Technologies that empower workers to do their jobs more effectively will be crucial in the battle for greater productivity and AI in retail is prone to be a major supporting tool in that area.

There are a number of challenges the retail sector is currently facing. Some are longstanding and familiar, others brought by more recent geopolitical and technological developments. With daily developments on the bricks vs clicks contest and increasing numbers of store closures, coupled with Brexit, skills shortages and consistently sluggish productivity, profitability is being squeezed and an atmosphere of uncertainty in the sector is building. However, a greater focus on the deployment of technology in the workplace will offer retailers the opportunity to completely reshape their working practices and revolutionise key operations. Which role will AI in retail play?

Empowering the Employee

Retailers have not yet fully embraced these technologies, meaning many have not yet taken full advantage of the power of comprehensive digital transformation. New technologies such as artificial intelligence, and virtual reality may be coming to the fore, but retailers also need to do more to acknowledge the availability of other solutions that are designed to help maximise the output of human workers, such as workforce management tools.

The retail sector as a whole has much to contend with over the coming years including Brexit, the National Living Wage, business rates, the relentless growth of omnichannel and fluctuating consumer confidence. Retailers will be forced to do what they can with limited or changing resources in the bid to stay ahead of their competitors. Workforce management supported by AI-technology has a pivotal role to play here, by empowering managers and employees to do their jobs more effectively.

By placing greater emphasis on the adoption of the most innovative workforce management technologies, productivity woes can be tackled, and retailers can offset the impact of factors that are beyond their control.

To learn more about how AI in Retail can support workforce management – download our latest white paper, Empowering the Employee: How technology will play its part in creating a more efficient workforce in the retail.