Empowering Intelligent Retailers with Data and Insights

As with other industries today, we believe that business data is at the center of a retail transformation. Organizations that leverage their data to delight consumers, empower employees and optimize operations will be at an advantage in today’s competitive environment. With Dynamics 365 for Retail, Pandora Jewelry, Guy Degrenne, Pet Supplies Plus, Saje Natural Wellness are among those companies that are becoming insight-driven organizations, generating growth for their organizations and providing new, differentiated experiences personalized to their shoppers.

This week, at the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) annual show in New York City, we’re excited to introduce new product capabilities and show how our customers are adopting Dynamics 365 for Retail to manage daily operations while transforming their business processes and customer experiences for future growth.

Helping Build-A-Bear optimize operations with Dynamics 365 for Retail

At NRF this year, we’re happy to welcome Build-A-Bear Workshop (BAB) to the growing family of retail businesses that are reinventing ways to delight shoppers and improve business processes with Dynamics 365 for Retail.

Over its 20-year history, BAB has offered millions of parents and their children a unique retail experience: the opportunity to make and personalize their very own stuffed animal. Growing to 400 company-owned stores worldwide, the significance of their data has increased dramatically, but siloed legacy systems required costly and cumbersome IT efforts to provide company-wide views of key metrics.

“As a relatively small organization, ERP can be support intensive,” said Michael Segura, Director of Enterprise Systems at Build-A-Bear Workshop. “We were looking for something that required less maintenance on our end, and wanted a cloud-based solution with the right type of support. It had to solve our business needs, which is exactly what Dynamics did.”

Starting with their operations, we partnered with BAB to implement our intelligent cloud service, giving employees access to more reliable information about customers, sales, and products, as well as the ability to garner valuable insights and generate customized reports using modern visualizations. And because Dynamics 365 is designed to be flexible and scalable to meet the changing needs of an organization over time, BAB plans to continue tying together various areas of their business, integrating processes and leveraging interoperability with Office 365.

Take a look at the video below that offers an overview of our end-to-end retail solution, spotlighting additional customer scenarios including Hickory Farms and Michael Hill Jewelers.

Introducing New Capabilities and Enhancements to Dynamics 365 for Retail

Also at NRF this week, we are introducing new capabilities and enhancements to Dynamics 365 for Retail to help retailers get ahead with tools that combine the best of digital and in-store to deliver personal, seamless, and differentiated customer experiences by empowering people and capturing insights to drive growth.

Some of the new features with the latest update for Dynamics 365 for Retail include:

Associate productivity with task notifications. Store associates can be assigned various tasks like helping customers, running transactions, performing stock counts, or receiving orders in the store, all within a single Point of Sale (POS) application. To keep on top of daily tasks, a notification capability lets associates know when a task requires their attention, like when an order arrives or a product is no longer in stock.

Store order fulfillment. Many retailers would like to optimize order fulfillment by enabling stores to fill orders created elsewhere. To address this need, a unified order fulfillment operation has been added to the POS. This allows employees to fulfill orders much more efficiently, and lets retailers provide their customers with a true omni-channel experience.

Inventory visibility enhancements. With improvements to inventory visibility features, cashiers can now use the POS to get a clear picture of the inventory status of any product in their store – or in other stores and warehouses of their company – thus helping customers find the products that they want.

Inventory lookup now displays the reserved inventory and incoming order quantity along with the total inventory to help:

  • Cashiers locate a product that is not on the shelf by verifying if the item is elsewhere in the store, or is in stock at a nearby location.
  • Store managers determine if product replenishments have been ordered when stock the stock of a product is running low.

These latest features are now available in preview, and we expect to offer global availability of these features in early 2018. Watch the video below for a detailed overview of the latest capabilities.

So, if you’re among the over 35,000 industry professionals representing the nearly 3500 companies present at NRF 2018 this week, we hope you’ll visit us at the Microsoft booth (#2803).  And of course if you’re not in New York City, but are interested in learning more about how we can help you on your journey to becoming an intelligent retailer, delivering unified commerce across all channels encompassing sales, mobility, intelligence and productivity, please visit the visit the Dynamics 365 for Retail site here, get inspired by the stories of other modern retail successes on the Microsoft Transform blog, and get started with a free trial: https://trials.dynamics.com/Dynamics365/Signup/retail.