Technologies and capabilities are changing so quickly now that the retail omni marketplace partners must focus on developing and maintaining a robust and flexible framework that can incorporation changing technologies and tools efficiently and quickly.  The marketplace must support change in a continuous and efficient manner that can respond to change demands when they are identified without a great deal of effort, especially from an integration perspective. It has become abundantly clear in the recent years that the rate of change is quickening and that the incremental change introduced at this quickening velocity will soon create a revolution in demands.  The omni market must introduce and maintain a framework and collaboration capabilities that eliminates the friction and delays in meeting the changing demands.

 

I am convinced that market ‘revolution’ occurs when the level of incremental change pushes the market over the cliff of a major market disruption.  This disruption occurs as a surprise only to the participants and partners in the marketplace that have not focused on meeting the velocity of change due to either lack of funding for the change, lack of ability to internalize and support the change, or finally an unwillingness to change.  The real disruption then occurs for the participants that are not maintaining and reacting to the change in the marketplace and in this situation when the disruption occurs it really doesn’t matter the reason why participants cannot meet the change, it only matters that they cannot meet the change.

 

This marketplace sense and respond framework can be relatively straightforward to put into place in a manner that provides both the early warning sensing and the flexible framework to support the change.  This is all very straightforward when you come down to it because the technology capabilities are just as available to participants across the board. The difficulty in this comes from the work required by the retailers, carriers and suppliers to support the integration to their back office financial and operational systems and functionality.  This does not mean however that these requirements for this relationship sense and respond framework should be ignored just because it's hard to develop, it simply means that the participants need to put a program in place both internally and across their partner network to put a framework in place to support these requirements.

 

All of this does not change the level of importance for recognizing and implementing a relationship framework that can provide the tools to sense and then the framework to support a quick response to the demands.  The alternative is to slowing lose market share until the level of change reaches the point of disruption and then the pace of disruption and loss increases. This is when these marketplace partners that have been either reluctant or unable to meet the changing demands will fall by the wayside to either fail or fall into a niche that prolongs the eventual demise. 

 

And now for the audience participation portion of the show…

ECommerce will have wide ranging impacts on both the retail and manufacturing sectors.  How can you focus these abilities to improve the consumer's experience? Improving the consumer’s experience will require a re-evaluation of the sales channels, the manufacturing channels and practices and the supply chain channels and practices from the raw materials to the consumers’ homes.  In order to ensure and maintain success in this new reality you must harness the tools and capabilities in many new areas. How can you support these continuously changing requirements?