Cabela’s implements Reflexis Task Manager and StoreWalk
Dedham, Mass. — Workforce management solution-provider Reflexis Systems said Monday that Sidney, Neb.-based Cabela’s has implemented Reflexis Task Manager and StoreWalk to increase efficiency and improve the store-level execution of its retail strategy.
The Reflexis cloud computing solutions, according to the company, enable retailers to streamline corporate-to-store communication, ensure consistent execution of in-store merchandising and promotional plans, and improve compliance with safety and operational policies.
“Store managers and employees now view a list of prioritized tasks in one system, instead of planning, replying, and following up via e-mail, voice mail, and other communication,” said Marlon Giese, Cabela’s retail communication manager. “The task management system also enables us to monitor job completion and compliance levels in our stores, which was not really possible by e-mail alone.”
With support from Reflexis, Cabela’s tailored the solution to fit its business needs, including using only minimal internal information technology resources. Giese called the solutions intuitive, low-maintenance and user-friendly, which made it possible for the company to implement them during the busiest time of the year.
Report: Employment Trends Index increases 8% year-over-year
New York City — The Conference Board’s Employment Trends Index, released Monday, increased in February for the fifth consecutive month.
According to the Conference Board, the index now stands at 101.7, up from January’s revised figure of 100.1. The index is up over 8% from a year ago.
“In the past half year, the economy has been adding, on average, about 110,000 jobs per month,” said Gad Levanon, associate director, macroeconomic research at The Conference Board. “The strong growth in the Employment Trends Index suggests that the pickup in jobs may accelerate in the next couple of quarters. However, with a shrinking government, a stagnant construction sector, and a manufacturing recovery that has only a small impact on overall employment, overall job growth will still be modest.”
Grocery continues to drive growth at Target
Get used to that headline. Increased sales of food during the coming year are expected to contribute 1.5% to Target’s same-store sales growth as the company continues it aggressive PFresh remodeling program.
Same-store sales in February advanced 1.8%, and the strongest performance came in the grocery category, where comps increased in the low teens while health care, beauty and other household essentials experienced gains in the mid-to-upper single-digit range. Also showing strength was the apparel category where comps increased in the low-to-mid single-digit range.
“Target’s February comparable-store sales were in line with our expectations, as our REDcard Rewards and PFresh remodel programs continue to drive meaningful incremental sales and traffic in our stores,” said Target chairman, president and CEO Gregg Steinhafel.
The gain was respectable and impressive as the increase came on top of a prior year comp of 2.4% and the number of stores in the PFresh concept number about 500 at year end out of a total store base of 1,750 units. Target remodeled 341 stores to the PFresh concept during 2010 and 380 stores are due to be remodeled during the current year, which means by the end of 2011 the company will be well past the halfway mark and close to its goal of completing an entire chain conversion by 2013.
Stores in the PFresh format feature fresh foods and an expanded offering of grocery and consumables products, but during the past year other departments also received an upgrade as part of the process. The addition of food is the biggest change for shoppers and the effect post-PFresh for shoppers is they can satisfy many of the same food shopping needs as they do at a SuperTarget.
PFresh is having a powerful impact on Target’s operations and should continue to do so for the remainder of the year, but that’s not to say that all is right with the company’s business. February results again demonstrated that business conditions remain challenging for many categories. For example, Target reported weakness in such areas as hardlines where comps decreased in the upper single-digit range and comps in the home category, a traditional strength of Target, declined in the low-to-mid single-digit range.
Despite weakness in those categories, the opportunity at least exists to grow sales in those areas as customer traffic continues to grow. Target said more than half of its February same store sales growth was driven by an increase in transactions, continuing a trend that has been evident since a meaningful number of stores in the PFresh format entered the base of stores used in comp calculations.