Type “mobile data collection” in your favorite search engine and you will find a large number of vendors in this category. Unfortunately, data collection alone is not enough. Why? Data collection is a means to an end, not an end in itself. Focusing on the means makes you miss out on the benefits of the broader picture. Let’s us look at it in more depth.
A doctor does not just run tests
First, some perspective. A doctor does not just run tests or simply provide a diagnostic. A doctor prescribes treatment and cures. A doctor follows the patient through treatment and onto better health. Is your audit tool a simple data collection tool, barely capable of collecting evidence? Are you not able to treat deficiencies and track them through completion?
The Goal is not to collect data but to action data
You can’t get around this one by simply changing the “definition” of data collection either. If you start with a limited product category, you will end up with limited options. We believe that a retail audit program starts with in-store data collection but does not end there. It does not end until deficiencies are assigned and fixed. The purpose of the audit program is not to collect data but to action data.
If you just want to feel like you’re doing something, go to the stores and collect data. If you want to actually help the stores, set your sights on actioning that data.