Employees are any retailer's greatest resource — we truly believe that. Especially the case for brick-and-mortar stores, the customer's most meaningful and memorable experiences come from interacting with store associates.
In a competitive retail market where survival means giving your best at all times, success will depend on leaders behind-the-scenes empowering associates to be out on the floor, ready to address customer needs at a moment's notice.
Any moment when an employee is tied up or out of reach from a customer in need is a danger to the customer's experience. So, making sure routine tasks are taken care of without impeding on availability and visibility to customers becomes retailers' big challenge. Our solution? Use workforce management technology to your best benefit through three key solutions:
1. Smarter Staffing and Scheduling
Store traffic varies greatly, but there are underlying trends that can help retail managers staff efficiently. Workforce solutions like Kronos offers can take historic performance and traffic data to automatically suggest days or times worth adjusting regular schedules to avoid over- and under-staffing. By also putting seasonal data into managers hands, retailers can also be more proactive about seasonal hires, keeping workloads manageable for year-round employees who can best address customers' needs.
2. Task + Time Coordination
Effective scheduling isn't only based around customer traffic. Employees need time to complete their routine tasks that keep the store running smoothly, as well as fulfilling any new requests from HQ. By building in time around predictable periods of high customer traffic, managers can help employees be in reach of customers while still finding time behind the scenes, like moving new inventory to the floor.
Task management solutions were a huge benefit to our client The Container store, helping remote coordinators in HQ issue tasks to stores nationwide and monitor progress in real time. Their employees could see what needed to be done and be smart about how and when to fit tasks during lulls in customer traffic. Curious to learn more? Download our Container Store case study today!
3. Engaged Managers
Amanda Nichols, Senior Manager of Retail and Hospitality Practice at Kronos, Inc. sums up the benefits of having active and involved managers in her recent article on RetailCustomerExperience.com.
She writes, "Managers will also benefit from having insights into their team's attendance and performance trends, including nonproductive hours, overtime, and outliers, all of which can empower retail managers to become more agile in responding to workforce challenges, addressing individual employee needs, and building stronger customer relationships."
When managers are relieved from the administrative burdens through data and visibility, they can put their efforts toward building up their employees — and a happy employee makes for happier customers!
Discover More Retail Coverage
Interested in even more ways workforce management can work to your benefit? We recently launched Retail@Work to provide retail leaders insights into the latest industry knowledge our team has to offer. Discover more on our Retail Solutions page, and follow new updates with @RetailAtWork on Twitter.