Executive Update

The Evolving Role of Supply Chain in Meeting Organization Goals

During this session, Rick Rayford,President and CEO of Brookshire Grocery Company dissected his success as a leader and addressed the important role supply chain efficiency has played.

Rayford, a 43-year veteran to Brookshire, credited the growth of the company under his leadership to investing in better technology, improving relationships with suppliers, pricing and in-store remodeling.

Rayford explained how investing in technology helped make employees lives easier and their store growth more effective. As the first to adopt SAP retail technology, they were able to make fact-based decisions on the vast amount of data received. Combining this with an aggressive price-break strategy and a significant store remodeling program (acquiring 16 new stores and remodeling over 47 stores in the past five years), brought people into the store and has led to record sales and unprecedented growth.

Also a priority for Rayford was to improve supplier relationships. Brookshire hosted a summit with 100 of their top vendors, shared their strategic plans, and held one-on-one meetings to identify win-win opportunities.

Rayford, coming from a distribution/logistics background, also stressed the importance of incorporating these strategies with an efficient supply chain process.

“Every organization is impacted significantly by supply chain. Companies with a well-run supply chain outperform by 12 times those companies that don’t. Any glitch in the supply chain can cause value to torpedo.”

Beyond all of these strategies, however, Rayford explained there is one additional key to success, which may be the most important: the people.

“Over the last five years, we’ve acquired 16 stores because of great people. We’ve achieved record sales each year because of our great people and we’ve won hundreds of awards both corporately and professionally because of our great people.”