James Rodger, Retail IT’s MD talks to Sophia Murray about what providing its own software solutions and integrations, is truly like..
Tell us about Retail IT’s background?
We started Retail IT in 2001 because we saw a gap in the market for shops that needed systems that were not ‘out of the box’. Most people are different in their approach and this is what makes the industry exciting. This does present challenges in that retail systems generally cannot do everything as a retailer wants, so we put our focus on finding out the gaps and then making sure we address them.
Our team consists of everyone we need from sales and marketing through to project management, consulting, development and customer support.
Our goal has always been to provide the same advanced retail systems to all our customers, from single stores to multi-national chains, and our customers reflect this. This means we have a fantastic software solution as a base, and then making sure we use our skilled team to understand different requirements before delivering them in a cost effective manner.
We have a team of people all based in our Wimbledon office that all understand retail as well as IT. The team consists of everyone we need from sales and marketing through to project management, consulting, development and customer support. We pride ourselves on having all the skills necessary to deliver the mentioned highly tailored systems to our customers.
We celebrated our 15 year anniversary this summer and to mark this milestone, we opened a new shop in our Wimbledon office. The store, which we affectionately dubbed ‘the concept boutique’, allows customers to sample our own software and technology offerings in a live working shop environment.
Retail IT recently held the How Growing Retailers can Harness Technology to Compete With Amazon event in London. What were some of the key issues for retailers at this event?
I think clients who were there would have left with ideas about how they can utilise technology to grow their business. Obviously, we are on hand to help any client with their technology needs, because we do support the software they purchase from us, but the event covered much more than this and technology relationships. Our panel session covered closing the gender gap in the tech sector, payment by bitcoins, customer privacy, virtual reality etc.
We had Sir Clive Woodward as a keynote speaker, talking about the importance of interpreting data and the importance of IT. He cited a number of examples from his sporting background. “Whoever wins in IT, tends to win” was the focus of his presentation. I think attendees would have gone away full of ideas and inspiration from what he had to say – and can apply these to their own operations.
What are your most popular support services and solutions?
Our solutions such as click and collect, loyalty schemes and – more recently – e-receipts, are increasingly requested by our clients. We are also busy with finance package integrations, and the desire to be known as as an omni-channel specialist. We provide our own ecommerce devoted software packages that we exclusively provide to our customers. Our team of specialist analysts are also trained to be able to help our customers with their queries, and because we supply the software, we know what our customers need from us.
Year established: 2001
Number of staff: 16
Address: 56 Wimbledon Hill Rd, Wimbledon, London. SW19 7PA