Employee Engagement

The Key Lessons StoreForce Learned from the HR Technology Conference 2023

November 16, 2023 in Employee Engagement, Retail Events, Retail Trends, Workforce Management

Did you know that according to Forbes, 36% of HR professionals say they don’t have the technology they need for their jobs? With advancements in technology like Artificial Intelligence actively re-inventing the retail landscape, retailers need to invest in technology to ensure they outperform their competitors proactively.

This October, the StoreForce team attended the HR Technology Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. Here are points discussed in the keynote sessions and how those insights and recommendations apply to Specialty Retail.

Engaged Employees Contribute to the Financial Success of an Organization:

According to research, companies with the highest rates of employee engagement are 21% more profitable than their peers.

Engaged employees tend to be emotionally committed to their work and the goals of the organization. They go above and beyond their job descriptions because they feel a sense of ownership and purpose. When employees are engaged, they tend to be more productive, innovative, and customer-focused. This leads to higher quality products or services, increased customer satisfaction, and ultimately, higher revenue. Engaged employees are also more likely to stay with the company, reducing turnover costs associated with recruitment, onboarding, and training.

Additionally, engaged employees are often brand advocates, speaking positively about the organization to friends, family, and on social media. This can enhance the company’s reputation and attract top talent, further contributing to its financial success.

StoreForce’s Takeaway for Retailers: According to McKinsey, retailers regularly face the challenge of replacing more than half of their store staff every year. Retail employee disengagement is one of the biggest reasons behind this figure. We at StoreForce strongly believe that empowering and engaging with retail employees by giving them the right tools to connect, communicate, and collaborate is the best way to tackle this issue. Making use of technology to bring out the best in-store associates and making them feel valued through recognition and celebration of their achievements is the key to success.

AI: The Future of HR:

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is revolutionizing various aspects of Human Resources (HR) management. HR departments are increasingly using AI-powered tools for tasks like company fit, candidate matching, and even initial stages of interviews. This not only saves time but also helps in identifying the best-fit candidates more accurately.

AI also plays a significant role in predictive analytics for workforce planning. It can analyze large datasets to identify trends in employee performance, turnover, and other key metrics. This enables HR professionals to make data-driven decisions about hiring, training, and talent development.

Overall, AI in HR is streamlining processes, improving decision-making, and enhancing the overall employee experience, making it a pivotal part of the future of HR management.

StoreForce’s Takeaway for Retailers: AI is no doubt one of the most popular advancements in recent times. Being able to leverage AI to enhance the experience of retail employees will have a huge influence on how the industry functions. Three key high-impact areas within retail that we believe will be affected by the implementation of AI in the near future are employee performance, data-driven decision-making, and optimized workforce management. Effective use of this technology by the retailers will lead to improved labor cost control, and increased efficiency.

Prioritize Becoming a Skills-Driven Workforce:

In a rapidly evolving global economy, the emphasis on specific job titles or roles is diminishing. Instead, the focus is shifting towards skills. As technologies advance and industries transform, the ability to learn and adapt quickly becomes crucial. Organizations that prioritize building a skills-driven workforce are better positioned to thrive in this environment.

Additionally, a skills-driven approach allows for more flexibility in talent management. It enables organizations to redeploy employees to different roles based on their skills, rather than being limited by their current job titles.

By investing in continuous learning and skill development, organizations not only stay competitive but also create a more agile and resilient workforce that can adapt to changing market demands. This can lead to increased productivity, innovation, and overall organizational success.

StoreForce’s Takeaway for Retailers: Retail has changed fast in recent years, and more change is coming. As you continue to offer services like BOPIS, Clienteling, and shipping from the store, the skills you need in your frontline associates as well as your store and field leaders, are changing. What tools do you have to identify the skills you will need and ensure you can easily deliver them? After all, you can’t pull people off the sales floor, or out of the field for long.

Once the critical skills are recognized, assessing where the employees are with those skills is essential for tailored training programs, mentorship, and access to educational resources. With the rapidly changing trends within the retail industry, equipping the store associates with the necessary skills can help foster business growth.

Our experience at the HR Technology Conference offered great insights into how technology has been impacting the department across different industries, especially retailers. At StoreForce, we believe that HR plays a key role in the growth of a business and recognize the importance of keeping up with the rapidly changing technology in this industry. If you are a specialty retailer looking to transform your business to bring out the best in your employees and get results, book a call with us today!

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