Today, India is considered to be among the top five retail industry markets
worldwide and is the fastest growing one. Over the last five years, the sector
has become more organized as its gaining popularity. Thanks to big retail
chains which actually changed the dynamics of retailing in India. In 2009,
retail trade contributed 12% to the Indian GDP, while in 2010 it is expected to
contribute about 22% and grow up to a $700 bn dollar industry. And the good news
is that organized retailing is gaining traction and today it has almost 20% of
the overall market share.
What made all this growth possible and that too in such a short span of five
years? If we keep aside all the socio-economic and demographic changes, and just
concentrate on the basic medium which provided solution steering the way modern
organized retailing works, it is nothing but technology that has made this model
work. Retailing is one big example wherein IT has truly proved itself as the
business enabler. And riding high on technology is Indias one of the fastest
growing retailing chain, the Landmark Grouppromoter of brands like Lifestyle,
Spar, Maxwhich is currently on a rapid expansion mode. And with intelligent and
well planned IT implementations, the company is confidently driving its growth,
beating its competitors.
Aligning IT with Business
As the organization is expanding its presence, scaling up of the IT
infrastructure as well as security aspects are two big challenges for its IT
team. To meet the current business demands, Landmark is now busy with
refurbishing its entire IT set-up. "The existing set-up cant support our growth
and expansion plans. Hence, we are upgrading the entire infrastructure and
aligning it with our business processes for maximum results," says Sudesh
Agarwal, VP, IT, Landmark Group.
Within the next one year, Landmark will
have a completely new IT infrastructure
|Sudesh Agarwal, VP, IT, Landmark Group
As part of the plan, Landmark is restructuring its networking, storage,
security, data back-up systems, and creating a DR site as well. Presently the
company has its own data center based out of Bengaluru that is managed by
thirty-five servers and takes care of its pan-India operations. Critical servers
running the core applications have a proper back-up system on the IBM Tivoli
platform. All stores, warehouses, and offices belonging to the group are
connected through WAN and IPN VPN connectivity as a back-up.
The company has already implemented CRM and online gift voucher tracking
system (GVTS) in all its outlets and these are managed centrally. Other key
applications that have been deployed already include financial management system
based on Oracle Financial solution.
However, the company is still running on legacy systems for some of its core
business applications like PoS, warehouse management, and merchandise system.
"We are soon going to upgrade all these applications and deploy a live and
integrated system for better management and business productivity. Within the
next one year, Landmark will have a completely new IT infrastructure based on
state-of-the-art technology," informs Agarwal.