I regard Walmart as a great example of successfully using digital technologies to transform itself not once but repeatedly.
The first wave of digital transformation of Walmart began when Sam Walton was alive. Walmart was one of the first big retail companies in America to build an enterprise-wide communication network connecting all their stores. He built a supply chain and logistics management system that are the envy of people in the retail industry to date. The use of RFID technologies and inventory management is one of the best in the retail industry.
Probably the greatest success of digital transformation in those early days of Walmart was the introduction of a technology appreciation culture which many enterprises operating in traditional businesses find difficult to deploy successfully.
The second wave of digital transformation in Walmart is taking place now. The company has rapidly moved into online retailing and preventing itself from getting disrupted by e-Commerce retailers like Amazon. It is leapfrogging and bridging the gap between itself and e-Commerce companies through a mix of acquisitions and technology adoption strategies.
Walmart is a great case study for business school students interested in how digital transformation strategies are deployed to bring about enterprise-wide efficiency.
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