How Social Business Software changed how a leading South African Retail firm innovates

During the first quarter of 2012, a well known, leading South African Retail chain deployed WyseTalk Social Business Software. Following a well planned and structured program it established the purpose of the SBS deployment: The roll-out would  be implemented and would seek to improve internal efficiencies and innovations.

While it took some time for the culture of the business to align to the SBS environment, it started to take hold. One afternoon the CEO, based at his head office in Cape Town, asked his staff the following question: “If any of you know how we could do something more efficiently or more innovatively within our business, then please let us know.”

A week passed and one Friday afternoon an answer popped up within the community. It was from the personal assistant to one of the operations managers in Johannesburg. She suggested that the current procurement system between the distribution centres and the retail outlets were somewhat antiquated, too manual and prone to errors.

Her answer was an Excel macro template which resolved 95% of these errors. Unbeknownst to anyone in the company, Linda was an Excel whizz and her solution, according to the Financial Director would save the business in excess of R 250.000 per annum.

Linda was publicly rewarded by the CEO and sent on a week long cruise for her efforts.

Three things happened here:

1) The real ROI for the deployment of Social Business Software within the organisations environment was established;

2) The executives now realise that there are people within their organisation that have some really smart ideas and that SBS provides them with a platform to stand out from the crowd;

3) Employees want to be recognised and SBS will give them a platform to be creative, collaborate, share and build a better company.

Green shoots have started emerging throughout the organisation and it is expected that improved efficiencies within their environment will yield savings in excess of R 1 million in the next 12 months.


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