Consumer Technology Inc. Retail
This is a case study of one of our Consumer Technology clients that we cannot mention publicly at this time. It is wholly accurate and reflects the work carried out by Futurestep and subsequent results from the project. For more information on what Futurestep can do for you, please select an expert from the options list on the right.
Consumer Technology Inc., founded in 1976 and headquartered in California, designs, manufactures, and markets personal computers, mobile communication and media devices, and portable digital music players, as well as sells related software, services, peripherals, networking solutions, and third-party digital content and applications worldwide. The company sells its products worldwide through its online stores, direct sales force, third-party wholesalers, resellers, value-added resellers and more recently, its own retail stores. Consumer Technology Inc. employs over 49,000 people worldwide and regularly cited as the world’s most valuable brand.
Futurestep and Consumer Technology Inc. have been working together since 2006, where the partnership began when Futurestep successfully hired staff (from Store Manager to the Sales Staff) into Consumer Technology Inc.’s first flagship stores acrossEurope. From then on, Futurestep’s relationship with Consumer Technology Inc. expanded into Canada and the Asia Pacific, where Futurestep hired Consumer Technology Inc.’s first retail store staff in China, Hong Kong, and Australia.
In 2001, Consumer Technology Inc. decided to open a series of retail stores that would showcase and sell their entire line of computer products, software and peripherals.
The targets included bringing new customers to the Company, expanding its installed base through sales to computer users who currently do not own a Macintosh computer and get first time personal computer buyers.
In 2005, Consumer Technology Inc. had 140 retail stores open, but only eight stores outside of theUnited States, and only one in Europe (London, UK). Consumer Technology Inc. made a strategic decision to expand their network of retail stores across the world, predominantly in major business centers across Europe and Asia Pacific.
The first rollout took place in Europe, where there was a requirement to staff the initial new Consumer Technology Inc. stores planned in Europe: Italy (Milan, Rome), Germany (Munich) and Switzerland (Geneva). In 2010, Futurestep and Consumer Technology Inc. Retail partnered in Canada to staff the new store opening in the first French location in Canada (Quebec City). Subsequently, in 2011, Consumer Technology Inc. expanded into the Asia Pacific Region with Futurestep, looking to fill 300 retail roles for each of the Consumer Technology Inc. Stores based in China (Beijing & Shanghai), Hong Kong, Sydney and Melbourne.
In 2006, with the planned openings of Consumer Technology Inc. Retail stores acrossEurope, Consumer Technology Inc.’s decision involved an internationally aggressive store opening programme with tight timelines. The size of the flagship stores meant for most locations 300 to 400 new staff were required within two to three months.
Some of the major challenges included:
- Changes in scope of number of stores with deadlines for store opening dates
- Across all regions, the sourcing requirements varied as there were a number of positions to be filled per retail store. Finding appropriate candidates for managing the stores was a priority, as were technical specialists or ‘Geniuses’, additionally there was a large scale requirement to recruit sales advisors and specialists too
- In Canada, Futurestep was tasked to source, interview and select candidates for a range of roles, ranging from the Retail Leadership Team, Family Room roles (Genius & Creatives), key technical roles, and the sales team (full & part-timers)
- In Asia Pacific, there was an unstructured China & Australian retail market with a tight candidate pool and a shortage of relevant technical expertise
- Strict brand and marketing guidelines limiting capacity to fully utilise range of sourcing channels to attract and sell the opportunities to potential candidate
- InChina, there was an aggressive hiring timeline for the first retail store (theBeijingstore opening was to coincide with 2008 Olympics). In addition,Chinahas a unique culture and concept. There are limited candidates with the right product knowledge, expertise and personality type
- During the rollout, the Australian Consumer Technology Inc. Store publicity announcement did not generate anticipated response, partly a lack of awareness of Consumer Technology Inc.’s retail concept and its differentiation to the reseller market
Consumer Technology Inc. took the decision to partner with Futurestep as a result of Futurestep’s strong expertise of the retail market and the established relationship between Consumer Technology Inc. Group and Korn/Ferry International. With all the challenges faced during the first project, a successful store opening inRome,Italyin 2006 made Consumer Technology Inc. certain Futurestep had the capability to manage subsequent store openings. With every new store opening, Consumer Technology Inc. and Futurestep learned on their past experience and were able to enhance the recruitment solution for consecutive store openings. Futurestep recognized of the importance of Consumer Technology Inc.’s global employer brand, and was able to tailor its solutions against it.
With further countries to be included over a period of years, Futurestep’s global capabilities and scalable resources across the world were key to the selection by Consumer Technology Inc..
Futurestep understood the specific requirements in each region. A firm project management approach was needed in order to manage high candidate volumes (400 to 800 CVs per day for European countries), meeting timescales and store opening schedules. At the same time the recruitment solution had to be flexible to manage the changing timescales for store openings.
Futurestep worked with Consumer Technology Inc. to define an efficient and effective recruitment process flow, underpinned by sophisticated recruitment technology, screening and candidate management tools
Recruitment specialists from Futurestep worked with Consumer Technology Inc. to develop a strategy that would deliver successful hiring requirements mirroring diverse sourcing requirements, which were region as well as role-specific. Futurestep’s expertise allowed for the capability to offer different sourcing and assessment methodologies to optimize quality, speed and costs, and approached recruitment through a mix selection: direct search for the senior positions, on line advertisement and assessments for the store staff (Mac Genius, Mac Specialist, Inventory, etc.)
- Facilitated an information session for Consumer Technology Inc. to meet with in-country retail experts to gain an insight into local market trends
- Provided ‘real time’ compensation figures for comparison against 3rd party salary survey research and advised Consumer Technology Inc. on changes to employee relations legislation
- Sourcing: With a dynamic technology company such as Consumer Technology Inc., online sourcing methods were required to recruit the appropriate candidates who often reside in niche online forums, including building a bespoke, branded application portal.
- Sourcing the candidates was handled by dedicated Futurestep teams in each country and it was this local approach that enabled Futurestep to overcome low response levels in some countries. For example, inAustralia, there was due to lack of awareness of Consumer Technology Inc.’s retail concept and its differentiation to the reseller market. To combat this, Futurestep and Consumer Technology Inc. devised an innovative multi-sourcing strategy to target niche technical experts. The approach included targeted search and online marketing through postings on forums and social networking sites, ‘walk-in recruiting’ as well as extensive networking with industry sources and existing candidates.
- Assessments: Futurestep worked with Consumer Technology Inc. to develop a series of competency-based telephone interviews for store staff, sales and technical specialists to ensure only staff that could deliver a business impact were hired.
- Adapted recruitment methodology and resource model in response to change in scope and timelines
So far, the project has spanned six years and in that period of time 15 + stores opened across Europe, North America and Asia on time with a 100 percent client and customer satisfaction rate, and cost per hire targets were met. The all-new sourcing strategy created was embedded in the hardware and software manufacturers across Consumer Technology Inc.’s retail operations, and with a number of job fairs and campus recruitment programs attended, all building the Consumer Technology Inc. brand.
At the core of the project was Futurestep’s strong management methodology that ensured the deliverables were achieved to a high standard.
Presently, Futurestep works with Consumer Technology Inc. in Hong Kong to support their expansion of stores in the region, and most recently, Futurestep was chosen by Consumer Technology Inc. to devise a sourcing strategy for Consumer Technology Inc. Retail new stores across Europe in France, Germany, UK, Holland, Switzerland, Spain and Italy.
- In 2005, an unanticipated real estate challenge delayed the opening of the Italian store, requiring Futurestep to develop and run a proactive candidate engagement program throughout the six months of delays; despite this, all stores had a full roster of store staff upon opening and Futurestep filled 80 positions for the Consumer Technology Inc. store in Rome
- In 2006 we filled 60 positions for the first Consumer Technology Inc. flagship store in Munich, and finally, 50 positions from Store Manager to the Sales Staff were filled for the Geneva store
- Delivered 600+ hires in China and 300+ hires in Hong Kong and a further 600 roles in Australia
- As well as ensuring the successful opening of all stores supported by Futurestep, we have also built local Talent Pools for leadership roles to support the ongoing recruitment for these positions
- Futurestep utilised the scalability of its Global Service Management Centres to meet Consumer Technology Inc.’s fluctuating demands as well as supporting in-country assessment centres through local expert resources
- In Canada, Futurestep’s successfully filled 50 roles for the Quebec City Consumer Technology Inc. Retail store
- In Asia we successfully identified Store Management candidates for all of the stores, as well as continuing to build a pipeline of store leadership talent to support Consumer Technology Inc.’s on-going expansion plans