STORES 2017 BIG Show Daily - January 16, 2017 - 1
Monday, January 16, 2017
FOR POSITION ONLY
Attracting and Retaining Top Retail Talent
s retail continues its rapid transformation, efforts to find and keep
the right employees must change
along with it. It's not just that the people
are different; technology has ensured that
the jobs are, too.
Consider data analytics; two years ago
Macy's Inc. had no team focused solely
on the field, according to Chairman and
CEO Terry Lundgren. "But now we do,"
Lundgren told a Sunday morning panel
discussion on "Building Tomorrow's
Workforce: How Retailers Are Attracting
and Retaining Talent."
The keynote also included Greg Foran, president and CEO of Walmart U.S.,
and James Rhee, executive chairman and
CEO of Ashley Stewart. It was moderated
by Bill Brand, president of HSN.
"We have to embrace new thinking to
meet the demands of this new workplace,"
Brand said. "We must experiment" and
The NRF Foundation's new RISE
Up education and credentialing program,
mentioned during the session, is one such
effort at collaboration. The initiative, already backed by more than 20 companies,
is aimed at helping people acquire the
2017 BIG SHOW PREVIEW
Panelists (from left) Bill Brand, Greg Foran, Terry Lundgren and James Rhee.
skills needed to secure jobs in retail and
advance into promising careers, regardless of education, background, economic
means or age.
"What we all know is that change is
constant," Brand said. "In the next five
years, they say retail will change more
than in the past 50 ... . Now is the time to
think and act differently."
Members of the panel spoke about
ways their companies are doing just that.
Foran talked about numerous Walmart
efforts to change with the times: The
Pathways entry-level training program
offers basic skills; there are plans to build
200 training academies by the end of the
year; and the company is raising pay
rates, working on retention and ensuring
associates have the right technology to
do their jobs.
"We know if we can get the army of
Walmart to march, it will not just be better
for Walmart, but better for the industry as
well," Foran said.
Rhee, meanwhile, spoke about the
See "Talent" on page 22
Using Data to Revise Retail Business Models
n a forum moderated by Rod Sides, retail, wholesale and distribution leader
for Deloitte LLP, Mike Mauler, EVP
and president of GameStop International,
and Colin Watts, CEO and chief health
enthusiast for The Vitamin Shoppe, de-
Deloitte, only 47
percent of surveyed
with their store
experiences on the
scribed ways in which insights about their
customer base derived from consumer data
have helped their companies change and
evolve their business models.
In his introductory remarks, Sides
noted that the United States economy is
growing at about 2 percent per year. The
retail industry, he said, is growing at about
the same rate. "In a slow-growth pattern
like this," he said, "overall, retailers seek
to grow by taking business away from
Meanwhile, he noted, the store journey is changing, as is the role of the store
itself. No longer do consumers become
introduced to products and explore them
by going to a store; that part of the journey takes place at home, through online
research. The actual trip to the store is
increasingly part of the fulfillment stage of
the buying process: Either the consumer is
picking up an order placed online, or they
have gone to the store to see and make
the final purchase of a product long since
For many customers, those trips to
the store are only moderately satisfying.
According to Deloitte, only 47 percent of
surveyed customers report being satisfied with their store experiences on the
logistical, taking-care-of-business level;
41 percent report being satisfied on the
emotional level. "Expectations of the
store experience are being set by the consumers' digital experience," Sides said,
which leads to disappointment.
The rewards for solving this problem,
Sides noted, are considerable; while the
retail industry as a whole is averaging 2
percent growth, industry leaders - those
differentiating themselves both on better
products and a better experience - are
reporting a 13 percent cumulative average
annual growth rate for sales.
GameStop has apparently cracked the
See "Loyalty" on page 22