Earlier this week, Parker Avery sent out our quarterly newsletter – Retail Advisor – which features industry news, events and resources. Below you will find an excerpt of the newsletter, a note from our leadership. We encourage you to sign-up for the newsletter by emailing us at: newsletter@parkeravery.com

As the first signs of spring begin to peek through the waning forecasts of freezing temperatures, snow accumulations and other winter weather, it is always exciting to anticipate what new experiences are in store, both personally and professionally. 
With the turn of each new season, retailers are also anticipating successful outcomes from their concerted efforts done far in advance around developing and planning new products and assortments, designing promotions and marketing activities, handling staffing and logistics, and managing the overall cadence of their business. 
For most consumers, an annual spring cleaning represents parting ways with winter and preparing for the events and activities of warmer weather. And quite often – just as we are packing up sweaters and boots, thinking we’d seen the last snowflake – meteorologists give us unwelcome news of a late winter storm (unwelcome at least for those of us not hoping for another school “snow day”). As consumers need to modify their plans and react to sudden changes in the weather, so must retailers also be ready to adjust course for the unexpected
How are retailers preparing for and adapting to ever-present change? Some are focused on new, innovative consumer-focused solutions to lure shoppers into the store to see their latest offerings, while others are investing in solid foundational processes and solutions to enable a sound and flexible platform on which to build new capabilities. 
Lately, Parker Avery has been involved in a variety of strategic initiatives in which companies are transforming their underlying business processes and systems to not just address, but rather to embrace today’s world of constant change. We’re helping retailers evaluate, select, design and implement new solutions to update legacy systems that worked very well 20 years ago, but can no longer effectively support the current and future needs of their omnichannel businesses. We are fundamentally shaping entirely new retail organizations across Merchandising, Planning, Store and Field Operations and more, to accommodate changes in today’s work force and make associates more efficient in their roles and responsibilities, as well as more valuable to the company. We are working closely with our clients in re-designing and optimizing their business processes to create much more agile and adaptive environments. And we are helping devise and execute change management programs, along with training strategies and content to support all of these efforts. 
A new season always brings with it a certain welcomed “freshness.” In anticipation of this change, it’s always a good idea to take a look back and thoughtfully consider what worked well during the last season, what can be learned from others’ best practices, and what steps need to be taken to ensure you are positioned for success – while at the same time being ready to adjust course for the unexpected. 
If you are thinking through or planning initiatives that resemble any of the above scenarios, and have any questions – or just want to toss around some ideas – please don’t hesitate to give me a call.