Tanda Blog: Awards & Rostering

Awards & Rostering

Peak Season Rostering: How to use data to meet demand and raise profit

The number of festivals, trade shows, conferences, and marketing meetings is on the rise. According to Eventbrite Australia, 54% of businesses plan to host more events in the future. And with several major holidays like Easter and ANZAC Day just around the corner, businesses face an increased demand in products and services. Hotels, pubs, retail […]

Easter Penalty Rates 2019

Easter is always a tricky time of year to work out when the actual public holidays fall. For the Easter period in 2019, the only national public holidays are Good Friday and Easter Monday – all the other days vary between the states and territories. Keep in mind Anzac Day is the following Thursday the […]

How to pay staff for Australia Day 2019

The Fair Work Ombudsman sets out that when a public holiday falls on a weekend, it can be substituted for another day. This year, Australia Day falls on Saturday, 26 January.  Given this, the public holiday for Australia Day will be observed on Monday, 28 January across all states and territories. Public holiday penalty rates […]

Actionable feedback from the front line

Do you ever hear about issues long after the fact? Are your employees wary of providing honest feedback to management? Does morale seem down at times, but you don’t know why? Shift Feedback is your answer. Timely, actionable insights You can now collect feedback from your front line staff to resolve issues as they occur […]

Restrict unavailability on published rosters

A common pain point for managers occurs when staff submit unavailability after the roster has been completed and published. Having to go back to the roster, make changes and re-publish it can be annoying and confusing to staff. To help prevent this situation we’ve always had minimum days’ notice setting for unavailability: This setting works […]

Automating Holiday Operations: Why Santa uses Tanda

The Christmas rush is upon us. Flights are being booked, recipes are being tested, and stores are working overtime to make sure everything is delivered well before it’s time to open presents. According to eBay’s head of retail insights, Gavin Dennis, shoppers are buying earlier this year and expanding online purchases beyond gifts to everyday […]

Introducing a new time clock and multi-break support

There are some exciting updates coming to Tanda that will make it much easier for staff to clock in for their shifts and their breaks In the coming weeks, we will be rolling out a new and improved time clock with a “break” button. This means that staff can now clock multiple breaks in their […]

Black Friday Blues? 5 Tips to avoid a staffing slump

Retailers all over the U.S. take the time to prepare and advertise Black Friday deals and discounts, for good reason: last year, retailers earned $7.9 billion on Nov. 24. This figure represents an increase of nearly 18% from a year ago, and research indicates it can only go up. And while online shopping is all […]

Keeping up with the Customers: Why feedback matters for every business

Customer service is a constant element in all business transactions. Before, during, and after a sale, your interaction with clients shapes their overall experience. It determines whether they will stay with you, or jump ship to your closest competitor. Customers demand smooth and stress-free support and are willing to pay for it. And the impact […]

Show Up for Success! A step-by-step guide to rewarding employee attendance

“I have always been a quarter of an hour before my time, and it has made a man of me.” – Lord Horatio Nelson (1758-1805) Improving employee attendance has always been a puzzle for business owners and managers. In a 2017 CareerBuilder survey, 29% of respondents said they came in late at least once a […]

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How this retailer increased profit by $8.9m from rostering more hours

There has been a lot of speculation on why we are losing retailers so fast. An interesting research piece from the US presented an alternative hypothesis that generalises the issue down to rostering for profit rather than rostering to control costs. For context – If you were given the choice of increasing revenue by 5% or reducing costs by 5% in order to create the most profitable outcome, what would choose? A “back of the hand” calculation would show that reducing costs increases profit more than the equivalent uptick in revenue. Accordingly, most retailers choose option two. This makes sense if you assume the two scenarios are independent of each other, but what if the cost was your employees? This is where the problems arise. For industries like retail, where staff have a direct impact on sales, it’s not as simple of a question as cutting costs to increase profit. In a study led by Professor Marshall Fisher from Wharton, he and his research team constructed a conceptual model from historical data to identify stores within a US-based retail chain that had the highest potential to benefit from increased labour spend. Importantly, the strategy was actually implemented at 168 retail sites over a 26-week period to validate the model, with the retailer electing to implement the strategy further. The result: A near $8.9 million increase in profit of the stores included. The labour cost challenge The challenge in allocating labour budgets lies in the tradeoff between the known immediate payroll cost and the less certain increase in sales that could be achieved with more staff on hand. The researchers point out that retail managers have a tendency to overweigh the decision to reduce the known payroll cost than the less certain increase in sales which could be achieved by allocating additional labour spend. The labour budget death spiral The study highlights the limitation of the most common retail strategy — setting labour budgets as a portion of sales. Fisher points out that this approach creates a circular problem by failing to take into account how store labour spend can positively impact sales, with the worst case leading to a spiraling effect of reduced sales forecasts reducing labour spend which reduces sales further and so on. Quantifying the impact of labour spend on revenue Creating labour budgets that are designed to maximise profit requires retailers to know on a store-by-store basis the correlation between labour-spend and sales. One way to do this is by looking at times when staffing levels deviate from the original schedule. If ten staff were scheduled on a particular day, but on that day only eight turned up, did sales also decrease by the same portion? If not, by how much? If the answer to the above is that sales didn’t decrease at all, the store is likely overstaffed. If there is a measurable impact, the inverse scenario is likely true and the store may be losing sales by being understaffed. This is the same approach used in the study, which found the relationship between random staffing deviations and impacts on sales was statistically significant. Results showed an increase in labour spend pointed to increased sales at varying degrees, depending on known store attributes. Implementing the strategy for profit The study identified stores in a US retail chain which had the highest market potential, making them good candidates for an increased labour spend. The market potential factored in attributes like average basket value and proximity to competitors, which would create scenarios that allow workers to have the highest impact on converting sales. In the study, 168 stores were selected this way, then allocated a 10% increased labour budget over a 26-week period, of which 75% of the increase was actually consumed in practice by the stores. The outcome was a 4.5% increase in revenue at the impacted stores and resulting in a near $8.9 million profit increase. Learning from the strategy The study shows empirically why the common practice of setting labour budgets as a fixed proportion of forecasted revenue is often self-defeating when applied in a retail setting. An opportunity exists to all retailers to leverage this same profit-centric model for defining labour budgets. The data required is available to all retailers however, it may just be a matter of leveraging that information with the right systems. An integrated forecasting strategy that integrates foot traffic, sales, and employee scheduling data is a practical opportunity afforded to retailers of any size to optimise their labour resource allocations. The interesting part is, Fisher’s research is readily available to all retailers who are looking to drift away from the traditional method of fixing labor budget rosters. The next step is to get this method of labour resource allocation battle tested in the Australian markets. Stay tuned. Up next: What is the Contingent Workforce and how can you leverage it in your business?

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