A new study conducted by Qualtrics on behalf of Zipline surveyed 356 retailers in the U.S. and Canada to find out whether comms is being disrupted as the industry undergoes transformation.
Companies that have access to auto-generated readership + task execution metrics are 6.5 times more likely to feel their field teams understand exactly where to go to get the information they need to do their jobs
Companies that do not measure the effectiveness of their store/location communications were 11 times more likely to feel their field teams did not read all of the communication sent to them
Organizations using a workload planning calendar were over 15 times more likely to feel communication stores/locations received from HQ is always accurate.
Companies with a well structured publishing cadence were 2.5 times more likely to have employees read communications from HQ
Of companies that do not target specific audiences with their communications only 5.13% believe their field teams understand exactly where to go to get the information they need to do their jobs.
Companies that use 5 or more channels are 11 and a half times more likely to believe their employees do not understand exactly where to go to get the information they need to do their jobs
98.8% of Zipline customers polled agree that the communication stores/locations receive from HQ is clear and concise.
Individual Contributor 33
Manager/Sr. Manager 181
Human Resources 50
Learning and Development 17
Store/Retail Operations 113
The average person might have trouble understanding what “store comms” actually is. After all, not everybody has worked in a retail job where they’ve been on the receiving end of messaging from HQ. Unless you’ve managed a store, or worked on the store support side of a major retailer at corporate, you probably aren’t aware of the specific nuances of this field of internal communications. In a word, it’s “niche.”
But Store Communication is incredibly important. Every day, there are dozens (maybe hundreds) of decisions being made at a retailer’s corporate headquarters: which product to buy, and how much. Which promotion to run, how to advertise it, how to measure its effectiveness. There are teams deciding whether or not it makes financial sense to switch to a different receipt paper vendor. There are teams working around the clock to figure out if pricing a pair of socks at $4.99 instead of $4.95 is actually a good idea.
Every single one of these decisions impacts that retailer’s stores. When one of these decisions is made, stores need to know about it.
Most companies understand that a headcount investment is necessary in order to manage communications effectively.
Despite the fact that little is understood about Store Communications outside of the retail industry, the vast majority of retail organizations do have a person, or a small team, responsible for wrangling all the messaging that headquarters teams need to get to the field.
This is an encouraging sign, as making the case for increased store comms resources or budget is undoubtedly easier if an organization acknowledges that it’s a full-time job.
Within the 85% of respondents who have a dedicated store comms team, the size of that team varies: