The National Association of Chain Drug Stores has teamed up with a global strategy firm to foster retailer-supplier collaboration.

National Association of Chain Drug Stores, NACDS, joint business planning, The Partnering Group, JBP, Creating Value Together, NACDS Retail Advisory Board, retailers, suppliers, distributors, manufacturers, Steve Anderson, Peter Leech, front end

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NACDS report sheds light on joint business planning

June 18th, 2014

ARLINGTON, Va. – The National Association of Chain Drug Stores has teamed up with a global strategy firm to foster retailer-supplier collaboration.

NACDS said Wednesday that its Retail Advisory Board and The Partnering Group have released a report that aims to help retailers and suppliers devise joint business plans to coordinate shared business goals.

Titled "Creating Value Together," the report identifies 10 key findings to help companies establish strong joint business plans with their trading partners.

In joint business planning (JBP), retailers, distributors, manufacturers and other suppliers work together to align short- and long-term financial goals for their shared business.

Key findings in the report include the need for more senior-level engagement, high interest in joint business planning among retailers and suppliers but little execution, retailers are driving joint business planning processes, the need for more standardized metrics and the need for changes in traditional planning structures.

For retailers and suppliers, the report said, key inputs include the establishment of collaborative working relationships, shared shopper/marketplace insights to create jointly defined strategies and initiatives, and joint investment into "breakthrough" demand-driving or cost-cutting efforts.

"According to the findings in this report, one of the biggest challenges is the amount of time it takes to complete a joint business plan with a trading partner," NACDS president and chief executive officer Steve Anderson said in a statement. "The NACDS Retail Advisory Board has been actively engaged in overcoming that hurdle. Working with NACDS member companies and with The Partnering Group, 'Creating Value Together' explores methods to help simplify the process and allow trading partners to expand the number of companies with which they conduct JBPs."

The report also identifies the main characteristics of joint business plans, methods and tools to maximize business outcomes, and recommendations for driving maximum efficiency and effectiveness.

The "Creating Value Together" executive summary, full report and tool kit are available on the NACDS website along. The kit provides templates, workbooks and other resources to help companies get started and manage the development of their joint business plans.

"Joint business planning should be looked at as both a business strategy and a business process,"stated Peter Leech, managing director at The Partnering Group. "These properly executed plans create incremental value in a relationship between trading partners. This process is not in lieu of a category plan, it is much more."

The NACDS Retail Advisory Board makes recommendations to the association's board of directors on front-end issues and helps to shape member programs and services.

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