Pushys – Australia’s leading online bike retailer – is a unique business. The business also operates from a very large premises of 2600 square metres in Fyshwick, however, it is split over two premises and encompasses not only a shopfront, warehouse and repair centre, but also a café. Pushys prides itself on unequalled knowledge and skills as well as an unrivalled range of products – more than 15,000 – in stock, yet it is exactly these points of difference that challenge day-to-day operations of the retailer.
How do customers receive great customer service when, as operations manager David Knight says, “With such a huge assortment of bikes and products it’s actually impossible to know everything”? Physically finding the right staff member to help over such a large area could take too long and the sale lost. There is also the challenge of managing staff dispersed throughout the store in addition to ensuring that adequate staff service all areas of the business across the two premises.
The solution came in the form of Motorola Solutions’ CLP two-way radios, which are sleek, palm-sized two-way radios designed for professional and discreet communication between team members, particularly in retail and hospitality.
The devices are now used by the majority of Pushys staff with another batch of handsets delivered recently owing to their overwhelming success.
Only six months after the deployment, David Knight says “now we couldn’t live without them as they are so vital to the way we do things. Without my radio I’d feel naked, and we couldn’t work efficiently and effectively. I would struggle to manage staff and direct the business without them”.
Four significant benefits emerged from the new technology:
Improved customer service: With more than 15,000 available products, no individual employee can be knowledgeable on all products, so staff were previously forced to leave the customer in search of another staff member to assist. Of course, if that person was already busy with a customer, there would be a further delay, especially if that did not resolve the query and further assistance was required.
“Now we just ask the question over the radio, and someone will pipe up with the answer. We can help the customer straightaway and don’t have to walk away or keep them waiting. We can get information to staff and the customer instantaneously.”
Furthermore, if a customer telephones the retail shop enquiring about the progress of a repair, the Pushys staff member can now check with the repair shop via radio on the status of the repair, and update the customer immediately over the phone. While the customer could be transferred to the repair shop according to previous practice, this approach is seamless and immediate, and the customer only needs to deal with one employee.
In a development that has the potential to exceed customers’ expectations, shop staff are even able to see a known customer in the store, and radio ahead to the repair shop to ensure that the customer’s job is ready for them.
In fact, Pushys’s customer service is such that the business was one of only two finalists in the Telstra Australian Capital Territory Medium Business Awards, a testament to the company’s success.
Efficiently manage the workforce: Over such a large premises, Knight is confident that he can hear all communications via his CLP, which currently operates on just one channel so that everyone hears everything.
“I can be anywhere in the store and in complete control. I don’t have to worry that there is a customer not being served. It works really, really well whether I’m on the shop floor, backhouse, workshop, stock processing, customer services, café or storage areas.”
“There are lots of blind spots in the store, but I can direct someone to an area if required, so it’s really handy to direct staff to where they are needed.”
“The café shift manager can radio for more assistance, and retail staff can move to the café if there is a crowd in, and vice versa if required as everyone is trained across both areas. We can scale up or down as required and move the workforce around.”
“In fact, without the radios I don’t know how we would run our two stores – I think we would have to run them separately.”
Ease of use: The CLP is the first two-way radio designed for the demanding and fast-paced retail or hospitality setting, yet the design makes communication simple and natural. The CLP’s one button push-to-talk operation makes usage very easy to master and the durable, compact design suits the less industrial setting of traditional two-way radios.
Pushys staff may have been wary of the new technology initially, however, this situation has changed completely. In fact, as “we don’t have enough for all staff it’s a privilege for a person to have a radio. They then feel they are not alone on the floor, but connected to everyone”.
Stock security: Finally, the radios have proven useful in times where a staff member is discreetly made aware of a potential shoplifting risk.
Knight reports that two other businesses have invested in the same solution after seeing the CLPs in action at Pushys.
BTW Communications worked with Pushys to roll out the CLP solution, which Knight reports as a great experience. “BTW were great, and went above and beyond. I would just call and they would be here, working everything out. The new handsets we bought recently arrived all configured and ready to go. I don’t have to do anything. I don’t know the technical side but they just make it happen. It was super easy and I highly recommend them – I tell anyone to go to BTW.”
Download Pushys case study here.