As retailers begin looking to hire extra help for holiday traffic, many are finding it difficult to find seasonal workers.
- Retail positions are especially hard to fill with around 60% of retailers reporting that they were having difficulty finding staff.
- Other positions within the store are difficult to fill as well. Around 45% of retailers are also struggling to staff contact center and office positions in their stores.
- While nearly all retailers have plans to hire staff before the holiday rush begins, 30% say that they do not have adequate Human Resources staff to conduct the hiring process.
Why it’s news
A survey from customer engagement tech company Verint found that the majority of retailers are struggling to fill these positions and are looking to alternatives.
More than 80% of those surveyed plan for automation to pick up the slack in some areas such as order tracking and inventory. A majority also said they are looking to automate customized offers and recommendations for customers and the return process.
Over half of respondents have some way to automate customer support services and 21% plan to implement some type of automation in this area. Around 23% have no plans to do so.
A vast majority of retailers communicate with customers through bots, but only 34% said these bots are an important part of their communication with customers.
In order to alleviate some labor shortage issues during the holiday rush, retailers are looking at several methods of automation.
Posting FAQs on a website or using automated responses to answer common questions can help remove some of the labor from human employees. Retailers can also make better use of automated messaging systems to cut down on employee involvement.
Using bots or automated responses is generally helpful for frequent questions or simple problems. More complicated issues will still need to be resolved by a human employee, but a bot can relieve some of the pressure on employees during the rush.