Jai Kalyan, Divisional Executive; Joosubs

Joosubs supports growth through Argility innovation

Joosubs, the family-owned furniture retailer, has decided to implement Argility’s Ceres retail software suite across its existing network of stores. Ceres provides a tried-and-trusted solution that has been relied upon by retailers for the past 20 years. In terms of the deal, Argility will implement Ceres in each store, and then host the solution from its data centre. This means that Joosubs will effectively access Ceres as a service for a monthly fee.

“Businesses today are operating in a rapidly evolving environment where it is necessary to constantly invent new ways of doing business that is founded on a platform that supports this changing landscape as they go forward.

Joosubs CEO, Rasheed Gutta, notes: “Joosubs legacy system does not offer any of the functionality that a modern retailer requires. As our business expands, we need a robust system framework that will support growth and provide reliable financial information to enable optimal decision-making. The Ceres solution allows us to adapt to these changes without the high cost and effort involved with off-the-shelf software. One of the most attractive aspects of the Ceres solution is that it caters for both cash and credit options for customers. It also provides multi-device support for kiosk and tablets where required.

“Ultimately, Argility’s depth of experience in retail and its established hosting infrastructure clinched the deal for us,” Gutta adds.

Founded in Mahikeng in 1904, Joosubs currently has stores in Mahikeng, Rustenburg, Soweto, Johannesburg (Southgate and Westgate) and Emalahleni. The company markets the Home Italia range, making international quality product affordable to the local market.

New Partnership

Jai Kalyan, Divisional Executive, Argility, says the new partnership with Joosubs is significant because it shows how the cloud computing model gives a mid-sized company access to resources that were previously the domain of larger players. “Joosubs has the vision and ambition to see how accessing a top-end retail system, like Ceres, can help it to compete successfully with larger competitors in a very contested marketplace,” he says. “We believe the hosting model will be increasingly attractive to mid-sized and even small retailers wanting to improve margins and gain market share.”

Kalyan emphasises that Ceres is geared at all levels to support the exponentially demanding world of the multi-channel consumer driven environment. “This includes pulling customers on social media to store fronts – physical or digital; fulfilling their buying journey on multiple channels – in-store, mobile or website. It also ensures that information on inventory, for example, pricing and availability, is obtainable accurately across all touch points to both employees and customers,” he adds.

Ceres Retail Solution

Kalyan confirms that Ceres provides full back-office, financial, inventory management and point of sale capabilities in an integrated, easy-to-use suite. Each Joosubs store will run its own instance of Ceres, which will be batch-loaded to the Argility data centre daily, where it will be replicated and held centrally. This means that trading will not be affected by network downtime, and the central replication means that highly accurate financial and other information, will be available to management in near real time,” concludes Kalyan.

Argility has completed implementing Ceres at the Joosubs stores in: Maponya Mall, Soweto, Southgate, Westgate and Witbank.

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Argility Business Intelligence, Flash Figures mobile app

Argility Flash Figures, BI as it should be, unique capabilities of this app set to revolutionise the BI market

Argility launches Flash Figures

SA technology innovator and customer experience specialist, Argility, has launched Flash Figures, a unique, highly configurable business intelligence and data-visualisation platform. Flash Figures turns unstructured business data into user-friendly, insightful information in real time – and makes it available on mobile devices.

But unlike most other mobile data visualisation platforms Flash Figures not only visualises but also applies logic for computing facts and totals based on organisational hierarchy. This is a unique capability in the BI market and sets this product apart from competitive offerings.

Argility CEO, Marko Salic, notes that organisations have various hierarchical constructs, typically the most common being the organisational one e.g. country, region, division, branch, and related to this most data visualisation platforms require the feeds to be aligned with these predefined constructs. This then requires the SMARTs (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound) together with the associated computing logic to live on ancillary feeding system(s).

Not so with Flash Figures!

Flash Figures is designed to remove this prescribed pre-processing and visualisation as the SMARTs are loaded into the platform against the end points of the associated hierarchy, thus permitting facts to be rolled up, sliced and accessed via role permissions and presented as various user friendly display types, e.g. graphs, charts, numeri’s etc. This computation on the fly by the Flash Figures platform allows for any adjustments or additions to the hierarchy or associated SMARTs to be immediately visible to end users providing timely, reliable and accurate views of business information.

Salic says the mobile revolution is enabling anywhere, anytime business – and business intelligence has to evolve to provide employees with the information they need when they need it. “Flash Figures represents a massive evolutionary step in data-driven decision-making because it tailors information to an individual’s role and is available in real time. It also has the ability to balance facts against other information to present data-based intelligence that is also contextually and strategically relevant,” notes Salic.

Flash Figures is highly customisable, and can be configured to a company’s organisational structures and individual roles. Data is presented in user-friendly dashboard format, with the ability to drill down into the detailed underlying data. In this way, it empowers users to make informed decisions on the go, thus empowering a business to be both smart and agile.

Salic says that Flash Figures can be used in any industry or department. For example, Flash Figures makes it possible for a large supermarket to monitor sales against targets in real-time, or a finance house to monitor payments received, or outstanding, refunds, credits passed or collections made. A call centre manager can view call volumes, service requests against calls resolved, escalations and answer times, among others; and an HR executive can monitor hours worked, reviews, ratings, leave days and training by individual employee or department.

While making business intelligence meaningful and accessible, Flash Figures has also been developed with security in mind. Strict authentication protocols are built into the platform, and lost or stolen devices can be blocked. In addition, Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encryption ensures that data is transferred safely.

Flash Figures is available as a conventional, on-premises solution but also as a cloud-based service.

“The cloud model is uniquely well suited for mobile solutions such as Flash Figures. In addition, it means that companies can access the power of data-driven decision-making on a per-user basis, reducing capital expenditure and enabling scalability,” concludes Salic.

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