Clarkston was recently engaged by a large retail client to perform a Technology and Analytics assessment and discovery to evaluate what the client was doing well, where pain-points and gaps existed, and how the client compared to analogous companies.Over the past 25 years, this client has grown to become a $4+ billion company. As they grew in size and revenue, they did not invest in technology to scale with their growth, leading their IT systems to become outdated. Through interviews with employees across all levels and areas of the organization, it quickly became evident that there were many opportunities for improvement, most notably:
- Utilizing an outdated, home-grown system for all retail applications
- Lacking a clear data and analytical strategy
- Utilizing multiple instances of single systems, and in some cases, completely different technology platforms for the various international markets
The Clarkston team formulated a comprehensive list of recommendations but focused on three that required more immediate attention: retail technology, analytics capabilities, and building a global template for international growth.
Some of Clarkston’s primary objectives for this technology and analytics assessment included understanding their current processes and technology support, identifying how peers and other retail companies leverage vital technology, assess current IT landscape, and leverage omnichannel and analytics strategies to demonstrate client comparables to other market leaders and present versus desired future state. This resulted in more than 70 interviews conducted across the organization, a focused scope of recommendations including three focus areas, and a robust summary of the client’s present-day state with a path forward.
It was important for this project that Clarkston provide tailored recommendations to allow for retail growth, analytics growth, and international growth. This focused the organization towards high priority areas and built business cases to support the investment in new technology. Presenting an achievable and strategic action plan in the form of a retail modernization program with an analytics jumpstart enabled buy-in from executives.
Ultimately, Clarkston held meetings with the executive team to share the strategy to move forward which resulted in a large retail technology and analytics transformation with two new workstreams within the organization engaged and four projects launched with multiple new systems to support the revitalized technology platform.