The CStore Decisions/Humetrics 15th annual HR Benchmarking Survey began by asking participants: “How was your overall business in 2022?” More than half (59%) of retailers surveyed shared that business for them in 2022 was better than expected.
But it was no surprise that survey participants still rank staffing as one of the industry’s most exhaustive and repetitive challenges. Attracting and keeping workers remains a struggle for store owners and managers.
While the pandemic has exacerbated staffing issues, the rising costs of food, supplies and fuel have also presented new challenges.
Consumers are looking for ways to stretch their dollars further. C-stores are finding creative ways to entice consumers with coupons, promotions, loyalty programs and BOGO (buy one get one) offers to keep dollars inside their stores.
On the bright side, the average in-store purchase increased 6.3% in 2022 and has grown 22.4% continually over the past two years.
And more positive news is that USAWire.com reported that 51% of Americans want to travel in 2023, and out of that number, 67% are planning road trips. The majority of those are planning out-of-state travel, and 40% are taking staycations, which will still require stocking up the pantry, refrigerator and adult beverage cooler. With kids and adults on the road, that means more pit stops and purchases along the way — all excellent news for the c-store industry.
Retailers were asked: “How do you think your business will be in 2023 compared to 2022?”
Responses included: “We are growing and have high hopes for 2023.” “(We) struggle hiring individuals that have strong work ethics and want to work.” “We are on track to have our best year ever, but worried about 2023.” “No more COVID handouts.” “I think staffing challenges will ease due to layoffs in other industries.” “Recession will be the deciding factor.”
Meanwhile, remnants of the pandemic are still creating HR challenges. As shown in the graph below, retailers ranked recruiting challenges (66%), retention/turnover (54%) and not enough shift coverage (49%) among the top business impacts of the pandemic.
Retailers reported that recruiting, hiring and retention remain the most significant HR concerns overall, with employee compensation close behind in fourth place:
- Employee Compensation
- Benefit Costs
- Vaccine Mandates
In 2022, the majority of respondents experienced a turnover rate between 11-50%, with 18% of retailers reporting a turnover rate of 31-40%. Some 55% of respondents noted that their experience with turnover was about the same as the previous year, while 23% said turnover was higher and 22% responded that it was lower.
Retailers were asked, “In 2022, approximately what percentage of new hourly hires quit within the first 30 days?”
Some 31% of respondents reported seeing a quitting rate of 0-10% among new hires in the first 30 days, while 27% of retailers saw a quitting rate of 21-30%. Compared to last year, the average quitting rate from 0-30%, is up by only 4%.
To view the full CStore Decisions/Humetrics 15th annual HR Benchmarking Survey, click here.