Empowering Next-Gen Execution at Your Retail Stores
Retailers today are laser-focused on agility as a response to the challenges in retail today. This involves empowering retail stores that are connected, enabling more responsive frontline employees, and staying nimble so that today’s customers receive the personalized customer experience they desire. This is particularly important as the holiday shopping season arrives, with retailers still needing to focus on safety and cleanliness, omnichannel processes such as BOPIS and curbside pickup, and shifting customer shopping habits.
And new hurdles keep coming up within the retail industry. Supply chain gaps are making it more difficult to keep items stocked on shelves. Labor shortages continue to make it difficult to hire and retain staff, with many stores going understaffed. These challenges are frustrating even for leading retailers. Those that are using outdated methods to coordinate execution of major tasks, whether it’s email, phone, or three-ring binders, are making far more challenging to ensure that tasks are done on time and frontline employees have the most up-to-date information.
What does this mean for your store managers and associates? They may feel overwhelmed by the amount of work that they have to do during their shifts. They may be unsure of what work they have to do because of slow and cumbersome communication methods. And all of this translates to lower employee engagement, lower employee retention, and higher rates of employee frustration and burnout. This can be devastating to your in-store customer experience – engaged and knowledgeable frontline employees are an essential component of providing customers with the information and the assistance they need.
Ensuring success in today’s challenging environment comes down to empowering next-gen execution in your retail stores. Next-gen execution means making your frontline employees more connected, giving them new and actionable information in real time so they can immediately react to any challenges that arise in the store. It means ensuring that your employees can communicate in real time, with real time insight into all tasks they need to complete in the store. And it means providing store managers with immediate visibility to all completed tasks, with the ability to provide in-the-moment coaching should frontline employees need it.
Solutions that enable next-gen execution should provide:
Peer-to-Peer Communication: A real-time communication solution provides a simple way to send messages across the organization, giving corporate, field managers, store managers, and frontline employees a single, unified solution to send and receive messages from one another. With the ability to create message templates and distribution lists, you can simplify the process of communicating new policies and procedures, ensuring that everyone in your organization receives only relevant and up-to-date information.
Real-Time Task Management: A real-time task management solution streamlines store execution and communication by providing a real-time view of all work to be done in the store. It centralizes all tasks generated by corporate, store managers, IoT devices, and third-party systems, intelligently directing workflow to the right employees so frontline employees aren’t overloaded with tasks. By giving frontline employees a prioritized list of tasks and projects that updates in real time, you can coordinate activities and drive a real-time response to any unplanned issues at your stores.
These solutions also enable management by exception; if a task goes undone, the system alerts managers to proactively address any underlying issue, allowing for in-the-moment training opportunities. And with the ability to analyze execution analytics, you can discover system causes of task non-completion and assess trends in task assignment and completion, making it easier to fix issues in the store.
Streamlined Key Execution Processes: There are a number of solutions that can simplify many of the processes that frontline employees have to contend with every day. Document repository solutions ensure that your store associates have real-time mobile access to all relevant documentation, such as cleanliness protocols or new stocking procedures. Intelligent forms solutions eliminate cumbersome paper-based forms, providing store managers with a way to create, escalate, and monitor forms through their mobile devices. And visual merchandising solutions include images and step-by-step instructions to simplify setting up merchandising displays, with real-time validation capabilities making it easier to manage by exception.
Leveraging these some or all of these solutions will help you empower next-gen execution at your stores, making it easier to handle routine and unexpected tasks more efficiently than ever before. To learn about how next-gen execution can help you during the holiday season, check out our white paper, “How Retail Can Avoid Holiday Season Nightmares by Streamlining Store Operations”.