Pandemic forces retail leaders to rethink disaster preparedness strategies from scratch, conforming to the existing challenges from critical events. The solution for them lies in bypassing the existing tools and extending them to the new level of innovations that CEM provides.
- Critical events – both nature-borne and man-made are culprits to cause retail threats.
- CEM provides scalable solutions in tandem with the evolving threat landscape.
- CEM has the best solutions available in ensuring retail resilience and business continuity.
C-level executives and leaders today need a 360-degree view into critical events across retail operations and the most efficient way to handle its consequences and mitigate risks is by leveraging the AI-powered CEM tool, which ensures resilience and gives the power to foster business continuity.
$700 billion in lost revenues – this is certainly not a small figure. In the US alone, businesses suffer this financial setback due to poor customer experience. Many businesses alike, retail – mainly their consumer product establishments build their growth strategy on customer experience only.
Forbes in 2018 mentioned poor customer service cost businesses $75 billion. Now, the margin only intensifies into a deeper gap – up by $625 billion in just 3 years.
As per Gartner, customer experience predicts the future growth of any business, wherein 20% of the existing customers are bringing businesses about 80% of future sales.
From a retail standpoint, customer experience is a narrative to drive brand advocacy if it dedicatedly satisfies demands- while the experience is worse, it ruins everything. By leveraging omnichannel retail, customers get more options to move beyond the existing brand into something that offers more flexibility and convenience. The competition is fierce, and the need to get an edge over similar retail offerings depends on how efficiently organizations handle various factors triggering poor customer experience.
It’s immense pressure on retail businesses to be vigilant and to be able to handle situations as they rage. But, how exactly customer service in retail sectors is susceptible to a poor experience.
Retail & CX – How are they at risk?
The uncertainties, market volatilities as exacerbated by the pandemic have been a sudden assault on businesses that jeopardized their existing policy and process, while also revealing their incapabilities to take control of the sudden unpredictable situations. However, businesses with significant and essential resources survived and also went on to thrive.
Pandemic apart, critical events can rage against business continuity at retail and affect its resilience. The toll of natural disasters, active shooters, infectious diseases including supply chain disruptions on retail operations is a concern. The threat potential of these critical risks is a direct impact on retail operations – therefore they can add to reputation damage, drop in customer loyalty, and lost revenues.
The ability to predict the upcoming risks and achieve proper emergency response is ideally the best method to help organizations mitigate risks of critical events. A Critical Event Management platform in this particular case can offer better scope to handle and mitigate the intensity and unpredictability of critical events at scale.
To make retail operations more efficient and customer-centric, Zsuite CEM is built to provide essential features and functionalities that help take control of situations well in advance and offer solutions to growth. Check out the top five critical events’ vulnerabilities across retail – to remediate or prevent by using the most competent CEM tool,
Zsuite, helping retails elevate agility and flexibility into recovery operations.
1. Supply chain disruptors
C-level executives and directors are taking a new approach to dealing with supply chain disruptions. As reported by a consulting firm in New Jersey, the COVID-19 pandemic was a major disrupter that raised complexity from procurement to sales. But, it isn’t the root cause. Executives or leaders across consumer goods and retail must rethink their strategy for existing complexities too.
Disruptive forces and their effects. Along with the COVID-19 pandemic, the new norms – quarantines and work from home forced the supply chain to stop its operations and brought critical operations to halt. On the other side of the picture, a whole variety of other external shocks are costing retail trillions in lost revenues. Climate-related natural phenomena, territorial disputes, active shooter, and IT incidents are a major part that inhibits the supply chain from operating liberally. As a consequence, damage to brand reputation is a blow for retailers to handle as the massive surge in customer frustration and dissatisfaction is noticed. Loss of productivity coupled with increased hours of operations drains cash flow, while loss of regular customers triggers a new set of challenges.
Zsuite Solutions. Supply chain resilience is the primary objective embedded in the critical event management software suite . More and more retailers, no matter how big or small, need to rethink their disaster preparedness strategy by fortifying it with the right solutions of CEM tools. Zsuite CEM provides more comprehensive visual risk intelligence, location awareness technology, and crisis communication- all integrated into one place to detect the trend of any potential threat and thereby empowering the response teams to take appropriate steps to mitigate the critical events.
- Visual risk intelligence detects where the supply chain can be susceptible to risk- on the route, sea, or at borders. By building future threat predictability in one single pane, it enables real-time predictive measurement to tackle the upcoming situations.
- Location intelligence finds the exact location which is in harm’s way, thereby helping reroute transit of logistics and improving supply chain performance. The timeliness of fulfillment provides a better approach to meeting customer needs.
2. Employees in harm’s way
Retail operations have plenty of sections that need high caliber employee supervision and efficiency in the frontline and backend. For a global workforce or employee onsite, security and safety is a primary requirement that ensures uninterrupted services and fulfillment of customer demands. The evolving threat landscape is throwing up unprecedented challenges for retailers, the immediate need to tackle these hurdles, therefore, is a growing concern.
Retail employee risks and their effects. Employees are constantly moving from one space to another, the global nature of the workforce is thus continuously changing and transforming to cope with the changing expectations of consumers. However, threats from an active shooter, infectious disease, extreme weather conditions, fire, and unrest are barriers to business continuity at retail spaces. Away from work for indefinite periods means lost productivity, missed opportunities as sales plummet, and lost revenues. In most cases, employees can feel too disengaged when adequate security and safety resources are unavailable from employers. This is another set of a challenge as new initiatives are the priority to fill positions fast and help with customer services.
Zsuite Solutions. Real-time response capabilities escalate to notify your people as they approach unforeseen threats – or already be tied up with critical situations. Lone workers, traveling employees, or employees working onsite can immediately get location-based threat alerts by emergency response teams helping them accelerate evacuation plans and ensure employee safety .
Zsuite provides situational awareness by leveraging threat data and thereby predicting the threat scopes in a particular area. Geo-fencing allows a granular level of locating employees in harm’s way, which is an important instrument to help with contact tracing and reduce the risk of disease infection.
3. Retail IT disruptions
Robust and continuous IT services mean retail operations are moving at scale. Thousands of data sitting at data centers and IT systems handling customer interactions ensure retail resilience. But, unplanned IT downtime is a serious threat to growth and scalability.
IT incidents and their effects. Datacenter outages, power outages, IT system failures, including server downtime, put long-term negative impacts on retail operations. The weak IT systems are vulnerable to data security breaches, affecting customer experience and trust. Issues stemming from IT incidents cause productivity loss, impede revenue generation, and damage brand reputation. Optimizing IT incident management is the smart way to tackle critical IT incidents at retail and beyond.
Zsuite Solutions. Zsuite IT incident management can seamlessly integrate with ITSM tools, service desk, and other essential tools to monitor upcoming IT threats ). By overlaying data into its systems, Zapoj IT incident management platform derives actionable insights into the threat landscape, provides enough relevance to analyze severity, and adds context to incidents in real-time. By using IT incident communication, two-way communication helps speed up the response and mitigate risks on time. IT incident responders can prevent a data breach, save customer information from being stolen, and keep IT systems running smoothly.
4. Retail store closures
Retail largely fulfills direct-to-consumer demands, making it a significant unit to provide all necessary operations and service that customers need regularly. Inadequate resources and poor contingency planning keep retail out of service for indefinite times.
Store disruptions and their effects. Vulnerabilities from critical events- natural disasters, active shooter, fire, and pandemic can force retailers to stop their operations. The inability to mitigate these risks on time has long-term implications on customer experience, which affects loyalty and profitability.
Zsuite solutions. The faster the recovery plan, the easier it is to restore operations at retail. Threat intelligence can scale easily to provide visibility into detecting the types of risks for retail stores. As emergency responders detect potential threats in real-time, it notifies its people to take appropriate action and avoid the risk. On-call schedules give much-needed benefits to retailers when an emergency occurs to fill an immediate slot and to help with operational efficiency.
5. Product recall
Product recall is never a new thing for retailers or manufacturers. A recall is a poor experience for everyone along the line. At times, trying to build quality products is the highest demand, but product recalls slip through the cracks and pose to be the most dreadful experience for everyone linked.
Product recalls and their effects. Stakeholders, partners, distributors, retailers, and customers – all have hard times when a product is recalled. The distressful part is to efficiently manage product recall and give customers an assurance that earns their trust and reinstates their loyalty to the brand. Product recall – being a critical process, oftentimes it is tough to manage the processes from initiation to final disposition. It is an expensive process for retailers and manufacturers.
Zsuite solutions. Zsuite critical event management builds a loop for enhanced outreach among – stakeholders, dealers, and customers so that they can connect and communicate to dispose of the product recall Visualization detects faulty or defective batches across the lots in the warehouse, thereby mitigating the risk of the wrong product being distributed to diverse channels that finally reach customers. On the other hand, real-time location-based alerts reach the impacted retailers or customers, help accelerate a critical process of resolutions – from refunds, returns, and to disposition at minimal time. Zsuite CEM, therefore, provides a comprehensive connected recall experience to its customers.
All connected operations – from supply chain management that bolsters logistics, to a product recall, retails can enhance its resilience and keep its customers happy with its uninterrupted services. An enhanced customer experience provides a template to grow and scale while securing a solid stream of revenue flow. With everything securely managed, leaders at retail can maintain their operational success and encourage brand advocacy- not to mention they are capable to manage operations at all quarters involving the retail operations, and thereby boost cost reductions.
Zsuite is an advanced AI-powered CEM tool that can handle a massive amount of critical events and their consequences swiftly. By empowering retailers with a high-end CEM tool, any type of critical event is easy to handle. If anything leaders at retail need to ensure resilience today, it is CEM. Zsuite promises to fulfill the retail expectations at large, which is indeed an important component to survive and sustain future risk. Call or ask for a demo today.