OPERATIONS

Penney names Saks CEO Stephen Sadove to board

BY Marianne Wilson

Plano, Texas — J.C. Penney Co. announced that departing Saks Inc. CEO and chairman Stephen Sadove has been elected to its board of directors.

Sadove’s election is effective upon his leaving Saks, which will occur once the acquisition of the upscale department store by Hudson’s Bay Company is completed, which is expected by the end of the year.

Sadove is a highly regarded industry veteran. He is the current chairman of the National Retail Federation.

Penney also announced that Geraldine Laybourne is stepping down from the board to focus more time as chairman of Kandu, a startup tech company for kids.

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Survey: Store associates would benefit from video training

BY Marianne Wilson

San Bruno, Calif. — Over 35% of respondents received no formal training, and 28% were asked to read a manual or a handbook, according to a recent study of retail store associates by Qumu, a provider of secure multimedia content management and delivery solutions. The survey also revealed that retail employees are looking for improved executive communication to provide them with a greater understanding of company strategy (57%), more connectedness to the company community (47%), and understanding of activity in other stores (46%).

The survey also put a spotlight on video training. Ninety-four percent of store associates recognize the benefit of receiving video training, suggesting that video is a ripe communication medium for retailers to embrace, according to the report. The associates outlined a wide range of benefits to training by video-on-demand as opposed to current training methods, including receiving training a time and location of convenience and when most effective (57%), increased sales performance (49%), better customer experience (44%), and better staff retention (47%).

"Video is fantastic way to engage people who work in retail stores," said Vern Hanzlik, senior VP and general manager, Qumu. "When you think about the demographic of store employees, you are looking at a huge number of ‘digital natives’ whose lives revolve around You Tube, social channels, mobile and connected experiences."

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Rite Aid renews agreement with e-source provider Intesource

BY Marianne Wilson

Phoenix — Rite Aid has renewed its sourcing partnership with Intesource, an e-sourcing provider in the retail, drugstore, grocery and restaurant industries.

Rite Aid has leveraged Intesource’s e-sourcing technology since 2009. The partnership helped the chain secure significant savings on both direct and indirect categories — including snow plowing services — and drove efficiencies across the entire supply chain.

The retailer uses Intesource’s sourcing experts as an extension of its own e–sourcing team. By taking on complicated events and special projects that require additional resources, Intesource enables Rite Aid to invest its internal resources on sourcing more categories and securing additional savings.

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