It’s no secret that Christmas is the retail peak of the year. Many retailers make a significant portion of their annual revenue in just a few weeks, so the run-up to Christmas is a commercially crucial time. Retail recruitment is important year-round, but it becomes absolutely vital during this period.
Over the past few years, Black Friday has dramatically changed the retail calendar in the UK. In 2010, this U.S. retail event jumped across the pond, becoming mainstream for many UK retailers in 2014. It has since grown hugely each year, taking over a whole weekend at the end of November. Customers now expect discounts and deals around Black Friday, which has impacted spending patterns and staffing requirements. Black Friday has concentrated the end-of-year retail frenzy and added another key date to the high demand period. It’s made the busiest retail season even busier.
Retailers can’t afford to miss out on Black Friday and the run-up to Christmas. Unfortunately, even though they’re used to seasonal sales peaks, they often don’t have the right logistics infrastructure to handle new or unexpected peaks. Many retailers fail to adequately plan and prepare, leaving them unable to maintain service levels.
We’ve all heard the horror stories – websites crashing, stock running out too soon, deliveries being delayed, orders not being fulfilled, angry customers taking to social media to vent. These problems don’t just eat into your revenue in the short term; they can also mean a long-term negative impact on profitability and brand reputation.
Sales peaks present retail recruitment challenges
Many Black Friday sales issues stem from retail recruitment challenges. During sales peaks, retail staff can double in size. To handle this, it’s essential that retailers recruit enough talented, flexible, part-time employees. Staffing needs aren’t limited to sales assistants and cashiers on the shop floor. Warehouse assistants, van drivers, cleaners, e-commerce assistants, customer service personnel – there are lots of people needed to make busy retail periods a success.
Retail recruitment is high volume, with more applicants per role than any other sector in the UK. Inefficiency in this process costs retailers money – often wasted on expensive and restrictive recruitment agencies. It costs retailers time – often spent sifting through applications and handling paperwork. It costs retailers talent – as it’s difficult to pick the best candidates.
Even for longstanding events on the UK retail calendar – Boxing Day sales, summer sales – retailers often end up cutting into their profits with inefficient seasonal recruitment. Black Friday has only magnified these recruitment problems. To maximise profits, retailers need to reduce the time and labour spent on recruitment. They need to revolutionise their whole recruitment process, with innovative technology and flexible models.
Coople provides on-demand retail recruitment
Retailers – meet Coople. Coople is changing the way the world works. We simplify the recruitment process, making it easy to hire staff for peak retail periods. With the Coople platform, retailers can connect with available, qualified staff within minutes.
Here’s how Coople makes recruitment easy for retailers:
- Quality control – We use a unique peer-driven system. People get ratings from each company they’ve worked for, so retailers can see who the best people are and hire them.
- No paperwork – Everything is done digitally. Retailers upload job information – who they need, where and when the job is, and how much they’re paying. We take care of all the other stuff – right to work, contracts, payroll and more.
- Efficient application cycle – Our algorithm takes a retailer’s requirements and matches them to available people. Retailers then pick from a pool of people who have already accepted the job. This maximises acceptance on both sides and ensures that the right people with the right skills are doing the right job.
- Maximum flexibility – Retailers can book people a week in advance or on the same day. They set their own hourly rates and only hire the people they need. Available people will instantly get the job information via our app, making it easy for them to accept jobs they want.
- Retain good people – Retailers can save the people they’ve rated, giving them a solid database from which to recruit in the future. This can be especially useful during the post-Black Friday and post-Christmas returns peak, when consumers return impulse purchases or unwanted gifts.
Black Friday is just one example of Coople’s retail recruitment benefits. Coople helps retailers manage during Christmas and January sales, Valentine’s Day for florists, Easter for chocolatiers and many other seasonal consumer peaks. We also help with additional staffing to support product launches and planned staff absences. Whenever a retailer needs on-demand staff, Coople can help. Join Coople UK today to transform your brand’s retail recruitment.