by Rotageek on 29 January 2021
The effects of Covid-19 on business operations are incalculable. Entire brick-and-mortar stores have gone digital, offices closed and teams reassembled, new innovations have been implemented at speed. Throughout the last twelve months, leaders have faced immediate changes to their entire operating model.
Whilst the pandemic will, hopefully, come to an end as the vaccine is rolled out, it is clear that the business implications of such a monumental crisis will be with us for years to come - if not permanently.
Covid-19 has caused one of the largest shifts to human behaviour in our history. As consumer habits have drastically changed, so has that of our workforce. The need for flexibility and autonomy have crafted a new way of operating as more and more employees work remotely.
Employee productivity still remains one of the biggest levers for business success and with it comes a mandatory shift to a new agile operating model. Reverting back to pre-Covid processes is no longer an option.
In this article we highlight how embracing technology to enable improvements in productivity is vital in a post-Covid world.
In the last few years, we have truly begun to see how tech integrations can enhance workforce productivity for consumer-facing companies. Retailers are now able to collect and measure shopper behaviour with industry-leading accuracy that then allows stores to perfectly predict and meet customer demand.
The RetailNext and Rotageek partnership combines best-in-class traffic data with AI-led auto scheduling to optimise productivity. Retailers gain immediate insights into store performance, true traffic, conversion and peak hours. This information is then utilised to predict shopper trends, behaviour patterns and to forecast future demand with prescriptive recommendations based on current and past data. By integrating the traffic analytics with Rotageek’s smart scheduling workforce management, stores can build schedules proven more accurate to customer demand than a human can create - whilst meeting business compliance rules and employee preferences.
The tech partnership has been rolled out across global stores, saving up to 8% on labour spend.
“Thanks to Rotageek, planning the right number of people with the right skills and at the right time is no longer complicated and time consuming. The perfect integration with our HR & footfall traffic counting system RetailNext allows us now to build effective schedules for our retail teams in a matter of minutes. That’s an amazing win and a major step forward in making the business operations more efficient and productive.”
Andreea Ciocan, Retail Operations Manager at Sephora Middle East
A similar partnership with retail choreography software, Qudini, has demonstrated Rotageek’s ability to enhance labour-based productivity. By feeding employee rota information into a booking system, stores are able to accurately predict who and how many staff are available for customer appointments. This has not only saved administration time but also improved consumer satisfaction.
The booking system proved successful during 2020 with brands including O2 and Tesco adopting virtual queuing and scheduled store visits. By supporting social distancing regulations, tech innovations such as Qudini will only become more in demand as they continue to boost productivity.
Flexibility was already a pre-pandemic focus for many organisations. But as remote working and staggered shift bubbles became the norm, the demand for such working practices soared. With 28% of staff stating that their mental health has declined since the outbreak, more needs to be done to cater for employee preferences.
Many workers’ expectations of their employer have changed in the last twelve months - and the request for flexibility has swelled with 73% of staff now valuing the practice. The benefits are apparent; happier staff lead to improved productivity. So how can companies continue to enhance flexible working?
There are a complex combination of factors that influence employee happiness including time management, trust, the work environment and recognition. Yet many of these can be touched upon by the adoption of automatic scheduling.
Scheduling automation lends itself to improved employee engagement as much as it directly impacts productivity. Staff gain increased autonomy over their working hours with the ability to swap shifts, pick up extra work and input preferences. But the software also has timesaving benefits. Managers who previously spent up to nine hours a week created staff rotas can have up to 80% of schedule-related admin. Not only do auto-generated rotas result in heightened accuracy - there is no need for staff to spend time making it happen.
Investing in your workers’ autonomy is crucial for nurturing a next generation of leaders. Yet to dramatically increase employee productivity, there must be a collective set of performance goals for the entire workforce.
New innovations are streamlining business operations and workforce communication for better productivity. Platforms such as Colateral.io make processes easier for multi-location teams, saving time, money and confusion. The app allows retailers to plan and implement in store campaigns with simple reporting and clear project management tools.
Apps including Atobi are also engaging teams with a creative cross-organisation solution. Gamification enhances the user experience, making day to day training, tasks and communications more exciting and human-centered. This provides companies with an impactful method of measuring employee productivity through KPIs and company-wide goals.
By implementing productivity software that not only drives efficiency gains but also engages employees, businesses can develop a future-forward operating model.
Find out more about how Rotageek’s auto scheduling software can improve profitability and your employee productivity in a post-Covid world.