How can RTFS fix the Fashion Industry?

Risky, unstable, but challenging. It’s been a huge year for the fashion industry!

As economic and political changes came through, it faced the fashion industry as well, representing the seventh-largest economy in the world, proving just how twisted fashion is to its environment. 2016 has shown big confusion in all aspects. And it’s going to continue to change in 2017 due to various factors, filled with designer shakeups.

Despite numerous and worthy initiatives, keeping track of the standards in fashion supply chains is still challenging. As a provider of cloud-based supply chain technology, ELSE Corp already works with leading high street names. However, fashion is typically anything but fast when it comes to tech. Brands and retailers have been slow to adopt new technologies. If they remain so, there is a perfect storm brewing of consumer demand, pressure and ethical competitors, that could see many of them go out of business, possibly much sooner than they think.

Meanwhile, consumers have become more demanding, more discerning and less predictable in their purchasing behavior, which is being radically reshaped by new technologies.

The RTFS (Real Time Fashion System) is a vision for a new product design process for companies and independent designers, that leads to the accurate prediction of individual needs and product demand while positively impacting the fashion industry, socially and environmentally, on a global scale. This new technology and approach to fashion design, retail and manufacturing will change the industry by focusing on direct to consumer.

It is important to note that industry performance in 2016 has not been even across all market segments and categories. Past year was particularly difficult for the luxury and mid-market players

For an industry that’s supposed to be rooted in originality and creative expression, fashion sure has a lot of copycats. From Zara’s not-quite-knockoffs all the way up to storied fashion houses like Chanel. Designers are constantly accused of ripping off each other’s work. This issue is so common that designers have even begun focusing more on fabric quality and cut.

The Real-Time-Fashion-System will learn from customers and companies and proposes individual designs, perfect in style and size.

The RTFS platform will recognize the unique style preferences of each individual customer. Customers add different types of data that reflect their personal style preferences and the platform learns from it. This results in ‘Personal Style Patterns‘ which could be used to re-design or adjust on demand an ideal products for each customer. This is how customers are deeply involved in product purchase, personalization, co-design & manufacturing planning. You can’t copy an owned design, right?

Next to that, since we all became impatient because of fast technology, products are immediately available and adaptable in real-time to the customer’s individual needs, thanks to a new 3D CAD & AI based product design process for fashion and design companies and customers.

But there’s more to consider when you’re deciding whether to buy or not to buy a new piece of clothing, other than the brand, the cut, the fabric, the quality, and the price. One aspect that rarely factors in to the decision-making process is the people behind it. The major problem for most is they have no control or visibility over what suppliers do daily, so the system is still largely built on trust. The question is, ‘If a factory is seen to be ethical on Monday, will it still be so on Friday?’”

On a larger scale, the expectations of companies are changing generationally — Millennials have different views on how companies should act!

Millennials and Generation Xers believe brands need to do more good. This generation is questioning purchase in general. The majority will spend more on experiences, which is intimates the luxury world. An unsustainable piece of clothing or shoe is, in the end, anything but flawless. As we all wake up to that reality, the luxury companies have no choice but to act.

The evolution of the fashion industry must be developed around sustainability, seeking to reduce its social and ecological footprint. To that end, the RTFS provides the fashion industry with a tool for the sustainable transformation of the supply chain, from conception to distribution.

In the end, the consumer spends more and more of his digital time on mobile devices. Almost everything is virtual in 2017. Fashion is the industry that needs to step its game up. Digital innovation goes behind the scenes: digitisation will be the key to supply chain efficiency, lowering procurement costs and the enhancement of sourcing opportunities. Fashion Executives must see tech and innovation as the capacity for value chain digitisation and the key investment area for 2017.

This is a CALL FOR ACTION! If it seems relevant- please join us at the development of a better future for the fashion industry!