It’s been a very busy past few weeks here at Positive; Firstly, on the 22nd of September 2017 Positive were presenting our Retail Technology at Microsoft’s South Dublin HQ.

Focusing on what our solutions brought to the customer experience we spoke extensively about the changing landscape in Retail and how, Mobile was a real disruptor. Positive utilize the retail technology of LS Retail who have some powerful mobility solutions including Mobile POS and Mobile Inventory to help your store manage all day to day Inventory activities. The Mobile POS, putting the full power of your POS on a mobile device allowing you the retailer to walk, select, update and sell with your customer while on the shop floor.

We discussed how over 65% of all digital time spent online is now through a mobile device (Deloitte, 2017), our phones are truly becoming our digital companions. Mobility is not just a tool for inventory or POS, but that you should also be using this for loyalty and having this built into your offerings to your customers.

A powerful insight spoken about was the channels that consumers interact with retailers, and that the more channels your customers interact with you, the more revenue your business receives from them(Harvard Business Review, 2017). Getting your app onto the mobile devices your customers use, equates to 5 times the spend in all channels, using your own branded loyalty app is just the tool to do this.

73% of all retail customers shop in Omni-channels, 7% online only, and 20% in store only, so it’s obvious your focus should be in this Omni area. (HBR,2017) To truly take back customers from your competition you need to have one solution running all sales and relationship channels for your business. Fragmented systems running different parts of your business are a slow, and can be, painful experiences for you and your customers.

Built on Microsoft Technology, specifically Microsoft Dynamics NAV for larger retailers, LS NAV allows Mobility, POS, ERP, Back Office, HR, Sales, Accounting, Operations, Marketing & all retail functions in one system. This gives you, competitive advantage your competition can only dream of. If you are a smaller retailer not in need of ERP or built in accounting, but want a feature full solution LS ONE is what we’d recommend as you grow you can incorporate those features into your investment.

While we are not one for banding around current buzz phrases, Digital Transformation was a hot topic and this also found it way into the second event we were invited to attend in the Culloden Estate just outside Belfast the SMART NI Retail Conference.

Positive were asked to participate on the technology expert panel, which was a great honour, many of Northern Irelands best retailers were in attendance and has some great questions on how they could Digitally Transform and become a disruptor instead of being Disrupted. PWC have a great journal on The New Retail Eco-System, From Disrupter to Disruptor Six Strategies for retailers. (PWC, 2017). One PWC recommendation was, retailers focus on platform, and that platform is a big part of the Omni-channel experience you should be giving your customer, make sure you are available on all platforms and offering a unified experience throughout. Again, e-receipts, loyalty, offers, stock management, click and collect through your loyalty app all being spoken about, while we reiterated that these should all be in a one system solution.

Finally only this week, we attended the ERP HEAD to HEAD with our strategic partner ProStrategy Colmen – . Joe Byrne spoke on the financial capabilities and how powerful Microsoft NAV is on financials for SME businesses. Joe also went through the sales process using NAV. We had many interesting conversations in the breaks with successful Retailers in Ireland looking for a retail ERP solution and as to what requirements they believe they will encounter in the near future.

A defining competitive advantage we hold over other ERP providers is that we have specific purpose build solutions for retail. LS NAV expands the capabilities of Microsoft NAV so that this solution excels in retail and has all the features a retail business would need to manage and grow their business. We had great interest in AI, (Artificial Intelligence) using LS Recommend. This allows you to harness powerful insights analysing your data to make recommendations to customers in your store or on your website. Using its inbuilt Artificial Intelligence algorithms LS Recommend provides you with the same functionality the biggest online retailer in the world uses. It does this by converting your customer shopping data into relevant recommendations of products to your customers.

Mobility again another big draw of attention, putting the full power of ERP in the hand of a mobile retailer was a head turner. Going further, Mobile Inventory, managing everything in store through a handheld device, Stock Takes, P.O’s, Transfers, Shelf Edge Labelling, Items management, you get the idea. Retailers were very excited about these out of the box functions. When we spoke about mobile POS and the ability to manage the whole sales process on a android, windows or apple device it actually caused one retailer we spoke to, to laugh out loud, as only the previous day he was in another clients business a client of ours using mobility, and said he wished he could do that in his system.

So as you can see we’ve had a busy last few weeks, if you are interested in anything we spoke about in this post or would like more information please contact us. We love retail and would love to answer any questions you may have. We are not just about large ERP retailers either we have 000’s of single and 2-3 stores also and all this cool stuff is available to you if you fit into that category too.