Too many retailers believe productivity comes from functional excellence. If you look at a typical technology stack you will often see it has grown via "functional excellence" or a "best of breed" approach, where the overall excellence of the end-to-end process is sacrificed for functional specialism
We believe productivity and excellent business outcomes only come from better end-to-end processes, and this 'best of breed' approach is often the enemy of end-to-end efficiency. More importantly it promotes siloed thinking.
This approach is also expensive and retailers end up over-investing in technology. The highest operational and technology costs come from sustaining and maintaining systems integrations often through 3rd parties and consultancies.
If retailers are successful in exploiting the 8-opportunities strategy, they will still not create sustainable, profitable growth if they are not increasing productivity.
Productivity means doing more sales, with disproportionately lower headcount and stock investments. Headcount must support the processes and systems not the other way round.
If end-to-end processes are the key to profitable growth, then each process must be digitised with process outcomes in mind in preference to functional excellence.
Better, digital end-to-end processes if designed well will inevitably mean retailers can get suppliers to do more of the work for them. A crucial profitability driver.