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IMS Evolve acknowledges the increased pressure on supermarkets and supermarket staff due to the significant and unprecedented changes that have arisen from COVID-19. Throughout this period of uncertainty, IMS Evolve continues to be a proven partner for thousands of supermarkets around the world, driving real-time action for retail operations.

Significant shifts in demand, footfall, stock levels and staffing are putting pressure on both central operations and individual stores. Reductions in staff numbers and store hours, frequent re-merchandising and new levels of manual safety requirements mean that many standard processes and levels of service are at risk of being compromised.

The global pandemic has brought the collective capabilities of the IMS Evolve platform into sharp focus across our engagements with clients. The need to remotely adapt the control of machines and workflow for resources, take into account multiple new factors and mitigate new or exaggerated risks to the interruption of trading is more critical now than ever.

IMS Evolve’s software is delivering real-time insight and automation across thousands of supermarkets worldwide and is currently looking to support our existing retail partners by:

  • Freeing up staff hours to focus on merchandising, safety procedures and customers by using automation to remove the requirement to manually probe product temperatures
  • Remotely tuning ventilation systems in buildings to improve air cycling and displacement – removing the need for social contact and removing contaminated air from stores
  • Providing access to specialist resource and enabling workstream prioritisation to isolate tasks that require specialist skills in store 
  • Delivering a condition-based view of the estate with automated prioritisation of highest impact issues and management of store interventions to minimise the risk of social interaction where possible
  • Enacting remote health checks and corrections on mission critical assets
  • Remotely adapting refrigeration control strategies to manage increased stocking cycles and changing products to ensure optimum product safety, quality and shelf life

Built upon the existing capabilities of the IMS platform, the above strategies are deployed with minimal resource and no requirement to visit stores. The capacity to realise these effects remotely has been essential in the retailer’s ability to adopt them quickly, and above all, safely.

The IMS Evolve platform is low cost, non-invasive, and has been rapidly deployed at scale. As well as providing retailers with the ability to quickly and remotely react to unforeseen changes, the solution also delivers transformative day-to-day savings and efficiencies such as:

  • 99% consistent availability of critical assets through improved maintenance regimes
  • 80% reduction in central resource requirements to manage physical infrastructure through automation
  • 49% reduction in stock loss due to machine failure through improved maintenance and management
  • 40% reduction in reactive maintenance calls due to both predictive and proactive maintenance and remote fix capabilities
  • 7-12% reduction in overall energy consumption

Take comfort in the knowledge that there are technologies available to support retailers during unforeseen changes such as the COVID-19 pandemic, with digital capabilities that are both flexible and robust enough to rely upon.