Someone from the management guru noticed that now the most effective leader is now not the strongest, but the most flexible. How to apply this thesis in work practice? Very simple. Regular salary increases are a force method. Like muscle building - at some point the body reaches a physical limit, and the desire to increase and increase muscle mass still remains. Changing working conditions is a more rational method. One of such methods - flexible working hours - during the business program of the Buy Brand exhibition was told by expert of the training company Serviceman Andrey Nechiporenko.
Traditional practice implies that sellers work two days for 12 hours (plus 1-2 hours for opening / closing the store) and rest for two days. More and more companies realize that it is not convenient for the owners or those who are in the trading floor. Purely physically being 12 hours on your feet is hard. Not to mention the fact that all this time you need to be friendly, polite, ready to maintain a conversation with visitors, to show attention, participation to the client. It is not surprising that by the end of the 12-hour shift, sellers are ready to climb the wall when they are asked: "Bring me the fifth pair, please." And if it still turns out to be a businesswoman who flew into the store half an hour before closing, who needed everything right away and who lost her temper due to the sluggishness of sellers, then the seller’s fatigue can very easily transform into an open conflict. The risk of losing a client is great, by the way, as well as the risk of losing a seller. Do you need it?
It’s much easier to reduce the shift by a few hours so that your employees have time for themselves, for friends, and for the pleasure of work. It is more difficult to imagine how this system works and organize in your store.
There are two other very common situations in our shoe stores. The first one can be observed if you come to the store half an hour after the opening: you will either have the picture “Bored girls waiting for changes” or the option “Stormy discussion of the past evening”.
It’s even more difficult for buyers at rush hour, when it’s difficult to find at least one of the sellers in the trading floor, and if you can get one of them out, it’s very difficult to get a clear and sensible consultation.
To avoid such situations, it is enough in the morning to reduce the number of sellers, and at rush hour - to call a few more. Actually, this is the essence of a flexible work schedule. Firstly, the shift length varies between 6-10 hours. Secondly, the number of sellers in the trading floor depends on the attendance of the store. By the way, this is the most important point in the system.
What should be considered when introducing a flexible schedule?
The volume of daily preparatory operations for opening a store and the time it takes to do so.
Time spent closing a store.
Store attendance by the hour and by the day per week.
When planning the time of each seller and all shifts as a whole, we start from attendance - this is an axiom (if the seller also deals with the warehouse, then we plus this time).
As a rule, visitors' counters are not enough to find out the attendance, because their data can not always be interpreted correctly. Three recorded people - are these three independent visitors or a family with a child? If a family, then they should be taken into account as one “group unit”. Serviceman experts suggested puzzling the collection of guards statistics for three to four weeks, after explaining to them whom to consider as one unit of purchase. By the way, according to the experience of the trainers, the guards like this, because their work becomes more meaningful.
The second stage - attendance data needs to be supplemented with a service standard: how many buyers have time to serve the seller per hour (labor productivity).
You can calculate it if you fix the number of approaches to visitors (it is worth paying attention that all approaches are taken into account: those that led to the purchase, and those that did not). A small difficulty arises in the fact that the sellers themselves fix these approaches in their personal cards, and some of them are tempted not to write down some approaches in order to increase the ratio of approaches and personal sales. Such a system can be avoided with the help of prophylaxis, which Serviceman trainers call the “drum rule”: by default it is assumed that all shift sellers approach visitors in turn, respectively, if several sellers have 10 approaches in their cards, and one has 5 , then you will have a reason to talk with him.
Now you know the downturns and peaks in traffic and the opportunities of your sellers. By combining this knowledge, you can build a flexible schedule. According to the scheme, one seller will open a store - in 9 hours. The second seller arrives at 11 hours, the third comes at 12 hours, the store manager enters the trading floor at 14 hours (Serviceman practice shows that active sales of managers not only unload part of the seller’s working time, but also greatly influence their motivation), 17 hours the first seller leaves work, at 19 hours the second, at 21 hours the third seller closes the store. That is, the essence of the system is that all sellers start and end work at different times, adapting to your customer flows.
The first undoubted benefit of this approach: you are reducing the payroll. However, this should be explained in detail and in detail to the staff, because if you tell them: “Guys, instead of 12 hours you will work on 8, and your salary will decrease in proportion to 4 hours,” you are unlikely to see enthusiasm in the eyes of the guys. Therefore, they need to explain that reducing working hours gives more opportunities for sales and a more relaxed life: "Yes, in the morning from 9 to 11 hours you will work alone, but all the buyers at this time are yours."
The second obvious benefit: the circle of candidates for sellers becomes much wider. A flexible schedule will be convenient for students who cannot constantly interrupt their studies at 12 hours of work, and young mothers who do not want to leave their child for a long time, but who are ready to work 6 hours.
The first obvious complexity of a flexible schedule: the manager's volume of both current and strategic work increases. The turnover increases due to the fact that the planning should be carried out instead of once - in the morning - several times a day (since in the morning half of the sellers are not yet). The strategic time margin is reduced due to the fact that the system requires updating once every two months: you should not expect that you will make a schedule once a year, it is a lively and mobile system. Plus, you will increase the number of people for whom you will plan time: where you had one 12-hour shift, now there will be two in six. However, all these efforts are offset by sales: 10 people working on 6-10 hours with pleasure sell much more than 7 people serving time at the workplace.
The second possible difficulty: conflicts over shifts. It is clear that one shift may be better than another. But here, having shown flexibility, it is possible not only to solve all the contradictions, but also to make a flexible schedule an instrument of motivation. For example, by giving the right to choose a shift primarily to the best sellers, and secondly to everyone else. To avoid a split, when the best sell better and worse, the worst sell worse, we need to evaluate not only the sales volume of each seller, but also the dynamics. If the dynamics change faster than the rest, it can also enter the category of "stars" of sales.
There are difficulties, but the biggest plus of the flexible schedule is that you begin to meet the parameters that customers need.
1. Some employees may leave - from those who were comfortable with a fixed schedule
2. In the case of the introduction of such a system, you need universal sellers who are versed not only in any one category, but in the whole assortment
3. Inaccurate performance calculation will cause you big problems
4. The manager increases labor costs
5. Shift distribution can cause conflicts. You need to be prepared for this and have ways to resolve them.
6. The manager will have to spend more time in the trading floor
7. It becomes more difficult to control the time of arrival and departure. Disciplinary policy is important here. Discipline can and should be positive.
Advantages of flexible graphics
1. Higher level of service
2. Salary fund is optimized
3. More opportunities to earn for sellers
4. You easily extend the store’s work schedule at no extra cost
5. You have a significantly larger selection of candidates
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