8th & Walton supports Walmart suppliers three ways:
- Walmart supplier training classes
- Custom advisory and one-on-one training
- Full service support
In part two of our “What Is 8th & Walton” series, we’re focusing on how we help Walmart suppliers on issues specific to their business: Custom Advisory and one-on-one training.
On this episode of our Retail Supplier podcast (click the play button above to listen), we sit down with Joel Graham, 8th & Walton’s Director of Retail Link® & Sam’s Club Insights. Joel is usually the first person a supplier will speak with after filling out a contact form for a free consultation. During our conversation, we learned more about what happens during that first consultation and what topics most suppliers are asking about to help their Walmart business.
Custom Advisory vs. Taking a Class
We started by asking Joel about determining when advisory hours may be better than taking a training class. As he illustrates, the initial conversation with the supplier reveals their business need and how their time can best be used.
“Often times I’ll get someone who has signed up for a class and I give them a quick call to welcome them and get to know their business,” he explains. “What we sometimes discover is this person has a very specific need. While the class they signed up for may be fine, it might not dive deep enough into that specific need. Just from a small conversation, we sometimes find out a custom advisory is what they really want. Now we can focus on their needs and really dive into that specific area that they want to learn more about.”
Hot Topics in Custom Advisory Requests
The custom advisory team at 8th & Walton receives many requests from Walmart suppliers each week. We asked Joel what some of the hot topics are now that Walmart has rolled out so many changes over the past few months.
“Supply chain is a really hot topic right now,” he begins, “with all the new requirements Walmart is introducing in the Supplier Quality Excellence Program (SQEP). Also, the new Advance Ship Notice (ASN) requirements are bringing many questions.
“Walmart’s Item 360 is very hot right now. Walmart is moving item creation and item maintenance over to this new platform. Item 360 will be the vehicle of the future, including cost management.”
Supplier expectations have been raised significantly in the last few months. Through working with suppliers, Joel explains the common denominator in Walmart’s initiatives and what he sees in custom advisory requests.
“It really all goes back to Walmart’s focus on supply chain and how to improve it,” he explains. “Walmart is taking these steps to ensure suppliers are paying attention to the broken things in the supply chain. Anything that comes into the Walmart distribution network that causes a pause in the process is an expense. That expense is now being turned back over to the supplier as a fine.”
Common Custom Advisory Questions
With over 300 years of combined Walmart experience at 8th & Walton, there isn’t a question they haven’t heard! As a Walmart supplier, you should never be concerned that the issue you’re facing is too complex or too basic for Joel and his team. We asked Joel to give us an idea of some of more common questions his team answers each week.
“We get a lot of suppliers with on-boarding requests,” he notes. “They just got accepted into Walmart and don’t really know where to start. There are a lot of questions each week about Walmart accounting. Suppliers have questions about Codes 22, 24, and 25, claims that items didn’t make it to Walmart. We also receive a lot of Retail Link® training requests.”
Setting up a Free Consultation
Whether you’re interested in one-on-one training or a special session for your team, all it takes is a quick consultation to get started! Click here to answer a few questions and you’ll be contacted this week. We look forward to working with you!