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Tesco Bengaluru bets on agile market push

November 14, 2016

Tesco Bengaluru has bet big on the agile model of practices in software development, in a bid to help the UK-headquartered retail giant’s global operations become more seamless and customer-centric.

Tesco Bengaluru supports technology and business operations for a $67-billion business, with over 6,800 stores that serves 60 million customers worldwide. The cross-disciplinary team creates solutions to help make everyone’s job easier, and serve customers better across markets, carrying a combination of a strong retail domain, a culture of innovation, and a global work environment.

Talking to DH, Tesco Bengaluru Senior Manager (Technology Skills Transformation) Ranan Bhattacharya said, “In 2014, the technology teams at Tesco Bengaluru decided to bring in Agile and DevOps practices in its working — making it an agile-led product development team. Prior to this, it would take us longer to deliver value to the client, leading to time and money wastage. The intention was to make our entire product development process more predictable.”

An agile project, which is a global trend of the software world, is an iterative process that focuses on customer value first, team interaction over tasks, and adapting to current business reality, rather than following a prescriptive plan. With the objective of reducing end-to-end lead time and improving communication, Tesco Bengaluru’s agile model has gone beyond software development.

Tesco Bengaluru is home to one of the retail technology teams based across Farringdon, London, and here in Bengaluru. The areas managed are Store (Tesco’s multi-format business) supporting point of sale, checkouts, billing applications, scheduling, stock management through marketing, customer loyalty, product price promotion, merchandising, supply chain and distribution, and business intelligence and analytics, besides online channels including mobile, online grocery and merchandise for the UK and other markets, among others. There are over 3,000 engineers as part of agile teams working across the two teams. The agile model has ensured that products are configured in a way that they are release-ready on any given day. “Between end-2014 and now, there’s a lot of improvement in efficiency across teams, for we could bring a difference of 25% in the end-to-end (concept-to-cash) lead time,” he claimed.

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