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Boston Pizza selects Paytronix for loyalty program

BY Dan Berthiaume

Richmond, Canada –- Canadian casual dining chain Boston Pizza has selected the Paytronix Rewards platform as the foundation for its new Boston Pizza MyBP Program. Boston Pizza selected Paytronix because of its expertise in casual dining and integration with both the POSitouch point of sale system and the ONOSYS online ordering system.

Deployed on the core Paytronix loyalty, gift, comp and email platform, the MyBP loyalty program also includes the Paytronix REST integration, which enables it to incorporate mobile apps and social media experiences into its loyalty program.

Paytronix helps the Boston Pizza MyBP Program to drive enrollment via email promotions, personalize the customer experience with more customer data, and measure lifetime customer value with a unique customer identifier.

“Paytronix is a big part of Boson Pizza’s initiative to rebuild and refocus its loyalty program around food service and the customer experience,” said Alexander Green, VP of marketing, Boston Pizza. “With its proven POSitouch integration, mobile and messaging capabilities, Paytronix helps us get a single view of the guest across all touch points and then link that to both online and in-restaurant transactions.”

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Tech Guest Viewpoint: Palming the Power of Mobile Commerce

BY CSA STAFF

By Ed Stevens, Shopatron

Technology is changing the way people shop. Today’s retail customers typically touch multiple channels before making a purchase–researching products, comparing prices and checking inventory online or via mobile and buying online, via mobile or in-store.

Smart retailers are transforming the shopping experience to meet shifting consumer behavior, providing real-time inventory visibility and rich, reliable content over responsive websites, enabling consumers to research and buy products easily over the channels they prefer.

Empowering consumers to shop via any connected device is no longer a nice-to-have. It’s table stakes. To understand why, let’s take a look at the stats. According to Forrester:

56% of shoppers have researched products on their mobile devices from home

38% have checked inventory availability from a mobile device en route to a store

34% have researched products via mobile in store

69% expect sales associates to be equipped with mobile devices

In order to compete and win in the new retail landscape, retailers must offer a seamless omni-channel shopping experience that integrates mobile technology into the in-store journey.

1. Dial M for Mobile: The first order of business is to create a responsive website. Even if you have poured untold resources into launching an app, that’s no substitute for providing a mobile-friendly website. Why? Consumers are browsing the Internet over mobile devices and may not wish to look for, or download, your fabulous app.

2. Total commerce: Today’s consumers are not focused on individual channels. They simply expect you to offer frictionless omni-channel shopping. This requires you to deliver a consistent brand experience across all channels, enabling your customers to save their shopping carts and product preferences as they shift from mobile to computer to in-store.

3. The educated consumer: Never before have shoppers had so much access to information. If you want to keep them coming back, you need to be a go-to destination for accessing the most comprehensive and reliable content available. Make sure your mobile-friendly website and sales associates are equipped to provide extensive, trusted guidance, including product reviews and ratings.

4. The new sales associate: While we alluded to this above, customers have heightened expectations around the value and services they expect sales associates to provide. Your associates should have mobile devices that instantly connect customers with product intelligence, special deals and promotions, inventory visibility and support capabilities, including the ability to process in-store returns.

5. Interactive is the new active: Integrating in-store interactive kiosks and displays enables shoppers to control their in-store shopping journey. You can help your customers help themselves by offering up-to-the-minute information on the location of available products along with in-store promotions to keep them coming back.

6. Embrace showrooming: While many retailers shudder at the thought of in-store comparative shopping, savvy retailers, like Best Buy, view this trend as an opportunity. When sales associates see a customer searching on a mobile device, they offer to search with them, matching the best price on the spot. Building this level of trust and engagement will not only save the sale, but boost customer loyalty and retail foot traffic.

7. The cash register is dead: Apple was among the first to let customers pay in the aisle, eliminating the need for long queues and paper receipts. Providing sales associates with mobile devices for accepting payment creates a more frictionless purchase path, while empowering associates to establish a more personal and engaging in-store experience.

Ed Stevens is founder and CEO of Shopatron.

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Three Hot Workforce Management Trends from KronosWorks

BY Dan Berthiaume

As a focus area of retail technology, workforce management may not be quite as sexy as CRM or omnichannel commerce. However, a lot of very exciting stuff is currently happening in the world of workforce management, as attendees of the recent KronosWorks 2014 conference in Las Vegas discovered. Here is a brief summary of three of the hottest current workforce management trends.

1. Mobility. As workers become increasingly mobile in their personal lives, they are expecting the same convenience and accessibility provided by mobile technology in their professional lives. This extends to workforce management. Kronos clients including Life Time Fitness and Australia’s Woolworths Ltd. allow employees and managers to perform tasks such as punching in and reviewing timesheets from mobile devices (with appropriate security for system access and safeguards against activities like “buddy punching”). And as more constantly connected Millennials enter the workplace, mobile workforce management capabilities will only become more necessary.

2. Social Connectivity. Workforces are essentially self-contained communities, which function like any other community. Employees will often tend to spend most of their time with other employees in their own department, and may not be aware of the personnel, skills and resources at their disposal in other parts of the company. This disconnect becomes even more pronounced with organizations that operate on a national or global basis.

However, just as social networking is connecting far-flung individuals in a digital instant outside the workplace, it’s starting to provide the same benefits inside the workplace. Kronos is now enabling users to create internal social networks so that a manager looking for an employee with a particular capability can quickly find one anywhere in the organization, including a different office, region or country, using a keyword search.

3. Gamification. Kronos is also developing gamification capabilities to allow users to create competition and entertainment within normally staid workforce management functions. Next month, a new leaderboard feature within its Workforce Central suite will allow companies to reward and recognize employees, managers, and teams for positive job performance and adhering to an organization’s time and attendance policies and procedures.

According to guest keynote speaker Dan Schawbel, managing partner at Millennial Branding LLC and an expert on generational differences in the workplace, younger workers who grew up playing video games are especially receptive to gamified workforce management experiences. He gave the example of vertical cosmetics retailer L’Oreal, who uses digital games to gauge the work skills of potential employees and help them discover where in the company they would most like to work. Realistically speaking, most Gen X employees grew up playing video games, as well.

Do you see a common thread in these three hot workforce management trends? They are all trends which are highly prevalent in the personal, as well as professional, lives of employees. As the lines between work and personal continue to blur, with flexible hours and telecommuting becoming more commonplace, it is only natural that workers will expect their professional environment to function similarly to their personal environment. And workforce management vendors like Kronos are responding to the need.

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