Delhaize deploys IT innovation for a better customer experience

Delhaize never stops optimizing the customer experience in its over 800 shops. ICT is an essential part of this. Proximus NXT plays a role in the high pace of innovation to support Delhaize's mission of offering consumers healthy food every day.

Delhaize sets the bar high in terms of the buying and shopping experience. This is one way for the retailer to stay ahead of the competition. Hervé Van Wayenberge, IT Director and Jean-Marc Vanhove, IT Domain Lead Infrastructure at Delhaize, together with Bruno Tintinger, Sales Account Executive at Proximus NXT, have turned the IT department into an early adopter.

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Solid pace of innovation with high ambitions

Hervé: "At Delhaize, we use technology to fulfil our mission of making healthy food accessible to everyone, every day. As part of this, we have 10 Belgian 'test shops’ where we continuously test new things. Up to around 80 projects a year and IT plays a core role."

Bruno: "Of those 80 projects, 50 have an impact on ICT infrastructure. That is why we need to coordinate and monitor these in detail. At Proximus NXT, we experience Delhaize’s ambitious view in real life. The 'try fast, fail fast' attitude is quite challenging, but it keeps us sharp and agile."

Jean-Marc: "We implement around 15 to 20 of those 50 projects every year with Proximus NXT."

IT complexity

Hervé: "Technology is not about saving a few seconds at the checkout with automatic scanning of shopping trolleys, for example. We focus on the quality of our range and content for a healthier diet and life, ... IoT, data monitoring, and advanced logistics processes are crucial elements in putting our customers at the center."

Jean-Marc: "We now depend on ICT. Our customers are constantly connected to our infrastructure and all the systems behind it. So, our ICT has to work optimally and be up to date."

Our ICT partner should be able to follow our wildest dreams and innovative experiments. If we ask for a pink elephant? Then that is what we will get, or at least something very similar.

Hervé Van Wayenberge, IT Director at Delhaize

Bruno: "Over the years, we got to know the ins and outs of Delhaize's business. That means that we can now tackle much more complex experiments. Delhaize does not turn to us to buy standard ICT solutions. We run the network, the cloud, and security. Everything is tailor-made. So, we are talking about a completely different level of responsibility."

Hervé: "What really set Proximus NXT apart from other suppliers was the fact that they know us so well. They are able to compensate for the weaknesses in our organization by providing expertise in areas we are less familiar with. But they are also capable of adapting to our needs and offer us solutions that sometimes deviate from the default to give us the user experience we are looking for. If we ask for a pink elephant? Then that is what we will get, or at least something very similar."


Bruno: "There are always several projects running at the same time, across the different stages of the customer journey. That is why we need a team with colleagues who have specific ICT expertise as well as colleagues who keep an overview. That is when our entire Proximus NXT ecosystem comes in handy, just as our subsidiaries Davinsi Labs and SpearIT, who are already collaborating."

Jean-Marc: "Our teams have grown closer. It is a team that performs in all areas. We have the right person in the right place and we have already been able to deliver that which was envisaged."

Keep looking ahead

Hervé: "Proximus NXT often come up with proactive innovation suggestions that might work but for which we are not ready at that point. It will be particularly interesting to see how Proximus NXT can help us get to the point where we are able to deploy them. We work together to move forward on major innovation projects and align them with existing business. That is a challenge for many companies."

Delhaize's company profile

Delhaize is a Belgian supermarket chain that wants to make healthy food accessible to everyone in society.

Hervé Van Wayenberge is IT Director at Delhaize.
Jean-Marc Vanhove is IT Domain Lead Infrastructure at Delhaize.
Bruno Tintinger is Sales Account Executive at Proximus NXT.

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