Business Challenge story

This grocery retailer struggled to make the most of its data. Each store batched data and sent it to a central warehouse once a day, but the delay hampered analysis and theft prevention. 

Transformation

Using an in-store ESB with IBM MQ and IBM App Connect, the company updated to a model that allowed data to be processed in seconds.

Results

Reduce

time it takes to move information from stores to the data warehouse

Provide

a rock-solid messaging integration engine with a small footprint

Deliver

a reliable infrastructure for transaction data and file-based information

Business Challenge Story

Geographic Distance and Delayed Data Analysis

The company operates 2,400 grocery stores throughout the country, and its operations are spread across numerous states. Because of the geographic range, the company used to manage information in large batches. Once a day, each store collected its data and sent it to a central data warehouse for analysis. 

 

However, with the number of associated stores, this resulted in roughly 50 million messages traveling to and from the stores every day. These messages included transaction logs from checkout lanes, credit checks and pharmacy information verification. 

 

The batch processing method they were using resulted in delayed data analysis and sometimes hampered theft prevention efforts. The grocery retailer decided to make an update so that it could access daily statistics and improve its customer service, supply chain management and more. It knew that its new solution needed to collect data in a timely manner so that it could make informed decisions about the company as a whole. It also knew that it needed to be able to handle large volumes of information.

[This] message broker is rock-solid. It has a relatively small footprint, and it is a world-class integration engine.

—A Software Engineer, Grocery Retailer

Transformation Story

An In-Store ESB with Near-Real-Time Updates

To improve its data transfer, the grocery retailer implemented an in-store Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) based on IBM MQ and IBM App Connect. This solution included IBM IBM MQ’s Telemetry capability, which store controllers used to publish messages to their store’s ESB. MQ Telemetry is designed to connect endpoints that don’t support a full MQ client but need the same level of reliability.

 

“The ESB provides reliable data transformation and delivery to all of the endpoints in the store which use a variety of protocols,” says the software engineer. “It also enables us to transform messages and publish them so they get sent to remote endpoint systems that might be interested in them.”

 

With their new system in place, the company can transfer data from any store to its central hub in near-real-time.

Results Story

Processing Data Faster Than Ever

With IBM MQ and IBM App Connect, the grocery retailer’s architecture has been streamlined. Previously, data was batched and processed daily, and now, the data warehouse receives transactions within seconds of a checkout.  “[This] message broker is rock-solid,” says a software engineer. “It has a relatively small footprint, and it is a world-class integration engine.”

About Grocery retailer

This company employs more than 339,000 associates. It manages grocery stores, multidepartment stores, convenience stores and jewelry stores.

Take the next step

To learn more about the IBM solutions featured in this story, please contact your IBM representative or IBM Business Partner, or visit the following websites: