STORES Magazine - May 2009 - (Page 51)

NUTS AND BOLTS / HUMAN RESOURCES sausage, sweets and cheese and corporate executives could shift their focus to margin growth, rather than filling 5,000 seasonal positions. And, while the 2008 holiday season was anything but jolly for most retailers, Hickory Farms was able to rack up impressive numbers in some areas. “The most measurable result was that we were cost-neutral on a full company rollout,” says Jim O’Neill, Hickory Farms’ vice president of retail kiosk and wholesale operations. “We saw our HR STATS Who: 62,000 job candidates What: 6,000 hires (sales associates and managers When: 2008 Where: 597 Hickory Farms locations in 47 states How: Headway Corporate Resources workers’ comp premiums almost evaporate in year one [and] our administrative costs virtually disappear.” This disappearing act was due to Headway’s on-boarding new hires to its own payroll, which meant Hickory Farms no longer had to provide for workers’ compensation, something that had hit the retailer hard because premiums are set based on the number of hires, not the length of employment. Additional savings accrued through reducing or eliminating the need to print job applications and ship checks to 600 locations, and the fact that Hickory Farms didn’t need to ramp up its own payroll department to manage new hires. The changes had a bonus for workers, too: weekly paychecks. “We were running our own human resources juggernaut to hire 5,000 people,” O’Neill says. “When you do that many transactions a week with new paperwork, we couldn’t pull off weekly payroll. When you talk to the STORES / MAY 2009 51 Farm System BY SANDY SMITH Outsourcing seasonal hiring a gift for Hickory Farms T hink you have staffing issues? Hickory Farms practically launches a new nationwide business each fall. In a matter of weeks, some 600 stores open in malls across the United States and Canada. Staff is hired, managers are trained and shelves are stocked. In the past, those managers would spend three days in training, half of which was focused on human resources issues like recruiting workers and filling out pertinent paperwork. Last year, however, Hickory Farms rolled out Headway Corporate ReWWW.STORES.ORG sources’ Adaptive Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) to impressive results. Employees arrived pre-screened, managers could concentrate on sales of http://WWW.STORES.ORG

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of STORES Magazine - May 2009

STORES Magazine - May 2009
Executive Editor's Page
President's Page
Facts to Chew On
What Shoppers Think
Deals "R" Us
10 Things You May Have Missed
Numbers Worth Counting
Full Price/Markdown
Retail People
Cover Story: Brand X Power
Home Improvement
Credit Where Credit's Due
Locate, Locate, Locate
New Playbook
Staying in the Fast Lane
Clean and Green
Driven to Please
Farm System
Rx for Shrink
Zeroing Out Zombies
Rogues Gallery
Ounce of Prevention
Loeb Retail Letter
Chain Action
Optimism Rocks
ARTS Update
Point of View
Retail Crossword
Retail Industry Calendar
End Cap

STORES Magazine - May 2009