RETAIL MOVING ON CLOUD

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1 s RETAIL MOVING ON CLOUD Page 1

2 Preface In the business of Technologically Transforming Retail Landscapes, CitiXsys Technologies has been involved in bringing valuable content to readers for some years now. This white paper is intended for all who have experienced, observed and appreciate the value of Modern Retail Technology, Integrated Store experience and are keenly looking forward to commit to the concept of Cloud in Retail. Modern Day Retail stores must offer shopper s seamless Retail experiences, something that can t be experienced online, to become preferred destinations. On the other hand retailers need to re-examine their strategy to provide a seamless experience across the entire customer-buying journey by diminishing the boundaries between online and physical world. Some benefits that forward looking retailers have noticed post-deployment of ivend Cloud include: Faster Go To Market Global spread with a local control Streamlined cost-effective operations that are easier to manage Scalable and collaborative P a g e 2

3 Cloud Disrupting the Retail Ecosystem Retailers have long set out on the journey to innovate realizing the absolute necessity of being truly seamless - maximizing the power and promise of technology across all channels, and across the Retail enterprise. But where should a retailer focus and how can a he quickly move from what s now to what s next? Primarily retailers focus on efforts to build a competitive edge for the future by going interoperable and seamless across all channels. Progression towards this path will be truly seamless set of systems, the business and IT will support continual adaptation, the digital experience will be supported by analytics and scalable IT, and the instore experience will be integrated with digital channels. Cloud applications for retail, scalability delivered as-aservice, makes this distant dream possible. Retailers can now meet time-pressed, on-the go and digitally connected consumers during their entire retail cycle of stepping into the store to the checkout. Currently, cloud applications are effective tools for retailers to build capabilities fast enough to hold the attention of consumers. Till today, plenty of boutique and small retailers have achieved far more cloud-based agility than large brick-and-mortar retailers. Primary reason for their early adoption freedom IT overheads in the implementation and maintenance of computing systems. Retail applications on cloud save them the time and finances invested in managing IT, which over a period have increased exponentially. Retail Cloud applications will eventually have a major impact on how retailer staff and their businesses function. Traditional brick-and-mortar retailers find retail technology disruptive and live with assumptions about their core systems. They fear disrupting these systems - particularly point of sale (POS). And because they perceive their core systems as differentiators, they fully rely on an on-premise technology with an Enterprise at back, which means significant resources are tied up in technology maintenance and upgrades The constant evolution of computing has helped businesses to automate and innovate providing them a competitive advantage in the global marketplace. Nevertheless, with introduction of Cloud technology in Retail, organizations are once again on the crossroad of technology. Early adoption of the Cloud on the Brick and Mortar store would provide retailers with an opportunity to transform their business models and gain a competitive edge. While cost reduction is one of the benefits, several other benefits accrue to organizations. Organizations P a g e 3

4 would be able to concentrate on their core competencies while leaving the task of running IT infrastructure to the Cloud service providers. Further, through the adoption of the Cloud, Mid-size retail organizations are expected to become more nimble. A unified/seamless customer experience is directly proportional to integrated data, integrated channel operations, actionable insights and ability to process & deliver hence seamless retailing. The Cloud would help them quickly provision resources for quick expansion across geographies, which could otherwise be lost. An on-premise enterprise retail cannot build this foundation alone - on the contrary a Cloud based Retail application connects discontinuities and changes business models, ecosystems. In addition a homegrown solution in all likelihood is unable to match cloud based enterprise application on speed, cost or scalability. Provisions of an Enterprise Class Cloud Retail Application Clean and accurate retail data Single view of customer Real-time personalization Any channel shopping and fulfillment Seamless customer experience Access to basket across all channels and real-time cross-channel inventory visibility Delivering Seamless Shopping Experience on Cloud Retailers must adopt agile approach that integrates the physical, web, social and mobile retail touch points with customers. Once they successfully do so, they will be able to bridge the silos between conventional functions such as merchandising, supply chain and channel operations. The Cloud based Enterprise Retail Suite of Applications is the complete solution that helps Retail organizations solve their business problems giving them end-to-end execution and complete visibility. There are no information silos, and no need to coordinate software upgrades between vendors, integrate data, or manage disparate security policies. Retailers deploying cloud solutions look forward to deliver an engaging in-store experience while streamlining the transaction process while accommodating multichannel expectations and build customer loyalty. Empower sales associates with a 360-degree view of the customer and enterprise-wide inventory visibility. P a g e 4

5 Growing Beyond Borders Domestic markets no longer provide the exponential growth that retailers expect. With millions of citizens joining the middle class, world is witnessing emergence of new economies where average incomes are rising. Countries such as such as Brazil, Nigeria and Indonesia, offer rich opportunities for growth far away from home. A Cloud based retail application ensures co-existence of traditional stores as well as stores on the cloud. This facilitates the retailer to locally manage varied store formats. Retailer can now have different store management policies depending on the demographics of where in the world the store is locate. Cloud technology offers global spread with a local control 1. A cloud based retail infrastructure can be commissioned with great ease without upfront capital investment making it easy to rapidly expand in global markets. 2. A retailer can save considerable capital cost in deploying traditional POS systems. This is achieved by running POS application on portable tablets - be it ios or Android. Collaborating Business Information on the Move Retail Chain owners and their employees are no longer sitting in a single location now a days. Given then, retail business owners must have the right tools in place to manage and track key business information, from financials to customer information, while on the go. Cloud-based business management application Suite, can make a retailer s life a lot easier when trying to secure a deal while waiting in line at the airport, or sitting in a hotel room Transforming their Stores to be More Flexible, Dynamic and Connected On the level of Managing Retail processes cloud-based solutions - known as Retail-process-as-a-service, or RPaaS - offers Internetenabled, externally provisioned services for managing an end to end retail process. These solutions differ from application clouds because they provide end-to-end process support, covering people processes such as contact centers as well as software. P a g e 5

6 With RPaaS, operational processes (e.g., sales associate management, task management and restocking) will be handled by a single retail cloud application, with data from each process being stored at a single location and could be used by other integrated retail application of the suite. System updates will be handled by the cloud service provider without consuming effort from the retailer, which eliminates the need for outmoded legacy systems. Think of it as retail systems in a box or retail as a service. Retailers no longer have to own and maintain the additional servers required to support peak loads at holidays or product launches. Instead, through cloud technologies, they can simply sign up for more capacity on an as-needed basis, paying for what they use. Market Responsiveness Increases with Scalability The ability to quickly provision computing resources would enable organizations to leverage the Cloud to quickly meet business needs. Retail enterprise could easily scale up and down, responding to market needs in a nimble manner. This could lead to the development of new business models and enable organizations to serve their customers more effectively. For e.g. setting up flea shops and additional retail counters had never been easier. In-store Computing will Drop We believe retailers will take increasing advantage of Software-as-a- Service (SaaS) solutions to lower their total cost of ownership and reduce IT costs. Virtualization gives retailers flexibility for example, in a virtualized environment, Windows applications can be run on Android or Apple ios devices. In addition, retailers will gain access to a multitude of cloud-based applications that they do not need to purchase or manage. P a g e 6

7 Geographic Expansion will be Easier Cloud-based services enable retailers to scale their IT fast without the burden of traditional IT infrastructure and to respond rapidly to volatility in consumer demand. When a cloud data center can be spun up literally in a day, without upfront capital costs and with no facilities development cycle, it makes it easy to rapidly create a prominent overseas presence and to learn quickly from the initiative. Resources can then be devoted to other tasks, such as finding suitable properties (if a physical store is planned), configuring web services for the targeted country, and sorting out legal, payment and fulfillment components. Running proven company systems in the cloud builds consistency by allowing a franchisee to rely on the franchisor s applications in the cloud. It also means companies do not need to be as reliant on finding local talent with a specific skillset for example, a retailer could move into an emerging market that lacks the IT skill base to run the main systems. Benefits of cloud based applications not withstanding; mid-sized and even Large Enterprise Retailers today want to have an Enterprise Class Retail Application on the Cloud. Large Enterprise Retailers now have the unique opportunity to let their traditional brick and mortar stores co-exist with stores on the cloud. Provide engaging in-store experience while streamlining the transaction processes with ivend Cloud Retail Suite enables retailers to accommodate Multi Channel expectations and build customer loyalty. ivend Cloud is an Enterprise Class Retail Application Suite for retail businesses requiring less up-front capital investment compared to traditional Retail IT deployment models P a g e 7

8 LAN APIs LAN Solution Overview Retail is one industry, which offers equal amount of opportunities for retailers of all sizes. Small and mid-sized retailers aspire to become large players whereas the big box retailers aspire to capture the lower end of the segment by increasing their retail footprint. All these retailers have the same challenge of faster and cost-effective expansion. ivend Cloud is one such application that suites the diverse needs of all smaller, boutique, specialty retailers, mid-sized retailers as well as the big-box retailers. ivend Cloud is amongst the first few Enterprise Class Retail applications to ALSO be available on the cloud ivend Cloud allows the not-so-large retailers to scale up to an Enterprise Class Retail Operations and at the same time allows the Enterprise Class Retailers to expand their retail footprint while ensuring streamlined operations, cost optimizations, ease of use & deployment and an unparalleled agility for effective and faster response to the changing market dynamics. ivend Cloud does so by taking away the logistical and operational challenge in maintaining expensive, resource intensive IT infrastructure. Retailers looking for faster and effective expansion only need to deploy Mobile POS at their stores. Day to day back office functions can now be handled by accessing the store manager application hosted on the cloud. With ivend Cloud, back office functions like management of inventory, promotions, gift cards, coupons, stock take, cash reconciliations, user rights, end of day, etc. are executed on the store managers console on the cloud giving the store manager an anytime anywhere accessibility into this store operations. The users at the Head Office, on the other hand get a real time view into the operations at the store. ivend Mobile POS Store Operations ivend ecommerce ivend Passes ivend APIs Via Internet ivend Cloud Enterprise and Store Business Functions ivend APIs Via Internet ivend Mobile POS ivend Store Server ivend POS ivend POS Store 1 ivend Analytics ERP Application using ivend APIs for integration ivend Mobile POS ivend POS Store 2 n Number of Stores ivend Store Server ivend POS P a g e 8

9 ABOUT CITIXSYS Thousands of stores in over 45 countries are running ivend Retail from CitiXsys Technologies and are more profitable and efficient. CitiXsys Technologies has a strong focus on Retail, and offers innovative software solutions to its customers globally. Enhancing modern retail industry experience, ivend Retail is a fully integrated, comprehensive Retail management solution to manage Head office and In-Store processes. ivend Loyalty, ivend Passes, ivend ecommerce, ivend Mobile and ivend Analytics are a few integrated modules making ivend Retail suite the right choice for modern retailers of any size. ivend Retail is seamlessly integrated into SAP suite of Business Management Applications and can be integrated to any standard Business Management Application through its API's. CitiXsys Solutions for Retail aim to optimize the entire retail process covering head office, store back office and in-store operations, to add value to customer's shopping experience and maximizing returns to the retailer's investment. ivend Retail Management Suite helps retailers improve efficiency and gain an unified view of their customer. With a history of innovation, industry expertise and desire for excellence, CitiXsys inspires customers to build lasting competitive advantage. Headquartered out of New York, CitiXsys has its own offices in USA, UK, Mexico, Panama, Nairobi, Dubai, Singapore, Australia and India with affiliates worldwide. For more details: Log on to Contact us: P a g e 9

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