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Sunday, June 27, 2004

Vendor Alliance Boosts Hudson's Bay Co. Clout via Optimisemag

By sharing practices with its key vendors;and getting preferred treatment in return;the giant retailer - Hudson's bay co. optimized its partnerships. The alliance turned a competitive relationship into a win for all.To survive as one of Canada's oldest companies, Hudson's Bay Co. has learned that traditional approaches don't always work. Being nimble in a fiercely competitive retail industry requires strong IT relationships and the help of many hands.
Well into the 1990s Hudson bay's use of technology wasn't competitive: IT supported the business but didn't advance it. We had disparate systems and high support costs, and we weren't gaining efficiencies across our various stores. Additionally, Hudsoncouldn't tap into the valuable information collected about a majority of Canadian consumers, nor could we pull information together to fully mine it. To fix all this, Hudson required a great deal of technology support in the stores and supply chain. As part of an analysis of business performance in 1998, Hudson shifted from a traditional mainframe-centric approach to one that matched the company's product and customer needs and moved to applications and an infrastructure that advanced the business rather than simply replicating the existing functionality with newer technology.While IT has many capabilities that are critical to the overall strategy, the innovative approach to working with key vendors has helped Hbc get optimal business results more quickly and cost-effectively, says theit IT head Hudson actually built a collabarrative alliance consisiting of traditional rivals to sevice their needs by making IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, Cisco and also brought in a new culture where the alliance members were seen as true partners and not as adversial suppliers - Interesting article - Read on..
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