5 Minutes With Richard Rhodes, CEO, Retail Response

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Tell us the story about Retail Response.

We formed the business back in 2004. We had accumulated over 20 years of store systems support experience which we wanted to put to good use. We set out to offer retailers consistently reliable and inexpensive managed services to help keep the cost of supporting their store systems to a minimum. We’ve stood the test of time and are still doing the same today but provide a much more comprehensive range of managed services.

What gap in the market does Retail Response strive to address?

We perceived at the outset that there was a gap in the market for an independent provider of completely integrated end-to-end deployment and support services. It was our view that fragmented service models with multi-layers were inefficient and thus expensive. In todays’ ultra-competitive retail market that holds true more than ever.

Why must retailers invest in store systems technology to remain competitive?

It’s very well documented that today’s consumer has extensive choice and to keep pace with the competition retailers need store technology including MPLS networks, PoS systems, stock checking systems, payment systems, back office systems, Wi-Fi networks etc. the capital cost of which adds up to something substantial.

How can retailers utilize Retail Response to help deliver better value to their business on an ongoing basis?

Retailers might need to spend a fortune on store systems technology but it’s certainly not necessary to spend another supporting it. A fully integrated and inexpensive service solution that consistently maximises up-time delivers exceptionally good value to retail businesses on an ongoing basis.

Tell us a bit about some of the services Retail Response offers

We offer a single point of contact for a full end-to-end store systems support service which is available seven days per week, 52 weeks per year. In the event of any system related incident or query all store staff need to do is pick up the phone and one of our UK based service desk technicians will answer promptly. Over 95 per cent of incidents are resolved remotely but if there is a requirement for in-store service our field team is on hand to attend and fix the fault at the first attempt in compliance with SLA. We have invested substantial sums in support stock and our service management system to do this consistently well.

In what ways is Retail Response unique compared to its competitors?

The reliability of our complete end-to-end store support service, which removes the complexity associated with engaging multiple providers, combined with extremely competitive charges makes ours a unique and leading value business proposition.

What are the risks associated with contracting with Retail Response?

We are a very well established, proven and debt free UK based business trusted by retailers over the long-term so the risk of contracting with us is negligible.

Who are your best-known clients in the UK and how have they used Retail Responses services?

McColls, Card Factory, Crew Clothing and Hotter Shoes are probably our best-known UK retail clients. Most of them have engaged with us to provide a full end-to-end store support service. They work with us directly and keep coming back year after year. We like to believe that’s because they’ve benefitted from great value services but we don’t get complacent and are continually striving to maintain high service standards to keep them satisfied.

Tell us about your role as CEO of Retail Response.

We’ve got a team of very high calibre, directly employed staff most of whom have been with us long-term which means they’ve accumulated considerable experience and expertise. It also contributes to the ongoing stability the business needs to deliver great value service. My role is to ensure our management team provide our front-line staff with all the appropriate training and resources they need and that they get great support from the rest of the business to enable them to deliver consistently reliable service to stores.

What’s next for Retail Response?

We’re in the business of supporting retailers for the long term. We don’t see things getting easier for the High St. anytime soon so we’ll continue to offer retailers an opportunity to reduce store support costs and improve service standards for many years to come.

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