For some retailers, developing an IT architecture -- the framework of technology applications that run the business -- is easy: They just rip out all the old systems and install a new all-encompassing system. Borrowing from astronomy, this approach is known as "the big bang." But most retailers don't have the luxury of making such sweeping changes all at once. For them, a step-by-step approach, adding one application at a time, is much more prudent, from both a fiscal and a business ...

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