Later this month we’ll be attending Retail Tomorrow, a special event designed to ignite ideas and accelerate innovation in the retail sector, where we will be showing retail bosses how they can deliver an amazing experience for their customers by embracing mobile technology and powerful automation tools.
It’s a time of huge change for the sector. Customers’ buying habits and needs of employees are both changing. This, combined with factors like the National Living Wage and the uncertainty surrounding Brexit, means it’s an exceptionally tricky playing field for retailers to navigate.
The aim behind Retail Tomorrow is to focus on the practicalities of getting the right technology in place quickly to make retailer visions a reality, by bringing together retailers, suppliers and consultants in a forum dedicated to making change happen.
We know there’s a workforce revolution underway. A growing majority of the UK’s retail workforce consist of Millennials, of whom two-thirds express a desire to leave their organisations by 2020. This, coupled with dropping retail profit margins, demands innovation. This is where mobile solutions come into their element.
The average person lifts their mobile phone 280 times a day, yet mobile use in the workplace still has a stigma attached to it when, in reality, it shouldn’t be viewed as being scary or counter productive, but as an asset. Employees expect to be able to manage their lives through their phones, they are devices which they already rely on and increasingly will become more dependent on. From an employer’s perspective, embracing this will give greater flexibility, reliability and provide employees with a better work life balance.
Many businesses across all sectors have been slow on the uptake when it comes to empowering their workers through the smart use of software. But, as this TechCrunch article says, the use of software to empower workers can transform a business, by driving employee engagement, increasing customer satisfaction and making the business more profitable.
It can drive employee engagement, increase customer satisfaction and make the business more profitable. With happier and better engaged employees, alongside easier and more effective communication, these are the benefits your store and business will see:
1. Improved profitability
Engaged employees will make you more profitable. In fact, according to a study from Gallup, businesses with engaged employees see a 22% increase in profitability. What’s more, research from Watson Wyatt, found companies with strong employee engagement deliver a return for their shareholders of 64% across a five year period compared to 21% for those with low level of engagement.
If the bottom line is your ultimate measure of success, then keeping your employees engaged is a vital component to being successful.
2. Better employee retention
It’s much easier for you to keep an employee than it is to recruit a new one. The average cost to replace an employee in the UK is more than £30,000, which includes the time it takes to recruit them, train them and make them a high performer. With statistics from the Corporate Leadership Council showing engaged employees are 87% less likely to leave their job than disengaged ones, focussing on employee engagement makes financial sense as well as business sense.
3. Less sick days
According to the Confederation of British Industry, the number of sick days taken by disengaged employees is double that of engaged employees. Better employee engagement means less sick days which also means less time taken up by admin for your HR team.
4. Improved customer satisfaction
Gallup also found business with engaged employees score up to 20% higher on customer satisfaction surveys than their competitors with low levels of engagement. And it’s not hard to see why. Happy employees who feel rewarded in their work are much more likely to go the extra mile for your customers. The same study found the productivity in engaged employees is, again, 20% greater than disengaged employees.
At Retail Tomorrow, we’ll be holding a workshop with global retailer, Swarovski, who dared to bring mobile technology into the workplace. We’ll be asking the question, how should you, as an employer introduce mobile devices whilst balancing the risk of decreased productivity with benefits like improved flexibility, accountability and employee engagement? If you’re attending the event, we’d love for you to join us.
Want to learn more? View a special, free webinar with Swarovski where we will be discussing Future Proofing your Staff Retention with Mobile Technology.