Nike’s ERP overhaul supporting consumer-first strategy

Dive Brief: As part of the technology in Nike’s consumer-direct acceleration strategy, the company is working to replace its enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, said Courtney Kissler, VP, Nike Global Technology at Nike, speaking Tuesday at the Virtual Grace Hopper Celebration. “We’re also investing in unifying our investments and our […]

Dive Brief:

  • As part of the technology in Nike’s consumer-direct acceleration strategy, the company is working to replace its enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, said Courtney Kissler, VP, Nike Global Technology at Nike, speaking Tuesday at the Virtual Grace Hopper Celebration.
  • “We’re also investing in unifying our investments and our foundational technology, really looking across our technology landscape,” said Kissler. “We’re really building that platform to bring together our financial and inventory view across that ecosystem.” 
  • Nike is in the process of shifting its ERP onto SAP S/4 HANA, SAP said in an email. Greater China, the company’s first region to adopt the technology, is scheduled to go live in July 2021.

Dive Insight:

In a shifting retail landscape, Nike is betting on technology to adapt to changing consumer patterns. As physical stores contract, the goal moved online.

ERP tools can make or break a business — they track and manage inventory, procurement, supply chain and other core business operations. Systems need to efficiently enable massive transaction volumes at global scale. 

The second phase of the company’s consumer-direct push, announced in June by CEO John Donahoe, aims to create seamless experiences for consumers and connect the broader Nike marketplace, said Kissler. 

A focus on agile ERP systems will play a critical role in the projected expansion of Nike’s consumer-direct approach. “Technology can be an accelerator” in the company’s strategy, Kissler said.  

Where businesses seek agility, acquisitions — in addition to in-house projects — can quickly help augment an enterprise’s tech stack. 

Last year Nike acquired demand forecasting tech company Celect to expand its insight on future customer behavior. Previously, Nike also expanded its analytics capabilities by acquiring data science company Zodiac, which ended its contracts with other firms and became a dedicated unit within the company. 

The January appointment of Donahoe highlights a sharper focus on technology at Nike, as his past experience includes leadership roles at software company ServiceNow and eBay.

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