Pick a number

You have just moved into a new house.  The kids are exploring the yard, you are packing out the last of the boxes and it’s almost time to kick back and relax.  Standing outside your house looking with pride at what you have just achieved you notice the street number is missing.  That wouldn’t do you think to yourself, so just before you decide to relax, you nip down to the local hardware store.

As you enter the hardware store you realise that you will need a drill to mount the numbers against the wall.  This will be one of those days that you get to treat yourself you think as you head down to look at the latest drills.  Finally after now knowing everything about drills and drill bits you decide on the best one for the job and get a few extra drill bits that will do the trick.

You are number 174 in the street.  You scan your eye down the shelves looking for the little numbers that you always pass on your way to buy other things. Today however, is different, today is the first time you get to buy those for yourself.  As you stand in front of the shelf you eye notices the number 1 and the number 4.  Unfortunately you are unable to find number 7.  Your frustration levels immediately start climbing as you frantically start searching.  You scan through all the numbers, each one in turn, yet still you cannot trace down number 7.  And you need number 7.  How is it possible.  Finally you bend down and look under the shelf, there in the far corner you see a number.  You stick your arm as far in as you can and grab a hold of it.  Got it you think as you flip it around to discover…. another number 4.

That’s it you think.  As you take the other two numbers and stab them back into their little hooks.  What a waste of a good afternoon.  As you go back to the till you suddenly realise that you really don’t need a drill now, and you really don’t need drill bits.  After all that you head back home.  Well, at least you now know what hardware store not to come and visit next time.

We can all relate to this anecdote yet still very few vendors understand how being out of stock affects your business, or the cross selling that is done in the retail store.  In so many cases different products are connected to each other and being out of stock with one item not only relates in a missed opportunity to sell, but also in a poor customer experience.

StockLab was formed to address this problem.  We realised the need for staff who can treat the product they look after as their own and can problem solve at store level.  We realised the system will always be broken, so our staff will need to understand not only how to make a shelf look pretty, but how the system works and how to fix the current situation.  Ultimately it’s not only about poor stock levels and missing the sale, although that is also important, but it’s about the customer, their experience, and making them love your products.


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