Store operations professionals have signaled loud and clear that they understand the vital importance of aligning their brick-and-mortar locations with digital channels: In the 2019 Retail TouchPoints Store Operations Benchmark Survey, 36% identified this as a top challenge, second only to the 40% selecting overall store operations budgets. In 2018, only 9% of respondents had cited online-offline alignment as a key challenge.
Other key findings from this year’s survey:
- Retailers are less concerned about workforce issues overall: In 2018, employee hiring/retention and employee training/engagement were identified as top challenges by more than half of respondents; this year both figures dropped to less than 20%;
- Despite growth in BOPIS and other omnichannel services, more than two thirds of respondents say less than 10% of associate labor hours are spent handling online order fulfillment;
- Matching staffing levels to demand has become a top-tier workforce challenge, rising from 44% in 2018 to 61% in 2019; and
- There’s no rush to open Amazon Go-style stores: Only 14% of respondents operate cashierless stores, with another 4% saying they plan to open them.