Magazine Article | March 26, 2012

Managing A Labor Budget Turns Into Real Savings

Source: Innovative Retail Technologies

April 2012 Integrated Solutions For Retailers

By Bob Johns, associate editor

Regional grocer Doc’s Food Stores saves on labor costs by implementing a cloud-based employee management system.

The retail grocery industry is more labor intensive than many other retail verticals. Efficiently managing and scheduling this labor force can represent significant cost and time savings for the retailer. Doc’s Foods Stores Inc., a 66-year-old, family–run, six-store grocery retailer, was facing serious time management and scheduling issues concerning its 250 employees. Managers were spending too much time scheduling, adjusting schedules, monitoring breaks, budgeting departments, controlling overtime, and sending payroll to corporate. Doc’s president and CEO Jim Brown knew that a cost-effective solution to the problems had to be found. In mid-2010, Bixby, OK store manager Kevin Caskey became the guinea pig for implementing a new system at the store level. At the time, store managers did not have immediate access to associates’ time punches; this information was not readily available until payroll wrapped at the end of the week. “To see if someone in the meat department was into overtime, I had to have corporate run reports and forward them to me,” Caskey complains. Managers had no visibility into the current time management system.