The Retailer Winter Edition 2022

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Backroom and supply chain Edge computing makes ‘real-time’ inventory management a reality and can support innovations in automation – for example, automatic reordering without the need for manual intervention or validation. The edge has the capability to put greater confidence into the supply chain. New revenue streams The Internet of Things represents a brave new world for consumer engagement and employee empowerment instore, which is expected to drive innovation and thereby new revenue streams. More reliable synchronization between channels and platforms should also promote better customer loyalty and new thinking. Supply chain and the last mile In her NRF presentation ‘Tech innovation: What consumers want and where retailers should invest’, Michelle Evans, Senior Head of Digital Consumer at Euromonitor International identified that 40% of retailers see the role of IoT as increasingly important in delivery initiatives. The eCommerce acceleration over the pandemic has meant a huge increase in deliveries and pressure on logistics. Michelle’s research indicates that half of consumers would welcome innovation in delivery choices which might include automated and robotic delivery – more food for thought for loT technology.

A future on the edge The future of edge computing inevitably and inescapably will go hand in-glove with the maturity and success of the Internet of Things. And while there has been an immense amount of talk and investment in IoT, many argue that the real impact of the IoT in retail has yet to be felt. At NRF, CDW hosted a well-received session about future retail where we were joined by David Dobson of Intel as a guest speaker. David was very clear that the immediate opportunities around edge infrastructure and edgeAI are very exciting, and talked through an example instore video cameras with advanced detection capabilities. But he also cautioned around the inestimable importance of getting the security piece right. Companies that have implemented successful IoT projects have seen efficiency improvements, costs savings, and improved satisfaction scores for workforces and customers. IoT needs planning, and security, careful implementation and rigorous monitoring. The Intelligent Edge is an exciting place, which places analytics and pro cessing closer to IoT devices and the people that use them. It’s rapidly becoming the newbattleground for customer satisfaction, which means the retail sector is taking note. For more about how CDW can help you take innovation forward in 2022, please see

Jane Liston

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