How retailers are embracing innovation to optimise their store and empower their employees

by | 22.02.2017

Every year retailers are faced with the same challenge; how to increase sales while at the same reducing costs and spending less.


Right now the industry is holding its breath amidst the swirling clouds of uncertainty created by the politics of a new administration in the US and the impact of Brexit on the European markets. As the bottom-line remains the single biggest factor driving the behaviour of retailers, this uncertainty isn’t making the traditional challenges any easier.

 

At the start of the year we sent a small team from our offices in Stockholm and London to NRF, retail’s big show in New York City, where the need for innovative solutions and the disruption of the status quo dominated proceedings. And this need for innovation isn’t merely focussed on what retailers can do for their customers, but also what they can do for their employees.

 

As Danny Meyer, CEO of Union Square Hospitality Group and the founder of Shake Shack, said in his keynote: “We can become essential in the lives of our customers by first becoming essential in the lives of the people who work for us.”

 

That’s why retailers are embracing SaaS based, mobile-first workforce management (WFM) solutions like Quinyx to empower their employees and optimise their businesses. And they’re doing it by...

 

Being mobile. 

Shauna Maney, one of our Business Development Managers and part of the team who attend the NRF show, says: “Any workforce management solution has to be mobile-first. If it’s not mobile, it’s not of interest and that’s really a demand retailers are seeing trickle up from their stores. It has to be mobile because that’s what their store employees want.”

 

Through the Quinyx mobile app employees are easily able to control when they are working, swap shifts and apply for leave. Managers can also use the app to approve shift swaps, make new shifts available and communicate with employees. This means they’re no longer stuck in the back office but instead on the floor where they can be selling to and interacting with customers.

 

Being connected.

The need for enhanced integration was also a key topic at NRF, especially when it comes to software. Everything needs to connect otherwise solving one problem can create two more new ones.

 

Quinyx often acts as a hub for retailers, pulling and pushing information into different systems. It’s this level of integration which significantly reduces labour intensive back office process like absence management and running payroll.

 

Being where their employees are.

Any company serious about empowering their employees has to be where their employees are. As Shauna says: “Retailers want to be everywhere the consumer is. Look at Amazon. They are on your computer, your phone, your TV and throughout your home now with Alexa. At Quinyx we want to be everywhere the employee is, so that employees are engaging with the solution and both employee and employer see the benefits quicker.”

 

Being agile.

One of the biggest benefits retailers see when they invest in a WFM solution is the amount of time they save on labour intensive processes. By having this time back, they are able to think creatively about how to increase, train staff more effectively and coach employees to a higher standard. They are also able to react, instantly, to the needs of the business and ensure there’s always the right number of people in store based on demand.


It’s these kinds of innovations creating a buzz throughout the industry. And if you’d like to find out more about how Quinyx can help your retail business, we’d love to hear from you.

Tommy Tonkins

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