Intelligent CIO Europe Issue 57 - Page 59


Richard Surman , Head of IT , Crew Clothing , explains how the UK retailer has transformed its IT infrastructure by utilising Couchbase ’ s highperformance database .

Can you tell us about your role at Crew Clothing and what this looks like day to day ?
I ’ m responsible for all of the IT strategy , infrastructure , software , hardware , etc . for the business , as well as what our current systems do and how they ’ re used within the departments in the business . I ’ m also responsible for deciding what we should be introducing to the business to help innovate and grow and make everybody ’ s day-to-day life as simple as possible .
Tell us about the initiative behind deciding to partner with Couchbase and about your strategic vision ?
When I joined Crew around two years ago , we were coming out of the pandemic and there was uncertainty around whether stores would be open for a prolonged period of time , or whether we ’ d go back into lockdown and have to close again . Around this time , the business was looking for other ways to drive revenue and help support us through these troubled times .
One of the initiatives driven by the business was getting our name out there through a number of sponsorship events . There was still an element of uncertainty about what that would look like as we didn ’ t know whether the events would go ahead , what the capacity would look like and whether we would need to socially distance etc ., but we had a plan to sponsor the Lawn Tennis Association ( LTA ) events and we ’ d have little pop-up shops in each of these events where we ’ d sell our products .
However , we needed to make sure that we could drop a mobile selling solution in place , allow our store staff to sell products to customers , but also if needed , have the ability for our customers to be able to purchase products in a socially distanced way . We also wanted the ability to drop a solution into one location , but then pick it up very quickly , move it to another location and


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