Change At The Speed of The Customer

Change At The Speed of The Customer

July 28, 2016

My friends at RSR Research talk about “making decisions at the speed of the customer” and that got me to thinking about the changes retailers face in order to make these decisions. In last week’ s post, we looked at Supporting the ‘ Always On’ Shopper and some of the technology needs to support it.This week, we’ ll turn our heads to the underlying business strategies that are standing in the way.

Robert Eastman, Research Manager, Retail Omni-channel IT Strategies at IDC Retail Insights said recently, “Retailers must recognize and drive digital transformation however, retailers dealing with legacy, disconnected, siloed systems have latencies and speeds that cannot support modern commerce, nor do most of the legacy systems allow retailers to quickly launch the types of services that customers today are expecting. At a time when customer expectations are rising and customers are more digitally fluent and digitally equipped than ever before, customers are expecting that their shopping experience will be easy, convenient, frictionless, and available anytime everywhere.”

While I am not saying that retailers must ‘rip-and-replace’ everything, what I am saying is that in order to give consumers convenience, ease, and great shopping experiences, it’ s time to rethink current business and technology strategies.

To achieve a true digital transformation, and not just a ‘make it work’ environment, will require a redesign of strategies from the top down. This means not only looking at the technology infrastructure but also leadership, business processes, and workforce.

The top-down approach starts by identifying those business-critical processes across the enterprise that most support the experience your customer’ s want and need. Many retailers are looking to the Cloud to achieve the ease and the speed required for those processes. Then tackling the monsters in the back room on a planned, systematic approach over time.

Whatever approach you choose, the time is now to get started. Competition is ready and waiting for dis-satisfied customers.