Sneak preview of Motorola Solutions mobile technology that will allow store associates to deliver a better shopping experience
NEW YORK – June 21, 2012 – Shoppers are walking into stores more informed, better connected, and expecting more from the retail associates who are assisting them. As part of Motorola Solutions, Inc. (NYSE: MSI) vision of the Future of Retail revealed today, new mobile devices and software will reward and enhance the shopping experience by allowing sales associates to be better informed and connected with shoppers, thus reducing the one-third of visits that end with shoppers leaving without making their intended purchase. These new products include the new SB1 smart badge (buy here from Legacy Technology Services), the MC40 Enterprise Assistant (buy here from Legacy) and the Mobile Workforce Management software (buy here from Legacy).
Consumers increasingly have easier and greater access to information than many store associates. This leads to an expectation that store employees should be able to quickly answer questions about product pricing, stock status and other information. A majority of retail associates told Motorola they would benefit from a device like the SB1 because it allows them to scan an item to check price and availability, have immediate access to product information, accept tasks, and connect to managers and other employees via a push-to-talk feature. The MC40 further enhances the customer experience through a sleek, user-friendly mobile device that provides the associate access to in-depth product information, data collection and mobile point of sale (MPOS) capability without ever leaving the customer’s side.
Motorola’s new Mobile Workforce Management (MWM) software was developed to help solve the task management problem of large in-store mobile workforces that are manual and inefficient. In conversations Motorola has had with retailers, over three-quarters of all retail supervisors indicated they assign tasks verbally or with handwritten notes during the day, and most (63%) have no method for electronically tracking task completion. This leads to a poor shopping experience because associates and managers don’t have an efficient way to coordinate the completion of work or respond to customer requests.
When released later this year, MWM will extend traditional corporate workforce management, bringing together planned and ad-hoc tasks to be sent directly to mobile devices – such as the SB1, MC40, ET1 Tablet and others – reducing the need for store managers to physically walk the store and track the progress of each employee on their to-do list. The real-time exchange of information between associates and supervisors streamlines retail operations and allows for more intelligent and dynamic workforce adjustments, all resulting in an improved in-store shopping experience that will keep customers coming back. The HTML5 mobile client for MWM was built on the RhoMobile suite enabling supervisors and store associates to create tasks from their mobile devices and having the system auto assign these tasks based on the configured rules.
KEY FACTS – SB1
- The Motorola SB1 smart badge will help retailers affordably equip everyone in their organizations with a smart, wearable, cost-efficient, mobile device with an E Ink® display that provides long battery life and excellent readability in all lighting conditions. It can be deployed in enterprises to empower sales associates and task workers with communications and collaboration solutions that drive cost savings, improve productivity and customer service.
- The SB1 can be economically deployed to the entire workforce, keeping them connected with a powerful voice and data architecture.
- A solution that is accessible to all associates on the sales floor, SB1 runs MWM and other HTML5 server-based applications that enable task management, price checking, inventory look-up, and product information. Applications for the SB1 can be quickly and easily developed using Motorola’s new RhoMobile Suite.
KEY FACTS – MC40
- The MC40 is compact, easy to use and has the power to access secure data and business applications which can allow on-site ordering. It also enables the viewing of inventory so associates can immediately respond to customer requests.
- The MC40 brings the familiarity and popularity of a consumer-class user experience to a true enterprise-class device with a clear and bright 4-inch touch-screen display that allows product information and images to be easily shared with customers.
- The MC40 can also serve as a MPOS with an optional barcode scanner and magnetic stripe reader to complete a sale anywhere in the retail store without leaving the shopper’s side. This can result in fewer lost sales, a better shopping experience and greater shopper satisfaction.
KEY FACTS – Mobile Workforce Management
- MWM provides powerful capabilities for generating, assigning, delivering, receiving, monitoring and escalating tasks for mobile workers.
- It is a software application that intelligently pushes tasks to store associates within a shift and can help with real-time customer requests. MWM can monitor and escalate tasks and provide managers with real-time dashboards. Coupled with an SB1 device, MWM helps push tasks and communications to the “last mile”, enabling retail associates who previously had no convenient technology to assist them in their work. This real-time information and feedback enables management to better optimize operations and make more intelligent workforce adjustments as required – all resulting in an improved in-store shopping experience.
- MWM can integrate with all in-store and corporate business systems — including time and attendance, labor planning, project scheduling, promotion management, Point of Sale (POS), kiosks, RFID sensors and more – and provide a powerful interface for those systems to submit new tasks, to modify tasks and monitor task status. It also simplifies communications with a range of mobile devices and allows user information, group information and skill set data from partner systems to transmit back to the MWM server.
Jim Welch, senior vice president and general manager, North America Sales and Field operations, Motorola Solutions
“To serve today’s educated and connected shopper, retailers have to equip their staff with the latest technology in order to keep pace with the rapidly changing trends affecting their business. Our advanced solutions are playing a key role in helping retailers better connect with shoppers and enable associates to provide an optimal and increasingly personalized experience.”