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Streamlining processes with automated retail inventory management

The new mobile application was delivered in just 3 weeks, thanks to having employed OutSystems’ low-code technology.

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The Client

The Client is a subsidiary of one of Europe’s largest drugstore chains, with thousands of locations across the continent. Its range of products includes hygiene, cosmetics, household, food products, and many more.

Industry Retail
Technology Low-code, OutSystems

Key Achievements

  • The new inventory management process is 100% digital and automated
  • Employees do not need to manually create paper-based reports
  • Validation information and other data insights are updated in real-time
  • Thanks to low-code technology, the app was delivered in just 3 weeks

The challenge

Business Need

The Client was planning to open a new logistics hub where thousands of inventory items would be loaded, unloaded, and shipped to their brick-and-mortar locations on a daily basis. This hub would also process returns, making their on-site inventory management even more expansive.

Prior to opening the new location, the Client decided that it was time to leverage the advantages of automation by digitally transforming their inventory management processes and optimising their business operations.

If the hub location were to open without the new application in place, the Client’s employees would have to manually process every single inventory item. This is something that the company was looking to avoid as paper-based inventory management processes are time-consuming and prone to human error.

Considering this, they wanted to introduce a mobile application to streamline their employees’ daily work efforts and to gain a firmer grasp on their inventory. The app’s barcode scanners would make item tracking and validation more accurate, while also eliminating the hassle of having to manually fill out paperwork.

The Client’s objective was to have the application ready in just 3 weeks. They decided to create the solution using low-code, as nothing else on the market would have been able to guarantee such incredible speed of delivery.

The solution

Project Details

As the Client was already working with OutSystemsa low-code platform provider, the company decided to leverage low-code capabilities when creating the inventory management application to ensure fast delivery. 

Low-code platforms employ visual development instead of traditional codemaking them uniquely fast and flexible. Thanks to thisnew products can be created very quickly – as was the case with the Client’s inventory management application. 

The Client approached Objectivity as they needed an experienced and trusted low-code delivery partner. The technical experts from Objectivity’s team created a mobile app, which is tailored in a way that enables it to be used on barcode scanners – making item tracking and validation much easier. 

By using OutSystems’ low-code technology, the team managed to measurably decrease the development, testing, and DevOps time.  They used the low-code platform’s standard UI elements, having to only slightly adjust them to match the Client’s needs 

Employing low-code technology also significantly sped up deployment time. Projects realised using traditional code typically require that DevOps pipelines be set up from scratch, which inevitably takes time. Whereas by taking advantage of the OutSystems low-code platform, deployments work right out of the box’ and can be performed with just 1 click. 

The new app supports the loading and unloading processes taking place at the new location as well as logs all related employee actions, which enables the company to prepare detailed data reports. It keeps track of everything that entered and left the hub and checks whether data and transport information is correct. 

The results

Business Benefits

Having introduced the new app has significantly improved everyday inventory management processes, in terms of both item tracking and validation accuracy as well as employee satisfaction.

Without the app, employees would have to track their inventory efforts on paper, making instant verification impossible and slowing down the operations of the company.

The inventory management application also enables employees to receive accurate feedback with regards to their work, which will consequently lead to fewer mistakes and the faster handling of deliveries.

The Android-based application is unwaveringly reliable as it works both online and offline, meaning that it will continue to work in case any infrastructure issues were to arise.

The new digital solution takes advantage of barcode scanners, speeds up logging, minimises the occurrence of errors, and ensures automatic validation of inventory items. It also provides valuable data insights, which can be used to generate detailed reports, providing the Client with more accurate control over their operations and product assortment.

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