Conclusion and Recommendations
In conclusion, Zara is an international retailer that has uniquely positioned itself as a company with a strong value chain that has vertically-integrated manufacturing operations which allow them to bring fashions from initial design to store shelves in a matter of weeks. Their current IT infrastructure although efficient for past operations, is no longer sufficient to deal with current modern technology and will not be sustainable in the future as the company continues to grow and expand internationally.
It is my recommendation that Zara upgrade their information systems to a modernized, supported operating system, and expand many of their distribution center automation and application processes to enable them to continue to create sustainable competitive advantages in this rapidly changing technological environment that they operate in. To accomplish this recommendation, the following is an action plan that should be followed to achieve future success. The Technology Steering committee should conduct a detailed review of all of Zara’s current hardware, software, and automated processes. There are many boutique IT firms that specialize in writing software programs to meet the unique needs of a particular company. Zara has historically developed the majority of their software internally. To compete in the future, and to stay in line with their overall businessstrategy, I think Zara should continue to have a major role in the development of their software programs. They must choose a current operations system such as Windows 7 to run their programs on, they can outsource more complex programming to a boutique firm. The point of sale system should be upgraded, each with a wireless card and the ability to track, create, and submit orders. All POS terminals should be able to communicate with corporate or other stores at any time. At the distribution center, the automation processes need to be upgraded to include...
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