5 Tips to Prepare Your Retail Employees for the Holiday Rush

By Lauryn Page | 12/01/2016

The holidays have arrived and hordes of shoppers prepare to descend on your retail business. Black Friday kicks off the holiday shopping season that continues well into the new year. These five tips may help ease the strain on your holiday season.

1. Stock up inventory

The holiday season is often a make-or-break time for retailers. To ensure quick turnaround of merchandise from selves to customers, be sure to keep inventory stocked and easy to find in the storeroom. A clean and clear stock cuts down on the risk of injury and helps speed up restocking at the end of the day.

2. Remind employees of their training

The holiday shopping rush can test even the most seasoned retail employee. Be sure to remind employees about proper safety policies and procedures, especially after a spill or breakage. It may seem simple in the training, but employees may forget the proper procedures in the moment creating a larger hazard for other coworkers or even customers.

3. Put a holiday schedule in place

Holiday deals mean there are more customers than employees. To protect the stamina of your staff, be sure to stagger scheduling. This may mean a need for hiring seasonal workers to help your regular workers off-set extended hours or additional merchandise to be unpacked and tagged. Create a work schedule that includes employee breaks and lunches to allow for downtime and escape from the shopping rush. On high-traffic shopping days, it may also be a good idea to schedule backups for any no-show employees.

4. Check your equipment

One of the worst moments for a retail employee is when a credit card system goes down, or computer systems that suddenly lock up. While these annoyances are often unavoidable, plan ahead by checking all your equipment before every shift. If important computer updates are needed, be sure to schedule them in the overnight hours to limit the impact during operating hours.

5. Give good advice

The holiday season is regarded as the most difficult time of the year for retail employees, with long shifts and greater exposure to the public. While it means a greater return for employers and companies, it also means your employees are at a greater risk of getting sick or missing work. During this chaotic time, encourage your employees to get plenty of rest and take care of themselves when not at work.

A few of these suggestions can go a long way in protecting the health of your employees, and creates goodwill among your team as you conquer the hustle and bustle into the New Year.