Optimizing workforce performance while reducing costs
Michael Hill Case Study
Michael Hill sees golden opportunity with E-tivity Workforce Management solution to save global jewelry chain $3 Million per year through better cost control
Australian-based jeweler, Michael Hill, is predicting savings of more than $3 million per year following the implementation of Workforce Management software from E-tivity® Corporation.
Since deploying E-tivity Corporation’s flagship product at 200 sites across Australia, New Zealand and Canada, Michael Hill has seized control of its biggest cost – wages – and can now better manage staffing levels, driving up potential revenue.
Established in New Zealand in 1979, Michael Hill opened its first Australian store in 1987. The company now boasts 230 stores throughout the world and employs more than 2,000 staff.
Phil Taylor, CFO, Michael Hill, says the company needed a tool which would instill a degree of discipline around scheduling and, subsequently, give the jewelry chain a better handle on its wage costs.
“Like many other retailers, wages are our largest single cost,” Taylor explains, “and without a system to help us manage that expense, we are running blind. On top of that, our staffing levels largely dictate our revenue, so it’s critical we have the right number of people on the floor at the right time to maximize our sales potential. We simply didn’t feel we had the right tools in place to give us the control we wanted.”
Previously, store managers were manually creating schedules – often on Excel spreadsheets – a task which was often overlooked when they were too busy or on leave. Managers had little idea how much they were spending on wages or whether they were triggering overtime for certain employees.
“The new system has provided excellent visibility for managers who can immediately see the wage and overtime costs they’re committing to,” says Taylor. “The Work Rule Interpreter module also means managers are notified when award rules have been breached, again reducing wage-related costs.
“Although we’re still fine tuning our use of E-tivity Enterprise and getting everyone used to it, we nonetheless are expecting potential savings of around $3 million per annum.”
According to Taylor, the implementation ran smoothly, with the majority of stores up and running after two training sessions. “We had three different countries to consider, all with varying key trading periods, so having a product which was simple to install was critical,” says Taylor. “Compared to other applications in the market, E-tivity Enterprise is significantly more logical, clear and straightforward.