No Paper, No Problem: How to Conduct a Better Merchandising Audit

By NANCY CHEN – It’s the middle of the week, and your field rep is in a slump. They’ve done audit after audit, and they’re exhausted from filling out paper forms and making phone calls, from checking prices and spending thirty minutes too long tracking orders in the retailer’s freezer.

With a sigh, they scrawl something onto the audit form, get it signed, and leave to perform their next audit.

Hastily done audits can cause your business to miss out on major issues, often resulting in customer dissatisfaction and a loss in sales. There are three concerns that impact the quality of your merchandising audits: working conditions, price checks, and human error.

  1. Working Conditions: According to a study published in Educational Research International, the nature of the physical condition under which employees work is important to output. If your rep experiences something like the situation described above, they may omit parts of the audit in order to escape the less-than-ideal work condition. Working conditions are worsened by the time-consuming methods most companies currently use to perform audits- taking audits over the phone and/or filling out paper and Excel forms is frustrating for all parties involved.

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