Magazine Article | September 22, 2011

Leave Retail Redundancies With New-Age WFM

Source: Innovative Retail Technologies

By Sahir Anand and Max Gladstone, The Aberdeen Group

An inflationary economy, slower-than-expected growth in consumer spending, and the rise of shopping alternatives have pressured brick-and-mortar retailers to differentiate themselves through customer service. Meanwhile, static and redundant WFM in stores has resulted in decreasing employee productivity and practices that are not customer-centric.

Retailers using redundant legacy WFM processes/systems cannot match the labor cost and customer engagement standards of retailers using nonlegacy WFM processes. Aberdeen's data shows that stores using nonlegacy WFM see customer retention gains six-times greater than stores using legacy WFM, and half the labor cost to sales increase year-over-year. Stores with legacy WFM processes and technology are not managing customer expectations or labor costs at the same level as their nonlegacy counterparts. Even astute store managers have trouble improving labor cost and customer service performance if their WFM application does not support labor planning, scheduling, and task management.