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Liz Claiborne


Fujitsu POS a Good Fit for Liz Claiborne Inc.

CHALLENGE: Outdated DOS-based POS System and no WAN Connectivity

The overriding goal of the new system was to enhance customer service while improving store operations, which over the past 12 years, had been underpinned by an increasingly outdated DOS-based POS system. The system had no wide area network (WAN) connectivity and no database, so it therefore could not consolidate customer data across stores. Replacement parts for the original system were also very difficult to find.

"We operate specialty stores in more than seven different formats, and we wanted to improve the level of information on customers and their buying behaviors to enable personalized customer service and targeted marketing promotions," said Lenny Rizzo, senior retail systems manager for Liz Claiborne Inc., who had spearheaded several major technology rollouts at competing retailers prior to joining the company in October of 2002.

SOLUTION: Fujitsu TeamPoS 2000

Following a rigorous search in the fall of 2002 that included a review of business, technical and application requirements for a new chain-wide point-of-sale (POS) system, Liz Claiborne Inc. deemed Frisco, Texas-based Fujitsu Transaction Solutions Inc. as the best fit for its then 300-plus retail stores.

As part of the review process that evaluated three of the leading POS/services providers, the $4.8 billion fashion company developed a five-point decision matrix that addressed:

  • Cost – initial purchase price, ongoing maintenance costs and implementation costs
  • Risk Mitigation – implementation risk and strength of the relationship with each vendor
  • Functionality – ranking of vendors’ equipment on the technology curve, mean time to failure, innovations and end-user impressions • Service/Support – retail hardening, field service delivery, billing and installation
  • Intangibles – vendors’ focus on Liz Claiborne Inc., stable financial condition, market share in the specialty apparel marketplace and references.

Rizzo said the competition was tough, but Fujitsu won based on its scores for user-friendliness of the TeamPoS 2000 POS units (which were actually field-tested by employees); best hardware design including a touch-screen monitor; serviceability; and company reputation and viability.

300-store Conversion

Deployment of the Fujitsu POS hardware running NSB Group’s Connected Retailer application began with a pilot of 14 stores in the fall of 2003. Following a successful pilot, in the spring and summer of 2004, another 175 stores were added and then 110 more were transformed between January and April 2005. Rizzo said that equipment was staged at Fujitsu’s Foothill Ranch, Calif. facility and shipped to the stores, where a Fujitsu technician completed the conversions overnight. Most locations averaged three terminals per store, but as many as 10 were installed in some sites. Fujitsu also handled all integration, installation and maintenance services during the rollout and provides ongoing maintenance today.

Upturn in Uptime

Wayne Dabney, Liz Claiborne Inc.’s vice president of IT, said that maintenance and service costs have decreased significantly with the new retail-hardened system.

"Less than one percent of our registers are down now compared to 15 to 20 percent previously. Service calls —a rare necessity now—are conducted the same day or the next day following an event, whereas before, we could be down a week or more," Dabney said. Rizzo said that pre-rollout training also reduced help desk calls. "Prior to deployment, we supplemented the user-friendly aspect of Fujitsu’s touch-screen terminals with an hour of computer-based training per sales associate,” he explained. “That first week of implementation went much more smoothly than other rollouts I’ve been associated with, and in the second year, we added more computer-based training that reduced service calls."

For more information:

Industries:

  • Retail/Wholesale

Offering Groups:

  • Retail Products

Solution Areas:

  • Retail Solutions

Regions:

  • United States

Challenges:

  • Update POS hardware to improve performance and reliability
  • Improve integration of store technology

Benefits:

  • Less than one percent of registers are down compared to 15 to 20 percent previously
  • Maintenance and service costs have decreased significantly with the new retail-hardened system
  • Pre-rollout training reduced help desk calls