"Also discounting needs a robust ICT system; supporting the efficiency."
Information & Communication Technology (ICT) is indispensable in doing modern business, especially at a high rotation and fast-moving retail, like discounting. That’s the reason every discounter should consider and aim for a well-equipped and robust ICT framework in order to process all kind of operations on a highly efficient way, and to be enabled to extract information out of the ICT system to report, analyze, manage and to develop the business further.
Based on this aim a strategic ICT plan needs to be set up. The execution of such a plan should prepare the discounter:
achieve efficiency for the business and its management functions;
enhance and support the business in general.
Also, a strategic ICT plan should play an important role in reaching the organizational goals in a timely and systematic approach; it puts in place an infrastructure which enables the discounter and its stakeholders to share information securely and to collaborate in order to create an effi-cient, operating organization.
A strong ICT plan also increases engagement with staff to ensure that the provided systems support their daily work and that the ICT services meet their needs within and beyond the (financial) perimeters of the discount chain. The plan should also increase the benefits through improving the information quality and accessibility, which will help the discount chain with better decision making.
Despite our vision how the ICT systems should work and to which quality requirements it should comply with, we are also aware that not every discounter can afford a state-of-the-art system with premium devices. As a result, the ICT investment should fit in the life cycle stage of the discounter and into the discount-concept-thinking; functional and good quality for the best price in the market. This means discounters' manage-ment should be aware and understand the balance between quality and price, and know the market for equipment and software and the required outcome very well. The sourcing area may be globally.
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