Arcadia is a fashion retailer comprising nine of the high street’s well-known brands, including Topshop, Topman and Dorothy Perkins.
IT leader: Andrew Clarke, Group IT Director.
In role since: October 2006.
Reporting line: Group CEO.
How often does the CIO meet with the CEO: At least once per week often more.
Board level seat: Yes.
IT budget: £50 million revenue, £45 million capital.
IT estate and or number of log on accounts under the control of the IT leader: Around 10,000 logins to email and applications representing 22% of the workforce, however if login to tills is included more like 95%.
IT staff currently employed: 200.
Split between in-house/outsourced staff: 50:50.
IT management team and reporting structure: Five direct reports + PA;
- Tech Services Director.
- Head of Bhs Systems.
- Head of Business Systems.
- Head of Software Development and Support.
- Head of e-Commerce Services.
Primary technology platforms at the organisation: In-house developed ERP soon to be replaced with Oracle.
Primary technology suppliers: IBM, BT, Oracle, PCMS, Microsoft, Apple.
Strategic technology deals have been struck in the last 12 months:
- Eight-year hosting deal with PCMS.
- Eight-year application support deal with PCMS.
- Eight-year store maintenance deal with IBM.
- Three-year till maintenance for Bhs with Vista.
- Three-year software support deal with IBM.
- Three-year e-Comm hosting deal with IBM.
Percentage of your applications/infrastructure run from the cloud: 5%.
Major technology or transformation project recently completed and how did it transform operations, customer experience or the organisation: Implementation of PCMS Beanstore POS system, offering faster transaction times with a 25% improvement, better stock control through better controlled refunds, better promotional control.
Business transformation programme – beyond technology – that the CIO owns or is a major contributor to: I can't think of many business transformation programmes that don't have a technology element.
Strategic aim of the CIO and IT operation for the next financial year: Deliver IT systems that allow business agility at a reduced cost.
Strategy in the use by employees of their own technology, use of mobiles and how social networking is impacting operations, customer experiences or the organisation: Employees can currently use their own smartphones and Arcadia will deliver corporate email to them. Aside from this we are about to launch a BYOD programme going beyond smartphones.
Technologies being considered to enable transformation: Oracle.
Transformational inspiration sources: World class retailers.