Process Management 3 mins read

But…we’ve always done it that way

The metamorphosis of customer demands and expectations in retail is evolving in front of our very eyes.

Andrew Busby Andrew Busby

Time to throw away the old rulebook and begin to understand how your retail business really functions.

Like just about every other business, you can be sure that you most likely have plenty of them. They are there, lurking on hard drives, stuck to walls, sucking in your people’s time and energy. To what am I referring? Spreadsheets of course.

Combine them, as in most cases, with undocumented, or worse, unknown processes, and it’s a recipe for rising costs and diminishing productivity.

Even before the pandemic, retail was under pressure from all sides; rising costs, consumer confidence, the changing shape of online engagement – and supply chain challenges associated with climate change and sustainability. Those, however, were the sunlit uplands of 2019. Because then along came Covid-19. And life as we knew it changed forever.

You don’t need me to tell you how painful things have become. But you might want to hear a story of how one retailer reduced costs, while at the same time increasing productivity – all by understanding its processes.

There are three forces at work here:

New business models

Or to put it another way, today that means accommodating Covid-19. Because what is becoming increasingly clear is that, just as you are having to adapt to a life alongside a new virus, businesses must learn to do the same. This means re-evaluating every aspect of the operation.

New customer journeys

Consumers were already becoming fickle and promiscuous, not to mention extremely smart in their shopping habits. However, now far more of you have a new heightened awareness of our spending patterns. Putting the customer at the heart of everything has never been more important for retailers.

The need for constant improvement

Smart retailers know where to turn when it comes to really understanding how the business is performing and how customers are feeling – and it’s not turning to those at head office. However, starting there as this retailer did builds the platform necessary to drive cost and productivity improvement activities.

Tesco gets it

That retailer is Tesco, which partnered with Software AG and ARIS to deliver an integrated view of its end-to-end processes. This allowed Tesco to create a business operating model that would hypercharge its efficiency.

It is now embarking on perhaps the most exciting stage of the journey – in the store, where the business meets its customers. Lower costs, increased productivity – while at the same time delivering a better customer experience. That looks like a prize worth striving for, don’t you think?

More than ever before, businesses of all shapes and sizes need to understand their purpose and what their brand stands for. The metamorphosis of customer demands and expectations is evolving in front of our very eyes.

Capturing and digitalizing the processes is at the heart of understanding the business. And, just like the Software AG and Tesco partnership experience, it is important to remember that it is a journey with amazing outcomes along the way.

Watch the webinar, Operating Cost Reduction in Retail, by clicking the link below.