Tony Godwin, Woolworths’ IT director, says the company’s IT achievements during the last year have been focused on the customer part of the business, implementing SAP platforms and in making sure chip and pin systems were ready for the deadline. “We have been concentrating on multi-channel offerings, with in-store ordering and putting kiosks into 22 stores. This has gone really well,” he says. “We have also implemented new warehouse management solutions as part of our migration to SAP and had a dream implementation for chip and pin.”

Woolworths is employing SAP platforms throughout and hopes to finish this next year when it tackles purchasing systems at its distribution centres. “Obviously this puts systems integration high on the agenda,” says Godwin. “There are business change issues involved and integration is key.” There will be a major emphasis on a multi-channel approach, both in-store ordering and self-service kiosks. This will include
in-store collection services, as well as home deliveries, as a result of customer feedback. Godwin says that the number of products that can be ordered in this way (up to 20,000) means that content management will become increasingly important. The company will also be installing kiosks in about 100 more of its stores over the next 12 months and is currently working on the most effective positioning and number of kiosks.

Woolworths will also be doing a desktop upgrade from NT to XP for its desktop PCs in six different locations.