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Consumer Behaviors, the New Retail Landscape & The Role of FM

3/12/2021
An evolving retail landscape and changing consumer behaviors are having a profound impact on the role of facilities management (FM).

The wants and needs of the consumer are what drives the retail landscape. This is as true now as ever before. Consumer behavior dictates what concepts and aspects of facilities management receive the most significant focus. How, why, when, and where consumers make choices can directly impact FM services across the board. In the wake of the turbulent year, consumer behaviors play an essential role. It can have a powerful influence on recovery throughout the supply chain industry. Here are some key points facilities management supervisors need to consider when looking at the big picture of the general retail landscape.

What We Know and What We Believe About Consumer Behaviors in Retail
When it comes to the retail landscape, there are some basic concepts that FM teams need to keep in mind: consumers have adopted new behaviors during the crisis. Many of these are becoming more ingrained as normal behaviors. These include things like utilizing online shopping and delivery options. Overall enhanced awareness and focus on germ safety are also rising trends.

More traditionally, social experiences are now being done at home to avoid exposure and reduce face-to-face contact. Things like working out at home rather than the gym and online learning for students are prime examples of this concept. Remote work, split shifts, and office procedural changes also impact retail landscapes in many areas.

Some of these behaviors may become permanent post-COVID, and retailers can take steps now to prepare. Mask-wearing and hands-washing will likely continue to be the norm for some time to come. Changes made to brick and mortar businesses may also become normal as employees and customers alike adjust to the new way of doing things.

What Remains to Be Seen Within the Retail Landscape Market
On the opposing side of what we have seen regarding the changing landscape, there are still some questions that remain to be answered:

  • How soon will the return to brick-and-mortar retail occur, and what changes will be made?
  • Will new brand preferences develop among target customer groups due to pandemic offerings?
  • How will retail consolidations change the retail landscape, and how will consumers respond?
  • What changes will become accepted and expected even after the pandemic threat is gone?
  • Where will consumers focus when it comes to the services they still demand from businesses?
  • Who will be the leaders in the retail space, and who will set the example that others will follow?
  • The answer to these and other critical questions will be highly influential in the industry. They will remain essential for continued growth and recovery in the years ahead. And having the right FM partner in the retail space is critical in responding faster and avoiding delays.

How an Expert Outsourcing FM Servicer Can Help
Cushman & Wakefield’s Distributed Facilities Solutions understands the importance of these questions. We know how critical the answers are and how they drive the retail landscape now and in the future. Our team can help you plan for some of these behavior changes. We remain committed to assisting retailers in responding to current concerns. We do this by expanding online pickup areas, installing protective screens, and implementing social distancing programs. We can also help you get ready for increasing traffic as consumers begin to return to pre-pandemic habits and activities. And in fact, the top areas we can assist with include:

  • Helping managers adjust to fluctuations in consumer demands with creative spatial solutions.
  • Reopening closed locations safely and at scale across a portfolio that maximizes reach and impact.
  • Ensuring consistent execution of in-store branding, marketing, and safety procedures.
  • Leveraging an extensive supplier network and buying power to boost the impact on the retail landscape.
  • Reducing costs without impacting quality through our value engineering and consultancy services
  • Providing scalable resources and planning options to match the actual effort requirements.

Future-Proof Your Retail Landscape With the Right Partner
Even still, it’s essential to realize the actual state of the retail landscape and its trajectory as listed above. Contact our Distributed Facility Solutions today to see how we can help you prepare for what’s next within the retail space.

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FM Services in Action

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Helping a Car Care Expert Accelerate

A national manufacturer of care car products with a growing network of repair and maintenance shops was growing quickly (organically and through acquisitions) and struggling to keep up with the associated logistics, e.g. vetting new vendors, managing performance, and documenting spend and savings.

SOLUTION
Cushman & Wakefield’s managed program includes on-demand service, maintenance and project management. Our team documented savings of 15-20% though TCO strategy, preferred pricing hourly rates, IVR, and performance management.

Scalability / program management

cars (image)
A Steady Response in an Uncertain Time

As the pandemic disrupted business and travel in unprecedented ways, a major car rental company was contending with bankruptcy while trying to maintain operations. As we were already a critical vendor for locks, landscaping, and janitorial, a senior director reached out to our team to expand to additional services after losing a key vendor for maintenance services.

SOLUTION
Cushman & Wakefield initiated carwash and gas pump services, quickly identifying vendor resources for much-needed repairs that had been on hold. Our responsive model helped scale quickly to provide trades that are critical to the client’s operations.  We’re now a one-stop stop shop for the client across multiple related.

Adapt to changing conditions

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Streamlining Maintenance Across a Retail Portfolio

A major retailer with a large, geographically dispersed portfolio was looking at ways to streamline its maintenance strategy and cut costs.

SOLUTION
Cushman & Wakefield bundled maintenance items so that handyman-type tickets that can be handled in 8 hours are less are addressed bi-monthly for each location. Completing all work at once significantly reduced total trips to the site. As an additional value add, while on-site we also complete a checklist of key items that can be reported back and proactively entered as work orders for the next visit.

Driving efficiency & cost savings

store (image)
51 Store Rollout in 30 Days

A national convenience store chain engaged Cushman & Wakefield to manage the rollout of their new food service concept concept. The objective was to complete 51 store food equipment demo and installs over 30 days.

SOLUTION
Simultaneously managing multiple crews over multiple sites, Cushman & Wakefield managed equipment installations and branding refreshes with an ongoing 2-4-day completion rate. Crews worked after hours, ensuring stores remained open for business.

High-volume rollouts

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Quick Response in Remote Location

When a car ran into a gas station in rural Illinois, 120 miles away from the nearest city, the client was unable to find a vendor in the area.

SOLUTION
Cushman & Wakefield found a contractor the same day, provided a quote and managed the entire project from start to finish.

Service to remote locations

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Rebranding to Support Aggressive Growth Strategy

The growth strategy of one of of the fastest growing convenience store retailers in the United States included multimarket remodels throughout the Midwest and Southeast, with a particular focus on rebranding.

SOLUTION
Our team managed the entire program, removing old branding components, implementing installs, organizing inspections, storing equipment, painting and building structures as needed. Following a 7-10-day timeline, our team efficiently managed this complex minimart remodels and ensured total adherence to the client’s brand standards.

End-to-end remodel

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