Due to the unprecedented circumstances surrounding the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) crisis, some products supplied by Pollock Orora may not be cancelled or returned. These high-demand products include, but are not limited to, the following: gloves, sanitizers, disinfectant chemicals and wipes. Products ordered now are considered firm commitments to purchase and are considered non-cancellable and non-returnable. Orders cannot be cancelled and the product ordered cannot be returned for any reason other than a manufacturing defect. We will make every attempt to meet your requested needs, both during this crisis and for many years in the future. We appreciate your understanding as we all work to get through these challenging times.

Also, due to raw material shortages, labor shortages, SKU reductions and transportation issues in the market, LTL and Ground Freight transit times may be extended.

How to Create an Omnichannel Retail Experience

Nowadays, shopping does not always occur in a brick and mortar building. And when your customers shop online, they want the ability to see products on their phones as well as at home on their laptops. Not only that, customers use specific forms of media depending on their ages or other demographics. How can you reach all customers in each of these scenarios? Welcome to the world of omnichannel retail experiences!

What is an omnichannel retail experience?

According to a GE shopper research poll, approximately 81% of all shoppers look online for the best deal before buying a product, even if they are standing in your store. Knowing this statistic, it is vitally important to spread your retail message across a vast array of platforms, hitting social media with the same message you are sending out to billboards, newspapers, sales ads, and online ads. This campaign to send the same message throughout a customer’s entire media world is an omnichannel retail experience.

Customers are savvy computer experts and are likely to look up ads in your store for the item directly in front of them. Does this mean you should block cellular service in your building? No, on the contrary — your best method of defense is to offer free Wi-Fi and place QR codes directly on product price tags to direct customers to your website rather than have customers arbitrarily scroll through the websites of your competitors.

What is the difference between omnichannel and multichannel retail experiences?

In multichannel retail experiences, the message is distributed across platforms. However, the message is not always the same. In omnichannel retail experiences, the branding and message are consistent no matter what media a customer chooses. In other words, a multichannel experience is not integrated while an omnichannel experience is.

Creating the dream team omnichannel retail experience

Knowing customers use their phones to shop, create a mobile app with the same quality as your website. Ensure mobile shoppers have the same shopping experience as online or in-store customers.

Next, focus on the customer. Don’t buy print ads simply because you have always bought print ads. Survey your customers to determine how they shop, and meet them in their preferred venue.

Customer focus also means creating a user experience tailored to your clients. When they shop online, have them sign in. The information they provide offers a phenomenal starting point for targeted ads. As they shop, the products they click on give clues on their shopping experience: did they purchase the product? Why or why not?

Lastly, engage your customers via social media. Ask shoppers to take pictures of themselves using your products and post – and tag – those pictures. This free advertising is priceless as your existing customers engage new customers. And they enjoy the prestige of seeing themselves on your social media.

How does omnichannel retail marketing help you?

When your customers notice the same message spread across different media platforms, they associate the message with your business. This creates a more recognizable brand and message.

Engaging your customers with mini-contests, live chats, educational content, and pop-in events keeps your content enticing across all social media. This marketing is generally not expensive, and the engagement will keep the customers returning for new content. Even better, customers tend to spend more time on your website shopping because of the engagement across platforms.

The bottom line

Studies have proven omnichannel retail marketing increases customer satisfaction and loyalty, promotes profits, consolidates many of your business practices (rather than having a traditional marketing campaign as well as an online campaign, the two are combined) and stimulates better communication between you and your customers.

Green Solutions for Every Area of Your C-Store

Many retail stores are converting to green solutions to entice customers into shopping, and convenience stores are no exception. The bar is set low for c-stores, since, as the Environmental Protection Agency reports, convenience stores are among the most energy-intensive small businesses to operate. With a wide variety of amenities, c-stores can easily find dozens of methods to save energy and to create a more earth-friendly business.

Reduce Food Waste

Recycling can be your first line of defense against waste. While most people think of paper and plastic, recycling also means food waste. According to a survey by the Natural Resources Defense Council, approximately 40% of all processed food ($165 billion a year) is wasted.

The amount of greenhouse gas emissions generated by wasted food in landfills is approximately 8.2%. In comparison, road transportation tops the list at 10%.

Wasted food is still processed, which consumes energy. Here are a few solutions to this common problem:
• Reduce the food price at the end of the day to sell food rather than send it to a landfill.
• Set up a point of contact to donate to a local food pantry or shelter.
• Give the food to local farmers for their livestock.
• Compost.

Refrigeration

Energy Star research proves 40% of c-store energy is dedicated to refrigeration.

Compressors create a lot of heat. Connect indoor compressors with outside rooftop condensers. This keeps the heat outside the store and does not impede on valuable parking lot space. This is the main problem refrigerators have, but there are plenty of other issues that you can solve with routine maintenance.

Try some of these solutions:
• Maintain and clean all cooling equipment. A healthy refrigerator and/or freezer run much more efficiently.
• Defrost quarterly. ¼” of frost can significantly decrease efficiency.
• Deep clean refrigerators annually to improve air circulation.
• Replace broken door seals.

Packaging

Switch from polystyrene packaging to plant-based packaging to save a huge amount of landfill space.

Doors

Aluminum shields over windows and doors can reduce energy use by 9%.

Add plastic vertical strips between refrigerator or freezer walk-in doors and the store proper, and coat doors and windows with clear plastic film.

Lighting

Replace fluorescent and metal halide lights with efficient CFLs or LEDs.

Renewable Energy

Shingles equipped with photovoltaic cells transform sunlight directly into electricity using semiconductors.

Solar energy can potentially pay for itself, although it is currently considered cost prohibitive for many.

Wind paired with solar is the ultimate solution, although cost is an issue.

Water Conservation

With public bathrooms in frequent use and small restaurants often located on the premises, many convenience stores use a significant amount of water.

Try some of these solutions to reduce water waste:
• Install low-flow toilets and faucets.
• Install movement-sensitive faucets that turn off after a number of seconds.
• Install water bottle fillers rather than wasteful water faucets.
• Replace old kitchen appliances with more energy efficient models.
• Plant native plants or use xeriscape landscaping for a more drought-tolerant landscape.

Paper Conservation

Recycling gives paper another chance, but it is even more effective to use less paper. Use an app to generate coupons, add QR codes to products, and give out receipts only on request.

For co-workers, use direct deposit rather than printing checks.

In the bathroom, install energy-efficient hand dryers rather than offering paper towels.

Install a Car Charging Port

Add charging ports for electric vehicles. The 20 minutes it takes to charge a car is a perfect time for consumers to shop in your store.

HVAC

Your heating and air conditioning system is a huge consumer of energy. Updating to a modern system will save you money in only a few years.

While many of these changes may seem elaborate or expensive, even the smallest steps make a difference. The money you save on small changes will add up over time, giving you the revenue to tackle larger issues. Look for more green solutions from Pollock Orora by visiting our website or calling us at 800-843-7320.

What to Look for in Commercial Cleaning Supplies

Most people do not demand the level of cleanliness in their homes as they do in businesses. Offices generally invite a wide array of individuals at different levels of health. For everyone to remain healthy, it is important to keep your office as clean and germ-free as possible, and that requires commercial cleaning supplies from Pollock Orora. Read further to learn more about the cleaners and disinfectants that keep businesses safe and hospitable.

Different Types of Cleaning Chemicals

Chemicals are usually divided into categories of cleaner, sanitizer, and disinfectant. Each has an important role. Here are the most common types of cleaners:
• Cleaners: Remove loose dirt, grime, and a number of germs. Cleaners usually contain water and soap.
• Soap vs. detergent: Soaps are created from naturally-based formulas, while detergents are man-made.
• Sanitizers: Remove germs and other microbes from surfaces. Sanitizers work significantly better after the surface is cleaned.
• Disinfectants: As the name suggests, dis- (without) infectants kill the microbes that cause many illnesses. Disinfectants are usually more heavy duty than sanitizers. Common disinfectants contain chlorine or alcohol-based products.

Many chemicals are combinations of cleaners, sanitizers, and disinfectants. While some businesses require surfaces to be cleaned first (think: restaurant seating areas), others may benefit from one chemical combination to expedite the cleaning process.

Depending on the surface you are cleaning and whether it is a food service area, many governmental agencies have specific guidelines on the necessary chemicals to clean and disinfect the surface.

Be aware many chemicals are “one size fits all,” so they work pretty well anywhere. Others are specific, such as upholstery spot removers or window cleaners. A specific chemical works better on the task for which it is intended.

Cleaning Equipment

The “nuts and bolts” of cleaning equipment are the brooms and dust rags, but so much more equipment is necessary most people forget about until it is missing. A must-have list includes the following:
• Personal protection equipment (gloves – rubber and disposable, aprons, masks, et cetera)
• Broom and dustpan
• Mop and bucket
• Dry mop
• Brush
• Cleaning rags (often reusable microfiber cloths)
• Sponges
• LEED-certified vacuum with HEPA filter

Most people don’t realize how clean the cleaning equipment must be in commercial cleaning. After cleaning, all items should be washed and/or disinfected before moving to the next client.

Restock Items

Some businesses restock a number or all these items while others rely on their cleaning service. These may include but are not limited to:
• Bathroom tissue
• Facial tissue
• Paper towels
• Dispenser soap
• Trash bags

Go Green

Rather than opting for a disinfectant containing bleach or other harmful chemicals, manufacturers are now creating environmentally-friendly disinfectants still able to handle the viruses and other pathogens that cause many human illnesses without the use of volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

Toss-away disinfecting cloths and floor sweeper pads are convenient, but not eco-friendly. Many cloth cleaning products have a reusable option which can be sanitized in a dishwasher or washing machine.

Is a sponge really a sponge? Nowadays, no. Sponges were truly animals living in the ocean or, like loofa, plant-based scrubbers. Today’s sponges are plastic or manmade. Look for natural fibers in your next sponge shopping excursion, and remember to wash all sponges in the dishwasher for repeated use.

Look into a green carpet cleaning system that uses less water and does not utilize VOCs.

Sodium hypochlorite is a great substitute for bleach. It does not release dioxins and has similar germ-killing and whitening properties as bleach.

Go for the Gold!

Pollock Orora’s line of RadianceTM cleaning solutions have you covered. Here are some of the supplies this cleaning line has to offer:
• Chemicals: All surfaces inside your business, warehouse, and your vehicles remain in the ultimate condition with Radiance comprehensive solutions. From floor strippers to bathroom and kitchen cleaners, keep all surfaces in the best, safest condition possible.
• Cleaning equipment: Dispensers for your co-workers and customers ensure only the proper amount of cleaning solution or sanitizer is dispensed.
• Restock items: Rely on Pollock Orora for paper products to clean your bathrooms, kitchens, and workstations. For your shipping needs, our Radiance stretch film will stretch your dollars to capacity.

Give your commercial cleaning pros at Pollok Orora a call at 800-843-7320 or visit Pollock Advantage II to fulfill your online orders.

Why Hand Sanitizer Stations are Good for Business

It used to be that only specific stores had hand sanitizers available for their customers. COVID-19 changed that, and now sanitation stations are ubiquitous not only at retail entrances, but throughout most stores and businesses. Take a closer look, and you will find a huge percentage of those sanitizer stations are Ecolab products. But if everyone has sanitation stations, are they really that great for business? Pollock Orora has those facts for you.

Why Hand Sanitizer?

Hand sanitizers quickly kill a vast number of pathogens on the surface of your skin. If you have touched door knobs or displays, a quick dose of sanitizer can keep those pathogens from transferring from one person to another.

Most high-touch areas also contain sanitizer stations, such as check-out lines, produce areas, or fitting rooms.

Sanitation for Everyone

Customers are not the only people in a retail setting who benefit from sanitizer stations. Think about the average co-worker shaking customer hands, grabbing a pencil off the counter, or laying a hand on a table. Any of these instances can lead to a fistful of germs.

While soap and water is the preferred method of removing pathogens, it is not feasible to take a break every few minutes and excuse yourself to the restroom. Hand sanitizer is the go-to method of stopping pathogens quickly, and sanitizer stations are the ultimate weapon.

Both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) recommend hand sanitizer to stop the spread of pathogens and reduce illness.

By the Numbers

According to the CDC, 80% of all infections trace their route from one person to another through hand transmission. Here are more statistics you should know about illness and hand sanitizer:
• Businesses report approximately $226 billion in lost revenue every year from co-workers who are ill.
• 90% of co-workers report they will work even when they feel ill.
• On a positive note, appropriate hand hygiene, such as using hand sanitizer, can reduce hospital visits and sick days by 40%.
• Hand sanitizers remove 99.9% of pathogens on our hands.
• Co-workers who used sanitizing stations 5 or more times daily were 2/3 less likely to suffer illness compared to co-workers who only washed hands.

Long-range Effects

When you use hand sanitizer to reduce the number of germs on your hands before you leave the office, you are less likely to bring illness home to your family. Your children and immunocompromised family members are less likely to contract illnesses when you practice good hand hygiene.

If hand sanitizing stations are in plain sight, patrons and co-workers are more likely to use them. Therefore, it’s best to ensure your work areas have one at key locations.

Patrons and co-workers feel better about being in an office with hand sanitizing stations. These small stations prove employers care about everyone in the building and want to ensure a healthy environment.

Key Locations for Ecolab Sanitizing Stations

Like any office item, you want to make sure that you’re putting hand sanitizing stations in all the right places. Consider putting them in the following areas:
• Bathrooms: While the majority of people believe in washing hands with soap and water after using the restroom, not nearly as many actually follow through. While sanitizing stations in a restroom may seem redundant to many, it is absolutely essential to others.
• Doorways: Any entranceway with a doorknob is a potential for the spread of pathogens. A virus has the potential of hanging around on a doorknob for 2-4 hours, where it can pass to 40%-60% of hands touching it.
• Food prep, storage, and consumption areas: If you have pathogens on your hands and eat a hamburger, those pathogens enter your body. In cafeteria settings, handling food trays is another method of spreading germs.
• Registers: It is a well documented fact that currency is a fantastic way to transmit germs. Add a sanitizing station anywhere money is exchanged.
• Desks or other meeting areas: Especially if your co-workers meet with clients inside your facility, it is imperative to keep all offices as germ-free as possible. Any location where high-touch electronics are present, such as phones, computers, or adding machines, needs a sanitation station.

What Makes Ecolab Sanitation Stations Superior?

Pre-pandemic, Ecolab was already sanitizing over 40 billion hands around the world. According to Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and CDC guidelines, hand sanitizer must contain 60% ethyl alcohol or 70% isopropyl alcohol to be effective. Ecolab exceeds these standards. Ecolab’s stringent quality control processes ensure no products contain 1-propanol or methanol, which can be unhealthy.

Ecolab dispensers work equally well with gels, foams, or liquids. Ecolab dispensers have a patented pump to dispense the correct amount of sanitizer without undue waste. An internal regulator sets the exact amount you believe to be precise. Ecolab’s cutting-edge technology revolutionizes battery use with an approximately 44% saving in battery life.

Refilling is a snap with easy-to-view clear sides to know how much sanitizer remains. Cartridges can only be inserted one way, so you know it is correct.

Different sized Ecolab dispensers are available in either push or no-touch varieties. Rest assured Ecolab’s push-style dispensers are safe. The push lever is coated with an antimicrobial layer to keep patrons and co-workers safe by preventing the growth of bacteria, mildew, and mold.

Take a look at other sanitizing stations, then come back to Pollock Orora for Ecolab products. Their superior stations along with their stellar reputation are matched only by Pollock Orora’s great pricing and customer service. Give us a call at 800-843-7320 to order your sanitizing stations today.

Pollock Orora Named to Modern Distribution Management’s 2022 Top Distributors List

 

 

 

 

 

8/25/22, Grand Prairie, TX: Pollock Orora, a Grand Prairie-based distributor of Janitorial and Sanitary Maintenance products, announced today that it has been named one of Modern Distribution Management’s (MDM) Top Industrial Distributors for 2022, within the Jan-San category. 

MDM’s annual list of Top Distributors ranks the Top 150 North American industrial, construction and commercial product distribution companies in the United States. Selection to the annual list is based solely on revenue factors across 17 discrete sectors across the wholesale industrial distribution industry. 

“While it’s been a challenging past two years, it has also highlighted the critical role distributors play in keeping the U.S. economy running,” stated Mike Hockett, MDM Executive Editor. “These top distributors continued to innovate, problem-solve and persevere in a complex business environment.”

The MDM Top Distributor List is the definitive listing of the top performers in the wholesale distribution industry. By recognizing companies throughout the 17 business sectors, MDM aims to promote the health and prosperity of the distribution industry as a whole. MDM’s rankings are based on 2021 revenues, either reported or estimated by MDM researchers. Sector rankings are based on revenues attributed to that vertical only. 


About Pollock Orora

Since our founding in 1918, we’ve dedicated ourselves to building strong supplier networks and a strong customer service culture to offer our customers tailored one-on-one consulting, sustainable solutions and supplies for every corner of the workplace, from facilities cleaning and management to packaging resources and office solutions.


About Modern Distribution Management (MDM)

Modern Distribution Management, a Gale Media Company, is a market research and media company that provides business intelligence resources to wholesale distribution executives and industrial product manufacturers. For 55 years, MDM has been the definitive resource for distribution management best practices, benchmarking, trends and business intelligence through its market research, analytics, consulting, publishing and conferences. 

What Supplies You Need to Start a Commercial Cleaning Business

Opening your own commercial cleaning business requires more than hiring cleaners and buying the products you can purchase at a box store. Chemicals and cleaning supplies must meet the rigorous standards set forth by government agencies since the health of your co-workers and customers is partially based on how clean and disinfected the office is. Pollock Orora has you covered with our extensive product line of RadianceTM cleaners, disinfectants, and beyond.

Protect Yourself First

You and your co-workers are your business’s most important assets. Protect yourself and others with personal protective equipment (PPE), from face masks and shields to gloves and aprons. The amount of PPEs you wear depends on where you are cleaning. High-risk infection areas, such as hospitals or clinics, need much more heavy-duty protective gear than a traditional office. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) gives a detailed rundown of proper cleaners, chemicals, and PPEs required for various environments.

Equipment for the Job

To make all surfaces clean necessitates a bevy of chemicals, from glass cleaner to floor polish. Before you take on a client, tour the facility to be cleaned to determine the following:
• What level of sanitation is necessary
• The equipment and chemicals to complete the task

In other words, a client’s kitchen with a polished cement floor has different needs than a client with a carpeted office.

Most cleaning businesses begin with the following:
• LEED-certified vacuum cleaners with HEPA filters and various attachments
• Push broom, hand brushes, and dustpan
• Self-wringing or cloth mop and bucket
• Dry mop and pads (disposable or reusable)
• Scrub brushes, varied sizes and shapes
• Cleaning rags (disposable or reusable microfiber cloths)
• Sponges
• Floor polisher/buffer with disposable or reusable pads
• Spray bottles
• Squeegees
• Electrostatic sprayers with disinfectant
• Feather duster
• Laundry bag and bucket for carrying supplies to and from job site

Chemicals needed for a cleaning business may include but are not limited to:
• Window cleaners
• Stainless steel cleaners
• Multi-purpose surface cleaners and sanitizers
• Soap or detergent
• Dishwashing soap and dishwasher detergent
• Bleach or sodium hypochlorite disinfectant or equivalent
• Gel or other viscous cleaner/disinfectant for vertical surfaces or hard-to-reach crevices
• Room and bathroom deodorizers and air fresheners
• Bathroom cleaners and sanitizers
• Kitchen cleaners and sanitizers (choose food grade of applicable)
• Heavy-duty degreaser
• Wood/furniture polish or oil
• Oven cleaner
• Descaler for tile and other surfaces
• Carpet cleaner/stain remover

Replenishable stock that you may need for your cleaning business:
• Bathroom tissue with dispensers
• Facial tissue
• Paper napkins with dispensers
• Liquid soap and dispensers
• Hand sanitizer and dispensers
• Trash bags

RadianceTM Cleaning Solutions

Pollock Orora’s line of RadianceTM cleaning solutions gives your business a quality touch without breaking your budget. Here are some of the solutions offered:
• Chemicals: All surfaces inside your business, warehouse, and vehicles remain in great condition with Radiance comprehensive solutions. From floor strippers to bathroom and kitchen cleaners, keep all surfaces in the best, safest condition possible.
• Cleaning equipment: Dispensers for your co-workers and customers ensure only the proper amount of cleaning solution or sanitizer is dispensed.
• Restock items: Rely on Pollock Orora for paper products to clean your bathrooms, kitchens, and workstations. For your shipping needs, our Radiance stretch film will stretch your dollars.

New businesses work smarter with advice from experts. Give Pollock Orora a call at 800-843-7320 for a consultation to train your co-workers on the most modern procedures to safeguard your future clients, and read our blogs for great ideas on how your business can thrive!

Commonly Overlooked Office Supplies (And Why You Need Them)

Your week-long presentation begins this morning and you have everything… except the copies of the slide pages. You finally print them, but where is the stapler? Does it have staples? Sometimes our best-laid plans backfire because of one tiny element we have forgotten in the grand scheme of things. Pollock Orora understands your dilemma and stocks a vast array of office supplies to keep your business running smoothly day after day and presentation after presentation. Here are some of the ones that are most commonly overlooked.

Paper Products

Not all paper products are created equal. Copy paper is essential and generally rated as an office product used daily. It’s the lesser used paper products that may surprise you with their absences. Be sure to keep a stock of the following products on hand:
• Cardstock, both colored and white
• Envelopes, both standard and business
• Sticky notes
• Folders and hanging folders
• Toilet tissue
• Labels

Sticky Stuff

Tape and tape dispensers adorn most desktops. However, this is not the only instrument used to adhere. You might also need the following products:
• Double-sided tape
• Adhesives, regular and glue sticks
• Super glue
• Packing tape
• Masking tape
• Painter’s tape

Shipping Supplies

Along with packing tape, your office is not complete without a selection of boxes to pack your inventory to ship it to your customers or clients. Other essentials include the following:
• Bubble wrap, large and small
• Plastic stretch wrap
• Pallets for large packages
• Postage meter or stamps
• Packing peanuts
• Scissors or box cutters

Forgotten Furnishings

Chairs and desks are a given. However, modern offices have a few twists. These are some items you’ll want to be sure to have in a modern office setting:
• Standing desk, or convertible standing desk
• Shredders, large or personal
• Filing cabinets (even if you are going paperless, you will be surprised how much paper you accrue that needs to be organized)

The majority of the office supplies you lack are only a click away at Pollock Orora. Our co-workers are ready to assist you in creating a well-stocked office with perfectly tailored supplies on hand at all times. Give us a call at 800-843-7320 or shop online by visiting our immense catalog.

What’s the Difference: Domestic vs. Industrial Cleaning Supplies

Owning your own business has been your lifelong dream. You love helping others, and the ability to share your ambition with others is your ideal. Financially, though, it seems like money leaks out of your coffers at every turn. Industrial cleaning supplies are more expensive than what you can pick up at the box store down the street, and they’re much less convenient to order. What’s the difference between the cleaning supplies you use at home and industrial cleaning supplies?

Better Quality

A bottle of cleaner from your local grocery store is less expensive than a similar amount of industrial cleaner, but look at the percentage of chemicals in each one. You will find almost all industrial strength cleaners contain a more concentrated formula of cleaners, sanitizers, and disinfectants than what you have at home.

Buying professional cleaning supplies in bulk almost always saves money over individual, watered-down home supplies. Industrial cleaning supplies are used more frequently than home cleaners, so they must be less toxic to people.

This leads to a large number of industrial products being gentler for the environment or even considered green.

You usually will not find an industrial floor buffer in a residential home. It follows that you would not find the industrial cleaner for the buffer at home either. Many industrial cleaning products are designed specifically for industrial machinery.

While hospitals and clinics require hospital-grade disinfectants, many offices and restaurants are now turning to the same or similar disinfectants to ensure their customers and co-workers remain healthy. Ordering hospital grade disinfectants is a bonus for your business.

Compliance Standards

All businesses must meet or exceed Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) standards within their specific organizations. Hospitals require different levels of OSHA standards than a restaurant, for example. This includes ensuring all work areas are as safe and free of as many pathogens as possible.

Along with OSHA, restaurants and other venues serving food must meet rigorous board of health standards. These include ensuring surfaces are cleaned, sanitized, and disinfected with food-grade chemicals.

Be sure to be familiar with all levels of compliance – local, state, and national.

Saving Time and Money

Many industrial cleaning products are designed to spray on without wiping off, which saves time.

One of the key differences between home and industrial cleaners is durability. A professional setting needs a disinfectant with staying power and, as such, manufacturers ensure treated surfaces remain clean for as long as the claim states. This also cuts down on the number of times surfaces must be disinfected during the day.

Temperature

At home, hot water is often a key ingredient to disinfect and clean. For businesses, the less hot water used, the less expensive the process. Manufacturers understand this and have created cleaning products that work well at lower temperatures for businesses.

Take a look at Pollock Orora’s industrial cleaning supplies, and speak with one of our knowledgeable co-workers to learn about which products are best for your company. Call us at 800-843-7320 today.

5 Ways to Avoid Coworker Turnover in the Retail Industry

According to the 2021 Bureau of Labor Statics report, co-worker turnover rate across industries is a dismal 57%. Retail, unfortunately, is even more abysmal, hovering between 60% and 65%. How can you create excitement in your co-workers about their jobs and motivate them to meet customer needs every day? Pollock Orora has a handful of ideas on how to increase co-worker retention.

  • Increase advancement

If the majority of your co-workers have topped out, lack of incentive is obvious. More than 9 out of 10 co-workers report they left their past position because they did not have the opportunity to develop and grow.

When a co-worker is hired, determine that person’s goals and ambitions, and help chart a path to meet those goals.

  • If the desired position requires an advanced degree, think about tuition reimbursement.
  • For sales positions, offer contests to boost the competitive aspect of the job.
  • All co-workers benefit greatly from cross-training, which also benefits your company. Let co-workers observe and work with co-workers across your industry to better understand what happens across the company.

Whatever you choose, ensure your co-workers have room for growth. Once a co-worker’s goal is reached, work with that individual to set higher goals.

  • Offer fair compensation

Retail work is fairly similar from one business to the next. If your company’s compensation package is significantly out of line with your competition, your turnover rate will increase. An Achievers study in 2019 reported more than half the workforce would consider leaving their current position for a pay raise, and 20% would leave for increased benefits.

  • Balance work with life

July 2021 was a breaking point for many retail co-workers, with approximately 682,000 individuals walking away from work because of the encroachment of work life into personal life.

    • COVID-19 proved many co-workers can work more cost-effectively and strategically from home. As the pandemic wanes, many companies are telling their co-workers to return to their desks, even with studies proving it is economically more feasible to work remotely. Give your co-workers the option of working from home if they can. According to recent growth patterns, approximately 25% of all co-workers – including those in retail positions – will be remote by 2025.
    • Schedule flexibility is another sticking point for many co-workers. Juggling a busy home life with picking up children from school, planning birthday parties, nursing a sick family member, attending soccer games, and caring for elderly parents leaves large holes in a traditional work day. If your co-workers have the option of working flexible hours throughout the week, chances are retention rates will increase dramatically.
  • Hire the correct person for the position

So often businesses adopt a hiring strategy of choosing the best of 3 or 5 individuals. That does not necessarily imply the person being hired is the perfect fit for that position. Don’t settle. If a position is open longer than anticipated, update the job description and think of increasing the base pay. Remember, quality candidates respond to quality positions. Hiring a co-worker who matches the position vastly improves the chance of retention.

Nearly one third of new hires resign within 6 months because the job is more or less than what they had anticipated. Turn that number around by reviewing job requirements, training strategies, compensation packages, and other aspects of the position to your choice candidates.

  • Create a positive company culture

When co-workers feel appreciated, they are more likely to remain in their current role. Be positive in your words and your actions. Encourage your co-workers with surprise lunches, quick emails with a specific example of a job well done, or a company t-shirt.

Help increase engagement with team-building exercises, company picnics, and family movie or game nights.

Ask for co-worker input before changes are implemented, especially those co-workers who are affected by the changes. When you follow through on comments made from co-worker feedback, the co-workers feel more worthy and that they are being heard.

Pollock Orora knows co-worker turnover is expensive. In fact, replacing a co-worker sometimes costs more than twice his or her salary. Retain your co-workers with advice from Pollock Orora. We are here to assist you!

What’s Causing All These Supply Chain Issues?

A cascade of events has created a worldwide calamity in the access and shipment of goods as we collectively grapple with a supply chain containing several broken links. A survey from fall 2021 stated that 91% of shoppers consider the supply chain before deciding on a purchase. Pollock Orora brings you the rundown of where the links have broken and a tenuous timeframe on when these links could be melded once more.

Economic Practices

Since the 1970s, good economic practices stress that businesses maintain low, just-in-time inventory levels. This keeps overhead down, and with new models of phones, fashions, and vehicles arriving every few months, it makes sense to have a ready line of goods at your disposal without actually housing them in your inventory.

Likewise, a majority of distributors practice on-demand production of those goods without wasting resources on products that will not be readily sold.

With these two low-inventory models, the amount of coordination between buyers, sellers, manufacturers, and shippers is extremely tricky.

Trucking

For the past 25 years, the trucking industry has been sliding deeper and deeper into challenges. Driver turnover is 94% in larger trucking organizations and slightly more than 79% for smaller companies. Drivers cite infrastructure inadequacies, dropping wages, labor shortages (80,000 unfilled positions as of 2021), and dismal job quality. Considering 70% of domestic goods are shipped via long-haul trucks, the sheer lack of skilled drivers has caused many end-use shelves to be bare of necessary items.

Keep in mind that semi-trucks carry goods intended for freight trains and transport boats as well. Lack of drivers for semis keeps trains in stations and boats in port awaiting full capacity, which delays goods reaching their final destination.

Global Pandemic

One of the links is the COVID-19 pandemic. Without manufacturers, packagers, shippers, and retail establishments, the ability for an average shopper to receive merchandise drops significantly. The initial reaction was to tighten our proverbial belts and wait a few weeks for the first miserable wave of COVID-19 to pass. Once humanity understood lockdown would be longer term, massive amounts of toiletries and electronics were suddenly in high demand with a fraction of the workforce available to deliver.

As restrictions waned, many businesses brought back their co-workers, causing another upheaval as the demand for supplies went from zero to fully stocked in a matter of weeks.

The Great Resignation

In August 2021, co-workers spoke with actions rather than words when 4.3 million Americans resigned. In the warehouse industry, supplying giant brick-and-mortar enterprises as well as online empires, more than 490,000 jobs were available in July 2021. Many of these co-workers were frustrated with low wages, being overworked, and feeling underappreciated. With warehouses empty and hardly anyone driving semi trucks, the supply chain seemed more like several individual broken links rather than a chain.

Major enterprises are enticing co-workers with higher wages, the promise of free college tuition, and a hiring package slightly greater than their competitors’.

Shipping Containers

Ports around the globe are receiving thousands of large shipping containers – the cargo containers of semi trucks and train cars – with no manpower to drive the vehicles to remove those goods from port. This backlog has caused a huge demand for cargo containers for manufacturers to ship goods worldwide, but with the containers bogged in ports and no method for shipping, goods remain in manufacturing facilities or in warehouses.

Political Unrest

Wars cut off supply chains as one country bars the shipment and receipt of goods from another country. The push for globalization has created a strong reliance and interconnected web of worldwide economies. If one or more countries no longer supplies an integral component of a necessary item, the entire market can come crashing down.

Governments and businesses are working to correct many of the issues leading to supply chain breakdown. Economists vary on their estimates of when supplies will meet demand; some believe 4-6 months while others think it will be several more years. Since so many of the links are interconnected, a small degree of change could ease shortages quickly or bog down the process significantly.

You can rely on Pollock Orora to bring you the latest information on global business and how it impacts you.

How to Manage Higher Customer Service Call Volumes

Call volumes have increased significantly in several sectors over the past few years, but how is “high call volume” defined? For a large business, a 10% or greater increase in calls lasting in excess of 2-3 weeks is considered a high call volume. Smaller businesses may experience a greater increase, depending on the number of co-workers manning the phones and the average amount of calls per hour. Regardless of the sheer number of calls, Pollock Orora wants to share methods on managing higher than average call volumes.

Go with the numbers

Rely on historical data as well as more recent numbers to forecast how many co-workers should be available to take customer calls. If the past 2 years have shown an increase in calls between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. in October, ensure you have excess skilled co-workers available to take on those challenging times.

The coronavirus pandemic has transferred customer service from a traditional in-person experience to a phone exchange. According to Zendesk’s 2020 Covid-19 Benchmark Snapshot, more than 25% of companies have reported more customer service traffic since February 2020.

Break Out the FAQs

Many customer inquiries are addressed repetitively. Determine which questions are asked most often and create short videos or informational blogs to address those concerns.

Similar to FAQs are online chat platforms embedded in home pages. Customers often browse the website of the company they are phoning, and accessing a co-worker via chat can often answer the question more quickly than speaking to a customer service representative on the phone. Online chats require less time and energy from your co-workers, which means more customers receive service in a shorter amount of time.

Training

Teach your co-workers how to respond when a customer is upset. The normal reaction is to become upset when someone else is upset – humans tend to mirror the person with whom they are communicating. When your co-workers learn to remain calm and smile instead – even when they are on the phone – the customer’s anger level will decrease.

Another important tactic is using “we” rather than “I”. When your co-workers stress the importance of working with the customer rather than for the customer, it can reduce customer stress levels by more than 75% according to Harvard Business Study.

Technology

When a customer is disconnected or calls back with another inquiry, the ability to view the previous conversations between that customer and another co-worker is vital. Customers do not appreciate re-telling a long, frustrating story.

Real-time problem solving technology is also an option. While a customer is speaking with your co-worker, the information being shared between the customer and the phone rep is routed to the appropriate technician who can begin working on the situation while the customer is on the line. As the technician works, that information is forwarded to the co-worker on the phone with the customer so everyone involved knows the steps being followed.

Interactive voice response (IVR) software allows customers to receive assistance without human input. A set of questions by the IVR leads to either resources to help the customer, or to a customer service representative.

Call back options

Give your customers the option of being called back (this can be in the form of a recorded message) or to hold for the next available representative (with an estimated wait time). Some technology allows for customers to designate a specific time to be called.

If this technology is not yet available to your company, have your co-workers answer with the company name and immediately state, “Would it be possible to call you back?” Given the option of either an unknown wait time or being called back, 75% of customers choose the latter, according to a recent study.

Change your hold message frequently

When your hold message addresses any situations that may impede immediate assistance, such as when you experience high call volumes, give customers other options to assist them, including times you anticipate significantly lower call volumes. When customers realize how busy your office is at the moment, they can access other resources or wait for the influx of calls to decrease.

Give your customers a more pleasant experience in their phone conversations with your co-workers. Contact Pollock Orora for more customer success strategies.

How to Make Your Retail Store More Sustainable

Sustainability has become a buzzword for many businesses, and customers are paying attention to the positive impact companies are having on the environment. Pollock Orora wants your business to run as smoothly as possible while reaching your sustainability goals. Read below to learn several ideas to generate a green revolution in your company.

Go paperless

Paperless contracts, brochures, and receipts save an enormous amount of carbon for your business. Think about this: if United States businesses only issued paperless receipts, 10 million trees, a billion gallons of water, and 250 million gallons of oil would be saved. Going paperless reduces a business’s carbon footprint and the amount of waste thrown into landfills. Paperless receipts allow you to collect customer information such as email addresses or phone numbers for later contact and give your business a platform to advertise social media, upcoming events, or QR codes linking to your website.

Reduce, reuse, recycle, repeat

Look at your current business strategies. Do you really need to print 1000 copies of a sales event flier? Does in-house correspondence need to be on top-quality, new paper? Do co-workers leave the water running when they wash their hands? Do your co-workers recycle? Even the smallest changes cause huge impacts. Here are a few to consider:

  • Installing filters above EPA standards rather than filters that meet EPA standards could shrink your carbon footprint.
  • If your organization has a fleet of cars, consider more economical vehicles, especially electric or hybrid models.
  • Install energy efficient appliances and lights.
  • Co-workers can find companies to recycle used items. Soft-soled shoes can be repurposed into playground materials to replace sand, and denim jeans create fantastic insulation.
  • If you manufacture your own products, look for recyclable options for your base materials.
  • When you sell products with removable batteries, have customers bring back the non-working batteries for recycling. Landfills and batteries are a poor combination.
  • Use renewable energy

Solar and wind prices are declining, and many power companies offer rebates if your energy consumption is less than your creation. Many areas are now offering hydropower and geothermal options.

If your business resells products from other manufacturers, ask for transparency in their manufacturing processes to ensure their methods include energy conservation models.

Ask for an energy audit

Your local power company, subcontractors, and stand-alone businesses are all ready to examine your energy use and recommend changes to save you money. Small businesses may qualify for a free audit. Learning how your power is consumed aids in finding more efficient methods to save energy, from simple fixes (turning off computers and printers at night or replacing incandescent bulbs with LEDs) to more elaborate long-term plans (energy-efficient HVAC systems or double-paned windows).

Create sustainable products

Consumers have been conditioned to purchase clothing or electronics, use them for a year or so, then discard these items. Clothing manufacturers have caught onto this trend. Many major brands advertise inexpensive clothes designed not for durability, but for fashion. Wear them a few times, and when they snag, lose a button, or fade, simply replace them with another cheap item. Look around at many major appliances, and try to find a repair center. Most companies are designing their appliances to last 5 years rather than 30. Create long-lasting products consumers can rely on and repair if necessary.

Along those same lines, consider renting. Even the clothing market is turning to clothing rentals with monthly subscriptions so consumers can wear new outfits for a month or so, then return them for another batch of fashionable attire. Automobiles and appliances have long been rented with favorable results.

Ditch the plastics

Plastic packaging can often be replaced with a plant-based, biodegradable product. Many companies are using refillable glass containers for their liquid products, and food services are offering bamboo utensils in lieu of plastic.

With the current information concerning microplastics and their extreme negative impact on the environment, companies are changing their use of plastics in packaging and one-time use products, and the environment will greatly benefit.

Pollock Orora has information on reducing your carbon footprint and other ideas. Let us know what we can do to help your business succeed.