Next Tuesday (April 7) I will share the stage at the Grocery Manufacturers Association conference in Miami with two DemandTec customers — Kraft Foods and Safeway — to discuss the business benefits of collaborative deal management. We’re expecting more than 250 attendees including CPG manufacturers, a few grocery retailers and a smattering of technology vendors, consultants and media pundits to join us for this session.
So what is deal management? In a nutshell, it’s how manufacturers and retailers agree to which in-store promotions make the calendar, at what terms, for which products and during which time periods. The traditional deal management process is pretty inefficient involving a combination of paper deal sheets, spreadsheets, faxes, courier deliveries and phone calls…resulting in a lot of wasted time and energy. Each retailer uses a proprietary deal sheet and deal term nomenclature, forcing the vendor community to adapt to 20+ unique processes.
Online, collaborative deal management offers a more efficient way for big retailers (like Safeway) and their entire ecosystem of manufacturers (including Kraft Foods) to bring sanity to the process. Paper deal sheets are now a thing of the past. Deals are submitted and negotiated online with deal status and comments fully visible to both parties. No lost deals, and no anxious vendors. Meaningful efficiency gains are realized by both parties, allowing everyone to focus on more strategic activities. DemandTec’s Deal Management software service leads the industry, with retailers accounting for roughly 33% of US grocery ACV using (or deploying) the software service.
So collaborative deal management is definitely a good thing for the industry. As more retailers migrate to an online, collaborative process life gets a little easier for everyone. And this is ultimately a good thing for consumers. As trade plans are entered and negotiated more efficiently, more working dollars can flow to the shelf to support an incremental program or two.
If you plan to attend the GMA conference, we’ll see you in Miami!