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Raise your hand if you like waiting in long lines. I didn’t think so… Now raise your hand if (even better now, wait for it)… you like waiting in long lines during the Holiday season…again…didn’t think so. Unfortunately for many retail stores, long lines during the Holidays are completely standard and expected due to the heightened store traffic, and it’s no surprise. According to the National Retail Federation, “For some retailers, the holiday season can represent anywhere between 20–40% of annual sales,” which can be an enormous chunk of business! So what are these retailers to do? My prescription – a Workforce Management solution which help these retailers optimize their labor staffing this Holiday season, to ensure not only some shorter lines, but maybe a little bit of extra spending money for their business as well.

I don’t know about some of you, but I absolutely love the Holiday season! I enjoy the weather (laugh here, because I live in AZ ), the decorations, and especially the festive food and libations! One thing I do not enjoy however is the crowds of people filling up our favorite shops to the brim, and don’t even get me started about waiting in line (If you can tell here, patience really isn’t one of my virtues). Luckily for me and my fellow avid Holiday shoppers – many retailers are investing in Workforce Management solutions, which use key metrics like business forecasts and workload demands to ensure they have “The Right people, at the Right Place, at the Right Time.”

For those retailers that haven’t necessarily adopted this amazing technology (laggards we shall call them), here’s some reasons now, more than ever, they should jump on board the optimized scheduling movement:

  • “NRF (National Retail Federation) is projecting 2012 holiday sales to rise 4.1% from 2011. If the NRF’s estimate is correct, holiday sales this year would be $586.1 billion”
    • – With that much projected in sales within just a couple-month span, they are going to need to think about line control and space within their stores!
  • Customers are much more likely to spend more if they have an engaging shopping experience
    • – Relationships are everything, and now-a-days, with the advent of the iPhone and mobile shopping, the importance of an engaging shopping experience matters even more to get and attain those customer – this is extremely important here in Holiday season since people typically spend more than they would at any other point in the year!
  • The Recession isn’t over
    • – Retailers especially across North America are still feeling the brunt of the recession lingering and that’s been reflected in their sales. With a Workforce Management solution – they can apply budgetary constraints to keep things like labor hours and spend on track and save money. And who doesn’t like saving a few bills?

So what are you waiting for? No, I’m not asking about what you’re waiting in line to buy this Holiday season- What are you WAITING for to check out a labor scheduling solution!? Click here to find out more benefits of SAP’s Workforce Management, because come on, it’s the Holiday season!

So snuggle up with some hot coco and a couple sugar cookies and share your thoughts about your workforce this season! What schedule optimization tool does your company use?

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  1. Colin Haig

    I remember The Bon Ton saying they love SAP Workforce Management because it does a lot to combat the lines, keep the right people working at the right time, and control labor costs. Sounds like a lesson a lot of others could learn from!

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