This retail company had traditionally added a few large box stores annually. As market conditions changed, they quickly needed to open large and smaller stores at a higher volume and the existing process impeded growth.
Due to legacy systems and decentralized data, both finance and IT had redundant, manual processes for opening stores and reporting on the varying products and services sold. The new locations also spanned new time zones and led to critical issues for end-users and older IT systems.
Several potential retirees held organizational knowledge. No centralized documentation for the entire workflow existed. Legacy, bug-laden applications impeding centralized data and automation. Interdependencies induced bottlenecks and disruption to finance, IT, and additional areas of business.
These challenges led to costly, unplanned work and overtime with each new store. IT and engineering teams were seeing growing frustration all while retention was also becoming an increasingly industry-wide challenge.
Trility led an effort to discover and define the first steps to solve this challenge and map out where operational and technology improvements could help with growth. This approach included conducting interviews with key business and IT stakeholders to discern the following:
Overall timeline of the new store setup process.
Dependencies and hand-offs between the various steps in the new store setup process.
Risks and challenges in the existing new store setup process.
Prioritized objectives to create an improved future state.
The team initially focused on discovering and reporting on what exists, what could exist, and what steps are necessary to transform from current state to desired future state.
The client received detailed observations and recommendations; a high-level roadmap to begin the next phase of building those business and IT tasks, processes, and streamlined workflow; and key insight into the 28 inter-related dependencies across the organization that create risks to opening new stores.
The C-suite fully understood the extent of the problem and how both business and IT processes could reduce speed to market for new stores. Implementing the roadmap would reduce overall costs by decreasing unplanned work and overtime hours due to unexpected activities and make progress in an organizational goal to sunset legacy applications. Key recommendations included:
Improve communication across all areas by enforcing workflow with a tracking tool, documenting and maintaining best practices and organizational knowledge in a centralized location with version control, and ensuring engineering and IT representation in the process.
Harden and automate existing processes by fixing performance and functionality issues in current tools and applications.
Identify and create a Golden Standard configuration for new store setup and build ownership of the tools and apps.
Unify data as more than 10 systems or databases are altered every time.
Create a pre-install checklist to mitigate the 28 identified dependencies that create schedule and cost risks.
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