Stockmann’s Employee Experience is going digital – Applying Machine Learning and Algorithms in workforce scheduling
Stockmann Oyj Abp, Press Release 29 August 2018
As part of its #digitalAcceleration, Stockmann has launched a project where Machine Learning is used to predict labor demand. A new, modern, workforce management system is introduced, where shifts are optimized with the help of algorithms. With this reform, staff in department stores and warehouse operations will be able to use the mobile application for shift planning.
Workforce planning is affected by different factors: what Stockmann’s customers are shopping for, how many customers there are at each point of time, what products they will buy and what number of sales employees is optimal in each area. An important part taken into account while planning shifts is also the employee’s own wishes and needs.
The project that is already underway aims to improve the predictability of labor needs through artificial intelligence. The new system helps to plan workload more efficiently and to balance the workloads experienced by employees. With an automated system in place, shift planners can better focus on ensuring the quality of work routines and taking employee’s wishes into account.
“It was important for Stockmann to find a solution to improve customer experience in department stores and to provide employees with the mobile functionality they want”, says Suvi Ragnell, Stockmann’s HR Manager. “When taking into account predicted customer flows, it is possible to better ensure that the service is always available on demand at checkout, customer service and other store functions. With the modern system, it will be possible to predict job needs far into the future “.
Artificial intelligence or algorithms do not make decisions on behalf of people, but rather help shift planners to make decisions that are more right and right more often. The purpose of artificial intelligence is not to replace shift planners.
The project is implemented in cooperation with Zenopt and PeopleGeeks.
In January 2018, Stockmann announced launching the #digitalacceleration project and this project will be a significant step in increasing the scale and pace of digital development.
You can read the original press release in Finnish on this link.
Suvi Ragnell, Stockmann, Team Manager, Shift Planning, tel. +358 50 427 3996
Riina Hellström, People Geeks Ltd, Co-Founder, Director, tel. +358 40 772 3111