November 22, 2019
Retailers are adopting collaborative hiring strategies, sharing a skilled talent pool and leveraging apps with on-demand staffing technology so workers can choose schedules and flex fast, according to a new report from ManpowerGroup Solutions (NYSE: MAN) and the Retail Industry Leaders Association.
The report, “Fully Stocked: Alternative Work Models for Retailers,” found flexibility is key to finding the best talent for in-store and warehouse/distribution workers; it also makes them stay, according to the study of nearly 2,500 retail workers.
“Retail workers, from delivery drivers to customer service representatives, want work that can easily blend with their busy lives,” said Melissa Hassett, VP of client delivery at ManpowerGroup Solutions. “Retailers who offer workers flexibility and use technology to recruit talent when and where they want to work will have the edge.”
The report provides a few recommendations for retailers:
- Start internally: Retailers should begin by building an internal “gig system” to mitigate legal/compliance issues.
- Start slowly: The use of on-demand staffing platforms does not have to be an “all or nothing” approach.
- Roll out first in commodified roles: For retailers who are uncomfortable with the concept, pick job roles that are easily transferable between people. In-store, cashiers may be a good place to start.
- Anticipate change management issues for store managers: Retailers that are experimenting with on-demand scheduling platforms have reported some difficulty with transitioning managers (and not the workers).
- Speak out for policy change: Industry organizations and their members are a powerful voice for policy change. The industry needs a new framework/class of independent labor that can work in the new paradigm without retailers facing regulatory compliance issues. This is of particular concern to multi-state employers.
- Collaborate on a retail certification program: Industry organizations can potentially play a powerful role in facilitating an industry certification program that would make collaborative hiring easier. Certified candidates would give employers a level of confidence that they know the basics of their jobs.