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Abstract

This IDC study lays out the most important decisions we believe retail organizations will confront over the next 36 months. They are meant to guide senior IT executives in the formation of their three-year strategic IT plan. Key themes include the need for digital transformation, new ways of innovating, more integrated IT and operations, business security, and rethinking the future of work. While the predictions offered here largely focus on the near term to midterm (2017–2020), the impact of many of these predictions will be felt for years to come. Most of our predictions refer to a continuum of change within the wider ecosystem of the retail industry and global economy.

"Retailers must recognize and drive digital transformation. Retailers dealing with legacy, disconnected, and siloed systems have latencies and speeds that cannot support modern commerce, nor do most of the legacy systems allow retailers to quickly launch the types of services that customers today are expecting. At a time when customer expectations are rising and customers are more digitally fluent and digitally equipped than ever before, customers are expecting that their shopping experience will be easy, convenient, frictionless, and available anytime everywhere." — Leslie Hand, vice president of IDC Retail Insights


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