At Retail Reply, most of the retailers we work with are either part way through their digital transformation journey or are about to embark on it. For many of them, creating a standalone business unit for eCommerce was the quickest and least disruptive way to enter the multichannel world. However they are now finding that their ambitions increasingly depend upon changes to, and new capability within, their legacy supply chain and 'bricks and mortar' business.
It is a constant challenge to maintain momentum throughout transformative change; building solid IT foundations for future technologies, whilst still responding to today’s changing marketplace and innovation trends.
With customer expectations still rising, retailers must tenacoiusly focus on providing customer journeys that are seamless and without friction. Understanding what business capabilities they need to change or develop to achieve this is vital to every retailers’ success. Leading retailers have begun to address the challenges of bringing digital and store channels together and are starting to see significant benefits – ahead of their competitors.
However rarely do retailers have the opportunity to focus exclusively on transformation, as the realities of retail mean that operational stability and incremental revenue growth cannot be left by the wayside. How do you know which short-term and innovation initiatives should still be pursued, without being distracted from the long term goal?
Organisations who are leading the market in customer experience and innovation are those in which business and IT are closely aligned. This is critical to the success of transformation efforts as it enables effective decision making which optimises the business benefit while maintaining the flexibility & reliability of technology. We have found that this requires four key elements:
Capability Led Planning has been used by Retail Reply for some time and has proven a powerful way to promote business-IT alignment. Based on a clear articulation of the business goals, along with definition of the necessary strategies, this process has been used to help many retailers deliver new capabilities and business offerings. This is even more effective when overlaid with an end-to-end view of the retail organisation to inform and align the business and digital strategies.
Retailers also need to be effective at implementing and transitioning change into their business in order to see the benefits of transformation. This requires dedicated effort to build and embed the necessary competencies and processes to ensure that change can be driven internally. Retail Reply has extensive experience helping organisations build these capabilities - by combining pragmatism with industry best practice, their client's people are empowered to transform their organisations.
Retail Reply knows that there is urgency to make progress on your transformation journey. Its approach helps to quickly start guiding you to the right decisions, while creating and building consensus around the bigger picture. Retail Reply's experience with a variety of retailers, large and small, along with its role driving innovation in the industry means it is perfectly placed to get you on the right track.
Successful transformation is as much about embedding the right practices and culture to help your organisation to adapt to change. A blend of deep retail knowledge, a foundation in technology and extensive transformation experience allows its consultants to quickly make an impact and ensure the common pitfalls are avoided.
Retail Reply is part of the Reply Group which provides access to valuable insight and innovation across retail and many other industries, so that it can ensure you're prepared for the future of retail. Retail Reply's pragmatic approach helps its customers balance the requirements of today with their future goals, ensuring they make the most of their transformation investment.
Retail Reply is the Reply Group company specialising in retail digital and business consulting and is composed of specialist retail consultants who help achieve their client's retail vision through use of customer-centric digital solutions. Thanks to years of expertise working alongside UK retailers, large and small, Retail Reply is capable of best advising how to drive client's businesses forward with smart use of technology.
Retail Reply's mission is to help retailers innovate and ensure that they see tangible value at every step of the way. Its consultants are experts in Retail Innovation, Retail Ecosystems, Capability Transformation, Customer Centricity and Proximity Commerce and its services include capability-led planning, omni-channel strategy, customer journeys and architecture-managed services.