There is no question 2021 is not lending itself well to business planning in the grocery and convenience store sector. Consider these industry observations made in March:
- Four out of 10 Americans believe their finances won’t return to normal until late 2021 or 2022 and beyond.
- Many retailers were already working on thin 2%-3% margins, so the extra resources put toward additional services like curbside delivery caused retailers to lose money. Worse still, shopper satisfaction levels dropped close to 30% from November 2020 to January 2021.
- As technology and the shopping model continue to evolve, retailers should turn to new technologies to efficiently streamline administrative processes in support of delivering an exceptional customer experience.
In other words, your chain must develop operational processes that are agile enough to handle a potential downturn – or a potential boom, and maybe both in the course of what could be a chaotic year. One of the most effective ways to develop this agility within every store is through the adoption of digital “smart” checklists. The right mobile checklist app can streamline time-consuming tasks like demonstrating public health compliance while also vastly reducing human error and building accountability throughout your organization.
Cutting-Edge Checks and Balances
The retail industry as a whole is moving away from paper-based, handwritten documentation procedures because they’re not effective in any way – not as a business expense nor in terms of employee effort. Today’s digital checklist solutions have become best practice because they house all your in-store procedures such as cleaning protocols and loss prevention practices in a way that all your employees can easily access through their phones. Through the mobile app, every employee has the same, current version of every form, list and operational standard at all times. Establishing compliance through a checklist is as easy as a few swipes and taps; the apps even support adding photos and videos to the official record.
Further, every digital entry automatically records the employee, the time and the location as it’s uploaded to the app’s online dashboard. Management has a clear, real-time window into what’s going on in any store, and they can quickly find any data set they need, whether aggregated or segmented. You always have the right information – the kind that both highlights any areas of concern and reveals hidden opportunities. Soon your stores are consistently providing a top-quality customer experience.
Building Essential Accountability
For this brand consistency to build, each store must be held accountable for meeting all operational standards. Smart checklists help create this accountability by:
- Confirming policies are being followed through every shift in every location.
- Quickly making it clear when remedial action is needed and making it easy to assign responsibilities to individual employees through action plan templates, complete with automatic reminders and completion notifications.
- Adding photos and videos that document each store’s story.
- Allowing audits, even remote ones, to happen in multiple stores at once through standardized templates and with all findings available in real time.
- Eliminating duplication of effort and minimizing errors in administrative processes.
- Providing easy access to the enterprise-wide data reporting you need to manage all your operations.
In addition, when your store protocols are available digitally, you can create or update any of them just once, and the update rolls out to all devices in real time. Everyone is kept on the same page.
MeazureUp: The Smart Option for All Your Stores
As the saying goes, you can’t improve what you don’t measure. A digital assessment app like MeazureUp can help all your employees take the right action on time, every time, so every store delivers a safe and consistently great customer experience. Then you can focus on improving this experience in ways that will ensure your business thrives even in this chaotic environment. For more information on how to leverage MeazureUp in your organization, contact us today.