Dillard’s Smarter Approach to Business Intelligence - Video

How IBM Smarter Computing and Analytics can transform retail

Published on 26-Jul-2012

Validated on 15 Jan 2014

"The benefits of smart computing, the smart analytics environment are not unique to Dillard’s, they are not unique to retail industries as a whole, this is something that all organizations that have large volumes and small volumes of data can benefit from." - Melody Playford, Director of Business Analytics and Performance Optimization for Dillard’s Department Stores

Customer:
Dillard's Department Stores

Industry:
Retail

Deployment country:
United States

Solution:
BA - Business Intelligence, Big Data, Big Data & Analytics, Big Data & Analytics: Customers, Big Data & Analytics: Operations/Fraud/Threats, Data Warehouse, Smarter Computing

Overview

With its 300 nationwide department stores, Dillard’s created a huge volume of logistical and customer data.

Business need:
Needing a business intelligence solution to organize and process this massive data and enable better business decisions.

Solution:
Dillard’s turned to IBM’s Smart 7600 System. This analytics environment provided comprehensive data analysis and metrics to improve decision-making about logistics, pricing, and customer relationships without swelling Dillard’s IT budget.

Benefits:
- Improving productivity - Make more informed decisions in a timely mannor - Growing customer relationships

Video

With its 300 nationwide department stores, Dillard’s created a huge volume of logistical and customer data. Needing a business intelligence solution to organize and process this massive data and enable better business decisions, Dillard’s turned to IBM’s Smart 7600 System. This analytics environment provided comprehensive data analysis and metrics to improve decision-making about logistics, pricing, and customer relationships without swelling Dillard’s IT budget. Watch the video to hear how IBM Smarter Computing improved data management and decision-making for Melody Playford, Director of Business Analytics and Performance Optimization for Dillard’s Department Stores.




Video Transcript


IBM Smarter Computing – Dillard’s Video

As Produced Transcript

Melody Playford
Director of Business Analytics and Performance Optimization
Dillard’s Department Stores

Dillard’s Department Stores is approximately 300 stores mostly located in Central United States. We are located in 29 different states.

Customer service is the most important aspect of a department store.

Our focus today has been primarily on customer relationship management and merchandise management helping the merchants do a better job of delivering the right product to the right store.

Our merchants on average were spending from 8 to 20 hours a week doing data gathering, data prep to the point that by the time they gathered all of the data, often was no longer relevant.

We have large volumes of data but it wasn’t really accessible to the line of business. It required a lot of work and manipulation from the IT department. Our goal with our BI initiative was to enable the business to get access to the data on their own to empower them to get to the data that allowed them to make better decisions.

It was very important to Dillard’s that we get the infrastructure up and running without leveraging our IT resource and that we have an opportunity to evaluate what could be done in a cloud environment.

We spend a good better time talking with experts with IBM around what was the best infrastructure to implement what was the best architecture to leverage.

Leveraging Smarter Computing helps you to identify the right architecture and the right resources for your data needs.

We recently in the last 12 months have migrated over to the smart 7600 environment. It has been a terrific opportunity for us to free up our architects and administrative type employees, the people that are maintaining the environment can now focus more on the data less on maintenance and performance optimization

Leveraging info sphere data stage allowed us to quickly bring in the data with very small batch windows leveraging business glossary allows us to put definitions of the data, the metrics. The attributes, the calculations where the business could easily see what the data meant without having to contact somebody and ask for assistance.

With the smart analytics environment, we have been freed from many of the day-to-day maintenance issues, the difficulties with performance optimization that we previously experience.

We have leveraged our business intelligence and data warehouse initiative to do a better job of analyzing our sell-through rates and make wiser decisions about pricing that has been a great success.

Business intelligence has really changed organizations. The ability to make the right decisions for the company to have a positive impact on the economy to continue to see your team in IT as well as the line of business evolve and grow is very rewarding to me.

We were able to help the merchants make better buying decisions to increase our sell through at full price, which had an impact on the bottom line. We were able to work better with our vendors in making better decisions around what product to have in the stores and when to cancel orders and maybe rethink our strategy on certain merchandise.

Our business intelligence initiative has allowed us to transform our business by improving productivity across multiple lines of the organization by allowing us to make more informed decisions in a timely manner by growing our customer relationship because we have the right product and the right store at the right time.

The benefits of smart computing, the smart analytics environment are not unique to Dillard’s, they are not unique to retail industries as a whole, this is something that all organizations that have large volumes and small volumes of data can benefit from.

Products and services used

IBM products and services that were used in this case study.

Software:
InfoSphere DataStage, InfoSphere Business Glossary, IBM Smart Analytics System 7600

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