By Ali Knapp, Wisetail
In the era of instant gratification and high consumer expectations, retailers have so much to keep in mind when it comes to establishing customer loyalty. With 58% of consumers indicating that a quality customer service experience influenced their decision to make a purchase, providing your employees with the proper skills is non-negotiable.
In the retail space especially, no matter how seasoned the staff is, there are always new products on the shelves and customer situations to address. Using a proper learning management system (LMS) can reinvigorate your company’s dedication to training, learning, and development through its consistent instructional approach. Whether you have one retail location or thousands, an LMS can be easily accessed across all locations and eliminates the need for planning, setting up, and implementing traditional on-site training.
So, What Exactly Is An LMS?
An LMS is an online hub for your staff that houses all your company’s training materials and documents for easy access and use. Since it’s cloud-based, it provides all employees with immediate access to critical information if and when they need it without disrupting workflow or grabbing a coworker for assistance. It provides tailored training modules, assessment tools, and easy communication with your team members, all wrapped up in the guise of gamification to keep them engaged.
To provide an individualized experience, an LMS offers each employee their own profile, keeping all content up to date, organized, and simple to find. Since everyone learns differently, it’s also highly customizable for your team. Whether they prefer microlearning, blended learning, virtual reality, slideshows, or a multitude of other ways, the options are numerous and can be adapted.
How Can An LMS Help Retailers?
An LMS is a win-win for employees and employers alike. Your staff feels empowered to do their job well, and you provide an excellent customer experience as a result. What could be better than that? Several other benefits include:
- Clear objectives: Goal setting is an important step in the training process, but it can be tricky and time consuming. An LMS can help employers establish a list of behaviors or milestones they’d like to see so there isn’t time and money wasted on content irrelevant to the company.
- Centralized data: Have a new employee starting on Monday and need to gather your materials? With an LMS, there is no need to spend time digging through handbooks, texts, or hard copies of instructional materials. All trainees can easily access necessary materials through a mobile device or laptop.
- Employee retention: Prioritizing engagement from day one can help the staff feel like they are part of the company’s vision. Since it’s customizable, you can structure your system to immerse employees in a simple, quick, and easy way.
- Awareness and documentation: Not everyone will have the same learning curve. Since employers will have access to all the materials, they’ll be able to address skills gaps early, correcting them before they become an unwanted habit.
Getting The Most Out Of Your LMS
Since learning is an ongoing process—especially in retail where things are always moving and changing—having a consistent training experience is the way to go. What could take a few hours to get through on your LMS will save days of hands-on or in-person training. In addition, the ability to monitor employee progress and performance empowers retailers to know what trainings need to be revisited or which employees might be ready for advancement.
A recent survey revealed that 41% of respondents said the area that needed the most improvement in the training process was inadequate training software and lack of gamification. The average turnover rate in the retail industry is just above 60% with poor onboarding listed as a cause. Whether first impressions are the best or not, why take the chance? By implementing an LMS, you’re setting up your retail organization to have employees that are happier, more knowledgeable, and able to provide an overall better customer experience.
About The Author
Ali Knapp is president at Wisetail.