Dollar General Invests in Technology

— September 06, 2011

In a recent conference call with financial analysts discussing second quarter results, Dollar General executives gave insight into technological investments the discount chain is making including the implementation of a new workforce management system, the rollout of a new procurement system, improvements made to in-store handhelds and the launch of its first e-commerce site.
 
"The workforce management system is an industrial engineering program that helps us better allocate the hours in the store, based on the flow of the customer traffic," explains Rick Dreiling, CEO of Dollar General. "It also helps us identify how many hours we should use for stocking and check-out." CFO David Tehle added that "about 75% of the chain is implemented in."
 
While the workforce management system implementation is close to completed, the retailer is just beginning to rollout a new procurement system. "The exciting thing about that is that it will give us a real-time look in regards to allocating product rather than having to rely on the previous 10 or 12 weeks," explains Dreiling. "So, we think we're going to be able to do a better job of laying the right amount of product into the store at the right time, particularly on promotional items."
 
Other technological initiatives Dollar General is making include the launch of its e-commerce site on September 8. Dreiling reported that the site will initially offer over 1,000 of its current SKUs.
 
Additionally, Tehle briefly mentioned that the retailer is adding WiFi in its stores to improve the functionality of the HHT handhelds used by store employees as well as the implementation of new point-of-sale registers, both initiatives made to make the workload easier for store employees.

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