Day One of JDA Focus 2013 Comes to a Close

Orlando-based event kicks off with “come together” customer focus, synonymous with solutions and services coming down the innovation pipeline

“26,000 people coming together in Orlando—what a great opportunity,” said JDA Software Group Inc. Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing Tom Dzierk, getting the 2,605-member audience immediately engaged at JDA Focus 2013, to the theme of this year’s “Come Together” event (in tune, of course, with The Beatles’ infamous track).

Up from the 2,013 attendee count from last year’s event, the increase comes as no surprise, following the joint venture of JDA and RedPrairie in Q4 of 2012. And while yes, there is a present mix of curiosity and excitement as to what is in store as far as solutions and services for its customers—aside from JDA Eight, the first solution announced last month following the partnership between the two companies—perhaps more apparent on day one of the show was the amount of focus on its customers.

“The company would not have gotten to where we are today without your support,” said JDA Software Chief Executive Officer Hamish Brewer, addressing the room full of attendees at Monday’s general keynote session. “I want to make you a solemn promise that throughout all of our processes and product innovation, we will keep one thing in the center of our focus—creating more value for you so you can run your business better.”

From its “Customer Satisfaction” booth on site to its held “Support Services Roundtable” discussion to a planned “Voice of the Customer” program (set for gradual roll-out later this year) and more—JDA plans to create new levels of value for its customers in an end-to-end solution that addresses:

  • Supply chain planning
  • Merchandising
  • Supple chain operation
  • Store-level commerce


That’s not to say that the company won’t continue to address the needs of its customers requiring individual offerings, according to Brewer. “Our goal is not to create a monolithic offering” i.e., an all or nothing approach, he explained.

“If you look at the technology sector, there were other companies that brought together elements of capability that really did belong together but were not connected in the past,” Brewer continued. “In the past, very often you had to choose between integration and best of breed. We’re focused on not having you make that choice anymore.”

But also important to note is that its customer focus is not necessarily as new as it is more engaged with its customers. For example, customers using JDA’s platform 7.8 within their business, are already exposed to some of the infrastructures that JDA Eight presents.

What’s more, “40 percent of enhancements made in 2012 to the JDA portfolio were driven by you—the customers,” JDA Users Group President George Frongillio explained to show attendees. “You do have a say in your future and in the products that are being used.”

JDA’s focus on the user journey is perhaps also confirmed in its expanded suite of strategic services. In tailoring added support to its customers, JDA addresses such areas as strategic vision; assessment; end-to-end design; readiness assessment; change leadership; business diagnostics; impact assessment; and optimization services.

Regardless of whether you are a distributor, manufacturer or provider, JDA’s focus on addressing its customers concerns and growth areas with innovation and expanded service offerings rang true as day one of JDA Focus 2013 came to a close.

“Bringing together JDA and RedPrairie represented an opportunity for us to change the picture in the marketplace,” said Brewer. “But sacrificing intelligence for speed—we don’t subscribe to that philosophy. As we start to integrate these products together, it is going to take us a few release cycles to get that to our customers. We have a huge amount of things we have planned over the next couple of years. JDA Eight is not the end of the journey—it is the beginning and user experience is a key element of that. We understand that flexibility is key for our customers. My goal here is to convince you that we are ready to change the game.”

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