Home Case Studies EDEKA Improving operational management with gen AI
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Streamlining IT operations in the face of extensive documentation

EDEKA Rhein-Ruhr Stiftung & Co. KG wanted to streamline and simplify access to information from various sources and several formats for its internal support team. With this first use case, the company hoped to show that it could deploy an integrated AI platform to deploy AI applications in a structured and efficient way.

Applying gen AI to IT operations

EDEKA worked with IBM® Client Engineering and IBM Expert Labs on a pilot to see if they could apply gen AI to improve support situations for  the software systems the company used in its stores.

Together, the team used the combination of IBM Watson® Discovery and IBM watsonx.ai to create a knowledge base consisting of manual documents, technical documentations and other sources, which were ingested by the Watson Discovery service. Watson Discovery then returned several relevant passages for a user query, which served as an input for the large language model (LLM). The team then used the watsonx.ai platform to apply LLMs to generate relevant answers based on the corresponding input from Discovery as well as the user query. Furthermore, a custom application was built with the Vue Framework. The app included a search input, display of the results, as well a display of the relevant documents and text passages. Due to the use of the developed solution, the problem-solving time fell dramatically and the ROI of the solution is less than three months.

< 3 months

ROI of the solution

Improved operations with natural language support and gen AI

Results of this pilot occurred in two phases. In the first phase, the team implemented a solution that structures and understands all existing customer documents using IBM Watson Discovery. In the second phase, a user can query the system, and it generates a response from documents held in Watson Discovery and distilled into a natural language answer using gen AI powered by IBM watsonx.ai as a scalable middleware platform.

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About EDEKA Rhein-Ruhr Stiftung & Co. KG

EDEKA operates over 900 food and beverage markets in association with its independent merchants in North Rhine-Westphalia and neighboring regions of Lower Saxony and Rhineland-Palatinate. Of these, almost 700 are full-range grocery stores under the EDEKA and Marktkauf brands, and the majority of over 250 beverage stores are under the trinkgut brand. The Rasting meat farm and the Busch bakery also belong to the cooperatively structured company based in Moers. EDEKA Rhein-Ruhr generated sales of around EUR 5.9 billion in 2022. With almost 50,000 employees, the regional company is one of the largest employers and training companies in the region.

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