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Why retailers must break down team silos to drive digital innovation and growth

Why retailers must break down team silos to drive digital innovation and growth

BrazilDigital TransformationRetailTop Stories

Flávio Bolieiro, Sales Director for the Retail Market at Dynatrace Brazil, explains that supporting multichannel and omnichannel retail experiences is now an essential exercise for the survival of businesses.

The pandemic hit global retail hard, but not in a uniform way. For example, the demand for supermarket chains shot up while retailers of items considered ‘non-essential’ were forced to shut their high street stores and struggled for many months.

However, despite the differences, there’s one trend that unites the sector: in times of mobility restrictions and increased connectivity, the urgency of promoting digital innovation is latent in every sense.

Just realize that even ‘essential’ stores that were allowed to stay open during government-mandated lockdowns experienced a huge rise in online traffic during much of the pandemic. A survey by Americas Market Intelligence (AMI) indicated, for example, that 46% of Brazilians have increased their purchase volume in digital channels since 2020.

This means, in other words, that supporting the multichannel and omnichannel retail experiences is now a must-have exercise for the survival of businesses in all segments and formats. Retailers must meet these evolving expectations to safeguard operations and drive revenue growth in a highly competitive sector.

The good news is that this is already being done. According to a recent survey we conducted of technology leaders around the world, 89% of Chief Information Officers (CIOs) in the retail sector admit that the Digital Transformation of their operations has accelerated in the last year. Besides that, 61% of these professionals believe the digitization movement of processes will continue to accelerate in the coming years.

The result of this race, however, is that IT teams are increasingly under pressure to ‘keep the lights on’ while supporting the changes needed to enable the innovation demanded by their companies. Nearly half (45%) of retail CIOs believe, for instance, their IT teams are more overloaded than ever.

This is because the IT teams are being tasked with supporting rapidly changing business requirements and supporting multiple cloud-based IT environments that are a patchwork of interconnected containers, microservices, serverless architectures, orchestration platforms and much more.

This is more than complex and dynamic structures, by the way: We are talking about structural systems and applications in which any problem can represent the interruption of the operations of entire companies indefinitely, as we have seen several times recently.

In this scenario, getting the right insights and keeping control of application performance becomes absolutely vital to protect the business and create value for customers. But is it possible to make the work of the development and operations teams more assertive and intelligent with increasingly complex and dynamic technology environments?

The answer is yes and lies with automatic and intelligent observability delivered from a single unified platform. With everyone working in a single tool, it is much simpler and easier to identify practical actions for understanding and solving any operational problems.

Through these platforms, it is possible to create an integrated vision, with everyone fully seeing the key indicators and metrics to improve the customer experience and maintain excellence in the organization’s operational delivery.

This unified dashboard presents the chance for leaders to define KPIs and SLOs aligned with their strategic plans, with the keys to measuring the impact that IT innovation is having on delivering to consumers and on business results in a more meaningful way.

Without this effective insight, IT teams waste their time finger-pointing in endless analysis while revenue slips away due to preventable mistakes. We calculated that retailers waste 485 hours per year on average due to IT and business teams trying to combine data from siloed systems to identify solutions to problems. This lost productivity could be costing companies up to US$1.5 million each on average.

This is a time that could be better spent with the right tools and approach. Retail CIOs understand this: 76% are tired of being forced to tie together data from multiple tools to assess the impact of IT investments on the business, and 95% know these investment decisions must be more data-driven. Yet just 11% of retailers currently have a unified platform for IT observability.

This must be the first step towards success for the BizDevOps and NoOps projects that retailers are increasingly adopting. A single platform delivering precise answers about the performance and security of apps and infrastructure will go a long way to busting silos and removing blind spots.

With this single source of data, developers, IT operations and business teams will finally be working in the light and towards the same goals. That’s the way to drive digital innovation and growth as retailers look to a successful post-pandemic future.

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