Multi-channel retailing, sophisticated supply chain management, linking in-store and web systems and better customer relationship management are making the need for integrated retail information more important than ever, speakers said at today’s Intel Retail Decision Tools webinar, co-sponsored by Internet Retailer.
Intel Corp. laid out the details of its Decision Dashboard product, which brings together products and services from Intel, Scient Inc., Epicentric Inc., Manugistics Group Inc., Mercari Technologies Inc., ProAct Technologies Corp. and Microsoft Corp., to centralize data from disparate systems in an enterprise.
Decision Dashboard provides retailers with real-time data on sales down to the individual store and SKU, inventory levels at stores and warehouses, consumer response to a wide variety of marketing programs, and customer service activity at stores, call centers and retail web sites. Using secure Internet links to the same platform, manufacturers which supply the retailer are provided the same sales, marketing and inventory information for the purpose of setting optimum manufacturing schedules, programming web-based reordering systems and responding to restocking emergencies. The web-based system also supports in-store retailing functions such as merchandising and account management, staffing management and data collection through wireless devices.
“Decision Dashboard sits on your operating system and pulls information out to distribute it to field and headquarters personnel and then we layer new analytical tools on top of it,” said David Friedman, managing director, Retail/Consumer Goods Practice Group of Scient, which will act as a systems integrator for the product. Friedman walked attendees through how the Decision Dashboard can be used in marketing, product operations and sales and service.
Implemented by a $10 billion a year retailer, Decision Dashboard could generate additional sales of $1.16 billion and additional profit of $325 million, Michael Marburg, vice president of corporate development of Mercari told attendees.
John Davies, vice president, Solutions Market Development Group, Intel, summed up the conference by noting that more coordinated information throughout a retail operation results in more sales, better margins and more profits due to cleaner data, more efficient inventory management and better use of technology and makes an e-commerce operation a competitive advantage by allowing customers to shop any time anywhere and allows collaboration with vendors.
In response to an attendee’s question, Friedman estimated the entry level cost of implementing the Decision Dashboard in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.