Why You Should Be Engaging Employees Before Customers

Engagement is one of the most discussed topics in the hospitality sector. By now, most business owners will have heard about the benefits of customer engagement. When done right, it has been proven to increase customer loyalty, improve repeat custom and boost overall profitability. But while the benefits of an engaged customer base are endless, employee engagement is often regarded with a little less zeal.

We’re here to tell you that employee engagement is just as important, if not more so, than customer engagement. In fact, we would go as far to say that you cannot begin to engage customers without having an engaged workforce first.

Casual and fast dining restaurants are fast paced and it’s no secret that hospitality has one of the highest employee turnovers of any other sector, reportedly costing the industry a huge £11 billion a year. Despite the overheads of continually having to recruit new employees, an unengaged workforce brings with it a whole host of issues and could be the very thing that is hindering efforts of engaging your customers.

As well as being happier, healthier and more fulfilled at work, engaged employees deliver improved business performance evidenced by productivity, profit, revenue growth, customer satisfaction, innovation and efficiency.  Engaged employees care for the company’s future, are willing to go the extra mile for their customers and know how their work impacts the overall goals and vision of your organisation.

Engaged customers bring a 21% profitability premium to the companies they are engaged with.  Engaged employees increase sales by 20%, their absenteeism drops by 41%, and safety incidents decrease by 70%. Companies that invest in engagement see a 17% rise in productivity and a 40% rise in quality of work compared to those who don’t.[1]

For customers to be engaged, they need to see a workforce that is passionate, innovative and enjoying the work that they do. This will encourage customer interaction, create a more comfortable and happier environment to dine, and customers are more likely to receive the best service possible. No matter how hard you try to engage customers through loyalty apps and social media, if they have a negative dining experience in the restaurant, you’d be lucky to see them again.

An engaged workforce will become a necessity if you wish to truly make gains in coming years and stay ahead of your competition – but where do you start when beginning to think about an employee engagement strategy? It’s all good and well telling you why you should be engaging employees but it’s even more difficult figuring out how to engage them.

This is where your restaurant data plays a huge part. Not only will collecting and analysing your data give you visibility of transactions, sales trends and the best trading times, it can also provide a wealth of knowledge about your employees. This includes how productive they are, when they’re most productive, who they’re most productive with, and how outside factors influence their performance at work. Knowing this information will allow you to create the most engaging working environment for your employees to ensure you’re always getting the best out of your team.

If you want to know more about unlocking the wealth of information waiting to be utilised in your business analytics database, join us for a webinar soon to find out how to use your restaurant data effectively in order engage employees and increase productivity and profitability.

[1] Gallup, Gallup 2016 Q12 Meta-Analysis: Ninth Edition, http://www.gallup.com/services/191489/q12-meta-analysis-report-2016.aspx

The Importance of the Small Stuff

There are a lot of great small charities that sometimes don’t get the recognition they deserve due to the unique nature of their cause. To remind people everywhere that small doesn’t mean unimportant, we wanted to write about a few of the small things you might be forgetting that could make a big difference to your charity.

Reward your volunteers

Something as small as a quick ‘thank you’ to your team of staff and volunteers could go a long way to improving work ethic and engagement. Better still, rewarding them with small gifts when they have achieved something particularly impressive will boost motivation and encourage other volunteers to work harder too.

Make an impressive window display

Make a good first impression by getting creative with your window displays. Enticing displays can be created easily with your team and a few props from your store and could make a huge difference to increasing footfall. Not sure where to begin? Read our blog here on how to create a WOW! Factor window display.

Don’t forget to ask people about Gift Aid

Often one of the largest barriers to increasing the rate of Gift Aid sign ups is staff in store forgetting or feeling too uncomfortable to ask donors if they’re eligible to sign up. Doing so could make all the difference! Don’t forget to urge your volunteers to remember to ask the question. Alternatively, some digital solutions such as Electronic Gift Aid could remove the need to ask uncomfortable questions altogether by allowing donors to input their own information on a modern touchscreen interface.

Allow your volunteers to grow

Giving your volunteers a little extra time to develop their skills in store is essential to building the strongest team out there. Allow them to take courses on the back office PC, practice their selling skills on the shop floor, or let them plan a fundraising event. Giving them room to grow their skills and develop their professional profile is a great way to create lasting, knowledgeable volunteers.

Talk to your donors!

Engaging with donors is one of the most important things you could do as a charity leader. In order to fully engage donors, you should open up a two-way form of communication – talk to them, not at them! Ask for donors’ advice and get them involved in community events to create loyal givers who feel like they really have a connection with you, your store and your cause.

It’s all too easy to get bogged down trying to juggle all the policies and procedures that come with managing a charity shop. While the big things may seem more important, the small stuff adds up. Making sure that someone is taking care of those little things is essential and will create a solid foundation for you and your team to reach their full potential and raise valuable funds for your cause.

Engage employees to engage customers

Engagement comes in many forms and is often difficult to measure. With such a visceral concept, the definition of engagement can be iffy but the basis remains the same: ‘being positively present during the performance of work by willingly contributing intellectual effort, experiencing positive emotions and meaningful connections to others’.[1]

More and more businesses within the hospitality sector are beginning to recognise the positive effects of an engaged workforce. With 88% of businesses planning on improving engagement in 2017, failure to recognise the power it has will leave your business lagging behind your competitors.[2]

Ensuring employees are thoroughly engaged can improve all areas of a business. It is no secret that hospitality has one of the highest employee turnover rates of any industry. Bloomberg BNA estimated that a huge $11 billion is lost annually due to employee turnover. Money is literally walking out the door due to low levels of engagement.

It has also been proven that engagement isn’t only good for improving staff retention. As well as being happier, healthier and more fulfilled at work, engaged employees deliver improved business performance evidenced by productivity, profit, revenue growth, customer satisfaction, innovation and efficiency.  Engaged employees care for the company’s future, are willing to go the extra mile and know how their work impacts the overall goals and vision of your company.

Engaged customers bring a 21% profitability premium to the companies they are engaged with.  Engaged employees increase sales by 20%, their absenteeism drops by 41% and safety incidents decrease by 70%. Companies that invest in engagement see a 17% rise in productivity and 40% rise in quality of work compared to those who don’t.[3]

These are facts. Engagement works. All the statistics show that engaged employees improve the workplace beyond the happy employee; engaged employees actively work to improve profit and decrease unnecessary costs. Engaged employees are more loyal to their company, saving you money and time on recruitment and training. Your HR department would be better off spending less time recruiting new talent, and more time engaging and retaining the great employees your business already has.

With an increasing number of socioeconomic concerns influencing and, in most cases curbing profit, it’s easy to want to take the reins and implement processes and systems that rely on control, direction and compliance. This will only damage engagement levels and cause further financial distress. Instead construct the right teams, analyse productivity levels, ensure you have the right people working together at the right times, and trust them to do their job. Give them the support they need, discuss the larger focus of the business, where you want to be and where you want them to be, and they are more than likely to succeed and be happier while doing so.

Engagement is pinned to be one of the most explored concepts for hospitality this year and looking at the results so far, it is no wonder why. Businesses are being more innovative than ever with their workplace culture and are really going that extra mile to ensure they can provide the best, most engaging, environment for their employees. While installing slides in the office will be a little farfetched for most, if your business isn’t working on its engagement levels, it will be left behind and struggle to stay ahead of the curve. Not to mention spending valuable revenue on recruitment, training and labour costs! Large or small, engagement can help you transform your business for the better and it’s time you started talking about it.

Engagement needs discussing now more than ever; you should not underestimate the power it can have.

If you would like to discuss engagement in more detail and see how your technology can help, please get in touch at info@pxtech.com or 01332 921 300.

[1] CIPD, Employee Engagement: An Introductionhttps://www.cipd.co.uk/knowledge/fundamentals/relations/engagement/factsheet#

[2] Virgin Pulse, State of the Industry: Employee Wellbeing, Culture and Engagementhttp://community.virginpulse.com/state-of-the-industry-2017-es

[3] Gallup, Gallup 2016 Q12 Meta-Analysis: Ninth Edition, http://www.gallup.com/services/191489/q12-meta-analysis-report-2016.aspx

Human factor in engagement

Customer Business

Engaged customers bring a 21% profitability premium to the companies they are engaged with.  Engaged employees increase sales by 20%, their absenteeism drops by 41% and safety incidents decrease by 70%. (Gallup 2016 Q12 Meta-Analysis: Ninth Edition)

Source: http://www.gallup.com/businessjournal/166667/five-ways-improve-employee-engagement.aspx

Still think engagement isn’t important?

Engagement is far more than satisfaction or happiness. It is about emotional commitment. When customers and employees feel engaged and are engaged with a company, they are part of its experience, its adventure. They develop a feeling of pride and a feeling of belonging. They are prepared to go the extra mile to support the company.

The engaged customer will evangelise the company and the brand. The engaged employee will use discretionary effort to solve problems, to drive innovation, and is concerned with the company’s well-being.

Engagement is about people. Technology is the tool to make it successful.

To find out more and to join the conversation on engagement, email us on info@pxtech.com or give us a call: 01332 921 300!

A Day in the Life of Performance Tuning

Performance tuning

“Can I have all the things in instantly”?

“Make this slow thing fast”

“I want more, faster!”

Okay, yes, I am heinously boiling down the various questions we get asked for on a daily basis for comic effect, but in reality this is not far off the truth. You are about to get an insight into the journey I took to reduce a query from taking minutes to taking seconds.

Let’s start with the culprit;

DECLARE @startDate DATETIME = '2008-01-01',

        @endDate DATETIME = '2016-01-01'


       SELECT tdd.[Date Key],

              dbo.getDate(tdd.[Date Key])

       FROM [Date Dimension] tdd

       WHERE tdd.[Date] BETWEEN @startDate AND @endDate


It’s a simple snippet, it selects some keys from a table and passes one of those keys into a function to get another key between two dates.

It looks very innocent, nothing wrong here. One could ask a broader question about its usage in the scope on entire query but we are just going to take it in isolation here.

It looks innocent until you run it and find out that it takes 36 seconds!

Naturally my eye was drawn to the scalar function as at the moment it’s a black box and could be doing anything. I looked at it and determined that it was doing something reasonable but I could do it quicker.

DECLARE @startDate DATETIME = '2008-01-01',

        @endDate DATETIME = '2016-01-01'


       SELECT tdd.[Date Key],

       STUFF([Date Key], LEN([Date Key]) - 1, 2, '24')

       FROM [Date Dimension] tdd

       WHERE tdd.[Date] BETWEEN @startDate AND @endDate


Low and behold this returned its values 163 milliseconds! I went ahead and compared all the data and it matches as I expected it to. I wasn’t satisfied yet as while this is a great improvement, it is not entirely correct from a data point of view because I have assumptions about what is happening and the structure of data. I also needed to understand why this is quicker, without the understanding of why, you leave your code open to bugs and unforeseen interactions.

So next I asked the question; “Is it the scalar function call itself that’s the problem or is it the work the function is doing?” This directed me to create a function with the STUFF code within it. Creatively I called this “getDate2”.

DECLARE @startDate DATETIME = '2008-01-01',

        @endDate DATETIME = '2016-01-01'


       SELECT tdd.[Date Key],

              dbo.getDate2(tdd.[Date Key])

       FROM [Date Dimension] tdd

       WHERE tdd.[Date] BETWEEN @startDate AND @endDate


No joy. I had hoped it would be as simple as calling a scalar function multiple times was causing the problem but the execution plan and statistics tell me is isn’t with it executing in a measly 267ms. So we have to dig deeper. Let’s try in-lining the original function call statement with the method.

DECLARE @startDate DATETIME = '2008-01-01',

        @endDate DATETIME = '2016-01-01'


       SELECT tdd.[Date Key],


              SELECT tdd_day.[Date Key]

              FROM [Date Dimension] tdd_day

              WHERE tdd_day.[Date Key] = tdd.[Date Key]

              ) as Bleh

       FROM [Date Dimension] tdd

       WHERE tdd.[Date] BETWEEN @startDate AND @endDate


I was convinced that it would be this. In my mind doing this select for each result should be really slow but SQL server is smarter than I gave it credit for, it has looked ahead and created a plan that means it doesn’t have to do this. With this query returning its data in 163ms.

I was scratching my head at this point as the direct execution of a scalar function wasn’t slow and the direct execution of the work the scalar function was doing wasn’t slow. Maybe the scalar function has to interact with a table in some manner? So I created another function to do the same select as shown above but within a scalar function.

DECLARE @startDate DATETIME = '2008-01-01',

        @endDate DATETIME = '2016-01-01'


       SELECT tdd.[Date Key],

dbo.getDate4(tdd.[Date Key])

       FROM [Date Dimension] tdd

       WHERE tdd.[Date] BETWEEN @startDate AND @endDate


(With hindsight I didn’t need to do this because it’s the same as the original, but it was part of the process.)

At last! A result that shows the problem! This query took 22 seconds to return the results. So at this point it appears the SQL server truly treats scalar value functions as black boxes and this shows in the execution plan. The function call is in fact not shown.

It shows the estimated cost as 0 if you check the estimated plan but it is lying. The cost cannot and is not 0 as shown by all the above examples.

So what’s the answer? It’s not exactly good practise to just use the STUFF method. It makes various assumptions about how the data structure will continue to work and completely destroys any reusability we had before. Cue the entry of table valued functions!

Using a simple table valued function SQL can incorporate it into its plan. We can mimic the scalar function with a table valued function very simply by aggregating a result set with only one result in it.

SELECT MAX(tdd_day.[Date Key]) as [Date Key]

FROM   [Date Dimension] tdd_day

WHERE  tdd_day.[Date Key] = @transactionDateKey

We can then use the table valued function in place of our scalar function call;

DECLARE @startDate DATETIME = '2008-01-01',

        @endDate DATETIME = '2016-01-01'


       SELECT tdd.[Date Key], tdd2.[Date Key]

       FROM [Date Dimension] tdd

       CROSS APPLY dbo.GetDateForKey(tdd.[Date Key]) as tdd2

       WHERE tdd.[Date] BETWEEN @startDate AND @endDate


Looking at the execution plan we can now have visibility of the previous behaviour and how it’s been considered into the plan and it executes and returns its results in a cool 323ms down from the original 36 seconds, while maintaining a modicum of good coding principles as we are no longer forced to code in assumptions about structure or reusability failings.

The lessons to be learned here is never make assumptions, check everything. Although sometimes, when you don’t know what you don’t know, this can be hard…

Matt Bird, Developer

Time to embrace technology in Charity Retail?

Online donating is increasing year on year yet the charity retail sector is still lagging behind when it comes to updating fundraising processes. It has been almost 20 years since the first online donation but this still makes up less than 10% of total fundraising for most charities.

However, online donations are continuing to grow and with more people requesting convenient and quick payment methods, the demand for digital payment in-store is increasing.

In a recent study on the retail industry in general, half of young people surveyed said they would be more likely to frequent a business that offered contactless payments, with four in ten saying they preferred the ease of paying with one tap compared to chip and pin. The opportunity for contactless donations therefore is vast and charities could take advantage of this, simply by embracing technology.

Technology offers charities other opportunities to increase revenue. Take Gift Aid for example. Many charities implement a manual process around Gift Aid. An Electronic Gift Aid solution has many benefits; not only saving on storage of paper forms, but eliminating the 20% of forms that are thrown away due to messy handwriting, mistakes, ineligibility or because they’re unusable. Gift Aid is a great way to boost donations and it’s a shame to see potential support going unclaimed.

Digitising the process and allowing donors or volunteers to sign up to Gift Aid on a tablet or computer means that data is stored securely and backed up, and the process is streamlined for all involved. This means charities can increase the amount of Gift Aid sign ups, claim more money for their cause, and make their volunteers’ and donors’ lives that little bit easier.

Moving quickly and embracing these new methods of supporting and fundraising means charities can tap into the generosity of younger, more tech-savvy givers. By ensuring convenience of giving, this can pave the way for future generations of regular donors.

Charities rely hugely on people’s desire to do good in the world; thank them by making it as easy as possible to do so.

chris richards pxtech

Chris Richards, PXtech Head of Charity Retail

The True Cost of Bugs

software bugs

I’ve always known that there is a general rule that the sooner you find bugs the cheaper they are to expose and fix, with the converse being naturally true. But I had not really experienced it first-hand until now.

The experience has left me with some interesting “what-if” scenarios bouncing around my mind and none of them seem good when thought about as an avoided future possibility. So often we hear the dreaded turn of phrase “we are where we are”, so to be on the other side of that is a very nice feeling. A feeling which I will strive to replicate, which of course has led me to sharing this experience with you, the reader.

A quick search will quickly show a plethora of people showing graphics with exponential costs of finding bugs early compared to late so the following graphic will probably not be a surprise; costofbugs

So why do we allow ourselves to develop without any formal design or requirements? Why do we let ourselves release code into any environment without automated tests? Why do we allow ourselves to release code out of QA without confidence?

When you say those questions out loud it seems ridiculous to blame it on time (which is often the case), especially with the graph directly above it. You can quite clearly see that spending the time upfront will save you time later down the line even if you have to incur a smaller upfront cost. The problem here is that the time saved upfront is often forgotten about.

This is my call to every developer to at the very least highlight the cost next time the suggestion is made to shorten or circumvent one stage. This is also my call to every developer to make automated testing part of the development process and not some add-in extra that you do “if there is time”.

 Matt Bird, Developer

How to Use Your Restaurant Data to Engage Customers

Analysing what is going on in your restaurant is the first step to truly engaging your customers. You’re likely to already collect a wealth of data about your transactions, staff and customers. Collating this data is important but unless you utilise it, this can be a little fruitless. A good EPOS system will collect data automatically and store it safely in the cloud so it’s there to review when you need it. Good Business Intelligence systems can then take this data and transform it into something you can act upon.

However, it can be difficult to know where to start. Here’s some ideas on how you can utilise data in order to engage with customers on a much deeper level:

Listen to your customers’ voice

The first step in pleasing your customers is to listen to what they really want. Online reviews are becoming ever more important and can provide valuable insights as to where you could improve. More often than not however, customers tend to write reviews when they’ve had a negative experience than when they repeatedly get good customer service and the products they want. While valuable and useful, these don’t help you determine what you’re already getting right.

Sales data can indicate exactly which products sell most, what times of day, week or year they’re most popular, and what combinations of products are preferred. This means you can alter your menu to reflect your customers’ desires. Customers are unlikely to tell you directly that they’ll generally purchase a drink with a main meal for example. Your data does tell you this information, allowing you to create certain deals or options that the customer will engage with. Seeing trends in product sales ensures that your restaurant always offers the customer something they really desire, increasing the likelihood of repeat custom.

Spot emerging trends

While you’re constantly looking at your successful products to ensure your menu is desirable, it’s also good to see the journey of your products or ones that may be gaining or losing popularity. This is most prevalent in seasonal products. A good example includes the Pumpkin Spice Latte from Starbucks. Presumably it sold well in its first year, demand was high and many customers now wait in anticipation of its return to the menu each autumn.

If Starbucks were to have this item on their menu all year round, it may appear to look like an average selling item as its sales are likely to drop in the summer. Keeping it as a seasonal item builds the buzz around it and makes customers excited for its return. If you’re able to spot similar emerging trends, you can jump on them early on to maximise sales opportunities and excite customers with something they really enjoy. Restaurant trends come and go so it’s good to be able to review what works, what doesn’t and what you can implement for the future. This means your restaurant will never be behind the curve and will keep you in line with your competitors.

Personalise the dining experience

With the use of apps, memberships and loyalty schemes on the rise, you are now receiving more information about your customers than ever before. As you make the effort to collect all of this information, it makes sense to be able to do something with it.

Embracing technology within your restaurant through things such as digital signage or interactive menus and ordering systems means you can make the dining experience much more personal to the customer. If you don’t wish to directly implement technology on the tables, letting them order through an app to which they have an account means you can offer them tailored promotions and show what items they order most and may like to order again (i.e. “Want to order the same as last time?”).

Some restaurants are even going as far as to have live social media walls so that customers can take pictures, tweet or share their food across social media and it can appear immediately on the wall in the restaurant. Incorporating this with gamification and competitions (such as whomever gets the most ‘likes’ gets their meal for free) is a sure way to help your restaurant further its reach online, establish a recognised brand name and see what items are trending.

Engaging your customers can be a difficult process so deploying as much help as you can get from your data is a good idea. Big Data isn’t there just to be digitally shelved and never utilised. Analysing and creating actions from data is the next step to increasing customer engagement on a deeper level, sometimes without them even having to step foot in one of your restaurants.

If you would like to know more about how data analysis can help you make reactive decisions about your business, contact PXtech on info@pxtech.com or 01332 921 300.

Engagement Hype

Is it feasible to expect every single worker to be engaged?

It feels likes employee engagement is the new buzz in hospitality, with promises of increased productivity and profitability being thrown about.

What I can’t decide is, could there be a big underlying problem with the whole engagement hype? Does it create unrealistic expectations for employees? Does it set unachievable goals for companies?


When I got my first job at 16 working for a well-known fast food brand, I’m not sure I was engaged.  In fact I didn’t want a job. It was my dad that had frog marched me down there saying “you’re old enough to work now, it’s an important life lesson to learn how to support yourself.” Thanks Dad :).  During my time there I worked loads of overtime not because I couldn’t get enough of work but because I loved having loads of money, more than my pocket money, to spend on all the things I wanted…and there was a lot I wanted! Clothes, shoes, video games, going out on the razzle!

Did I care about the company goals? Did I care if we took more money than the other shop down the road? No I don’t think I did.  I did care that customers left happy, enjoyed their meal and would go out of my way to help if something had gone wrong.  Does that mean I was engaged and was that a result of something my manager did to make me feel this way? I don’t know.

In contrast, I feel completely engaged in my current role. I understand the impact I have and I know my opinion is respected, even if it’s not right.  I feel valued, in control of my own destiny, being supported without it being overbearing.  Here we are all about engagement. We want all our employees to have a voice, to be able to challenge and push us forward with innovative thinking.  We use a number of engagement tools like Hipchat, Mailchimp and Sharepoint.  It feels great, I get up in the morning and I’m thinking right what’s my plan for today – I feel driven and ready to succeed.

Now when I think back to my first job, I question what would have motivated me in the same way I am now back then.  Would it have been the same that engages me now? Is it the technology that helps engage me? I didn’t go skipping to work back then. I do feel I worked to my best ability but I certainly didn’t feel like I feel now.

Questions I want to understand are;  does every job/role have the potential to offer a meaningful, exciting, and self-actualising experience?  Does a job need to engage you to ensure you are at your most productive at all times? Can technology play a part in employee engagement? Let me know what you think!

 Kerry Townsend, Director of Hospitality Business

Why You Should Invest in Your Volunteers

We can be guilty of assuming that volunteers don’t want all the responsibilities that come with looking after a retail store. Many charities are hesitant to offload tasks seen as boring or complicated onto their volunteers in fear of scaring them away. However, not giving volunteers any responsibilities can deter them too.

When surveyed, only 31% of people said that their charity makes them feel valued. There are seven in ten people who do not feel like their importance is recognised by the organisation to which they choose to donate their time. When we talk so frequently about how volunteers are fundamental to a functioning charity shop, it is surprising to hear that they feel so disconnected.

When speaking with volunteers, we found that their most common needs are to feel valued, trusted and listened to. Ensuring your volunteers know they are highly important and are contributing to the wider mission of your organisation is key to recruiting and retaining the volunteers you need for success.

Enhanced communication with your volunteers can help boost motivation. Telling them they are important, what their hard work goes on to achieve, and how they impact the end mission is a positive way to reinforce hard work. In order to make them feel listened to, there must be a two-way line of open communication. Volunteers offer a wealth of experience and knowledge and can deliver an abundance of good ideas to help increase funds, improve the charity and better the organisation as a whole.

There needs to be this communication for them to feel trusted too. To further develop trust, it’s a good idea to offer them the more difficult or important tasks. It’s easy to assume that they don’t want the responsibility or are not up to the job but by not asking them if so, you are making them feel like they’re not trusted enough to fully contribute to the cause.

While being listened to and trusted will contribute to making them feel valued, there are also other things you can do for your volunteers. Demonstrating that you are ready to invest in volunteers where you cannot offer wages can be an excellent motivator. Sending them on training courses means they have the chance to develop their own personal skills while also making them better at the job they do in-store.

In our blog post on the importance of collaboration, we outline many ways you can raise extra funds to pay for something like this. Partnering with businesses who will pay for training bursaries in return for a short ad in a monthly newsletter or a feature on your website is a fantastic way of sourcing funds. Alternatively, join hands with another charity and improve volunteering skills across the sector while sharing the costs!

Giving volunteers different skills than they already have is a great motivator for many and investing in them is a sure way to make them feel worthwhile. Young people just beginning their careers will likely want extra experience to boost their CV, while older people or those trying to get back into the working world will also be looking to learn something new.

Knowing you’re taking the time to invest in them and develop their skills beyond the charity will boost motivation and will allow volunteers to invest back into your organisation. Interacting and engaging with volunteers is a two-way street, so treating them as valued members of your team will result in reciprocal respect and hard work. Investing in your volunteers will allow them to invest in you and create a more skilled, friendlier and more profitable retail store.