By Matt Pillar, chief editor
June 2013 Integrated Solutions For Retailers
Conversion, attendance, and efficiency improvements are among the benefits reaped by this 91-store retailer’s integrated, mobile, cloud-based scheduling system.
In the thirteen years since World Kitchen was born, the company has become the retail distribution arm for a veritable who’s who of kitchen brands, including Baker’s Secret, Chicago Cutlery, Corelle, CorningWare, Ecko, Pyrex, Revere, and Snapware. Today, World Kitchen operates 91 CorningWare- and Corelle & More-branded stores staffed by more than 700 store-level associates.
As the company grew, it began to feel the pain caused by a lack of integration and visibility between the store-level workforce schedules its managers were building and its payroll and profit and loss management systems. Mike Chester, VP of store operations at World Kitchen, says a three-year experiment to tighten the process was bearing little fruit. “We were originally using a simple payroll matrix system, whereby stores received a set number of hours with which to schedule their teams based on their sales volume,” he explains. “This didn’t give us a good connection between store-level schedules and our back-office accounting systems, so in early 2011 we moved that to an Excel-based scheduling model, again looking at payroll as a percent of net sales.” Still, the company had little visibility into employee schedules or hours worked at the corporate, district, and regional levels. “This lack of visibility gave us little control to influence scheduling practices in relation to business trends. For example, we couldn’t see how day-part traffic patterns were affecting sales at the store level and how we should be staffing accordingly to both meet customer service expectations and stay within our labor budgets,” says Chester.