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20 April 2017

How does a retailer manage the digital disruption to win customers?

“It’s important to remember that your competitor is only one click away”* Retailers are facing disruption from both nontraditional and traditional competitors who are exploiting digital technologies to win customers. This may be through having a more user friendly website or mobile app, creating the best shopping experience through augmented...

05 April 2017

Keeping off the rocks? Navigating restructuring in shipping & offshore

By Steve Moll, Matthew Little and Nasos Tsarouchis The message is clear, the shipping sector outlook appears challenging. Many have withstood the difficult environment so far, but cash buffers are continuing to erode, and without new sources of liquidity some will inevitably face a financing crunch either this year or...

04 April 2017

Will Virtual Reality mean ‘Virtual Retail’?

By Jeremy Dalton I freely admit to having been a bit of a geek about VR for a very long time now. But when you start seeing VR devices advertised on primetime TV – the Sony Playstation VR, in this case – then you know that geekery has definitely gone...

How can I help you? The power of personal connections

By David Oliver Here’s the thing: when it comes to retail, it’s the connection between the customer and the retailer that makes the ultimate difference. It’s the game-changer that converts lukewarm interest into sales, and occasional purchases into a lifetime of loyalty. So how can retailers build this precious connection...

31 March 2017

Wearables: The key to an immersive in store experience?

By Craig Skelton According to recent research from PwC*, 55% of English consumers now own a wearable device with the most popular device being a fitness band (49%) followed by smart watches (37%). A further 15%** of consumers purchase products using their next generation wearables. But why are consumers using...

Opinion: Making omnichannel pay – the next challenge

By David Oliver Many retailers have started to question fundamentally the way they organise their business for omnichannel. Having begun by treating online as a separate start-up business, with its own resources and P&L accountability, there has been a growing recognition that this model is unsustainable. First, it is difficult...

23 March 2017

The gold standard of retail: How to build trust in uncertain times

By Sue Rissbrook In uncertain times, investors look to gold as a safe haven; shoppers do the same, turning to the retailers they know and trust. 2016 was a year of huge disruptions, both politically and economically, and we can see the consequences in everything from rises in food prices...

08 March 2017

Managing cyber risk in retail: A winning strategy

Information is power. As retailers, you have an enviable volume of data at your fingertips. By analysing this data you can make strategic decisions to enhance the customer experience, from personalised offers and recommendation engines to the development of new products. Customers no longer get excited about personalisation, they expect...

02 March 2017

The Guru, The Problem Solver, The Seller, The Slogger, The Personal Shopper? What is the role of the future store assistant?

By Stephanie Bloor The PwC 2017 #TotalRetail Survey identified that the most valued attribute for a good in-store experience is store advisors who have deep product knowledge. It got me thinking - with so much change happening within the retail landscape and in particular the good old fashioned "shop"- what...

14 February 2017

How to keep control of an R&D megaproject

By Andrew Kidd I have been following the progress of the Hyperloop project with interest and, to be honest, a little excitement. It is a bold, ambitious project, driven by an inspired vision, which promises to deliver on-demand intercity transport: airline speeds at bus fare prices via capsules zipping through...

08 February 2017

Innovation: the curiosity project

By Andrew Kidd Very early in my working life, I saw the following notice pinned to my manager’s desk. “The ambition of any civil engineer is to retire without being blamed for a major disaster.” I can still remember the sinking feeling I had because of what this said to...

06 February 2017

Minimum wage demands maximum care - Why complying with National Minimum Wage rules may not be as simple as it seems

By Kerry-Ann Newton and John Harding In recent months, high-profile examples of businesses paying their staff less than the National Minimum Wage (NMW) have focused renewed attention on the issue of fair pay. Employers who fail to meet this standard are likely to be in for a rough ride. The...

Not on your payroll, not your problem? New public sector tax rules mean you need to think again

By Paula Letorey From 6 April 2017, new provisions come into force relating to payments made to off-payroll workers via Personal Service Companies (PSCs), that might be used in the delivery of public sector projects (this includes all bodies covered by the Freedom of Information Act 2000). As PSCs are...

31 January 2017

A new view of project data

By Alan Lavery The words ‘data’ and ‘analytics’ have been hot topics across industry for some time now. Financial services, retail, advertising and healthcare businesses (to name a few) are all massively improving the way they function; benefiting from the data we have produced for decades, now predicting our daily...

17 January 2017

Tomorrow’s Law Firm

By David Snell Back in the mid 1800’s, many people in Western Europe were resistant to the introduction of the combustion engine driven vehicle. Their insistence that it would never replace the horse and cart partly contributed to the United States economy accelerating at a much faster pace in the...

The UK housing market – the affordability challenge

By Richard McCole and Robert Walker It is widely accepted that there is a significant demand / supply imbalance in the UK housing market, with strong demand for home ownership but low build rates by historical standards. By some estimates, we are currently building around 60% of the houses required...

16 January 2017

Housing: Out with 2016 and in with 2017

By Lee Wilkinson It has been a somewhat uncertain few months for UK house prices – but the good news is that according to Nationwide, property value growth in 2016 has been “stable”, at a rise of 4.5% over. Though 2017 is looking slightly lower with both Nationwide and Halifax...

10 January 2017

Digital in Manufacturing - Collaboration realized

Today, digital technologies are creating new ways for manufacturers to deliver value. Those able to leverage ubiquitous data in meaningful ways across product development, sales and operations; across devices; and with customers are developing new models of collaboration. Whether you refer to this as Industry 4.0, the possibilities are endless....

22 December 2016

Is your supply chain Brexit-ready?

By Tom Woodham New research has shown that the volume of UK retail sales will drop 1.8% year-on-year in 2017, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit (Consumer Goods and Retail 2017 report). As Brexit concerns continue to hit the value of the pound, this would put the UK among the...

21 December 2016

Our Lives in Data vlog: analysing transport data

By Ben Whittingham and David Doyle Transport generates multiple sources of data, and it’s often being used real time. In the third vlog in our series from the 'Our Lives in Data' exhibition at the Science Museum, we've focused on the transport section which displays the inside of an Oyster...