Walmart Partners With Microsoft for Digital Transformation
Walmart operates grocery stores, department stores, and hypermarkets. It is a multinational retail corporation headquartered in Bentonville, Arkansas. Walmart is internationally recognized and is a fierce competitor for Amazon. Around 2.3 million employees work for the corporation. To be exact 11,718 Walmart stores are situated worldwide.
Walmart has officially announced its partnership with Microsoft. They aim to utilize the Microsoft cloud solutions like Microsoft 365 and Azure for digital transformation. There are many advantages associated with using cloud services. The goal is to make the shopping more comfortable and less time-taking for customers.
"The agreement between Microsoft and Walmart will be for 5 years"
Software engineers from both companies will work on shifting the existing applications to a cloud platform. It includes migration of the websites like walmart.com and samsclub.com to Microsoft Azure for a wide range of benefits. Sam’s club is an American retail warehouse club owned by Walmart Inc.
Scalability, reliability, robust, more computing power, ease in managing workloads are some of the benefits of using Microsoft cloud solutions. During offers, severe workloads on websites due to visitors opening the site will now be handled with ease.
A website may not load for various reasons and is labeled with errors like 404, 410, 500, 502, 401 and so on. Unexpected errors may arise that halt the shopping of the users on e-commerce websites. Walmart is focused on minimizing these kinds of problems and improving the speed and performance of site.
Innovations will save the time, money and eases the shopping work online. They use HVAC (Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning) system to reduce the energy usage in their stores. Machine learning concepts are applied for routing the trucks during the supply. Thousands of vehicles are in commute, and machine learning is applied to them.
Microsoft is currently working on a technology that will get work done without cashiers at stores. No specific details are announced yet. But it is observed that Microsoft has already shown sample tech to retailers and asked Walmart for its co-operation.
Lot of work is involved in managing the stores. The employees must be in collaboration to get the work done. As Microsoft and Walmart are in partnership, employees will be trained on Microsoft 365. It consists of productivity tools to improve communication, can share work details and many other uses.
Not just a few but employees can now access all tools offered from Microsoft platform which includes Microsoft steam, One Drive, Workplace analytics and much more. These tools will help in sharing, improves productivity and are time efficient.
While most of us think the partnership between Microsoft and Walmart is strictly business, yes it is, but a strategy is involved. A business is done only when both parties will be beneficial. As we know, Amazon is the biggest competitor of Walmart.
Amazon is internationally recognized and is attracting people with its innovations. The best example is Amazon Go. This is a store where you can shop for items without the need of cashier and need not wait in queue for checkout. The store is currently located in Seattle, Washington. Technologies wise, Amazon is way ahead of Walmart. So, they are trying to close the gap from Amazon by teaming up with Microsoft.
Microsoft, on the other hand, is facing competition from Amazon in the cloud services platform. Amazon Web Services is leading the market with $20 billion revenue per annum. Microsoft Azure is sitting on the 2nd position. Teaming up with Walmart will make more people use Azure, and they can expand globally.
Why Only Walmart?
You may think, Microsoft being a global brand has only chosen Walmart to compete with Amazon? Well then, you are wrong. Before the discussions of this partnership, they are developing a technology that will eliminate the cashiers at stores. Along with Walmart, Microsoft also partnered with GE (General Electric).
On the other hand, Amazon had talks with few retailers like KSS. All of the big companies are making their moves to be the global leader. Partnering with Walmart has loads of benefits for Microsoft. As said above, more people will start using Azure and other cloud services.
In general, two big companies in their respective domains will not team up without any mutual benefits. In Microsoft-Walmart partnership, both parties are benefitted in lots of ways. 5 years is a long-term contract, and we can see a digital transformation of Walmart. Smart, no cashier, no checkout line shopping is the future and is near.