Digital Transformation

JC Penny and the disaster of over-thinking

By | Digital Trade, Digital Transformation

Pitney Bowes has been remarkable at pivoting and not only joining the digital revolution, but implemented a digital transformation strategy. In 2018, they saw a second consecutive year of revenue growth, marking its best revenue growth in a decade.

Meanwhile, JC Penney losses double as digital transformation remains at the “thoughtful” stage after nearly 5 years.


JC Penney CEO Jill Soltau recently said that transformation would “take time”.

Again, why?

The journey began in 2015 under former CEO Marvin Ellison, and when Soltou took over, it is likely the transformation was already in decline. The retailer had already posted a doubling the $78 million loss recorded for the period last year. Sales had already falled 5.6% to $2.44 billion from $2.58 billion a year ago.

If JC Penny are indeed seeking customer-centricity, these aspirations must be more than heresy and become actual achievements. “Remaining thoughtful and strategic in our approach” doesn’t cut it when talking about what customers want and need.

Having a “leading omni-channel shopping experience.. will require us to work on redefining our brand identity and promise, evolving it for today’s digital age and enhancing the design of our online platform and physical stores accordingly,” says Soltou.

JC Penny are redesigning and improving core store processes with a new checkout process to streamline tasks and enhance the customer experience. Ideally this would translate into a shorter wait time at checkout. But JC Penney is taking their time: “Our strategy long-term will be a great balance between the fundamentals of retail and providing that strong foundation as well as transformational and/or innovative choices that we’ll make to differentiate and re-establish JC Penney for the future.”

This would be ok if it doesn’t establish the sentiment that digital transformation takes a long time to realise the benefits. It doesn’t. Just take a look at Pitney Bowes.

Kickstart your digital transformation journey

By | Digital Transformation

Digital transformation is a hot topic right now. 

We are after all, in a digital age. Technology is constantly changing and impacting the way we live and work and to “be digital” is a way of business now. 

So, what is digital transformation? And do you need it? 

Digital transformation is the delivery of value to your customers by integrating of all your business systems, processes and touchpoints. It also aims to future-proof your business through API reuse.

An API-based IT delivery model approach is the best strategy to digitally transform your business to fulfil these new demands and reduce the cost of doing business at the same time. 

The result? More satisfied, engaged, and loyal customers who purchase and then advocate for your company’s products and services.

Isn’t it time you invested in a well-rounded customized digital transformation roadmap?

WTO workshops new digital trade rules

By | Digital Trade, Digital Transformation, Global Trade

Earlier this year, at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Switzerland, 76 members of the World Trade Organisation agreed to begin negotiations new international rules in digital trade.

This is a step towards updating international trade rules that we sorely need.

It’s no doubt that a multilateral trading system is crucial in helping reduce barriers, remove red tape and increase global trade, as noted by the Australian Minister for trade, tourism and investment, Simon Birmingham.

While the 76 WTO members issued a joint statement confirming their intention to begin WTO negotiations, what we in the global trade community would like to see is action.

Already there are multiple systems, formats and processes. A unified process and set of rules would create efficiencies, reduce operating costs and accelerate global trade. A global trade digital transformation is what we’d really like to see. We’re looking forward to hearing more about this from the WTO in the coming future.