, with a broader range of possibilities than no code platforms but without the demanding requirements of traditional development. For retail and supply chain management, this results in the potential for bespoke inventory management and user-experience programs that are quick to produce and flexible with their functionality.

How can a Low Code Platform be Utilised for Supply Chain Management?

One of the best ways that a low code platform can be a positive impact on your supply chain is through AI inventory management. This uses AI tools and integration to increase your operational efficiency, improving predictions for order quantities and allowing you to respond to user demand on products to demonstrate availability and popularity.

Low code programs allow for analytics and reporting tools using AI functionality to understand customer behaviour patterns and produce detailed reports or recommended actions based on the projections of measurable data. An application of this could be automatic stock replenishment.

Another good use for low code platforms in retail and supply chain management is in communication. This helps to create synergy between systems involved by creating simple customer portals, web stores, and mobile applications that are easy to develop and make work together.

An ease of modification results in a bespoke end result. Low code programs allow you to create inventory management solutions that respond to your business’s unique needs while integrating reliably with your existing systems.

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Top Five Benefits of Low Code Platforms for Retail Management

The main reasons for using a low code platform in a retail environment are their advantages in inventory and supply chain management, including improvements to productivity, collaboration, customer experience, costs, and agility.

1.     Increased Productivity

By reducing the amount of time it takes to improve your inventory management using low code platforms, you’ll be able to spend more time working on your retail business. This also comes with increases in operational efficiencies due to the effective low code solutions and potential for AI integration.

2.     Greater Collaboration

A lower barrier for entry means more people can be involved with the development process. This means that warehouse and business managers can be involved in creating the solution, resulting a closer realisation of their ideas and needs.

3.     Responsive Customer Experience

Simple to adjust programs can add new user features and respond more easily to requirements after they’ve been released. The ease of using a low code platform means that full applications can be developed in a relatively low timeframe to fill an immediate need.

4.     Reduced Costs

Due to requiring less initial development time, and a lower skill requirement overall, low code platforms can cut down on costly development teams while increasing your return on investment.

These building-block programs can then be later enhanced when the user need and resources available reach adequate levels for a larger investment.

5.     Increased Agility

Adaptability to market changes and requirements from the lowered time and cost investment into leveraging a low code platform means you can develop a simple program that responds immediately to user needs. This can be changed down the line, or new programs can be created as needed, allowing you to be incredibly agile with your user portals and inventory management systems.

Benefit from low code platforms and innovative solutions by getting in touch with our team.

How to Leverage a Low Code Platform

When you’re planning on using a low code platform, there are several areas for consideration that can elevate the efficiency of your systems and futureproof any new programs.

  1. Define an enablement strategy. Outline who can be responsible for developing on low code platforms and show how low code should be implemented.
  2. Create a roadmap. Detail the tech requirements of your supply chain management process and align this with the capability of low code platforms.
  3. Offering training to retail managers and business stakeholders who may be involved with low code platforms can streamline collaboration with developers.
  4. Integrate low code platforms with existing systems. Support the collaboration process and futureproof low code platforms while retaining the functionality of your IT infrastructure.
  5. Establish governance and QA processes. Ensure your low code platform is compliant with regulations, customer data security, systems security, and your business objectives.
  6. Monitor and measure success. Record metrics like user satisfaction, operational efficiency, and reductions in stock management errors, comparing this data to your previous systems.
  7. Refine and improve. Enhance the functionality of your low code programs further by working with a professional dev team when more in-depth features are required.

Use low code platforms to leverage AI inventory management while integrating with your legacy systems. Our services enhance the order fulfilment and stock management capabilities of your retail business, working fluidly with your existing processes to provide greater overall effect.

Explore our intelligent automation solutions to see how we can automate your inventory management processes >

Improve Your Supply Chain with Low Code Solutions from FWF

With a low code platform, you can create bespoke programs for your retail or logistics business to enhance your inventory management and user experience while integrating easily with your existing systems – all at a lower cost and timeframe than traditional coding methods.

Get in touch with the team at FWF today to find out how we can help you incorporate low code platforms into your retail or logistics business. See our services for the full scope of what we do or call us now on +44 (0) 20 8124 5084.

Meet the Authors

Eric Hook

Eric Hook

Head of Power Platform

Eric is a highly professional, adaptable and flexible technology expert with over 15 years experience in the financial services, pharmaceutical and retail industries. Eric is Head of Power Platform at FWF, leading our Power Platform strategy and ensuring the best results for our clients.

Contact Eric
Dan Johnson

Dan Johnson

Director of Automation

Director and Co-founder at FWF UK. Dan has committed his career to the technology industry and has over a decade of experience working at senior strategic levels in Financial Services, including Insurance Process Automation Lead at Accenture UK&I and Head of Automation at Close Brothers Bank.

Contact Dan