IT Brief Australia logo
Technology news for Australia's largest enterprises
Story image

Shortening the click-to-customer cycle through smart technologies

By Contributor
Mon 23 May 2022

Article by Manhattan Associates A/NZ managing director, Raghav Sibal.

The race to shorten click-to-customer cycle times is perhaps the greatest challenge for today's retailers operating in an omnichannel environment. However, speed of delivery without accuracy of execution is the fundamental 'dealbreaker' for consumers who expect their goods to arrive promptly and get what they ordered in the first place.

Initiating a digital-first, omnichannel process through smart technology solutions is necessary for the accurate and swift execution of orders to be achieved.

Below are three key areas to balance the challenge of order promising in a world where exceptional customer service is paramount.

Consumers expect speed, flexibility, and control

For an efficient flow of retail operations, full visibility of shipments is necessary, including control over how, when and where goods are delivered. The consumerisation of supply chains is well underway, with buyers increasingly expecting this same level of visibility, regardless of whether a brand is a B2B or B2C label.

Today, even before consumers decide to buy something, they want to know if stock is available to fulfil their order and when it can be delivered. 

Once the order is placed, consumers then want to stay in control by checking the order, adding or removing items and having the option to change a delivery address or method without having to speak to a call centre operator for hours upon end.

The pandemic showed us that customers like to have different options, and it's becoming increasingly vital that brands offer them just that. Be it home delivery, office delivery, at a parcel pickup point, or click and collect, brands need the agility and flexibility within their supply chains to accommodate these delivery demands.

The 360-degree view of customers

Traditional point of sale (POS) systems are often too inflexible to accommodate the new capabilities required for new online-to-offline shopping journeys, such as curbside pickup or accurate two-way customer communications.  

Unified commerce in 2022 means having not only a single view of inventory and orders, but also customers. Today, transactions equal orders plus sales, meaning retailers must increasingly be capable of seamlessly processing purchases that combine orders and sales from physical and online stores and warehouse transactions.

This trend is having a profound and transformational impact on legacy retail systems while placing future-ready POS and order management technology squarely at the intersection of the speed, accuracy, and pursuit of an exceptional customer experience. 

Minimising the number of places data is processed, supported by centralised customer and inventory visibility, is one of the first steps to future-ready store systems and a retailer's ability to extend the customer experience beyond just the transaction.

Building a customer-focused roadmap that includes efficiently retiring existing technical debt, often accumulated over decades, is key to ushering in a cloud-native, microservices-based retail future. 

Moving from placement to fulfilment theory

Speed doesn't automatically deliver success when it comes to retail. Instead it needs to be harnessed and controlled. When it comes to omnichannel retail fulfilment, a 'reverse engineering' approach is often the best way to tackle the challenge; starting at the end of the journey with the consumer and working back through the processes to the actual software architecture that underpins it all. 

By doing it this way, when rapid consumer shifts occur, supply chain networks, in-store systems and people will have the strong IT foundations in place, enabling them to speed up, slow down, and realign with minimal impact regardless of the channel. 

Today, retailers need to rethink traditionally held ideas around assets and operations or speed and delivery. It's not simply a matter of digital vs. physical anymore or even speed vs. precision – but instead, it's about how a brand can leverage its entire network, as well as all the stock and channels at its disposal, to deliver that truly remarkable customer experience journey. 

The key is not being distracted by intricacies of order placement, but concentrating on order fulfilment – which can be achieved through modern, future-ready store technology solutions.

Micro-fulfilment will help drive supply chain efficiencies 

As eCommerce and 'store-to-door' delivery continues to grow, many retailers are struggling to turn a profit from online sales. The challenges of the last two years didn't just fast-track eCommerce uptake; they also accelerated advances in technology, pushed businesses to revaluate traditional models, and forced many to rethink relationships between retailers, disruptive start-ups, and automation; setting the scene for a radical shake-up of fulfilment strategies.
  
One of these fulfilment strategies and one of the most cost-effective trends retailers and supply chains are adopting, is micro-fulfilment. Micro-fulfilment involves moving from large singular DCs to smaller, more local and convenient hubs.

By expediting the fulfilment process, micro-fulfilment allows brands to get goods to their customers quickly; whilst also providing convenient collection points for consumers. With this kind of smart fulfilment method, retailers can get their goods to consumers faster, cheaper, and more efficiently. 

Related stories
Top stories
Story image
Southern Cross Cable
Southern Cross Cable launches the SX NEXT cable to connect NZ to the world
The new Southern Cross NEXT fibre cable (SX NEXT) is set to connect Australasia to the US and further enhance connectivity between New Zealand, Australia, and the US.
Story image
Microsoft
Elders signs five-year agreement with Microsoft to boost innovation
Australian agribusiness Elders has signed a five-year agreement with Microsoft that looks to transform its customer experience, efficiency and sustainability outcomes.
Story image
Ransomware
Examining the future of ransomware threats with Vectra’s CTO
As customers' valuable data move to the cloud, so will ransomware. What is the current landscape and what do we need to know?
Story image
Apple
Your tools, your choice: why allow employees to choose their own devices?
Jamf Australia says giving your team the freedom to work with their digital device of choice could help to attract and retain top talent in a tight labour market.
Story image
Multi Cloud
Cloud is a tool, not a destination
For many years, “cloud” has been thought of as a destination which has led to a misguided strategy that sees an enterprise trying to shift all its applications to a single cloud provider – regardless of the specific needs and nuances of each individual workload.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Salesforce announces new innovations for financial services
Salesforce has launched expanded financial services that offer more targeted and trusted automation to help teams unlock insights, deliver better customer service, and drive operational efficiencies.
Story image
Compliance
SentinelOne integrates with Torq to empower security teams
"With Torq, security teams can extend the power of SentinelOne to systems across the organisation to benefit from a proactive security posture.”
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Eight top DevSecOps trends to support IT innovation in 2022
The use of DevSecOps practices is growing, as it is increasingly seen as the best way to produce high-quality and secure code. So what are the current trends?
Story image
Malware
Colt launches new SASE Gateway solution with Versa
Colt Technology Services’ customers now have access to an integrated full SASE solution that brings together SD WAN and SSE features.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Without trust, your security team is dead in the water
The rise of cyberattacks has increased the need for sound security that works across any type of business, but with any change, buy-in is essential. Airwallex explains why.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Dynatrace extends automatic release validation capabilities
Dynatrace has extended its platform release validation capabilities to improve user experience at every stage of the software development lifecycle.
Story image
Wiise
Four things wholesale distributors need to consider for FY2023
In a post-pandemic world, there are many things for a distribution business to juggle. ERP solutions company Wiise narrows down what companies should focus on.
Project management
Discover the 4 crucial factors for choosing the right job-costing solution. Is your team struggling to cost jobs and keep projects running on budget?
Link image
Story image
Cybersecurity
Tech and data’s role in the changing face of compliance
Accenture's study found that 93% of respondents agree or strongly agree new technologies such as AI and cloud make compliance easier.
Story image
Remote Working
RDP attacks on the rise, Kaspersky experts offer advice
"Given that remote work is here to stay, we urge companies to seriously look into securing their remote and hybrid workforce to protect their data."
Story image
Media
Registrations for the W.Media Sydney Cloud and Datacenter Convention 2022 now open
Are you a C-Level executive looking to enhance your knowledge in the cloud and data center space in order to get the best results for your company?
Story image
Documentation
Adobe study finds lack of digital trust and utilisation in Australian Government agencies
New research commissioned by Adobe has revealed a significant lack of digital trust within Australian Government departments, along with the continued underutilisation of key digital processes.
Supply chain
Discover the 4 critical priorities for wholesale distribution businesses in FY23. Are you worried about how supply chain issues may affect your business in 2023?
Link image
Story image
Security Information and Event Management (SIEM)
LogRhythm updates SIEM Platform with latest innovations
LogRhythm has announced the launch of version 7.9 of the LogRhythm SIEM Platform and updates to LogRhythm NDR and LogRhythm UEBA.
Story image
Document Management
Regaining digital trust and enhancing digitisation in Australian Government agencies
Having a digitised ecosystem of documents, tools and data can help bolster security, improve workflow and ultimately create better services.
Story image
Low-code
Appian unveils low-code certification program in Australia
Appian has announced a program to provide the next generation of low-code developers with access to education on the subject and certification to foster career opportunities.
PwC
PwC's Consulting Business and PwC's Indigenous Consulting are proud to play an important role in helping Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience build IMAGI-NATION, a free online university for marginalised communities around the world.
Link image
Story image
Metaverse
How the metaverse will change the future of the supply chain
The metaverse is set to significantly change the way we live and work, so what problems can it solve in supply chain management?
Story image
Management
MYOB snaps up Sydney-based management software specialists
MYOB has announced the acquisition of Sydney-based business management software and support specialists, GT Business Solutions.
Story image
Aspire
NEC expands Open RAN ecosystem with Aspire Tech acquisition
With its agreement to acquire Aspire Technology, NEC Corporation has further increased its capacity to deliver End-to-End Open RAN ecosystems.
Story image
Samsung
Monitors are an excellent incentive for getting employees back
The pandemic has taught us that hybrid working is a lot easier than we would’ve thought, so how can the office be made to feel as comfortable as home? The answer could be staring you in the face right now.
Story image
API
Industry-first comprehensive risk-based API security enhances protection
Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) have become a crucial part of operating web and mobile application businesses and are causing significant economic growth in the digital sector.
Productivity
Discover the 5 ways your ERP may be letting you down. Is your current system outdated, difficult to manage, and costing you a fortune?
Link image
Story image
Enterprise Resource Planning / ERP
Five ways your ERP is letting you down and why it's time for a change
Wiise explains while moving to a new system may seem daunting, the truth is that legacy systems could be holding your business back.
Story image
Capital
Rubber Monkey gears up for Aussie market with latest capital raise
Rubber Monkey is seeking to raise up to NZ$2.5 million of new capital through online investment platform, Snowball Effect.
Story image
Data Protection
Five signs your business is ready to move to the cloud
Many organisations are thinking about moving to the cloud. But what are the signs you are ready, and what are the reasons to move?
Story image
Infrastructure
Video: 10 Minute IT Jams - An update from Paessler
Sebastian Krüger joins us today to discuss how unified infrastructure monitoring enables MSPs to seamlessly deliver services to their clients.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Accenture shares the benefits of supply chain visibility
It's clear that gaining better visibility into the supply chain will help organisations avoid excess costs, inefficiencies, and complexity to ultimately improve their bottom line.
Story image
Airwallex
How Airwallex helps businesses achieve globalisation success
As markets continue to shift, businesses need to be able to provide the same quality of service for customers regardless of where they are located around the world.
PwC
WSLHD and PwC’s Consulting Business came together to solve through the challenges of COVID-19. A model of care was developed to the NSW Health Agency for Clinical Innovation guidelines with new technology platforms and an entirely new workforce.
Link image
Story image
Cybersecurity
How organisations can mitigate IoT and IIoT security risks
IoT and IIoT come with inherent risks because they are often deployed faster than they can be secured, putting organisations in danger of cyber threats. Here are tips on how to mitigate those risks.
Story image
ASI Solutions
Western Australia CUA panel picks ASI as preferred supplier
Western Australia's Common User Arrangement (CUA) panel has chosen ASI Solutions as a preferred supplier for device hardware.
Digital Transformation
Discover the 5 signs your business is ready for a cloud-based ERP. Is your business being left behind as more of your competitors switch to the cloud?
Link image
Story image
Recruitment
Thales on recruitment hunt for next disruptive innovations
"Recruiting new talent is part of Thales's belief in the power of innovation and technological progress to build a safer, greener and more inclusive world."
Story image
Payroll
How New South Wales state departments achieved cloud migration success
State departments in New South Wales are heading to the cloud to achieve better workflow solutions, and one company is paving the way for their success.
Story image
CSG
To win at 5G, telcos must tame their quoting chaos
The catalogs of CSP (communication service providers) market offerings are set to explode as new digital services emerge, powered by B2B2X business models.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Vectra AI named as AWS security competency partner
Threat detection and response company Vectra AI has announced that it has become an Amazon Web Services Security Competency Partner.
Story image
Accounting
Four factors to consider when choosing the right job accounting solution
Progressive job-based businesses can achieve success by strengthening their ability to quantify every cost attributable to the delivery of an outcome for a customer.
Story image
AGVs
Bridgestone Australia uses Dematic's AGVs to optimise warehouse operations
Bridgestone Australia has deployed Dematic's Automated Guided Vehicle solution across its new Melbourne warehouse in Truganina.