Target Corporation is one of the nation’s largest retailers with three independent,
highly visible chains – Target Stores, Marshall Field’s and Mervyn’s. Operating in
its highly competitive retail space, logistics is big business for this retail giant as it
sells everything from fashion to furniture to electronics at more than 1,400 retail
outlets. Its supply chain includes several thousand vendors, 22 distribution centers,
and its core carriers and consolidators.
Target had a partially manual ready-to-ship process for inbound shipments.
Vendors were faxing thousands of orders each week, which Target needed to sort,
optimize and assign to carriers. Target’s staff would manually input shipments into its
proprietary vendor management system which feeds its transportation management
system (TMS) for consolidation and optimization. Target was making transportation
decisions with limited visibility to the shipments, which led to an excessive number
of more costly less-than-truckload (LTL) moves.
To keep up with expanding business growth and marketplace demands, Target
sought to get more value from its transportation network operations. In particular,
it wanted to improve its load factors, reduce data entry requirements and errors,
optimize routing decisions, and disseminate more timely shipment status information
to everyone in its supply chain.
Target turned to e-transportation leader NTE, Inc. in the fall of 2001 for a
technology-based solution for its ready-to-ship operations. The mass retailer
sought to capitalize on new Internet-based technologies to yield a more
efficient way to manage its inbound transportation activities.
Target partnered with NTE to develope a technology-based solution that leveraged
the retailer’s existing operations and infrastructure, including its TMS system.
Using NTE View as its core service, Target linked all of its trading partners into
a centralized private trading community for automated transactions, timely
communications and st