2017 was a year of growth, development and adventure for Nextenture. If our motto is “because effective retail is a journey,” this was arguably the biggest journey of our company’s life.
— HardTech.tv (@HardTechTV) January 20, 2017
Entering 2017, we were proud to announce that we had become Reflexis’ official development and implementation partner. After having success working with clients like Estee Lauder and CVS Pharmacy, our reputation for having world class implementations across the Reflexis suite began to speak for itself.
With an expanded role in the industry came greater responsibilities. Companies like Wawa, Walgreens and Love’s Travel Stops, among many others were knocking at our door. We knew that there was a need to expand our team, which at the time only consisted of eight long-term employees, and a few contracted workers within the India team.
Currently, Nextenture has 31 employees – almost four times the amount we had at the end of 2016. Many of the people we initially had as contracted workers in India became full-time Nextenture workers. As the year went by, we also realized that growing our company meant more than just having a larger team of engineers, developers and people in help desk support. It also meant redefining the word “implementation.” Simply put, you can’t have implementation without strategy.
To fulfill our need for even more strategic expertise, Nextenture brought two people on board: John Liebler, the former divisional vice president of store operations at Signet, and Libby Romfh, the former director of store operations at Barnes & Noble. In John’s case, he also had valuable experience as a former sales associate, working his way up Signet’s organizational hierarchy, while Libby’s degree in change management also proved to be an essential fit for our business needs. Between the two of them was 60 years of retail strategy experience, implementations and knowledge of workforce management software. And the additions didn’t stop with those two.
— Nextenture (@nextenture) August 16, 2017
Ken Cooke, our newly signed product architect, also emphasized a new point of direction for Nextenture’s future: the creation of intellectual property. As a mobile developer, digital trainer and change management leader with experience at companies like Apple, Ken’s input for the team was extremely crucial for developing two of our biggest additional services: the Discovery eLearning platform for Reflexis products and Next!: an appointment booking solution created for store associates and customers. While the latter remains in a testing stage, we hope to launch it in early 2018 by NRF 2018.
By the end of the year, we had an expanded team across both India and the United States, a greater presence at trade shows like Reflexions and NRF, and a far more consistent digital media presence. Before, we didn’t really have anything like biweekly blog posts or client and partner testimonial videos. As Nextenture grows, we hope to increase our digital footprint further, whether though attending more trades shows or creating additional multimedia content like our testimonials. Currently, we have a series of explanatory service videos planned to be released across 2018, along with yet another new website.
As next year approaches, we know that there’ll be changes, planned and unexpected. But if effective retail is a journey, the few bumps in the road that we inevitably encounter will ultimately be tests of if we truly understand effective retail. If there’s anything to be taken from 2017, it’s that for Nextenture, the journey never ends.