HuLoop offers intelligent automation specifically designed for retailers, so I’m wondering how you started in the industry. What has been your journey to this point?
I have had the privilege of working with retailers for more than three decades, always focused on innovation and business transformation. From my early formative days at IBM to executive leadership roles at Retalix, Revionics, NCR, and DemandTec, I have had the opportunity to work across the retail landscape. My experience has included everything from advanced merchandising (pricing, promotions, markdowns, assortment, and space) and shopper marketing (loyalty, shopper analytics, and personalization) to shopper engagement platforms (point-of-sale, e-commerce, self-service, and mobile) and supply chain and store operations (inventory, replenishment, and labor management).
Since you joined as CEO in May, HuLoop has grown significantly. What factors would you say drove this growth?
Retailers are quite complex businesses. They have disparate, often best-of-breed technologies acquired over many years that don’t always work well with each other. Some of this technology is in the cloud, and some are on-premise. Some of this technology is legacy, and some may be modern. The reality is that probably 70% of all business process activities aren’t even automated within the enterprise software platforms that they use. These activities occur between their enterprise software platforms on Excel, Email, or on tools like Teams or Slack. This means that even the most efficient retailers are people- and paper-intensive businesses trying to orchestrate their work across technology, data, and people silos.
HuLoop’s mission is to be the glue that stitches together those business processes across existing disparate systems, data sources, departments and organizations, and so forth. We seek out mundane, repetitive, and tedious tasks across the retailer’s business and apply intelligent automation to them. More specifically, we look for things that retail associates (people) have been trained to do in their current business processes. Often, these have been passed along for years from employee to employee – and we deploy software robots (“bots”) to free up human capacity to focus on more essential and valuable responsibilities.
This mission is vital because, like other segments, retailers face rising labor costs and struggle to hire, train and retain talent.
Can you elaborate on intelligent automation and how it works with HuLoop?
Intelligent automation (IA) means using automation technologies to streamline and scale decision-making across organizations. It simplifies processes, frees up resources, and improves efficiencies. In that spirit, HuLoop’s software has a full hyper-automation suite that tackles the following areas:
- Process and Task Discovery – Provides a holistic view of an organization’s people, business process management, and technologies. This includes understanding what applications they are using and how much time they spend in and between applications.
- Robotic Process Automation (RPA) – Building, deploying, and managing software robots that emulate and replace mundane, repetitive human activities.
- Business Process Automation (BPA) – Orchestration, workflow, and automation of complex business processes across disparate systems and personnel.
- Intelligent Document Processing (IDP) – Enveloping key documents and files such as Word, Excel, PDF, CSV, Google Docs, and other files into processes and tasks.
- Intelligent Data Automation – Collecting, validating, and publishing data from source to target automatically.
- Intelligent Test Automation – Creating, executing, and analyzing software and device tests comparing actual vs. expected outcomes to improve quality.
How do you see the partnership with Wizeline connecting to HuLoop’s mission?
HuLoop is in the business of providing AI-powered intelligent automation technology to retailers seeking to drive profitable revenue growth, increase productivity, reduce costs, and optimize our most precious asset, our people. Wizeline brings industry domain expertise and access to top talent worldwide. Our partnership with Wizeline recognizes that no matter how innovative and functional our technology may be, retailers need to augment the software and their internal teams. I’m excited because Wizeline’s know-how and domain expertise ensure they get the expected benefits from their intelligent automation solution.
What problems does the partnership with Wizeline address for HuLoop clients, and how does it set you apart from other vendors?
HuLoop and Wizeline together deliver a one-stop shop for intelligent automation technology and talent. Our partnership equals a faster time to market and greater realization of benefits.
HuLoop offers an enterprise-wide, no-code hyper-automation platform that is a one-stop shop for retailers, regardless of where they might be across the automation maturity curve.
Wizeline helps companies of all sizes achieve faster innovation cycles by delivering domain expertise around strategy, design, architecture, development, cloud, DevOps, integration services, and more. The company offers borderless access to talent with creative and entrepreneurial technologists worldwide.
What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve ever been given? What advice would you give?
The best advice I ever received came from my mother. It was, “Don’t put off until tomorrow what can be accomplished today.”
My advice to retailers is simple: You are facing substantial headwinds today more than ever. It’s not getting easier anytime soon. The anticipated recession will slow and change shopper spending while inflation puts severe pressure on gross margins. Due to the supply chain crisis, inventory balances remain too high on some items and too low on others. These challenges come as retailers continue to struggle to find talent, given the extremely low unemployment rate. When you can hire, rising wages put further pressure on your profitability. In this unprecedented environment, you must find new ways to reduce expenses and improve productivity. Intelligent automation is the solution.
How do you see HuLoop and intelligent automation changing in two years? What are you most excited about?
We are in an age of innovation. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning, in particular, are enriching what we can do for our clients. Simultaneously, access to technologies like ours is democratized across the retail enterprise. No-code technology like HuLoop’s can empower non-technical businesspeople to deploy capabilities in minutes, hours, or days compared to months or years. Specifically for those in merchandising, marketing, store operations, accounting, and supply chain. Our industry calls this phenomenon “citizen empowerment.” We are doing our part to accelerate citizen empowerment with a ridiculously simple-to-learn and use “app-like” user interface.
How Can HuLoop and Wizeline Help You?
Earlier this month, HuLoop and Wizeline announced a partnership that offers an all-in-one, no-code software test automation solution. This transformative solution streamlines processes and simplifies workflows for retail clients and software test automation for customers across industries. Many organizations trust HuLoop’s software and Wizeline’s proven implementation
expertise to address the most daunting test automation challenges and release quality applications faster and more confidently. To learn more about the partnership, visit Wizeline – HuLoop Automation.