20 Jan COMPUTER VISION PUTS CUSTOMER-SERVICE-CENTRIC RETAIL STRATEGIES TO THE TEST
Customer always comes first. But even the best customer service standards ‘on paper’ are challenging to implement on the shop floor. New Computer Vision (CV) monitoring solution by technology company Agmis enables retailers to measure the efficiency of shop assistant performance and provides objective quantifiable metrics to further improve the experience of customers.
“Customer Service centric policies are the most difficult to put into practice, as they narrow down to subjective human factors. Even if service standards specify that a shop assistant must attend to the customer in a certain amount of time or proactively initiate customer contact when a client is browsing in a certain store department, retailers lack proper tools to supervise if these standards are adhered to” – notes Head of Products at Agmis Simas Jokubauskas.
Computer Vision analyses video footage from security cameras already monitoring the shop floor. From this data, specialized algorithms can produce actionable insights according to company business needs.
“For instance, the algorithms can identify shop assistants, as they are wearing company uniform. It can also identify customers who are continuously browsing the same shelves or spend a certain amount of time looking at the product and are in need of assistance. Our software suite can measure how quickly the shop assistant initiated the contact, the contact duration, how many contacts per shift the service representative initiated and how many customers in need of assistance were left unattended” – notes Simas Jokubauskas.
These objective metrics enables real time tracking of customer service performance. The data is also stored in the retailer’s database for long-term analysis. The retailer can then make informed decisions on the performance of individual shop assistants, compare the workload and performance metrics among company stores.
“In hardware or consumer electronics retail sectors a professional advice is essential for buying decisions. It can not only nudge the customer to make the purchase, but can also reduce the number of item returns” – notes Simas Jokubauskas.
Simas Jokubauskas, EasyFlow CEO
Agmis develops EasyFlow CV software suite with the motto “If you can film it – we can analyse it”. It covers most analytical needs of the retail industry.
The software can count foot traffic and visitor flow through the retail spaces. The data can help to identify store “coldspots” and “hotspots” and assist in inventory stocking layouts. In addition, it can differentiate between genders and customer age, making the traffic data more insightful.
The facial recognition and behavior tracking features can identify suspicious persons and activities and reduce shoplifting. Face recognition can also be employed to better serve VIP customers.
EasyFlow suite can also monitor stocking levels of shelves and the time it takes to restock them. Additionally it can track customer time spent browsing the shelves and certain sections.
“CV solutions require little capital investment, as video monitoring hardware is already installed in the stores. High-degree of customization is what makes them viable for practical business applications. Although earlier CV solutions looked as if they came from a science-fiction and were affordable only by the largest retailers, the maturing of technology and a more developed ecosystem of CV companies puts them in reach of small and medium retail companies” – notes Simas Jokubauskas.
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