Retailers lagging behind consumer technologies

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By: Wise Marketer Staff |

Posted on December 31, 2010

Retailers lagging behind consumer technologies

New consumer-facing technologies such as smart phones, social media, and the web channel are negatively impacting retailers' IT infrastructure and decision-making, according to a report from retail technology market intelligence firm RSR Research.

The report, entitled 'Pandora's Box: The Impact of New Technologies on Retail IT', found that retail IT departments are being forced to move ever-faster, and that the technologies employed are simply not keeping up with consumer-driven changes.

In fact, the report highlighted a worrying disconnect between the demands of retail customers and the average IT department's ability to deliver value, driven in part by surges in consumer technology adoption. According to the report, "When consumers demand the latest in social or mobile innovations as part of their shopping experience, retailers just can't keep up".

"Retailers are particularly hurt by a lack of sound IT governance policies," said RSR Research managing partner, Brian Kilcourse, co-author of the report. "More than 20% of retailers don't have an executive steering committee at all and, among those who do, actions are mostly limited to approving significant capital expenditures rather than prioritising and working with IT in any meaningful way."

The report contains a detailed analysis of the impact of consumer-driven technologies on the entire retail enterprise, along with specific recommendations for improving what remains a problematic situation.

The report is part of RSR Research's ongoing effort to provide market intelligence on retail technology trends, and was supported by Intel, Salesforce, and Verizon in partnership with Cathy Hotka and Associates. The report has been made available for downloaded from RSR's web site - click here (free registration required).

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