In our work with more than 3,500 small business retailers across a diverse mix of retail channels, we have collected, along the way, a kit of tips and advice for managing staff in retail. We share some of these tips today here as an insight into the help we can provide beyond our POS software, beyond what you may expect from a POS software company too.
We are interested in retail business management, especially small retail business management, as we own and run shops ourselves and have done so since February 1996. We bought our first shop to give us a live test site. It’s grown since then.
Before we get to the tips themselves, we like this selection because it focusses on the management challenge as well as on the financial outcome for the business.
Here are some of the small business retail staff management tips we like:
- Set sales goals. In our experience, people perform well when they know the goal. It could be individual goals or a business-wide goal.
- Track performance. If not for reward, at least for active management engagement.
- Reduce mistakes and theft. Get employee code or number entered for each sale. It works.
- Skill your people. Make sure they understand the software and how they can use it to achieve more for the business.
- Change the roster. Roster changes can push back against predictability, they can also uncover opportunities.
- Set standards. In your POS you can establish standards for data to be followed – product naming conventions, department descriptions and more. The more consistency in your data the more valuable your data.
- Stop using the back room. You can’t sell product from the back room. Have staff do all pricing and other usual back room tasks on the shop floor.
- Track location performance. Train your staff in the process of tracking the performance of impulse locations. Moving a product could help it find customers. Make sure staff understand what you are looking for.
- Share basket insights. Knowing what sells alone and what sells with what can help staff make better decisions as to what is placed where on the shop floor.
- Ask them. Yes, ask them what you should / could stock, ask them what think a product is worth. Value their input and they will value more working for the business.
- Cut data handling. At every possible point, stop touching data. Having it flow from electronic supplier invoices through the POS to scanned sales through to Xero for accounting can reduce mistakes and possible fraud opportunities.
There are many opportunities for managing staff through and with your POS software. This can improve the business and enhance their experience with your business.