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GREAT UNIVERSAL STORES DITCH PAPER FOR HAND-HELDS LIFTING MORALE AND IMAGE


RBS World First Implementation to Increase Productivity By 15-20%


Retail Business Solutions, one of the UK’s leading independent retail solution providers in the UK, today announced that it has been selected by Reality Group, the end-to-end business solutions provider, to implement a mobile device based management solution for GUS Home Shopping Ltd. The solution empowers sales representatives to capture and collate data on potential prospects and existing customers as part of sales campaigns. Initial pilots report a 15-20% increase in productivity within three weeks of training, with improvements in data accuracy, faster data entry and cost reduction.

GUS sales representatives are responsible for identifying potential customers in both the high street, and cold calling prospects at home to offer a range of catalogues including Choice, Universal, Kays and Argos Additions. Reality Group recognised that the paper based system being used for data capture was labour intensive, slow and produced an unacceptable amount of data inaccuracy. This had resulted in a significant number of the 1.5 million prospects canvassed each year not maturing into the sales cycle.

RBS’s retail consultants worked with Reality to analyse their business processes, produce a detailed functional specification and then evaluate the available technologies that would meet the requirements of Great Universal Stores. Ease of use and improving the productivity of sales representatives were key considerations in defining the parameters of the project. RBS produced a data-entry application that is managed with Afaria, XcelleNet’s mobile device management software. The solution polls data entered on the hand-held device (Casio's Windows CE-based Cassiopeia) for transfer to central systems and subsequent analysis.
In return the hand-held receives software updates and prospects that should be followed up at home when the nightly communication takes place. The data polling is wholly managed by RBS from its support centre in Milton Keynes.

Programme Manager at Reality Group, Bernard Mills, explains, “RBS and Reality chose Afaria as it is the most comprehensive solution on the market that integrated with our Windows CE hand-held devices. The RBS solution is secure, reliable and efficient and it enables sales staff to communicate their daily sale work just by clicking a ‘virtual’ button on the hand-held device.”


Mills continues, “Our corporate image and morale has been lifted. Each of our sales representatives are now high technology users and the use of hand-held devices has improved the way the customer views our company.”

Managing Director at RBS, Richard Goodall comments, “We have provided Reality Group with a world first technology solution, and a strong platform on which to build future developments such as, ‘real-time’ mystery shopper feedback, questionnaires, queue busting solutions, stock and marketing enquiries.”

About The Reality Group
Reality Group is a leading provider of business solutions combining e-commerce technology with integrated nationwide logistics and support. It was created in May 2000 by combining existing companies within Great Universal Stores Plc with external acquisitions. This amounts to over 100 years experience in marketing direct to the consumer. Employing over 20,000 staff nationwide, Reality Group houses one of the biggest customer service networks in the UK, with a diversity of clients spanning industries such as digital marketing, customer contact, logistics and end-to-end solutions.


About Retail Business Solutions (RBS)
Retail Business Solutions (RBS) is one of the UK's leading retail technology solution providers. Headquartered in Milton Keynes, UK, RBS has over a decade of experience with more than 10,000 systems installed for over 1,700 retailers. RBS’s business philosophy is about providing the total solution with a product portfolio designed to move retailers to an integrated eCommerce strategy. Clients range from high profile chains, such as Arcadia, Birthdays, Booker, Wilkinson and French Connection UK, to its 400 retailers with under five stores. For more information about RBS, readers can visit the company’s Web site at www.rbsretail.com.

Editor’s Contacts
Interviews, photography and further information are available from Graham Thatcher or Juliette Doel at MCC International.

Chris Sidell
Marketing Manager
Retail Business Solutions
Tel: 01908 226226
Email: chris.sidell@rbsretail.com


Graham Thatcher /Juliette Doel
MCC International Ltd
Tel: 01962 888100
Email: graham.thatcher@mccint.com
Email: juliette.doel@mccint.com

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