Despite reported growth in May, the economic situation remains a precarious one as the cost-of-living and inflation looks set to bite over the next few months for retailers, when it comes to sales.
Indeed, retailers are expecting a downturn in sales but when it’ll come remains a bit of a mystery, which has left many unsure how to plan for the months ahead.
Ultimately, the prospect of a sales slowdown means that looking at ways of reducing costs is a necessary task.
In this blog, we’ll be exploring how you can implement cost-down initiatives effectively in your warehouse, without compromising on staff and capacity for delivery.
Although there was economic growth in May, retail sales contracted that month but it’s currently unclear whether this sales contraction was anomalous or the beginning of a long term trend, so it’s difficult to pinpoint how the cost of living crisis will affect shopping habits.
Looking forward to the next twelve months, the Centre for Retail Research has warned of a lack of certainty when it comes to retail sales but predicted a sales growth of zero in real terms.
So, the immediate test faced by businesses in the retail sector at the moment, is how to go about forecasting the resources they’ll need to deliver in the peak sales periods of Black Friday and Christmas, as well as this year’s World Cup, in such an indeterminate economic landscape.
Costing down while boosting performance
Planning for this period falls against the backdrop of implementing necessary cost-down initiatives, which means businesses will need to minimise expenses while still delivering successfully.
A central component in the success of these operations during the Winter period will be down to warehouse efficiency.
However, with Vitesse software, businesses can accurately plan how to approach orders on a day-by-day basis so that there is a clear strategy during busy periods.
Our software can read orders and tell warehouse operators precisely the number of hours needed to complete a task, which ensures that operations can run as smoothly as possible during times of peak sales.
Additionally, with Vitesse, warehouse managers and operators can access real time performance data, based on efficiency rather than units per hour, that allows for continual improvement.
Our data provides performance level visibility which, along with daily task timing capabilities, gives our customers a competitive advantage over other warehouses that don’t have access to such information.
Vitesse software will help to ensure that businesses can deliver at optimal costs by eliminating unnecessary expenses.
Importance of talent retention in an uncertain market
However, as important resource planning and efficiency measures are when it comes to operating at optimal costs, talent retention is equally as key.
Warehouses suffer from a high turnover of staff, and one of the main reasons staff cite for leaving their warehouse job is ‘lack of recognition and reward for the job they do’ but in periods of uncertainty this turnover is a largely unnecessary cost.
However, the data we provide helps operators to learn who their best performers are and ensure that key individuals are retained through reward schemes and recognition.
This enables operators to assemble the most efficient team, who are capable of meeting targets during peak delivery periods and ensure high business performance levels.
By implementing reward schemes, it’s more likely that employees will choose to stay as they will feel their role will be a more rewarding one.
This means that talent can be retained and the cost of regularly having to hire new staff is significantly minimised.
Overall, our efficiency driven approach will foster a fair and positive work environment where employees feel their work is recognised.
With Vitesse, cost-down initiatives can be achieved while raising efficiency and overall performance.