For executives leading multi-location businesses, one technology that holds immense potential for driving operational efficiency and unlocking new growth opportunities is Artificial Intelligence (AI). By harnessing the power of AI, businesses can run better location operations which will lead to sales, unit, and profit growth.
Most executives would agree that better unit operations are the key to long-term sustained growth. You can market all the live long day, you can change your POS, and you can implement different sales channels from curbside to delivery. If your location is dirty, and doesn’t execute well or in a timely manner, nothing else you do will matter. Customers will not patronize you.
Running a large Multi-location business has traditionally been very difficult because it is hard to get visibility into how each location is operating from a corporate perspective. Traditionally corporate has had to rely on backing into how well a location is operating by looking at other lagging indicators such as sales, costs, customer satisfaction scores, and audit results.
This problem gets compounded in franchise organizations where corporate is really not responsible for how the locations are run. The responsibility of running the locations belongs to the franchisee who has a financial incentive to run them well. Anyone who has worked in a franchise organization knows that the franchisee’s incentive to run a profitable business is not always strong enough to make them do the right things for themselves and the brand.
This brings us to the obvious conclusion which is running a large multi-location business well is very hard to do because of the complexities of managing and running large numbers of individual locations across sometimes vast geographic areas. Because there is a lack of visibility and real-time accountability, these businesses are generally run in a reactive manner. Meaning that franchisee and corporate management are doing their best to be proactive by providing training and standards but in reality, are often managing the business from a reactive position.
When Corporate finds out that something bad is happening at a location, often the bad thing has been happening for some time. Depending on the systems implemented and the patch size of the above store leader, we could be talking 3 to 6 months before corporate has an inkling that anything is wrong. By the time Corporate is even aware the damage has been done to the store’s sales and the chain’s brand reputation.
AI offers a solution to this common problem of finding out that something is wrong at a location that is hurting the business after the fact. For the first time in history, corporate management with AI and Predictive Analytics can actually get a glimpse into the future before bad things happen.
Yes, with AI and Predictive Analytics Corporate can predict which locations are going to get into trouble before it happens so they can deploy their existing field resources to help the locations. This is how using AI to drive better ops can literally save customer satisfaction, sales, and profits.
Here are a couple of examples of where AI could be deployed to help you better manage your locations: predicting sales inventory and scheduling needs more accurately, predicting mass turnover events, detecting theft, predicting future food safety incidents, and identifying underperforming managers before they severely impact the business or tarnish the brand, just to name a few.
Taking the first step towards integrating AI into your operations is vital for staying ahead of the competition and maximizing your return on investment.
We invite you to participate in a complimentary OpsAnalitica AI Strategy Session. This session will provide insights into the potential applications of AI for your business, helping you understand how AI can specifically address your operational challenges and drive growth. Schedule your AI Strategy Session by clicking here.
Artificial Intelligence is not just a buzzword; it is a game-changer for multi-location businesses. By harnessing the power of AI, executives can transform their operations, drive growth, and maximize profits.
The time to act is now, as the early adopters will reap the highest rewards. Don’t let this opportunity pass you by; take the first step towards incorporating AI into your business operations and secure your success in the AI era. Your legacy as a leader will be defined by your ability to embrace and leverage the transformative potential of AI.