First retail companies are bringing their core systems, such as those for merchandise management and store solutions into the cloud. This is the dominant theme so far at the EHI Technology Days, to which around 500 participants from the German-speaking retail industry and their technology providers are currently gathering only virtually. Dr Alexander Bradel, CIO of Tegut, reports that his company is now pursuing a cloud-first approach in all renewals of its systems.
Lego base plate for Hagebau
The building materials and DIY co-operative group Hagebau is currently radically moving into the cloud with merchandise management, workforce management and instore solutions. “We noticed early on that we needed something like a Lego base plate on which we could quickly convert ideas into IT applications,” reports Karsten Rypholz, divisional manager for ERP at Hagebau IT today at the EHI event.
Up to now, the conversion of the complex interface landscape when installing a new application has been a huge effort. If the competition has been able to implement innovations in IT faster, the best idea one could have had would have been useless.
For some time it has been clear for Hagebau that a flexible cloud infrastructure should be the basis for a new merchandise management system, workforce management and, last but not least, a new store solution. Hagebau has now chosen Microsoft Azure as the cloud platform on which Infor’s cloud solutions for merchandise management and workforce management will run. The Otto Group Solution Provider (OSP) will be implementation partner.
GK Software delivers store solutions in the cloud
However, for the instore solutions IT, Hagebau decided against the POS software of Infor and in favour of GK Software. Since recently, GK Software offers with Cloud4retail platform its solution platform as a pure cloud application and thus also takes over the operation. Generally, GK software is hosting the platforms of its clients also hosting in Microsoft’s Azure Cloud.
While one existing customer of GK Software has already decided to move to the cloud, the specialist for store solutions could win its first new customer for a pure cloud application with Hagebau. The affiliated group plans to have its more than 2000 cash registers in all eight countries in which it is active operated by GK Software. Until then, however, Hagebau still has to put a lot of work into setting up the new cloud-based merchandise management infrastructure. Brigitta Quednau, Managing Director of Hagebau IT, plans to convert the first pilot stores to pure cloud solutions in spring 2022.
Quednau explains that the central aim of the complete renewal of her IT is to extend digital processes right through to the customer. The employees of the owners of Hagebau stores need full access to Hagebau’s online world of goods, as Amazon is also pushing into the area of building materials trading and DIY. If a shareholder of Hagebau does not have a product in stock that the customer needs, the group must also be able to deliver to the customer on the same day. Otherwise Amazon will take over in future.