I’m back from my twenty-something-th NRF.  It was another great show for Opterus and felt like a normal NRF.  I loved seeing old colleagues, friends and our extended Opterus family.  A Special shout out to Pet Supplies Plus’s Matt & Kelly, who delivered an amazing Big Ideas Session for us.  If you didn’t see it in person, check it out here


This year at NRF there was definitely a theme, and you guessed it, it was ‘artificial intelligence.’ This was not the first NRF where there was a dominant theme being talked about.  In 2022 everyone was chatting about the Metaverse. Before that, Blockchain was the focus.  I believe that there is going to be huge value for retailers with AI but it’s not going to be found in AI for AI’s sake.  The real value will be found by understanding what is strategic and executable.  By adding capabilities and functionality to solutions that solve real business problems and industry specific challenges that will give retailers a measurable return on investment.  


Opterus will be taking advantage of AI technology to help dramatically increase efficiency and optimize retail operations. Our initial planned functionality will be incorporating both generative and predictive AI to help retail ops teams more easily communicate with stores, generate contented for the field, and help them field questions from the stores by offering employees access to a chatbot specifically trained with a company’s SOPs and product information. Some examples of this are to be able to create specific chatbots to handle offering solutions based on questions about any policies, procedures, or current programs. You will be able to allow users to open issue tickets if the chatbot cannot answer adequately and use the eventual answer to better train the chatbot. You’ll be able to use the AI functionality to create a friendly and concise communication tailored to a company based on a few summary sentences, create clear projects and tasks based on a simple list of points customized to the brand and types of stores that need to do it, and auto create suggested content, tests, and quizzes to do all the heavy lifting of creating new courses.  More to come.  This will be a big topic at our client summit in May and we are looking forward to discussing it with all of you. Your official invite is coming soon!


Opterus has recently added SCORM support to our already robust auditing and testing features to ensure it meets the requirements of retail LMS needs. This coupled with our new user customizable and responsive user interface makes OPSCENTER a top end learning solution for stores.  You can create course materials using our custom test creator as well as any existing SCORM content you have, or a combination of both. You will be able to link multiple courses into a full certification course to ensure employees can easily be stepped through a simple or advanced set of materials and tests to become certified on anything from onboarding and safety training to full knowledge expert training. You’ll have the ability to enroll and register employees for courses either manually or automatically based on configured rules and previous course completions. You can allow employees self-service options to selectively enroll in a course or take a quick refresher quiz when time allows. And you will have reporting results for mandatory and elective courses.


Anyway you look at it, 2024 is going to be an exciting time for our industry and we are excited for the potential.