How to Implement an Omni-Channel Supply Chain. A Case Study of Intersport Sverige AB
Title: How to implement an omni-channel supply chain. A case study of Intersport Sverige AB. Thesis degree: Master Degree Project in Innovation and Industrial Management. Authors: Tilde Bjärfors and Aron Hwang. Supervisor: Johan Brink. Purpose: The purpose of this thesis is to explore the pursuit of an omni-channel supply chain. Thereby, filling the academic research gap between what omni-channel retailing is and how to operationalise it. Research questions: (1) How is a Swedish sports retailer working towards implementing an omni-channel supply chain? (2) What are the challenges when implementing an omni-channel supply chain? (3) What are the motivators behind the pursuit of an omni-channel supply chain? Method: A descriptive single case study conducted at Intersport Sverige AB, one of the market leaders within Swedish sports retailing industry. Empirical findings from semi-structured interviews and observations have been presented in a narrative style. Followed by a thematic analysis combining the theoretical framework with the empirical results. Main findings: Intersport has engaged in five main activities to fulfil an omni-channel supply chain. First, Intersport had to centralise the organisational decision making. Second, the IT systems were changed to enable data chairing among the channels. Third, the online store was rebuilt. Fourth, Intersport built its own automatic warehouse to enable pooling of products for the physical stores and the online store. Fifth, Intersport has started to hire employees with digitalisation skills. In addition, Intersport has experienced four main challenges connected to the pursuit of omni-channel supply chain. Initially, there was a lack of managerial control. In addition, the new technology in its IT systems required heavy investments and cutting-edge capabilities. Two remaining challenges are connected to customer data usage and finding and using accurate evaluation tools for omni-channel operations. Still, Intersport’s omni-channel journey is in progress, motivated by customer demands, preferences and shopping behaviours. Further, Intersport finds the omni-channel pursuit to be an opportunity to increase profitability by increased sales and decreased costs.
MSc in Innovation and Industrial Management