Already running a supermarket store and wondering how to scale it further? Are you contemplating what should be your next steps to accomplish your vision to organize and manage multiple stores?
If this is what you are looking for, then you are in the right place. Your Retail Coach’s consultancy service will help you achieve this vision. Your Retail Coach’s supermarket consultants will help you with the right business plans and assist you in this growth path.
Important steps to organize & grow clothing store
- Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)
Any successful business has a very strong set of standard operating procedures. This is the only step that allows you to scale up your business in the future. In simple terms consider SOPs as flowcharts and tasks for various scenarios that can arise in a business. It is like defining to-do steps for various supermarket business processes. Some of the key reasons why SOPs for the supermarket are important are:
- Allow all departments to work in tandem seamlessly as they would have interdependencies at some of the other stages.
- Gives clarity to the new manpower of how things are to be done.
- Minimizes operational challenges.
- They ensure efficiency and throughputs of every individual to be maximized.
- Minimises error and gives a definite path.
- Provides backbone for scalability to multiple stores with minimum challenges
- Warehouse Layout Planning
Warehouse layout plays a vital role in effective supermarket inventory management. It is said the warehouse is the heart of a supermarket business. It can address many soft teething issues like maintaining a desired minimum stock level and avoid stock-outs thus preventing opportunity losses. Replenishment becomes much easier at various store points. The design and layout are crucial so that the goods flow (goods entry & exit) is smooth and is like a supply chain. It is crucial to ensure that similar SKUs are stored together and in such a way that aids easy access to the personnel. There should be adequate space kept at the warehouse for activities like barcoding and labeling. Having a strategically designed warehouse becomes the backbone for multi-chain expansion
- IT System Integration
For supermarket growth; Data and its synchronicity across all your stores are imperative in this day and age. It allows the data attributes to be the “same” across all stores, which can allow an excellent analysis of sales trends across regions. That could allow you to set up margin discussion/discounts/analyze the aging of products most effectively. Thus, expansion or stability without a robust software or retail ERP is impossible. If you already have an ERP/ POS application, then it must have the capability to support your expansion. Our experts will evaluate your existing ERP or evaluate/suggest the appropriate ERP which is the best fit as per your existing Human Resource capability and future expansion vision. The overall objective is to make the expansion journey easy and sustainable.
- Staff Training: SOPs & Sales
In scaling up a supermarket store channel business to a multi-chain model – Middle-Level Management plays a vital role to achieve sustainability. Human resource management in supermarkets is a vital cog of the wheel. They are the ones who are going to be your relay points in executing top-level strategies and provide you insight into the store performance. They are going to be like your surrogates for the various departments they handle as you cannot be present everywhere at every point and time. Thus, inculcating the habit of defining SOPs and training the team on them by the team will lead to much better results. Train them on the SOPs defined in such a way that the store operates like a well-oiled machine even without your presence and allows you time to focus on the bigger picture of identifying and figuring how to scale up further
Here are some common challenges encountered while organizing & scaling a supermarket store:
- Team Planning
Most often in the growth expansion of supermarkets, the Organisation structure is overlooked in detailing. Defining a proper Organisation structure, identifying their roles correctly allows you to depute the correct manpower to the correct role and in the correct personnel, count required.
- Low owner-involvement in-store management
A store launched without proper standard operating procedures, systems, and processes in place will lead to the owner dependent model on daily operations. This will not allow the store to function without the owners’ presence. Also when you expand it’s practically impossible for the owner to be present at every location and every instance to a dose of any issue. To avoid this, structures and procedures have to be pre-planned and pre-built into the system, so that they are implemented and operational right from day 1.
- Roles & Responsibilities of the team
Apart from following the “processes” set for standard situations in any retail store, the team’s additional responsibilities are also to create and maintain in-store displays (Visual merchandising), develop and execute sales and promotions strategies finalized, analyze and understand market trends and provide feedback about the same, gauge opportunities and competition, and keep track of sales figures, forecast sales volumes, and meet existing sales targets. A united, professional, and friendly team will create a welcoming atmosphere for all visitors, making them feel totally at ease, and give them the impression that the store is welcoming. Summing this up, as stated earlier, defining the exact job description (the daily tasks and the softer intangible aspects) is crucial to get a store function properly.
- Inventory Management
The old age adage of right place, right time, right quantity, and right quality still stands true. Keeping an eye on the SKUS/Categories of the supermarket business is detrimental. With a keen eye on inventory, one can avoid
- Take corrective action on near to expiry products
- Opportunity loss by maintaining an adequate amount of stock
Managing inventory in a supermarket business is the key to getting repeat and loyal customers.
- Employee Management
If the warehouse is the heart of a supermarket business, the employees are the heartbeat. To ensure uniformity and consistency concerning employment policies, a standardized SOP or employee handbook has to be created and enforced right from the start of the store that is from day 01. This shall also help increase employee satisfaction and bring transparency within the working culture.
- Staff Documentation
As the organization grows large, the statutory laws and regulations start to come into picture. Not only that, having proper employee documentation also hygiene in the system. Thus as a part of the recruitment process, proper systems/checks and documentation processes must be in place. Documents specifying all basic details should be collected from all the new joiners as part of the joining formalities before they initiate the job. This ensures trust and confidence between both parties.
- Customer Happiness Ratio
With the advent of e-commerce and technology, retail store success in today’s world is all about creating a unique customer experience. Right from the time customers sets foot in the store, the overall shop design and layout, ambiance, buying and checking out experience has to be centered around the consumer with your walk-ins, otherwise, you will lose your customer to your competitors nearby. A strong sales and service training system along with feedback management is also a must-have to reduce the probability of non-buying or dissatisfied customers.
- Loss Prevention
Pilferage is common in the supermarket business. Customer theft (external pilferage) and employee theft (internal theft) may hit your bottom line, if not taken care of. Though both internal and external pilferage affects the bottom line and inventory mismatch in the system, internal pilferage is a plague that causes unnoticed losses over years. Most retailers fail to follow a loss prevention protocol, which results in heavy losses and becomes a slow poison for the business. Loss Prevention needs to be tracked and mitigated on a regular basis with appropriate systems from day 01.
- Implementing the right store management software
For startup entrepreneurs, it can become difficult to identify the best store management software. After seeing demos, all applications and features look the same and entrepreneurs ultimately end up opting for a low-priced, inferior software. In the coaching program, you will receive a detailed checklist to select software that is the best fit for your business and vision. Top Level Management must guard against a few reports/ dashboards, which act as early warning signals to avoid long-term losses. Thus, selecting the right software is a must not only for effective monitoring and system management but also for making business decisions to help prevent losses and achieve sustainable growth.
- Warding off Competition
Implementing the right store management software Right from your pre-planning activities to after opening your store, you should always study existing competitors and strategize how to position yourself and break into the market. Through effective pricing strategies, promotional strategies, and social media marketing, you can directly reach out to potential customers and offer them benefits. It’s not always required to be different, but it’s important to be consistent in offering good service and value-for-money products to your customers to enjoy customer loyalty and gain a competitive edge.
Why YRC as Growth Advisor?
Implementing the right store management software YRC’s extensive services offered are designed to enlighten you with best practices and innovative strategies to help you overcome these challenges and build a successful and sustainable retail business.