HUDSONVILLE, Mich. -- Family Fare here recently completed the installation of a new labor-scheduling system in one of its 12 stores to increase customer service.
By the third quarter of this year, the rest of its stores should be receiving the new system, which comes from Kronos, Waltham, Mass.
Bryan Hull, director of retail information systems at Family Fare, said the biggest objective of the system is to get a better grasp on customer service, a major emphasis at the chain. An archiving feature will also help track worker activity, including deviations from schedules.
"We want to make sure we have the front-end people, checkers and baggers, available at the store when the customers are there," Hull said.
"The system runs strictly off business information collected from the point of sale. What we're capturing is how many customers, items and dollars come through the front end in 15-minute intervals.
"Then we apply labor standards to that, which tells us how many people we need at each one of those 15-minute intervals," Hull added. "And that's where our second objective comes in -- to schedule our associates when they prefer to work. So the system takes all those 15-minute intervals of people and assigns names to the schedule."
Because the system has only been in place for a few weeks, Hull said, it's too early to report results.
Family Fare is also installing an archive module to the labor-scheduling system that stores all associates' exceptions, including deviations from the schedule.