selects Kronos to optimise staff schedules and gain greater visibility to employee information has selected workforce management solution, Kronos for Retail, to optimise the deployment of 17,000 employees in over 400 stores in the UK and Belgium.

The implementation of Kronos will give an integrated solution for time management, employee scheduling, absence management and payroll processing. The advanced scheduling capabilities of Kronos will enable to accurately match staffing levels to the unique trading requirements of each store. The two-phase project is due to be completed in 2010. already had rigorous processes in place for collecting store-level data on attendance, absence, shift patterns and overtime, but the paper-based nature of the data collection was becoming increasing time consuming to manage both at store level and in the Head Office.

Karen Byers, Head of Retail, explains, “ With thousands of pieces of paper to process from stores each week, it was definitely time to move on and automate the entire workforce management system and to gain real-time visibility to what is happening in each store, every minute of every day if required. We were impressed with Kronos’ excellent credentials in the retail sector and appointed them following an extensive evaluation process.”

The first phase of the project, to implement an automated time and attendance system across all stores in the UK, is now complete with noting some key benefits. “We already have a greater insight into each store than previously, and now have consistent rules for managing the workforce across every store, rather than having some regional variations that had crept in over time. The implementation of this first phase has been rapid, with the entire team, including Kronos, pulling out all the stops to ensure that decisions were made quickly and stores up and running without any unnecessary delays,” said Karen Byers.

Phase two of the project will be to install a Kronos optimised scheduling solution which will ensure that staff schedules can be based on the very specific and unique trading pattern for each store. Using historical trading data from each store alongside projected sales figures, will be able to accurately calculate the optimum number of employees needed throughout each day in key areas of the store, including the checkouts and shoe departments. Customers will benefit from having the right number of staff in store to meet customer demand, and stores will be able to deliver consistently good service throughout the day in every store location.

Commenting on the project with, Keith Statham, Managing Director, Kronos UK, said, “Customer service is a huge differentiator in retail and retailers continue to work hard to optimise staffing levels to meet customer expectations. It’s a complicated task to perform accurately with a large store network and I’m delighted therefore that has engaged with us on this project. I look forward to helping them ensure that they always have the right number of employees available at the right times of day for their customers.”

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