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A Customer Understanding Story


G6889641082007_JPGHighres.jpgBy Fil Zanasi, Business Development Director for HP Software UK&I


You get a text at work from your partner asking you to pick up some nappies for your baby daughter on your way home. You have a busy day planned, so order them via Click and Collect on your smartphone to collect on your way home.


That evening, the supermarket’s geo location technology detects your arrival in the store. Their customer analytics tools also detect that you usually “Click and Collect” earlier in the evening, so have possibly been held up. Possibly by work demands (so you are probably tired and fed up) or because you have had a drink after work (so getting home later than your partner would have liked). Either way, you might be open to a few offers from the supermarket. The data tells the supermarket that you are married, and when either of you go shopping you often buy a popular bottle of Chardonnay and a particular jar of Korma curry cooking sauce. Occasionally you buy a bunch of lilies – presumably for other people or to brighten up their home – either way they are a favourite of your Partner’s.


When you arrive at the store, you are sent a text to tell you that there are special offers on the Chardonnay, as well as the supermarket’s best-selling “ready meal for 2” chicken Korma. It also suggests that you might like to buy some lilies. Because you know you will be later home than expected, you buy all of the above, including the lilies.


You also know that your friend John could do with some brownie points at home. So you tell him about your experience. The next day, John tries to place a Click and Collect order. But unfortunately the supermarket’s Click and Collect app has just crashed. The IT team know about it because they monitor the app 24/7 and have used their software tools to diagnose and fix the problem in seconds. The supermarket’s analytics can tell that John’s first attempt failed. He spends a lot at that supermarket. So a discount voucher is instantly sent to his phone as an apology. The order works second time – due to the rapid diagnosis and fix by IT – and John is delighted with this gift.


John has many Facebook Friends and Twitter followers and he shares the story with them. Word of the benefits of Click and Collect, the supermarket’s excellent service, and the special offer on the Chardonnay spread across the social media platforms with many people saying they are going to follow John’s advice the next day.


The supermarket’s supply chain analytics spot this probable behaviour and ensure the stores will have the necessary stock to supply the predicted demand. The Click and Collect team inform the IT and Apps teams that this future increased demand is coming. The Apps team confirm that they fully tested the Click and Collect app prior to releasing it into production. It will easily cope with the predicted extra transactions. The IT team’s tools predict that Click and Collect will need 5% more compute power to process these extra transactions. And because Click & Collect is built on a flexible private cloud platform IT quickly and easily increase the processing power to cope.


A hacker sees this story on the social media platforms and tries to find out why the supermarket has done such a good job, so he can sell the secret to their competition. But ultimately is left frustrated by their security tools ensuring that both their Click and Collect and their Customer Analysis platforms are totally secure.


So the hacker is not happy. But the customers are. And the supermarket is more than happy with the positive press, their ability to cope with the increased business, and the fact that their secrets are secure.


Your business is only as strong as your app. Be sure to get your apps up-to-speed by attending this free webinar on January 22, 2015.

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