This time of year, we start seeing commentary and speculation about the relative importance of Black Friday vs Cyber Monday. Or discussions as to whether this will finally be the festive season that online overtakes offline shopping. Yet, as we emerge from months of lockdowns and pandemic restrictions, it is increasingly clear that today’s Retail & CPG world is ‘And/And’, not ‘And/Or’.
For CEOs, the ‘And/And’ means getting the critical holiday season right, while also finalising strategic plans for the following years ahead. While already juggling multiple challenges, they must also try and balance the, often competing, demands of different departments, functions, formats, channels and geographies - to consistently deliver what consumers want. A single, accurate and up to date view of every aspect of the business is therefore critical – and in the modern Retail / CPG company, that can’t be delivered with narrow snapshot reports in Excel!
Demanding Customers, or just ‘new normal’ Customers?
Reports suggest that this year will see a resurgence in shopping at real-world retail outlets, as customers make use of returning post COVID-lockdown freedoms in many countries; Accenture research suggests 70 per cent of Gen Z customers plan to make most of their holiday purchases in store. But these consumers are different. They are not only seeking a wide assortment of quality products at great prices, but they want unique, memorable (and shareable) experiences. Delivering exactly the right mix of product, price, promotions, personalisation and experience, across all formats of physical store, plus online, requires huge levels of coordination.
The ability to both hyper-localise and hyper-personalise is becoming more and more of a necessity, leading CEOs with yet another challenge. How do you empower individual stores and departments to make data led decisions to support their specific customers, while still retaining head office control? CEOs face a ‘Catch-22’ dilemma. They need a single consistent view of data from across the business but must also empower local teams to use local data to respond fast to meet customer demands. All while avoiding the creation of data silos to supporting specific bespoke applications, which over time, undermines visibility and makes it harder to gather and use granular data in real-time at enterprise scale. Is it therefore here that the CEO is faced with an ‘and/or’ choice?
Avoiding the Catch 22
It does not have to be an ‘and/or’ choice. We are working every day with retailers and CPGs around the world to deliver ‘and/and’ capabilities. They are combining autonomy with visibility, empowerment with consistent corporate strategy, and the data is available to everyone as and when it is needed. Teradata works with leaders in retail and CPG to help them create enterprise data architecture, and then the data & analytical roadmaps required to allow data to be shared between teams, locations, departments and partners up and down the value chain. This central data ‘brain’ not only connects and orchestrates all of the data but enables the advanced analytics and machine learning required to add value to every process and the enterprise as a whole.
Working with CEOs and their direct reports, Teradata is breaking the reliance on Excel-based reporting by individual teams who only see their part of the picture. Instead, companies can accelerate the use of automated dashboards, analytic models, AI and machine-learning as the basis of rapid, effective decision-making. This pivots them towards truly enterprise data-driven operations, establishing a single version of the truth as the standard in the boardroom, shortening the time to value for projects, and increasing overall corporate agility to take advantage of real-time opportunities.
Driving increasing business value every day
A top-down commitment to enterprise data platforms continues to deliver significant benefits for Teradata’s customers across Retail and CPG. Individual departments are making/saving millions, and the overall benefit to each organisation is usually measured in hundreds of millions. For example, AI-driven forecasting increased revenue by 12% for a Retailers in-store bakery operation; optimising price and promotions though better sharing and usage of data saw a 3% margin improvement for another; creating a logistics control tower which orchestrates data from across the entire supply chain delivered a 5% improvement in service delivery for a third. These are the measurable benefits that matter most to the CEO – and which need to be set, monitored and managed at an enterprise level. These shift the focus up a level, from piecemeal digitalization to overall business value transformation. Integrated, orchestrated data then acts as a multiplier on all the incremental advances made across the organisation.
Where is your business on this critical transformation journey? Ask your IT team how quickly they believe you’ll be accelerating from a few million queries per day, to running over 250 million every day, with each adding more depth and value to the whole business? Achieving this level of transformation requires the CEOs vision, coupled with best technology, to enable the necessary operational ability and agility. Architecture and analytics that not only leverage existing investments but can support the multi-cloud infrastructures of the future, effortlessly handling the scale and speed of data to keep up with customer demands.
To find out how to successfully empower your organisation to deliver the ‘And/And’, plus talk about how we’ve delivered transformational results in partnership with CEOs in retail and CPG around the world, please email your Teradata team or get in touch with me directly.