You have all the ingredients
Everyday when you do business, you’re gathering information. You’re managing products, employees, and customers.
Organizing information is important because of its direct correlation to results. When you know your product, you can inform your potential customers better. When you know your customers, you know what kind of product they need.
Spending time on reports and cross-checking sources can be costly. There may be times the marketing department is reporting on sales but operations has different numbers. You want accurate, real time numbers.
What will hold it together
By systemizing information, you can save valuable time. A well strategized information system can help you answer the following in a timely manner:
- How do we keep in touch with our customers?
- Are we generating web content relevant to a customer’s buying patterns?
- When can customers expect the hottest item of the season?
- Are items in my store being stolen?
- How is my price doing against online sales?
- Do we have internal candidates that might be appropriate for a new position?
- How efficient is our payroll against sales results?
A retail organization I helped had customers complaining, “Why am I not getting the membership packet I paid for?” Turns out plenty of their customers were waiting up to 6-12 months. Cashiers were forced to give a blanket discount code when customers were not found in the company’s Point of Sales system. This means that the company was not collecting important customer information, leading to the company was missing out on learning about purchasing habits.
Now how can a computer be used to fix this problem? I programmed a database that would automate the process of entering customer information which then activated their membership discounts. That 6-12 month turnaround was accelerated to a single day.
Additionally, this would mean:
- Months of administrative hours saved
- Fewer complaints
- Happier customers
- Best of all, repeat business
Imagine what these changes would do for your company.