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Benchmarks in Action

Published on | Tom Mansfield | News & Updates

Charm City Run is a 20-year-young running and walking retailer, event organizer and training company with seven retail stores around Maryland and one in Delaware. About a year ago, a few staff members began receiving the RIA Snapshots in Action, after the premier member benefit was launched. Now the company’s entire retail leadership team receives RIA Snapshots in Action, powered by Cadence from Upper Quadrant, each week.

How have the Weekly Snapshots helped you know whether your business is making progress?

They make progress easy to measure. As a company we have identified three areas of focus for the rest of 2022: sock/shoe, insert/shoe, and email capture rate.

We monitor these at company and store level each week now. The staff gets excited to see improvement and it has provided some motivation on the sales floor. We have found that employees are thinking more about the whole process and how they can better help the customer. It isn't about upselling. It's about offering customers anything that would make their run or walk more enjoyable. A great pair of shoes with a bad pair of socks doesn't get the job done. It's helped put the staff in a more forward-thinking mindset.

How have the Snapshots helped you see where you need to improve?

I love each snapshot because it is so clean. You aren't digging for information and metrics. It helps us identify areas of our business where we can make real strides at improving, but it also allows us to see where we don't need to focus, which is just as valuable. When we look at the data and see areas where we meet or exceed industry numbers we move on. This tells us we are doing our job. An example would be frequency of customer visits and customer retention. Our marketing efforts are working and we not only see more frequent visits, but customers coming back to us.

Are your team members motivated based on what you see others are doing in the industry?

Absolutely. People are competitive. We are looking to just get a little better each day. We find metrics of focus and then set attainable goals based on what we see as the industry standard. 

The RIA Snapshots continue to be useful because data is collected from so many different retailers around the country. This gives us a good number sense and doesn't allow us to overreact to a trend or short window of time. The team sees that we are not just making up goals but we have the data to back up our thought process.

Please tell us about how you have used the snapshots for staff development and appreciation.

We have begun sharing our three identified metrics and benchmarks with all staff. Our accessory buyer now sends a weekly email on store performance to all employees. In addition, we share individual performance with leadership so we can coach and train to make us better. There is a weekly staff member shout-out through our all-staff email as well. This person is not always the top performer. Sometimes they may have just shown the most improvement. It has been fun to celebrate them company-wide. 

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