Many established retail brands are facing a rapid shift in consumer demand, and while it was accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic it seems this shift is here to stay.
Indeed ONS data shows that “internet sales accounted for 26.6% of all official retail sales, compared with 19.7% in February 2020.” How our spending has changed since the end of coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions, but transforming an enterprise reliant on legacy systems into a next-gen retail offering is no mean feat.
An embedded hiring model can help alleviate many of the hurdles faced when looking at rapid expansion, helping to reduce overall cost and project time, while providing expertise in the fields you need most.
E-Commerce Demand Has Increased YoY Since 2014
The two years of the pandemic accelerated the need for efficient and integrated e-commerce services. Many large high-street brands had to play catch-up in order to adapt to keep up with the latest consumer environment from Supply Chain, Warehouse Management Solutions to Smart-Stores.
For Holland and Barrett this posed an interesting challenge.
Acquired back in 2017, the well-known brand had great plans for its digital future, the goal was to convert Holland and Barrett into a leading global wellness brand through their e-commerce offering.
For Holland and Barrett this digital transformation necessitated a very delicate approach that balanced legacy systems and those experienced with programming them, alongside new technologies and those skilled to implement them. They required volume hiring to enable them to scale quickly.
Competitive Employee Markets
When the pandemic hit the plans that Holland and Barrett had in place previously now had to be sped up beyond what was originally conceivable. The entire market became much more competitive overnight, with demand for talent rocketing. If they didn’t invest in the right hires urgently, they would have fallen behind their competitors.
Holland and Barrett needed three things in order for this plan to succeed:
- Hire a new team of skilled professionals
- Retain their existing dev department
- Keep within a budget
And of course, they had to do this very quickly in the turbulent environment that the pandemic brought.
And it goes without saying, but we’ll reiterate anyway, the three points listed above are inherently interconnected and were vital for success.
An Effective and Efficient Solution
To effectively manage their recruitment process, Holland and Barrett partnered with Troi, bringing in much-needed resources and expertise to scale the Holland and Barrett team at the speed needed to reach their business goals.
“In 3 years, Troi helped Holland and Barrett hire over 300 new staff members. Helping to develop a much improved and expanded team structure including an engineering function that is able to explore and create next-gen e-commerce solutions, including 3D Automated Supply Chain and Robotic WMS Solution.”
Investing in Your Future
Often this type of digital transformation, more specifically pivoting from outsourced solutions to 100% owned and constructed technologies, has a massive cost implication that many departments find difficult to prove ROI to stakeholders, often leaving the projects on pause and leaving the company open to competition. This is undoubtedly one of the hardest things to contend with, but much of the cost in this transition period comes from recruitment costs.
Holland and Barrett saved £2.1m annually by working with Troi during their transformation project in comparison to what they would have spent with a traditional recruitment agency provider.
This cost-saving massively increased the types of talent the business was able to attract and could be reinvested into the project. Troi was able to secure talent and leadership experience from tech giants such as Facebook, Google and Amazon which helped Holland and Barrett become an attractive option for developers on the lookout for their next project.
This investment in their future cannot be overstated, with the “…Global Digital Transformation Market in Retail valued at USD 143.55 billion in 2020 and expected to reach USD 388.51 billion by 2026 and grow at a CAGR of 18.2% over the forecast period (2021 – 2026)”. Digital Transformation Market in Retail Sector Growth, Trends, Analysis | 2022-27
People = Profit
Investing early in your personnel infrastructure will make you more resilient to the changing retail landscape. In a world where loyalty and personalisation are key, technology is the tool that businesses will have to rely on in order to maintain their brand recognition and the loyalty of their customers.
Process is King
One of the major pitfalls that companies fall into when investing in digital transformation is to ignore hiring process improvements and rely on old methods to deliver new results. But this, however, cannot be overlooked.
A new team of engineers expected to deliver in shorter sprints with more agility should be complemented by a hiring process that is suited to their delivery model. Hiring should be streamlined not only to increase productivity and output but also to illustrate the employer’s culture from the very start of the candidate’s journey.
Your Employer Brand in Safe Hands
By partnering with Troi, Holland and Barrett were able to reduce their hiring process from two months to just ten days. This enabled Holland and Barrett to attract talent above and beyond their competition with a slick and easy process that made a great impression on candidates – not to mention Holland and Barrett were much less likely to have to deal with losing candidates to other offers.
Two months to ten days may not sound like the biggest productivity gain, however, when the average number of hires per month is 24 that’s a saving of over 1,200 hours. Ones that could be much better spent on delivering a better experience for your customers.
Want to know how else Troi is currently helping companies drive their digital transformation through an Embedded Hiring Model? Take a look here, and we’ll arrange a quick 20 min chat to discuss how we can help you.