The WFC Group Blog

Retailers: Prevent Unplanned Absences, For Your Customers' Sake

Posted by Neil Shah on Jan 15, 2019 11:45:00 AM

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For many retail managers, customer satisfaction is the greatest measure of success. According to a new study by The Workforce Institute at Kronos Incorporated, that satisfaction can be influenced by whether employees themselves feel engaged.

One problem many retailers in the study believe impacts customer satisfaction is the rate of unplanned absences affecting quality of service. Over 60% of survey respondents agree that higher unplanned absences stem from low employee engagement, and more than half see a similar connection to high staff turnover.

Reexamine Workforce Management with Employee Engagement in Mind

Workforce management systems can be a make or break influence on the employee experience. By taking a proactive stance and trying to understand the pain points for managers and employees alike, for instance in scheduling shifts and planning time off, retail leaders can eliminate structural hurdles that have a negative impact on employee engagement.

Making even small changes can go a long way to demonstrate that the organization is paying attention and supporting what matters at the employee level. In return, sparking greater engagement and productivity as a whole.

Use Shift Swapping Technology Effectively

In the study, more than a third of retailers declared shift swapping as one of their biggest challenges from a management standpoint. Many of the latest technologies available can help automate the approval of shift-swap requests, minimizing the required oversight, helping to free up managers and grant flexibility to employees within reason.

Employee access to these features has a long way to go. Less than 25% of businesses allow their employees to manage their shift requests from their mobile devices—an offering that can go a long way to providing workers the tools and flexibility they anticipate these days. Simple upgrades to their experience like greater self-service and mobility can do wonders for their feeling of engagement. When they can negotiate shift changes with colleagues on short notice, managers can trust that the work is still being covered and customers are getting the quality service they expect.

Topics: Workforce Management