Scandit, the leader in smart data capture, announces it has been selected by River Island as part of its plans to modernise store operations. The UK high street fashion retailer has issued each store associate a Scandit-enabled Samsung Galaxy XCover rugged smartphone, equipped with Microsoft Teams to replace shared hardware-based scanning devices.
River Island is focused on enhancing its day-to-day customer and employee experience by adopting the latest technology to differentiate in a highly competitive market. The Scandit Smart Data Capture platform unlocks a range of functionalities for River Island to improve workflows, introduce new services and empower store associates to uplift the overall customer experience. At its heart, Scandit enables Samsung smartphones to capture data from barcodes, text, IDs and objects with unmatched speed, accuracy and intelligence. For store associates, this leads to increased efficiencies and access to data to provide actionable insights.
Providing all River Island store associates with their own Scandit-enabled Samsung Galaxy XCover rugged smartphones allows them to instantly access information to answer queries, retrieve product information, check stock availability and proactively retrieve Click and Collect packages as customers enter the store. It also enables the deployment of mobile point-of-sale to reduce customer queuing times by freeing up associates to serve them anywhere in the store.
Paul Cooper, Head of Technology at River Island, said, “We’re on a mission to digitally transform, modernise and evolve our retail stores nationwide. Working with Scandit, Samsung and Microsoft has unlocked a platform for innovation which raises the bar of how we interact with both our employees and customers. Scandit’s performance has been fundamental to winning the hearts and minds of our store associates to be confident in delivering a superior and speedy customer experience.”
Samuel Mueller, CEO at Scandit, said, “Today’s shoppers enter stores armed with data in their pockets and expect a frictionless, convenient omnichannel experience. Working with River Island, we have equipped their store associates with the ability to access real-time information to provide a concierge-like service to customers while enhancing store operation processes. Deploying connected, user-friendly smartphones to all staff also helps to attract and retain employees in a competitive labour market.”
Equipping each store associate with a Samsung rugged smartphone, akin to what they are familiar with in their personal lives, creates an improved employee experience. The built-in push-to-talk button on the Samsung devices lets associates instantly access Walkie Talkie in Teams for clear, secure voice communication to respond to customers needs in real-time without needing to carry badged radios. As Walkie Talkie works over WiFi or mobile data, store associates are seamlessly connected with each other and their colleagues in head office. Store associates are leveraging Teams as a single hub for teamwork and collaborating with each other through file sharing, task management, group chats, and secure calls all in one place. Microsoft Teams also helps River Island effectively conduct training and share company wide announcements which improves engagement levels and supports a strong team culture, and in turn helps with retention.
Joe Walsh, Director of B2B, at Samsung Electronics, said, “At Samsung we are renowned for our rugged smartphones and their incredible durability within a retail working environment. Integrating Scandit Smart Data Capture technology and Microsoft Teams within our Samsung Galaxy XCover smartphones creates the perfect tool for River Island from a total cost of ownership perspective, ease of use and ability to increase efficiency. Most importantly, this integrated solution also delivers an enhanced experience for River Island’s customers.”
Mayank Verma, Sr. Director of Product Marketing, Frontline Solutions for Microsoft Teams, added, “In a fast-paced retail environment, it can be increasingly difficult to keep track of administrative tasks and communicate effectively while focusing on customer interaction. River Island’s transition to Samsung XCover rugged smartphones integrated with Microsoft Teams provides a single and secure solution for staff communication and collaboration, reducing the number of devices that staff needs to carry while enabling them to be more efficient on the job.”
By moving away from single-purpose hardware-based scanning devices, River Island has been able to lower the total cost of ownership significantly and grant each of their 3,500 store associates their own XCover smartphone – previously they were shared at a ratio of 4:1. As each store associate has access to their own smartphone, the user profile of the device has changed and enabled new opportunities from a corporate IT perspective while freeing them from expensive service contracts and maintenance.