Inaugural Customer Experience Summit announced

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The inaugural Customer Experience Summit, co-hosted by RetailConnections and by Cathy Hotka & Associates, will take place August 17-19, 2008, in Nashville, Tenn.

Hiring time

Experts say a recession is the perfect time to build your team.

Bergdorf Goodman named 2008's best customer experience

NEW YORK — High net-worth consumers rated Bergdorf Goodman the retailer that offers the best customer experience in the 2008 Luxury Customer Experience Index (LCEI) survey from the independent New York-based Luxury Institute. Respondents commented, "The selection of products is...

U.S. retailers just beginning to understand customer experience, report says

Forrester Research has published "The State of Experience-Based Differentiation," a summary of its recent survey of 287 customer experience decision-makers about the state of their initiatives. Respondents were quizzed about the three key components in Forrester's "Experience-Based Differentiation" method: obsess...

Starbucks closes 7,100 stores for training

Wall Street Journal: Starbucks Corp. retaught baristas how to make espresso shots, steam milk and hand drinks to customers while it shut down nearly 7,100 stores in the United States on Tuesday evening.

Product pros

Knowledgeable employees are trained, not hired.

Cisco unveils new tools for retail at NRF

NEW YORK — Cisco announced a series of new technology solutions and multivendor architectures that will help retailers improve security and reduce complexity of store systems in addition to increasing employee productivity to enhance their customers' experience. Cisco is launching...

Home Depot moving staff to days to improve customer service

Wall Street Journal: Home Depot Inc. plans to reassign overnight-shift employees to days at its lower volume stores, a change that puts more workers on the sales floor without raising costs.

Top source of retail shrink: employees

Progressive Grocer: Retailers suspect that their own employees are the main source of retail shrink, according to a new Retail Systems Research Benchmark report. The report, "Winning Trends in Loss Prevention: Benchmark Study 2008," found the worst-performing retailers are more worried about employee theft than other retailers.

Independent merchants fight big retailers with selection, service

The Columbus Dispatch: This season finds independent retailers across the country dealing with a new set of economic challenges even as they still contend with growing competition from big-box retailers such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Borders Inc.

NRF: Retail needs more qualified managers

USA Today: When it comes to careers, less than a third of college graduates think retailing has a good reputation, says the National Retail Federation. With fewer young people willing to consider entry-level retail jobs, there's a dearth of qualified and experienced retail executives.

Report says women are 'better suited for retail jobs'

Economic Times: Some of the biggest players in Indian retail are looking to the fairer sex, especially when it comes to dealing with killer attrition blues. Reliance Retail, Future Group, Shopper's Stop and RPG Retail are experimenting with a host of hiring models to increase the ratio of women to men in their workforce.

Measuring and managing the customer experience

Retailers must measure, manage and improve the experiences of their customers, in order to grow their businesses effectively.

Pep Boys revs up customer service

The automotive parts and accessories retailer required an integrated retail environment to be more responsive to customer needs.

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