Changing the global retail landscape with m-commerce
Mobile is changing the global retail landscape at a lightening pace.
Thanks to the proliferation of smartphones and mobile internet, retailers of all shapes and sizes are experiencing a once-in-a-generation opportunity to engage with customers in a new way that can both, encourage online sales and supplement bricks and mortar growth.
The scope to change the way we pay for goods is huge and by creating flexible, relevant mobile solutions for all sizes and types of retailers and consumers, mobile network operators can provide a vast range of services for different people all over the world. From the most technologically advanced regions to those with a small but growing population of mobile users.
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Shopping for pleasure is a popular pastime for many people in developed countries meanwhile
In less developed countries it can be a very different story. The task of having to visit the nearest convenience store to buy life’s necessities can involve a long and arduous journey on public transport or foot. This is a major inconvenience for a lot of people around the world.
A significant percentage of purchases made every day are made at convenience stores. These small, usually family-run businesses handle large amounts of cash on a regular basis, which is far from ideal. Mobile network operators (MNOs) can support these types of merchants by offering them the possibility of accepting mobile wallet payments from customers and making remote payments to suppliers.
Other benefits of MNOs deepening their relationship with the retail industry include marketing services such as coupons, and add-on services that make full use of their networks and consumer reach. Consumers can use their smartphones to find out what to buy, where to buy it, how to get there, how to make a purchase, how to contact customer service, and so on. For me, actually purchasing items, being guided and paying for things like parking, tickets and lunch, with a smartphone fits neatly into this picture.
But MNOs can’t do this alone. They’ll need to strike up smart partnerships with suppliers and distributors to offer advertising and coupon distribution to brands, retail chains, and advertising or media agencies. In markets with a low penetration of mobile financial services, they’ll need to partner with card issuers and payment networks to enable mobile payments wherever there’s a store of any kind.
In the latest of our business insights articles, The Retail Logic, we look at the importance of creating mobile payment solutions that benefit merchants of all sizes. Mobile wallets offered by operators can not only help retailers in both mature and emerging markets to manage the large amount of daily transactions, but also encourage loyalty by serving more of customers’ everyday needs.
If you’re interested in m-commerce and the impact of mobile on retail, checkout out our m-commerce blog.
Written by: Jan Hallberg, Head of Marketing, M-Commerce, Ericsson.
Intelliwave SiteSense boosts APTIM material tracking
“We’ve been engaged with the APTIM team since early 2019 providing SiteSense, our mobile construction SaaS solution, for their maintenance and construction projects, allowing them to track materials and equipment, and manage inventory.
We have been working with the APTIM team to standardize material tracking processes and procedures, ultimately with the goal of reducing the amount of time spent looking for materials. Industry studies show that better management of materials can lead to a 16% increase in craft labour productivity.
Everyone knows construction is one of the oldest industries but it’s one of the least tech driven comparatively. About 95% of Engineering and Construction data captured goes unused, 13% of working hours are spent looking for data and around 30% of companies have applications that don’t integrate.
With APTIM, we’re looking at early risk detection, through predictive analysis and forecasting of material constraints, integrating with the ecosystem of software platforms and reporting on real-time data with a ‘field-first’ focus – through initiatives like the Digital Foreman. The APTIM team has seen great wins in the field, utilising bar-code technology, to check in thousands of material items quickly compared to manual methods.
There are three key areas when it comes to successful Materials Management in the software sector – culture, technology, and vendor engagement.
Given the state of world affairs, access to data needs to be off site via the cloud to support remote working conditions, providing a ‘single source of truth’ accessed by many parties; the tech sector is always growing, so companies need faster and more reliable access to this cloud data; digital supply chain initiatives engage vendors a lot earlier in the process to drive collaboration and to engage with their clients, which gives more assurance as there is more emphasis on automating data capture.
It’s been a challenging period with the pandemic, particularly for the supply chain. Look what happened in the Suez Canal – things can suddenly impact material costs and availability, and you really have to be more efficient to survive and succeed. Virtual system access can solve some issues and you need to look at data access in a wider net.
Solving problems comes down to better visibility, and proactively solving issues with vendors and enabling construction teams to execute their work. The biggest cause of delays is not being able to provide teams with what they need.
On average 2% of materials are lost or re-ordered, which only factors in the material cost, what is not captured is the duplicated effort of procurement, vendor and shipping costs, all of which have an environmental impact.
As things start to stabilise, APTIM continues to utilize SiteSense to boost efficiencies and solve productivity issues proactively. Integrating with 3D/4D modelling is just the precipice of what we can do. Access to data can help you firm up bids to win work, to make better cost estimates, and AI and ML are the next phase, providing an eco-system of tools.
A key focus for Intelliwave and APTIM is to increase the availability of data, whether it’s creating a data warehouse for visualisations or increasing integrations to provide additional value. We want to move to a more of an enterprise usage phase – up to now it’s been project based – so more people can access data in real time.