Here we are at the conclusion of our I.M.P.A.C.T framework where we talk about the different technologies your brand needs to be looking into to stay relevant in this post Covid-19 era. Whenever the topic of technology is brought up it seems to be a difficult conversation with most retail owners. The reason for this difficulty stems from the fact that most new technology deployment by retail brands always end up either failing or over budget.
However, as difficult as it may seem, retailers need to use technology to adapt as quickly as possible. The key to ensuring that any technological adoption & deployment is a success is to first start with a road map for the whole technology deployment.
This road map should consist of 3 things. Step one (1) will consist of “what & why” where the retail owner and his/her team sit down to determine what are the technologies which need to deployed for the business to stay competitive. Next would be to ask why do we need these technologies? Will the deployment of these technologies help ease our client servicing issues that we currently face or will the technology deployed help us to save costs within our operations.
Step two (2) of the road map would be to determine the time taken for deployment as well as the costs involved. From the onset of the project a clear budget needs to be set and adhered to with perhaps a tolerance of 5 – 10% tacked on to the budget for incidentals. Step three (3) would be to determine what would be the Key Performance Indicators (KPI) which need to be put in place to ensure the success of the project. Some examples of KPI would be number of customers served, number of customers serviced, etc.
Since the road map seems so simple, this begs the very simple question, why then do so many technology roll outs fail or end up being over budget and ultimately scrapped. I think the reason is simple, most technologies are deployed without thinking about the impact this technology will have on the customer experience. Most technologies also fail because the usage of it was too complex to fit into the daily operations of the retail outlet. I think 2 pertinent questions need to be asked here for any successful technology to be adopted by the retail business, one (1) being does the technology ease our customers lives by saving them time or money? Two (2), does the technology deployed create a deeper relationship between the retail brand and the customer. If the answer is a resounding “Yes” to both then it highly likely the technology deployment will be a success.
In closing, technology within retail is quickly becoming an important cornerstone to the the success of any retail brand. Technology provides insights into customers likes, habits & behaviour and when deployed correctly, allow a business to continue to build an incredible relationship with its customers which ultimately creates more loyalty and is that not the goal for all of us in business.
Should you have questions about the IMPACT Framework and how I can work with your retail brand to create your custom I.M.P.A.C.T plan feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit this site to see what our clients have said about working with us.