Our client is a leading warehouse club (WC) operator in the United States. They provide perishable food products, including daily fresh fruit and produce; general merchandise; gas; and other services – all at low prices. WC has been a Prolifics client for over five years.Our Clients
Retail in General
Retail is changing – fast – due to the demands of tech-savvy customers who expect the “omnichannel experience” – a high-level, seamless interaction whether they’re shopping online, in-store, through mobile, or calling in. Any disconnect in the flow can make for a disappointed customer, leading to a loss of brand loyalty and consequently lower revenue. To meet these higher customer expectations, retailers needed more data for more information and analysis so they could react to their customers’ needs. Older, on-premise legacy systems that silo data are not up to this task.
Integration/modernization is the key first step toward providing the omnichannel experience.
WC’s COVID-19 environment and beyond
WC was in the process of a digital transformation to enhance its digital capabilities and offerings. COVID-19 elevated the importance of digital transformation, and the ability to pivot and change became more urgent for WC, even as the pandemic subsided. In recent years, the company launched an improved website; mobile app; digital coupons; buy online, pick-up in store; same-day grocery delivery; expanded digital options to include fresh and frozen grocery items, and other e-commerce conveniences for members. According to the company, new members are joining at a record pace, and the company is targeting new members who are younger and more digitally engaged. Consequently, WC needs to continually ensure its technology manages these applications and orders to maintain a strong omnichannel offering.
For more than five years now, Prolifics has helped WC to modernize and expand their IT capabilities by coupling IBM solutions with Prolifics’ services and solutions. This includes working with IBM Integration Bus (IIB), IBM MQ (messaging and queuing) and MQ Appliance, QRadar, Cognos Business Intelligence and multiple DataPower components.
“We turned up the throttle on the technology to give it the capabilities to do everything our client wanted it to do this year.”Steven Aiello, Regional Sales Executive for Prolifics
Prolifics continues to lead the major digital transformation at WC. Because of the increase in its digital segment, the company had to acquire more digital infrastructure while ensuring flexibility for further growth:
- The WC executive leadership team requested that Prolifics partner with WC’s information technology Order Management System (OMS) Commerce team to implement the most recent IBM Sterling Order Management. The order management system expansion gives the company the ability to process more orders per second.
- Prolifics successfully proposed utilizing IBM Cloud Pak for Integration (CP4I). Cloud Pak components let WC receive the higher number of orders per second for OMS processing.
While very few organizations have the expertise to implement Red Hat OpenShift within their current infrastructure and integration level, we were able to sell WC the software and stand up the CP4I environment for them. Certain tasks needed to wait for a 2021 upgrade. In 2022, we conducted a proof-of-concept (POC) to determine whether CP4I could successfully auto scale and run native APIs.
The OMS expansion and Cloud Pak licensing give WC the ability to receive and process more orders per second, helping to drive revenue and meet customer demand.
CP4I gives the company:
- licensing flexibility for different solutions
- an anchor for WC’s future cloud expansion
- help with secure file transmissions and improved DevOps tools and processes
For WC, Cloud Pak is about positioning themselves later for even more growth. The licensing flexibility allows them to grow and expand easily in a cost-efficient manner. WC’s growth has allowed it to make investments as an organization, and by leveraging the partnership with Prolifics, they’ve done it with cost efficiency.
For instance, by upgrading WC to CP4I, we created greater accessibility for their traditional and newer members, who were able to make product purchases in a variety of ways. This allowed WC to gain a competitive advantage and keep up with the retail industry’s “new normal” after COVID-19.
By acting as coaches, we equipped WC with the foundational knowledge they need for CP4I implementation. We’re able to meet WC’s needs due to our 40 years of experience, our skill sets and our position as an IBM premier partner and vendor.
“Our integration expertise allows us to ‘connect the dots’ across an IT organization.”Steven Aiello, Regional Sales Executive for Prolifics
Prolifics is a global digital engineering and consulting firm helping clients navigate and accelerate their digital transformation journeys. We deliver relevant outcomes using our systematic approach to rapid, enterprise-grade continuous innovation. We treat our digital deliverables like a customized product – using agile practices to deliver immediate and ongoing increases in value.
We provide consulting, engineering and managed services for all our practice areas — Data & AI, Integration & Applications, Business Automation, DevXOps, Test Automation, and Cybersecurity across multiple industries — at any point our clients need them. Visit prolifics.com to learn more.