Retail Zipline, the leading communication and store execution platform for retailers, revealed its Health and Safety Compliance in Retail Report based on data collected by NAPCO as part of its secret shopper research study conducted in July and August, 2020. The goal of NAPCO’s research study was to understand how omni-channel retailers are performing amid COVID-19 health and safety regulations.
New research shows that more than 460 coronavirus safety lawsuits were reported within less than six months of the pandemic against retailers like Walmart and Amazon. As such, retailers are eager to design and enforce measures that protect employees and shoppers from contracting the virus. An effective procedure in place has the potential to not only save lives, but also avoid lawsuits and contribute to building a trusted brand.
Based on NAPCO’s data of 100 retailers at mainstream stores such as Best Buy, Sephora, Urban Outfitters, Build-a-Bear Workshop, Williams-Sonoma, Bed Bath & Beyond and more, the Report reveals compelling findings around compliance performance, the best and worst-performing segments and hurdles that retailers face around health and safety in the midst of the pandemic.
Right now, safety is the priority. But stores have a long way to go before they’re fully compliant.
NAPCO analyzed and awarded retailers points based on five core areas: signage, safety, traffic, technology and friendliness. The average total score across all categories for the 100 retailers assessed was 49% (49 out of 100 possible points). Within the five categories, retailers scored the highest in safety – with an average score of 68% – indicating that store associates are prioritizing the enforcement of safety measures, such as social distancing, face masks, and cleaning the check-out area after each customer visit.
But the Report indicates that retailers still have a long way to go before the design and implementation of these safety measures will be fully effective, as stores scored just 49% on average on executing both effective signage and traffic measures. Retailers also ranked low on friendliness (30%), likely a result of associates having to do more with fewer resources and smaller teams.
The top-performing stores:
Retailers leveraging communication technology outperform those that don’t.
The study reveals that retailers that put software solutions in place to communicate better and manage store execution are better equipped to handle the additional work resulting from the pandemic, and outperformed their peers in all execution categories. Based on NAPCO’s analysis of how Retail Zipline customers performed against non-Zipline customers and customers that use a competing workforce management solution, Zipline found that tools users outperform non-tools users and Zipline customers outperform both.
Overall, Zipline customers scored 63% in safety and maintained high scores across categories. Top-performing Zipline customers include Sephora, American Eagle Outfitters, and L.L. Bean.
Non-essential businesses perform better than their essential counterparts, but it varies by vertical.
When the pandemic shut down non-essential businesses, many used that time to prepare for changes to stores – and it's paying off. The study found that non-essential businesses (48%) performed better than essential businesses (40%).
Just as essential and non-essential businesses saw a significant difference in performance, so too did retail verticals. Grouping the companies by NAICS code reveals the top performers were beauty, apparel and department stores. The bottom performers were vitamin and specialty automotive stores.
“Compliance in retail has never been more critical,” said Melissa Wong, CEO of Retail Zipline. “Never before in history has a retail associate been a steward for customer health and safety. It's rewarding to see our customers thriving, but we know there's a long way to go to make the industry at-large better, easier and safer to work in.”
To download the Zipline report, visit: https://info.retailzipline.com/retailzipline-health-and-safety-compliance-in-retail
Via a secret shopper study, 100 retailers were evaluated on the publicly available information about each retailer’s COVID-19 response measures as well as their typical in-store customer experience. NAPCO analysts scored retailers against 29 unique criteria, covering the specific and most common measures recommended by the CDC and other authorities to combat the spread of COVID-19. The analysis was conducted over a three-week period from July 2020 through August 2020. NAPCO provided Retail Zipline with each retailer’s detailed scorecard, which were used to uncover insights.
About Retail Zipline:
Retail Zipline is the leading communication and execution platform for retailers. Built with the complexities of retail in mind, Retail Zipline helps HQ streamline and coordinate communications with the field, in a way that makes store teams happier and more productive. The company’s goal is to improve the lives of one million retail employees by 2025, and the platform is already used by leading brands such as Sephora, American Eagle Outfitters, L.L.Bean, Gap Inc., Hy-Vee Inc., Lush Cosmetics, BevMo!, LL Flooring, Cole Haan, The LEGO Group, TOMS, Torrid and others. To learn more, please visit retailzipline.com.