2024 NRF Key Takeaways

2024 NRF Key Takeaways

The 2024 installment of NRF: Retail’s Big Show in New York was as intriguing as we anticipated. New innovations will soon hit the retail industry to help drive associate productivity, streamline supply chain operations, and, ultimately, enhance customer experiences both online and in store. However, the beauty of NRF is, it doesn’t just show technology solutions for today, but is a glimpse into the future of how we will solve tomorrow’s challenges. Here are a few things that stood out to us that will impact the retail landscape this year and beyond:

The future of Retail is Unified

Envision a shopping experience where everything is seamless. People, processes, and technology are unified into an orchestrated operation creating an experience that drives productivity from beginning to end. Now, that vision is becoming reality.

Retailers from around the globe are investing in technology that equips their employees to serve customers seamlessly. From the receiving and shipment of goods, to accurate inventory management in the back of store, to in-store assistance and point of sale, to curbside pickup, retail technology is evolving to become a force multiplier for retailers.

Technology like the Honeywell CT30 mobile computer transforms how in-store associates help translate the online experience to the physical store for customers. Soft scanning software development kits (SKD) can help augment reality and use computer vision to enhance user experience, like Honeywell SwiftDecoder. The combination of these solutions enables a connected workforce and builds a unified retail network to serve customers better.

Artificial Intelligence with a Human Touch

It’s no surprise that Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Generative AI took a front row seat at NRF 2024. And it should because this technology is exciting.

However, as AI solidifies it’s footing in the modern retail environment, Honeywell is already pushing its applications to the limits. AI is built into SwiftDecoder software, allowing it to leverage augmented reality to ensure accurate pricing and inventory while on the store floor, helping save retailers significant time and money in potential missed sales and store fines.

An SDK like SwiftDecoder can seamlessly integrate into a retailer’s own applications, helping retailers work smarter and faster. When such technology is implemented, consumers are able to download a grocer’s app to scan food items and SwiftDecoder will quickly recognize details about the product, such as foods with allergens, in a matter of seconds, informing the consumer of all they need to know about that product.  

Furthermore, software like Honeywell Workforce Intelligence leverages the power of AI to help keep workers on task, on schedule and productive. With automated processes to guide store associates throughout their day, retailers can deliver updates and notifications directly to employees’ mobile devices, ensuring operations remain seamless.

Automation

Automation can help achieve greater accuracy, helping associates remain on task, and keep customers happy. So, as automation prevails as the shining beacon for retailers to deliver exceptional service, retailers are turning to tools that can help them empower their associates.

The Honeywell CT47 mobile computer thrives in a range of operations within the retail environment. At the click of a button, the CT47 scans valuable data, whether it be from a few inches in a picking cart or up to 80-feet away on a warehouse shelf. Quick, accurate scans can mean better data collection, reduced time spent on movement and better productivity.

Doubling down on automation, Honeywell RFID solutions help retailers achieve streamlined scanning using fixed barcode scanners. By leveraging the power of RFID, fixed readers can tell retailers where a product is in the store and how many of them you have, helping reduce time spent on inventory management. Automation can help drive savings for retailers in significant ways by allowing them to reinvest the time and money spent on human capital and energy.

It All Starts with the Supply Chain 

Although the supply chain is our last takeaway from NRF, it’s really where everything begins. Products don’t reach store shelves or the customer’s doorstep without the supply chain. Equipping retailers with technology that enables employees with the tools needed to ship, receive, and sell becomes critical to ensuring the supply chain engine is always humming.

To ensure the supply chain is operating at max efficiency, retailers need intelligent data to see where potential challenges and pitfalls are looming in the process, so they can address issues before they impact downstream productivity. With Honeywell Operational Intelligence, retailers get real-time asset management combined with prescriptive analytics designed to improve efficiency, workflow management, and overall performance.

As workers become more mobile throughout the supply chain, staying connected and secure is more important than ever. Workers need tools that help them stay connected, improve their productivity, and deliver on expectations. That’s why outfitting associates with 5G-enabled mobile computers, like the CT47, that keep workers connected to their team while continuously feeding data to the retailer about inventory, workflow performance and worker efficiency can be imperative to achieving a unified supply chain.

As we begin the new year, Honeywell is poised to solve retailers’ challenges and meet customer needs with a full technology portfolio. With a full suite of industry leading scanners, mobility computers, and high-performing industrial, desktop, and mobile printers, all backed by purposefully driven software solutions, Honeywell is ready to help you meet tomorrow’s retail challenges head on. We aren’t waiting for the future of retail to come. We are innovating it now, and we want you to benefit from it.

Learn more about how we are driving innovation in the retail landscape in 2024 and beyond.