PROFILE: POWERHOUSE Shopfloor And, of course, there’s so much going on at the

moment, but it’s always the teams on the shop floor that really do all the hard work.

Q: How does your unique location play a part in your business ethos? GM: Being in Jersey, we do have a finite number of customers and we cannot scale up too much more so we really have to look after the customers we’ve got and future generations. Retention is absolutely vital. There are other retailers on the island and the internet giants do operate over here, but people choose to come to us and we have to ensure it stays that way. There’s population growth here and new people


come to the island all the time; like in most areas, there are plenty of young people setting up homes and we have to capture them when they’re buying their first TV or dishwasher so they continue to shop with us. Given our unique location it’s really important for the longevity of the company… which has been going for 96 years!

Q: How important is it to you to have these demo areas? GM: If we didn’t have this space in the store, so many products would just end up in boxes. Customers want to see how things work, they want to press buttons and speak to smart speakers, and doing all this certainly helps towards the sale. If we just had shelves of boxes it wouldn’t be

much different to shopping online, so we try and offer a bit more of an experience by having a curated product selection and giving customers that hands- on experience they crave, especially after not being able to visit many stores in the past year or so!

Q: You’ve mentioned before the importance of customer service. How do you ensure you’re on top of your game? GM: In our management meetings we always talk

about customer service before we talk about sales to be honest. It’s so important to us, as it is to any retailer. We value true customer feedback so we do

mystery shopping and regular customer surveys, but we have also got three ‘Happy or Not’ feedback stations at the exits to the store. This is a great tool as it gives us a real time feel of what’s happening in the store, rather than waiting for a survey or for mystery shopper results to come in; we can quickly look at what happened yesterday or even live on the day, and if something isn’t right then we can address that. And that is invaluable information. Our staff are the key to the success of the

business. They are the ones the customers interact with, the ones with all the product knowledge; having loads of great displays is one thing but using that to demonstrate a product and close the sale is the crucial next step.

Q: What are your plans for the months ahead? GM: There are a few things going on. We will continue on our journey of digital transformation with a big project to bring in new automated systems to make sure everything works together properly. And although we are running out of space in the

store, we’re always looking at more diversification. So we recently moved into electric bikes – with some electric mopeds on the side! – and that department will continue to grow into other complementary categories as well. Our big thing is introducing more services. We

have already invested in workshops, like our bikes workshop and servicing team which we needed to support those sales, but we also want to introduce more smart services by visiting people’s homes and installing things like smart lighting, heating and security. We know the customer would get a real benefit from these advanced systems, but for us it’s all about the additional advice and sales we can offer in the future as it seems the smart sector is never- ending right now!

April 2021

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