Over the last ten years, the retail environment has changed significantly, with many customers preferring to shop online and businesses racing to meet their demands. Although the industry is going through a period of change, sales this year have grown year-on-year, which clearly shows that the industry is full of potential. 

As the way consumers shop and their behaviour changes, we take a look at what could be the future of the retail environment and what it means for your recruitment strategy.

The importance of innovation

To stay relevant, retailers will need to fulfil their consumers’ expectations in an environment where speed will be the most important factor. In the past, retailers could launch new products annually, but today consumers expect new levels of innovation in a very short space of time.

It is important to hire executives who have experience in implementing the latest technology, from order fulfilment systems to the futuristic developments of artificial intelligence. Their enthusiasm for change and willingness to adopt new technology will help improve the speed of innovation throughout the business.

The decline of cash transactions

All consumers love the idea of shopping, but when it comes to paying for their items parting with the cash can create a barrier to the sale. Retail businesses are beginning to use new payment options through unified commerce experiences such as digital wallets. A great example is Uber, where customers pay automatically, as the payment process is invisible.

Hiring an executive management team with experience in streamlined payment systems can bring a new lease of life to your business. They could provide knowledge in everything from the latest payment solutions to chatbots which will assist with the payment process, with an aim to create a seamless shopping experience.

Physical shops will survive

The future of retail is not just online, the physical shops on our high streets have great potential in the future world of retail. The stores of the future are likely to change their focus, to become a place to both transact and build meaningful consumer relationships. It will become important for retailers to utilise their offline space to create opportunities to connect with their customers and identify their needs.

It is worth considering candidates for executive roles with experience in alternative industries, their approaches and ideas could bring fresh and complimentary ideas to the retail environment.

To ensure your business is steered towards the changing retail environment of the future, it is vital to seek the most experienced and professional executives. Our team specialise is assisting companies across the UK with their retail executive searches. To find out more about the candidates we have available and our wide range of recruitment services, please contact our team.