The omni channel framework very simply must provide the means to easily integrate new technology and partners into the retailer shopping and purchasing systems while also providing a platform to collect data for analysis and action.  This framework provides a means to plug new functionality into the consumer facing systems while using a standard integration framework for these new systems and functionality to quickly integrate into the retailer’s legacy business applications.  This control tower framework allows the retailer to easily swap and add technology capabilities to customer facing shopping and purchasing capabilities without impacting and changing the legacy business applications. 

 

This concept and framework of the control tower for omni channel retailers provides a robust and flexible means for the large multi channel retailer to change the consumer facing systems and capabilities based on the consumer demands without the risk of change to their legacy business systems.  This frees the retailer to focus on meeting the consumer demands without the concerns of impacting their legacy business applications.  This is critical to the retailer to meeting the increasing speed of change demanded by consumers and encouraged by mobile technology and mobile apps.  Without this control tower framework the retailer would continuously be challenged with each new consumer demand and with the framework the retailer can quickly add to their capabilities without risk.

 

Another important aspect to the control tower framework is the data collection and analysis capabilities that can be supported.  With the change demanded by consumers changing frequently there must be some method to standardize the data collected for analysis.  The control tower framework allows for functionality to be added to the consumer facing systems and capabilities while not impacting the collection of data for  analysis and research of new trends in shopping, purchasing, product manufacturing, product life cycle and utilization of the consumer tools and functionality. 

 

It is important for the retailer to provide support for changing consumer demands and it is equally, if not more important for retailers to collect information resulting from the consumer usage in order to both understand and take advantage of the ways that consumer utilize the features and functionality.  The retailer will not be able to maintain their focus on features and functionality without the means to measure the usage and acceptance of these features.  The control tower provides the means not only efficiently integrate new functionality but it must also provide the means to efficiently analyze the usage of these new capabilities in order to maintain success and also understand when to drop features that are no longer effective.

 

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?