We’re all familiar with the uphill battle faced by charity shops over the past few months. They have the massive task of attempting to catch up with almost a whole year of forced downtime and upping productivity again.
Now’s the time where the sector has to roll up its sleeves, optimise how it works, and secure as many donations and as much revenue as possible. But there will always be those little tasks that eat into your time. Time that could otherwise be spent boosting revenue.
This period of recovery is a great opportunity to tighten your operation and make some changes to help you recover and thrive for years to come. Let’s look at 3 factors that might be stealing away some of your charity’s time and productivity.
A lack of remote capabilities
You and your staff won’t always be in-store and able to access your systems. But that shouldn’t stop you doing your job. Perhaps you’re a manager who spends multiple hours each week travelling around the different stores in your area. Or you have volunteers collecting donations at a car boot sale in the middle of a field. Remote capabilities allow your staff and volunteers to continue doing their jobs no matter where they are.
Mobile dashboards can provide managers with operational and sales information on any compatible device, meaning they can monitor store and area performance in real time and on the move. Remote Gift Aid sign ups allow volunteers to secure that extra bit of revenue. Without the need to hunt down an internet connection.
Inadequate stock control
Across retail businesses, inventory is accurate only 63% of the time. Unfortunately, this trend will extend to charity retail, too. Meaning you might be making important stock decisions based on inaccurate information.
Improving real-time visibility of your stock will help to streamline your operations and keep your shop running smoothly. With the right system in place, you can track transfers throughout their journey, preparing for new stock to arrive. If you balance in-store and online channels, you can minimise the risk of accepting online orders you can’t fulfil. Or you can use estimated stock analysis to determine how much stock you will need over the coming days and plan deliveries accordingly.
To secure as much revenue as possible, you need to have stock to sell. So maybe it’s time to develop a more robust, accurate inventory system.
What your charity doesn’t want is a security breach throwing a spanner in the works of your recovery plans. 26% of charities report having a cyber breach in the past year – a scarily high number.
But rather than hoping for the best, waiting to react to a cyber attack, why not be proactive and reduce your risk before they can strike? Vulnerability assessments will highlight any flaws in your existing systems and infrastructure, helping you reduce your risk and keep your organisation more secure. They can also be valuable at quantifying different risks, helping you to prioritise investment in new systems according to a risk/benefit analysis.
To continue operating at your best, you want your operational, sales, customer, donor, and staff information to be as safe and secure as possible.
While these 3 issues might not seem like end-of-the-world problems, all that forced downtime or missed revenue adds up. Any way you can tighten up your internal processes will do amazing things for your charity and its cause.
CHARiot is a feature-rich EPoS system that can make your charity retail operation more efficient and profitable in no time. Remote capabilities, accurate, real-time inventory management, and minimising system vulnerabilities are just a few of the ways we can help. To find out more, call us on 01204 706 000.