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Webinar: Tips for Surviving the Changing Digital Landscape

June 11th, 2014 Brianne Schaer No comments

As digital technologies continue to transform the way consumers shop, businesses in the retail and consumer packaged goods industries must be able to keep up in order to remain competitive. Enterprise resource planning software is becoming more common to perform operations and manage inventory. Regardless of the tools available, there is a shift among the businesses that acknowledge digital disruption and those with a solid, attainable digital strategy.

A recent Forrester Research report titled “The State of Digital Business in 2014” found that while 74 percent of today’s business executives say their company has a digital strategy, only 15 percent believe that their company has the skills and capabilities to execute that strategy. The report reveals the reality of digital business in 2014 by examining digital business strategy, responsibilities, and organization structures.

Ignify’s new webinar titled “Digital Disruption: Threats and Opportunities for Retail and CPG Leaders” provides cutting-edge advice and tactics to build a successful technology strategy. Guest presenter George Lawrie of Forrester Research discusses new industry trends, how those trends are impacting the way retailers and consumer packaged goods companies do business, and how business applications allow companies to meet both threats and opportunities head-on.

Digital technology

Source: newretailblog.com

Consumers expect to find an in-store item on their smart phone at the tap of the screen. View our webinar to learn more about how digital technology has changed the way retailers do business.

The webinar features three main sections aimed at making leaders successful in the changing digital landscape. It culminates with a conclusion highlighting what these major points mean for a business developing a digital strategy as well as potential next steps.

Changing Consumer Behavior

Lawrie discusses how digital disruption can generate better ideas faster, as there is more competition between retailers online as opposed to just brick and mortar stores. Additionally, buyers are completing much more research before purchasing an item, and expect the retailer to provide a seamless experience across channels. With the Internet, consumers expect retailers to provide facts, data, and comparisons to paint accurate portrayals of their products.

Supply Chain Proliferation

Digital disruption has ushered in an increase of value-added services and precise tracking of items. Merchandise must be personalized to varying audiences; businesses must be able to supply goods for different demographics with varying demands.

Application Strategy for the Age of the Customers

In order to remain competitive in the digital age, businesses must provide useful, usable, and enjoyable experiences. These experiences will have to be transmitted across all channels, as more consumers will be turning to computing trends, such as mobile devices and wearables, to research their purchases. Lawrie discusses fascinating new data regarding this “mobile mind shift” during the webinar.

The full webinar is available here and may be viewed after completing a short registration form. For more information regarding Ignify’s ERP solutions, please email dynamics@ignify.com.

Crucial Webinar Insights:

  • New Forrester data on customers' and employees' changing expectations.
  • How changing expectations impact retailers' and CPG manufacturers' enterprise applications, such as supply chain.
  • How applications enable companies to evolve with these shifts and provide customers the service they demand.

Brianne Schaer is a Product Marketing Specialist at Ignify. Ignify is a technology provider of ERP, CRM, eCommerce, and Point of Sale software solutions to organizations. Ignify is winner/finalist of the worldwide Microsoft Partner of the Year Award in 2014, 2013, 2012 and 2011. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing businesses in North America for seven years in a row by Deloitte, Inc Magazine and Entrepreneur Magazine from 2007 to 2013.

Retail Information Systems Identified as Crucial Investments by Retailers

October 30th, 2012 Ashley Harbaugh No comments

For retailers seeking to expand operations into different channels, one of the most critical factors in growing and enhancing business operations is establishing a comprehensive technology framework that supports these developments. According to industry research, merchants are increasingly turning to retail information systems to develop multi-channel operations through data consolidation and a unified technological infrastructure.

Merchants are finding that in order to succeed in today’s retail environment, they need to adapt their business models to keep pace with emerging markets and changing customer expectations. By creating a seamless, consistent, and comprehensive multi-channel strategy through innovative retail software systems, merchants are better equipped to sustain and grow business in different channels.

Merchants are quickly understanding the importance of connected, varied retail channels, and are citing it as one of their top business priorities. According to "Succeeding in Multi-Channel Commerce" by Acquity Group, 56% of merchants surveyed either have or plan to have integrated systems for shoppers across sales channels – website, email, mobile, catalog and social – in the next two years.

Another primary business investment for retailers is updating existing operational systems. With retailers now realizing that supply chain systems once thought robust cannot meet rising customer expectations, the 2012 RIS/Gartner Retail Technology Study titled "Embracing Change" states that 25% of merchants with real time inventory systems have systems that are up-to-date, with 15% – the next highest level – saying they have started but not finished the process of updating their systems.

With the exponential rise of smartphones as a major consumer technology platform, merchants are also looking to embrace this new technology and initiate a mobile commerce strategy. In the 2012 RIS/Gartner Retail Technology Study, the majority of retailers surveyed are either planning or testing a mobile commerce strategy, or have an existing strategy – 46% of merchants are currently in the planning stages; 24% have pilots in progress; and 10% have a fully functional mobile strategy in place.

In addition to new, rising technologies, traditional brick-and-mortar stores also form an important part of a multi-channel retail plan. Creating a differentiated shopping experience for customers is a key factor in enhancing brick-and-mortar store retail operations, a concept that merchants recognize and are trying to incorporate. One such practice that addresses this is enabling customers to place orders for out of stock and specialty items from the store, with retailers providing self-service interactive screens in-store that allow customers to place those orders.

To effectively manage order processes – especially if customers are creating specialty orders – merchants require a cohesive order distribution system. Of the merchants surveyed in the 2012 RIS/Gartner Retail Technology Study who have an order distribution system in place, 25% said they have their systems up-to-date, with 15% saying they have started but not finished.

By re-evaluating existing retail business and technology practices, and by delivering a fully connected, integrated shopping experience to customers, retailers will gain a significant advantage over the competition.

To learn more about important strategies that can help improve your retail operations, download our infographic 10 Multi-channel Strategies to Keep You On Top.

And if you have any questions about the strategies, or would like more information on which retail information systems are best for your business, please email us at retail@ignify.com.

Ashley Harbaugh is a Product Marketing Specialist at Ignify. Ignify is a technology provider of CRM, eCommerce and ERP, software solutions to businesses and public sector organizations. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing business in North America for 5 years in a row by Deloitte, Inc Magazine and Entrepreneur Magazine and ranked as one of 100 most innovative companies in the world in the Red Herring Global 100 in 2011.