The worst of the pandemic is thankfully behind us, but its effect on the US economy will be felt for years to come. While the overall unemployment rate has returned to pre-pandemic levels, recovery has been slower in the retail sector. Record numbers of Americans quit their jobs in 2021, and this trend shows no sign of slowing. In February 2022 alone, the number of nationwide retail vacancies increased by 37,000.
We can’t help you to find extra associates, but we can ensure that you make the most of the ones you have. VoCoVo is designed to increase efficiency and cut wasted time to a minimum. In this blog we’ll take a look at the most common causes of inefficiency on the shop floor, and the ways in which we can make things better.
What is slowing associates down?
In 2020 we surveyed associates from 100 stores about the challenges they faced at work. We asked them to name the biggest causes of inefficiency on the shop floor. The same two answers came up time and again:
- Trying to find information for customers (26%)
- Searching for other associates to ask for help (26%)
Both of these problems come down to the same thing: a lack of communication. Associates are well aware of this, with almost half saying that more effective communication is the key to improving productivity. This is where we can help.
More talking, less walking
Answering customer queries often means walking to another department to find information. This is not only frustrating for associates-it’s also bad for business. Our recent customer survey found that over a quarter of customers will leave your store if they are kept waiting for more than five minutes.
Our headsets solve this problem by putting information at your fingertips:
- Speak to associates directly without searching for them
- Contact the stockroom to check on orders in a matter of seconds
This approach will reduce daily walking distance by an average of 1500 yards per associate. This is a huge timesaver, freeing up associates to serve more customers and complete other important tasks.
Unlock the power of multitasking
The shop floor can be a challenging place. Associates are always on call to answer customer questions, and this can make it difficult to focus on other tasks.
40% of associates say that effective multitasking would make them more productive. Our headsets offer the perfect solution:
- Hands-free design allows associates to answer questions while continuing to work
- Telephony integration lets associates take external calls without leaving the shop floor
- Associates can set their own voice reminders to make sure they don’t forget important tasks
Time is money
By improving task efficiency and cutting out unnecessary walking, we can save the average store 105 minutes a day. That’s the equivalent of adding an extra eight hour shift every five days.
This also translates into a considerable financial saving. Our research shows that improving task efficiency and reducing walking distance can save you almost $700 a week. With these savings alone, VoCoVo will pay for itself in just 16 weeks.