Retail Audits are an essential tool in a company’s arsenal to get information about the product availability and visibility. This helps them improve their distribution management and tackle issues like out-of-stock. Retail Audits were previously done manually which involved a huge checklist of compliances to be followed and filled. This drastically affected the time taken for the Audit as well as affected the accuracy of the data. In traditional audit, when the audit is done on a PAN India level, the paperwork filled by the auditor will take time to reach the office for quality check and verification.
Whereas if Retail Audit is done using a software, the data collected by the auditor is directly uploaded to the server by them and can be accessed by the quality control team immediately. The retail audit software can be downloaded by the auditors onto their smartphones. Most Retail Auditors have a smart phone so they can easily download the application onto their phones. This reduces the cost of printing physical questionnaires for the audits.
The notable differences between Retail Audit Software and Traditional Retail Audits are:
Method of Data Capturing:
In the traditional retail audit, the data was captured on pen and paper. The auditors had to fill the data by hand on paper. After the development of retail audit software, the auditor can easily download the application onto their phones and fill the questionnaires. They can additionally take pictures and videos as evidence to support their answers. After the added benefit of taking pictures, the accuracy of the data increases drastically.
In the traditional retail audit, there was no means for the Manager to know whether the auditor has actually audited the store or he has just randomly filled the questionnaire at home. Now, the retail audit applications are equipped with “Geo Tagging” feature which captures the exact location when the audit has started. The application captures the longitude and latitude as soon the auditor begins his audit. This allows the manager to know that the auditor had audited the right store.
Notification for Auditors:
Earlier, in the traditional audit, managers would have to coordinate with the auditors via calls and mails only. There was no better way to give instructions or assistance. Using notifications and preset instructions, the managers can ensure that the auditors are being notified while they are conducting the survey. This helps in faster, smoother audits with reduced errors.
Real Time Data Sync:
In the traditional retail audit, once the auditor completes the survey and mails it to the office. The manager is able to check the audit and give a feedback only after a few days. To get a report, the manager has to wait for all the auditors working on the project to send the data. But now, managers have access to live sync of data with the use of retail audit application. As soon as an audit is complete, the data is directly uploaded to the server. This reduces a lot of time as well as saves cost.