Zara produces of-the-moment fashion and has developed a very successful vertically integrated company which can design, manufacture, and distribute garments to retail stores in as little as three weeks. Zara 's target market is comprised of urban, fashion-conscious consumers who shop frequently for the latest trends. Currently under debate is a proposed upgrade to the POS system throughout the Zara chain. With over 550 stores, this would be a huge undertaking for Inditex, Zara’s parent company. The current DOS-based system meets the needs of the company, and despite some of the benefits of upgrading, we feel it is best to continue with the current system in place.
Zara’s POS system runs on DOS, which hasn 't been supported by Microsoft in many years. Some argue that this is a concern and that there is an urgent need to upgrade. While an upgraded system would provide more functionality and convenience, it is not essential to sustaining the core competencies that Zara currently excels at: “fast fashion.” Upgrading to a networked, Windows, or Unix-based operating system would be very costly and would require training as well as implementation support and continued systems maintenance. The only obvious benefit of upgrading the system at this point in time would be to provide real-time inventory tracking and the ability to see other stores’ inventories. Even though this networking functionality would be of help to customers and store managers, it would deviate from the company 's extremely effective business model.
We recommend that Zara maintain its current systems operations. Zara’s business platform is one of trendy, affordable fashion. By upgrading, Zara puts itself at financial risk with potential loss of sales, increase in overhead (additional IT staff), and the potential for adding complexity to a relatively simple operation. DOS is a very stable operating system and Zara has few to no problems with it. Therefore, we suggest that