Focussed on delivering top-notch service to 1.7M+ customers that visit their stores daily, dm-drogerie markt replaced dedicated scanners with high-performance barcode scanning on smartphones. Employees can now confidently address customer queries by accessing real-time data on their smartphones.
The path we take at dm is one of consistent customer focus. In this context, being able to advise customers is essential. With the app we have developed and with barcode scanning from our partner Scandit, we are giving our colleagues in the dm stores a tool that will enable them to advise our customers even better,” said Roman Melcher, dm General Manager, who oversees the IT/dmTECH department.
Germany’s most popular drugstore chain, dm operates over 3,700 stores across Europe. The company places employee and customer well-being front and center. dm’s retail outlets stock over 12,500 products, and store staff must be able to swiftly respond to customer queries on any of these products – including those related to stock availability, ingredients, eco-friendliness and allergy information.
Real-time product information through a mobile app
Store staff used to access product information through dedicated barcode scanners, which were shared between several employees across dm stores. This process of retrieving product information through shared devices delayed customer response times. dm realised that in order to improve the in-store experience for customers, they first had to empower employees with faster access to product information, before they could help customers make better-informed purchasing decisions.
dmTECH, dm’s IT division decided to build an app that would supply store staff with the relevant product information from its SAP system in real time. To do this, dm had to replace existing dedicated barcode scanners and deploy the employee app on COPE (corporate owned personally enabled) employee smartphones.
But first, the company had to ensure that that solution was:
- Mobile and practical to guarantee seamless store operations.
- Integrated into the existing IT infrastructure.
dmTECH integrated its store app with the Scandit-powered barcode scanner SDK, deploying it on 38,000 plus COPE employee smartphones. The decision to go with Scandit’s data capture solution was based on superior performance in tests against alternative solutions. Scandit’s smartphone-based scanning app was fast and easy to use, offering high-performance scanning even in poor lighting conditions, on damaged barcodes, at a distance, and from odd angles.
Smartphone scanning improves employee and customer experience
Store staff now have 24×7, real-time access to relevant product information. They respond to customer queries by simply scanning products using their Scandit-powered employee app. The app seamlessly connects with dm’s SAP systems to retrieve detailed product information.
Since store staff no longer have to share dedicated barcode scanning devices:
- Productivity has increased significantly.
- Response times on product queries are faster, and the information is accurate.
- Customer experience has improved.
The Scandit solution also allows the viewfinder and a keyboard to be shown simultaneously on the smartphone’s display via split screen, so that employees can use both at the same time.
- Store staff use the barcode scanner
- Products scanned for real-time information
- Employees can access product information anytime
The Scandit-powered dm app received positive feedback from users who rate the new app as an effective work tool. Store staff can now provide customers with detailed and personalized information about dm’s products in real-time, which has significantly improved the customer’s in-store experience.
Equally, Scandit’s barcode scanner offers added value for dm employees. It saves time as it is optimized for stock-taking and other store operations, increases productivity by delivering considerable time savings, and provides a foundation for optimizing business-critical processes.
Future plans: speed up shelf management with MatrixScan
dm has also shown interest in future-proofing its barcode scanning solution with additional features from Scandit, such as the smartphone-based MatrixScan barcode scanning feature. With MatrixScan and added augmented reality overlays, dm can further accelerate its merchandise management process, speeding up in-store activities such as shelf management by capturing an entire set of barcodes in a single sequence.
In powering dm’s smartphone scanning solution, Scandit helped lay the foundation for improving customer engagement at dm. The scanning solution also helped enhance processes within dm’s retail, logistics and corporate environments.