Today’s organizations face dynamic and complex challenges when it comes to managing their properties, facilities, and assets. These challenges span the entire lifecycle, ranging from asset maintenance and compliance to cost and lease management. To excel in this environment, organizations need a comprehensive solution to streamline processes, boost efficiency, reduce costs, and achieve sustainable business growth. Yet, many organizations continue to rely on manual processes or technologies that fail to work intuitively for their teams.  

In this article, we will explore some common challenges that multi-site retail companies experience and some of the latest industry trends. We will conclude with a discussion of some solutions that organizations can use to overcome these challenges and excel.  



Common Management Challenges for Multi-Site Retail Companies 

Some of the most common challenges that today’s multi-site retail companies face include:

  1. Managing Costs. Acquiring, operating, and maintaining a portfolio of properties is not cheap. Organizations must optimize spending across the entire lifecycle to ensure they are providing safe and appealing environments for their customers.

  2. Lease Management. Retailers often manage properties that are subject to a broad range of lease agreements with varying terms and conditions. Tasks like monitoring renewal dates and negotiating new leases can be time-consuming and complex.  

  3. Asset Maintenance. Retailers must ensure that assets and facilities are maintained regularly to provide superior shopping experiences. However, manual maintenance processes and inefficient technologies make the process far more challenging.

  4. Compliance. Organizations must adhere to a broad range of regulations, including those at the local, state, and federal level. For instance, building codes, zoning, safety standards, and environmental regulations.

  5. Sustainable Growth. Large retailers must manage a range of processes related to new locations, such as construction, capital improvements, and store openings.  

  6. Managing Data. Keeping track of a large amount of data can prove challenging. Having established data processes and using a comprehensive data management system can help ensure that data is reliable and can be used to make informed decisions.  

  7. Technology Integration. Retailers face obstacles in both adopting and integrating new technologies. For example, asset management, document management, and project management software.

  8. Changing Market Conditions: Retailers must stay on top of the latest trends and be prepared to adapt to changing market conditions and consumer preferences.  


The Latest Trends in Retail 

  1. Omnichannel and Self-Service Checkout: Consumers are finding more and more ways to shop. In fact, according to research, today’s customers use an average of approximately six touchpoints when purchasing a product. As a result, retailers are expanding the number of digital channels that they sell on and offering more self-service checkout options like kiosks and handheld scanners. One survey found that over 70% of consumers prefer them over traditional staffed checkout lines.

  2. The Rise of Experiential Retail Experiences: Customers are increasingly seeking enjoyable in-store shopping experiences. Retailers are responding by incorporating new methods and technologies into the shopping experience. For instance, by providing personalized recommendations through VR technology.

  3. The Transition to Mixed-Use Concepts: Retailers are incorporating mixed-use concepts to generate additional revenue streams and strengthen brand recognition. For example, a retailer that sells digital subscriptions or a restaurant that sells branded merchandise.

  4. The Adoption of Automation Technologies: More and more retailers are incorporating automation into their workflows to reduce costs, improve efficiency, and provide better customer experiences. For example, AI-powered chatbots can respond to service queries and questions and streamline data collection for human representatives, providing a less fragmented experience than traditional customer service interactions.


Streamlining Multi-Retail Site Management Processes with ServiceChannel 

Many organizations continue to rely on paper-based processes to manage their facilities. For example, manually printing and completing work orders. Not only are these processes inefficient, but they are prone to costly errors and do not give stakeholders access to reliable data in real-time.

Other organizations rely on a combination of third-party solutions to manage a broad range of processes. For instance, enterprise asset management software, energy management systems, and leasing management software. These disparate systems can present integration challenges, lead to bottlenecks, and prevent organizations from harnessing the power of their data.

At Accruent, we recognize the many challenges that multi-site retailers face and are dedicated to helping our customers achieve digital transformation throughout the full real estate management lifecycle. To this end, we recently announced a new strategic partnership with ServiceChannel. ServiceChannel offers a cutting-edge facilities management platform that helps large-scale retailers to maximize operational efficiency. The platform aligns asset lifecycle management with intelligent work order processing, helping to implement preventive maintenance strategies and significantly reduce costly downtime.

Multi-site retailers can confidently rely on the unmatched trustworthiness of the world's largest provider network. ServiceChannel’s Service Provider Marketplace counts on over 70,000 vendors featuring unparalleled data to identify the industry’s best vendors. In addition, a collaborative approach to facilities management enables organizations to outsource the management of their entire real estate portfolio to our team and enjoy peace of mind as well as a pay-as-you-go approach.

When combined with Accruent’s Lucernex and vx Observe solutions, multi-site retail customers gain an all-in-one solution that encompasses industry-leading leasing and project management capabilities, market planning and site selection, a powerful energy management tool, and IoT remote monitoring platform together with ServiceChannel’s best-in-class facilities management platform.

Click here to learn more about how this exciting new partnership can transform your management processes.