DIFFERENT MEASURES RESULTED IN DIFFERENT REQUIREMENTS - FAST IMPLEMENTATION WAS REQUIRED BY EVERYONE
Slowly we return to normality, and as unbearably quiet it may have been for some, as hectic and intense was this time for others.
One information followed the other, the publication of new guidelines happened in more and more frequent steps and the measures had to be organized and implemented.
In many countries the closure of shops, which were not relevant, was to organize and on the other side, the food retail was subjected to an enormous stress test regarding to the protection of its employees, but also with regard to the implementation of the measures.
Temporary closure of shops
Almost all of our customers have already implemented a "closing process" at some point using the Store Lifecycle Tool (SLT) and the integrated process tool - but mostly for a facelift or a permanent closure. But what does it mean to close individual or all shops at once? For an indefinite time? Which measures must be implemented?
What happens first, what happens last? Which, if not all stores, should be closed? How to get ready for a restart in the same time? Technically we could not help to answer all these specific questions, but we had a digital answer for everything: Via the SLT, a master "closing process" with all relevant steps and approvals was implemented only once, and then rolled out across all affected shops.
This allowed those responsible to monitor centrally whether and why the process had come to a standstill and intervene if necessary. The SLT was able to support the selection process of the shops to be closed in a targeted manner by querying a wide range of characteristics.
Parallel to the closure of shops, the "opening process" was dealt with directly. With the implementation of the closing process, work was carried out on the requirements for reopening.
RELEVANT EXPERIENCE WAS IMMEDIATELY INTEGRATED AND CENTRALLY CONTROLLED.
Once again: By setting up a master process, the first step was prepared for the reopening. Individualizations were implemented with the beginning of the reopening.
SUPPLYING THE SHOPS WITH COMMUNICA-TION AND OPERATING MATERIALS With the communication of the measures the requirements for implementation came - it had to be done quickly and effectively.
IN THIS CONTEXT, WE IDENTIFIED THE FOLLOWING 3 CHALLENGES
a)The demand and purchase of relevant consumables and protective materials
How high is the demand for disinfectant dispensers? How many refills should be ordered initially? How many masks are needed for the employees per store? How many protective devices of what kind had to be implemented at the cash desks? What at first seemed to be complex was quickly mastered by some of our customers. By accessing the master data in the SLT (number of entrances, employees, cash desks left/right, average customer throughput, etc. per store) it was quickly clarified how high the demand would be. With this knowledge, the purchasing department was able to send out corresponding requests to suppliers, to compare and to place orders finally.
b) Graphics, production and distribution of the communication media
So the distribution of communication materials was quickly implemented: While those responsible in marketing coordinated the ad-hoc required materials with the responsible agencies via the graphic process in the campaign tool, the software was used to calculate the quantity and determine the individualized requirements per store based on the inventory data. The result: one order per store for the required materials In one case, despite the special circumstances, this process took only seven working days - from deciding on the products, through graphic coordination, production and arrival at the petrol stations.
c) The subsequent supply of the materials
And how to ensure the subsequent supply of the above-mentioned products? The e-shop integrated in the SLT can handle all this in one: whether print materials or consumables, the articles have been entered and the stores can reorder if necessary. A lesson had been learned from the "panic buying" by consumers - maximum order quantities were implemented to ensure prompt replenishment for all stores
Instability due to permanent updates was not only felt in the management and office staff - much more so were the responsible teams on site, which were affected as the last link in the communication chain and usually had to go directly into implementation at the POS.
How should necessary measures be communicated quickly and clearly? To give the employees a feeling of stability? To spread memories of the necessary measures? To say THANK YOU? To give small trainings/assistance? One of our customers used our newly developed newsboard to distribute all this information to the shops, immediately closing the information gap and providing additional images and videos of the posts to provide explanations and remove further hurdles.
Using the commentary function of the posts, questions could be asked directly and were answered visibly for everyone. The resulting "two-way communication" had two clear benefits: time savings and transparency.
The topic of motivation was and is also very important to our customer. Thus, by posting regular, short videos, he tried to get close to the employees in the shops: to say
THANK YOU, to motivate them or sometimes to sharpen their skills.
The development and purchasing of materials was in progress. The communication via the newsboard was initiated. How to bring the material to the stores in a targeted and demand-oriented way without wastage now? How to implement the measures on site correctly and quickly?
What possibilities were there to control the implementation on site, not only via the responsible district managers? The campaign planning tool in the SLT was used to control the initial supply in the stores. Our customer, centrally organized, triggered orders for the stores "top-to-down" in line with his campaign planning.
Controlling was initiated by distributing two tasks in the reporting tool. On the one hand, the delivery of the materials was queried - the receipt had to be confirmed by the shop via the SLT. On the other hand, the task-based photo documentation ensured that the disinfectant dispensers were placed in the entrance area.
The responsible teams in the office were thus able to track deliveries to the stores and also had an up-to-date knowledge for implementing the measures on site. Necessary assistance in the shops could thus be managed in a focused manner.
That our Store Lifecycle Tool was and is a real additional support during this time, and that our customers who faced the topic of digitalization have profited significantly from it. Even the transfer of employees to the home office did not interrupt the work processes.
On the contrary, the SLT has continued to bundle them and in addition has given everyone an orientation in the new situation in their function. At one sporting goods retailer, the roll-out was even carried out across national borders at enormous speed - all web-based via one platform, no matter where the employees were based.
This resulted in two clear benefits: Speed of reaction and transparency Factors that are not only important in a crisis situation.
are facing the most diverse challenges - and we are grateful that we were able to support them with our technology.