How to Engage Store Associates with Workforce Management
Whether it’s the challenges that come with having an irregular schedule or the high turnover that comes from those challenges, store associates struggle when faced with inconvenient and ineffective schedules. As a result, they become less engaged with the work they’re doing and aren’t as able to help customers in the store.
This has a dramatic impact on productivity, customer experience, and the gross margin. Retailers with highly engaged store associates outperform their competitors’ earnings by almost 150 percent. Engaged associates also consistently provide better customer service and are less likely to leave their jobs. Conversely, retailers with disengaged store associates earn less per share than their competition.
It’s imperative that retailers find out how to neutralize variables that decrease that engagement level, creating store associates that thrive in their jobs, driving more sales and providing customers with outstanding retail experiences.
Impacting the Bottom Line with Engaged Store Associates
With the right tools, retailers can empower store associates to be more engaged during their shifts. Workforce management and employee self-service solutions help retailers accomplish this, simplifying store associates’ work and giving them greater control over their schedules.
Simplifying work starts with optimizing labor schedules. Employee schedules have to factor in all of the variables that affect the store associate. Whether it’s their skillset, their schedule preferences, or other obligations outside of work, all of these have an impact on a retailer’s bottom line because they affect how well store associates function in the store. By using workforce management solutions to optimize labor schedules, retailers can account for these variables. Tasks are completed by the store associate with the most relevant skillset, ensuring that a store associate who isn’t proficient on the cash register isn’t accidentally scheduled to perform that job. They also ensure that, if employees have to pick up their children from soccer practice at 6 or have second jobs in the morning, they can have those other responsibilities easily accounted for in the schedule. By seamlessly integrating these variables into the scheduling process, store associates are more engaged, more productive, and better equipped to help retailers increase their gross margins.
Retailers benefit when store associates have better control over weekly schedules. With mobile access to an employee self-service solution, store associates have more freedom to manage their schedules and are more engaged and productive while on the sales floor. Employee self-service allows store associates to view their schedules along with task details, and gives them the ability to request time off and advertise open shifts. They can also view timecard details so they know how many hours they have on their paycheck. With this solution, store managers have the ability to approve or reject requests, and can directly communicate any schedule changes to store associates. All of this contributes to store associates’ overall satisfaction with their work, making them more engaged and better able to impact the retailer’s bottom line.
Store associates want to be engaged with their work. They want to clock in and be excited to start interacting with customers. With workforce management solutions, retailers can give store associates what they need to be more engaged, increasing sales and creating excellent customer experiences.
Of course, this is only one piece of a complex puzzle. For more tips on how to foster more productive and more engaged store associates, check out our white paper, 3 Ways to Simplify Work for Retail Store Associates!