How to Turn Process Compliance Pitfalls Into Process Improvements

Compliance is a heavy word. It can carry a negative connotation, especially when associated with business and employee-related issues. But it doesn’t have to be a pain point for retail leadership, store operations or employees.

Nate Steadman, Director at Connors Group, has identified a couple of common compliance pitfalls, how to address them and the results you can expect from taking action now.

According to Nate, the big-picture problem is that retail store associates not complying with the process that’s been put in place is costing millions in payroll inefficiency. As if that isn’t a serious enough problem, compliance issues are also direct causes of sales conversion decline and labor budgeting headaches among countless other undesirable outcomes.

Common Pitfalls:

Less-Than-Ideal Staffing

Due to economic and labor market factors like unemployment numbers, difficulty finding and maintaining associates or the policies and staffing practices of the retailer itself, store operators often have to make do with staffing levels that make it difficult to maintain the best, most efficient process.


When team members unexpectedly miss work, productivity and efficiency inevitably suffer. This is especially troublesome during peak periods.

How to Address Compliance Pitfalls

Supplying stores with tools to help better execute best practices:

This can can result in significant operational improvements, including, but not limited to:

  • Reduced lines
  • Increased sales floor coverage
  • Improved product replenishment

Implementation of new store communication and workforce management software:

Improved compliance allows for improved communication, task assignments and tracking completion from corporate and field leaders.

Implementation of staffing technology solutions:

By doing this you can can empower associates to swap shifts that may otherwise go unstaffed.

These simple solutions, and focusing on improvements to other store management basics, can also enable store leadership to request volunteers for shifts to account for un-forecasted events such as larger-than-planned product shipments.

Expected Results of Process Compliance Improvements

Whether through workforce management software, enhanced training or efforts by retails to make staffing more ideal, process improvements can lead to a number of desired results.

Increased associate engagement and morale: 

When workers are handling the work and scheduling correctly and accurately, a better place to work naturally arises.

Reduced turnover: 

Compliance and turnover are part of either a virtuous or vicious cycle. If employees are in compliance, there’s a good chance they’re more engaged in the work they do. When greater employee engagement exists, greater compliance follows.

Enhanced customer service: 

Having a better process in place can help employees do their job more efficiently and effectively. More engaged employees are more attuned to satisfying customer needs, leading to…

Increased sales: 

At the end of the day, this is the goal of every retailer. Even the slightest process improvement can make a significant impact on the bottom line over time.

Knowing these results are to be expected, retailers dealing with the compliance issues above would be wise to see them not as pitfalls, but as opportunities.