How Changing a Label Can Avoid a National Embarrassment

Abnesh Raina
November 20, 2013

Earlier this year, Target had to apologize for labeling a plus-sized dress ‘manatee’ while the same dress in a missy size was labeled ‘heather gray.’  No one can prevent every mistake, but perhaps, if these labeling plans had been incorporated within a collaborative, centralized product information management (PIM) system, someone might have noticed the difference and prevented a national embarrassment.

Traditionally, product management pulls in a number of cross-functional departments, notably product development, merchandising, and product marketing. In talking to product management professionals and industry experts, one consistent message comes across: creation, cleanup, sharing and integration of product information and specifications, across channels, is functioning at a less than desirable level.  The reason is simple:  collaboration-driven product information management (PIM) is the missing link in enterprises’ approach to product management.  Without a fully integrated, collaborative PIM system, managers are left to rely on emails, spreadsheets, siloed systems and a rather haphazard approach to sharing information. 

Employee time is wasted.  The cost-of-goods-sold number increases.  Labor costs go up when production mistakes occur as a result of faulty information and communication. The result is a direct hit on the bottom line. Companies invest an average of 30 minutes per item per year manually cleansing out-of-sync item information. Operational costs for manually cleaning every 100,000 items is over $1.2M annualized.

But there is a solution!   Once you see you have a PIM knowledge gap, put in place a cloud-based PIM system that serves as a collaboration repository for all pertinent product content, including data, images, and video, to be shared with multiple internal systems and sales channels, as well as external marketplaces. Having this centralized repository enables multiple internal and external stakeholders, including your suppliers, to be a more integral part of the process to create, update, and clean up product information.

At PlumSlice, we have developed a PIM system that answers this need for efficient and effective sharing of information across all teams – internal and external—helping  you prevent costly and embarrassing mistakes. 


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