By Adam Siegel
Lots has been written about all the changes in retail, and their race to adapt to changing consumer expectations and the rise of digital. From employing robots in distribution centers to launching experiential stores, retailers are transforming the shopping experience before customers' eyes. We all know industry transformation isn't easy. Implementing new strategies –and in some cases completely different business models – has its challenges.
RILA's (R)Tech Center for Innovation recently released a foundational report identifying the four challenges retailers are facing as they foster innovation in their companies. Four cardinal challenges to innovation emerged…
Establishing a process to identify innovation priorities and communicating those priorities throughout the organization are keys to success for innovation programs. Retailers use two types of processes to prioritize innovation – narrative-driven and linear – and always look for ways to get senior leadership involved in the process.
With retail finance teams primarily focused on nearer-term ROI, it can be a challenge to receive buy-in for longer-term investments, or for those that aren't easily quantified with traditional metrics. Defining alternative ways to value an innovation project is vital to the success of such an innovation program.
Attracting fresh, creative, and tech-forward talent to the industry has been a challenge as traditional retailers compete with startups and tech companies.
Retail innovation teams have mostly existed within their companies for less than three years. Spreading innovation through a company that is operating with entrenched processes –established over generations – can be difficult.
These Four Cardinal Challenges, along with other valuable trends, are featured in a recent report, Organizing for (R)Tech, issued by RILA's (R)Tech Center for Innovation.
With each of these challenges comes an opportunity. Retail is a powerful and highly dynamic industry. In the next several years, the (R)Tech Center will tackle these challenges and pave the way for retail's success in the 21st Century economy.
To learn more about RILA's (R)Tech Center for Innovation and to access the full Organizing for (R)Tech report, visit rtech.org.