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Retail Technology, Retail technology News

Clarks signs store systems deal

Friday February 24 2012

Footwear specialist invests in growth with managed IT helpdesk, break-fix services, printer refresh and new EPoS systems deal

Footwear specialist invests in growth with managed IT helpdesk, break-fix services, printer refresh and new EPoS systems deal


Clarks, the footwear specialist, recently announced it had chosen Getronics for a multimillion-pound deal to provide IT hardware support and maintenance across its 633 UK branches.


The five-year contract is a continuation of the two firms' existing relationship and will see Getronics responsible for ongoing support, maintenance and break-fix services for hardware, such as store electronic point-of-sale (EPoS) systems and Clarks’ 3D foot gauge.


As part of the new deal, Getronics will also manage a storewide printer refresh and provide extended IT support services into Europe as Clarks embarks on its plans for international expansion.


Updating stores to meet demand


When Clarks recently found itself facing the enviable problem of its outlets growing thanks to increased footfall, the company realised the additional pressure on its store systems would need to be addressed with more extensive technical support and expertise. This included Clarks’ unique children’s 3D foot gauge, which is often one of the first experiences of a Clarks customer. Having this machinery work continuously and readily is critical to the business.


The new deal will see Getronics provide a dedicated response centre responsible for IT helpdesk support for Clarks retail staff, as well as provide a break-fix service for equipment, such as the 3D foot gauge, through dedicated field workers.


“Getronics has proven time and again to have the most wide-ranging skills set and dedication needed to deliver the service we expect. We know we’re not an easy customer – we have intricate and complicated instore technology, high standards and are, at times, particularly fussy – all in the name of improving the customer experience. Having Getronics as our IT partner ensures the technology in our stores runs effortlessly and delivers on our customer strategy,” stated Alistair Smith, store systems manager at Clarks.


Managing European expansion


The new solution will also see Getronics provide a similar IT support model within Clarks’ flagship store in Germany. There is also scope for this strategy to be replicated across other countries, where appropriate, as the business expands and looks to provide the same IT experience across its other flagship stores.


The managed storewide printer refresh, will also see the provider handle the many logistical problems of deploying new technology, including new laser printers in 600 stores as far apart as Lands End. With Getronics’ retail experience, it said this refresh will involve minimal impact, with many of the printer transitions being completed in under 30 minutes in order to ensure staff can operate as normal and that there is no distraction to the customer.


Smith added: “As a result of the challenges we face, outsourcing more services to Getronics is a fantastic solution. We have a long-standing relationship with Getronics, so experience told us that we would be met with a solutions business that understood our needs, and could deliver great results while we continued to focus on the growth and expansion of Clarks. We now have the reliability and assurance that our systems will work, as they are being managed by a fantastic team who act as an extension to our company.”