There is no doubt about the importance to have engagement employees at store floor to reach great store results, but what means employee engagement?
An engagement employee will fix a messy stack of T-shirts when nobody’s looking, voluntarily stay late to help make the holiday decorations look perfect, take it upon themselves to come in early and refill the shelves before a big sale, among many other things.
Summarizing an engaged retail employees take pride in their work and, therefore, care about their stores.
Employee engagement is important to reach great revenue results at store, but not only for that, disengaged employees don’t take care of revenue and generate an extra cost in many points, which could be unacceptable.
If disengaged employees leave the company or you decide to dismiss them, you must to replace them, which takes ad spend and valuable man hours. As you may already know, finding a new hourly employee could run you thousands of euros. Specifically, the IRLE (Institute for Research on Labor and Employment) report in the research Employee Replacement Cost that replacing an employee who makes approximately 10€ per hour costs up to 4.000$ (3.600€)!
Additionally the productivity of disengaged employee will fall to unacceptable levels. According to a Global Workforce Study by Tower Watson, disengaged employees make 100X more mistakes than their engaged coworkers. Do you imagine the extra cost that can generate an employee who is wasting 100X more time, resources and, ultimately, money?
At the end disengaged employee provide a poor customer service which generates dissatisfied customers.
According to an Accenture Global Consumer Pulse Survey, 52% of shoppers switch brands because of subpar customer service. That means that retailers lose nearly 1 in 2 customers to human error — human error that’s likely brought on by disengagement.
But how to archive engagement associates at store floor that are engaged with customers?
Before your staff can engage with customers and deliver an authentic experience, they must first be engaged with their job, their team, and their company. In this sense employees are engaged with their company if they feel that the company is engaged with them, so the employee must feel that the company is taking care of them, in many levels and we reach an employee engagement..
Many researches show that building a highly engaged workforce takes combination of many things, each one impacting people in different ways.
Particularly in the retail sector due to the wide extension of store opening times, the importance of the customer experience, and the variable workload dependent of the customer visits, are specially important the work environment, scheduling and workload.
For hourly staff, their shift schedules are among their highest concerns. Moreover with the influx of younger workers and the proliferation of technology at work, the whole environment has to be more flexible and transparent.
Related to this, scheduling and workload, associates will feel attended and that the company take care of them if the following is true among other things
Retail floor employees who enjoy fairness and participation in, predictability of, and a measure of control over their schedules enjoy greater work-life balance. Conversely Unpredictable scheduling, lack of fairness and lack of equity in assignments — and work — can leave associates feeling as if they’re lost in the numbers, and lose directly all their engagement.
Having all these issues into account, in addition to search a high performance of the store team can be quite juggling act for store manager, and we must not forget that they are specially an important piece for archive an engagement workforce.
Implementing a smart scheduling process that seeks to archive all point that help to reach an engagement store team, and a high business performance is quite complex to do it without tools.
The good news, however, is that there are new solutions on the market that were designed specifically for better employee engagement and interaction, as well as far improved predictability in scheduling. These systems support real-time information and anywhere access. These solutions give staff access to their schedules via mobile devices, request time off via smartphone, and more, all without forgetting the best performance for the store, and the most appropriate distribution of staff hours with the potential customer visits.
Now days there are solutions that using advanced analytics can turn inputs such as customer footfall history and employee preference into powerful outputs like smart schedules that fit perfectly the employee preference with the best business performance.
The most advanced workforce management solutions provide the potential to unite all important data and decision point using state of the art in data analytics focusing schedules to accomplish opposed goals like
In sum, in the retail sector scheduling and workload is an important axis for the employee engagement. When employees experience unpredictability and unfairness in their hours, they become disenchanted and worse, disengaged. So in order to accomplish an engagement workforce it is important to take care of employee schedules taking them to a higher level of smartness, aligning the business performance with the employee’s preference favor staff’s work-life balance,
With advanced workforce management solution, coupled with a people-focused culture, retailers extend the stay of employees. Staff becomes more productive. Retailers become better able to create the environment, organically, that compels floor associates to reciprocate, to the delight of customers.
C007/20-ED. 2020 call for proposals on technological development based on artificial intelligence and other digital enabling technologies within the framework of the strategic action of digital economy and society of the state R&D&I program