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Hyper personalisation, the next productivity trend in Retail and F&B

Updated: Apr 19, 2023

8 July 2022 – Best view with desktop

The Retail and F&B is not only a fast-moving but expend large data volume sector. Businesses and people in organisation need to change and learn new things to keep up. For example, during Covid-19 pandemic period, food delivery from kitchen to table was observed and performed by robots to mitigate the labour shortages woes that affected many sectors at large.

Movement Control Order (MCO) prevented the spread of pandemic in Malaysia as well as causing foreign labour shortage and resulted a sharp decline in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) where employers have high dependence on foreign labour. Therefore, retail and F&B industry shifted to continuously adopt new technologies to retain their productivity.

Productivity experience exchange from Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), McDonald’s, and Aleevar Consulting

The Webinar on Productivity of Retail and F&B: “The New Trend in Technology to Increase the Productivity of Retail and F&B Business” was organised by Malaysia Productivity Corporation (MPC) and Malaysia Franchise Association (MFA) on 1st July 2022.

There were 2 panel speakers, Ms. Carol Fung from Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) and Mr. Zaid Husman from McDonald’s. The panel discussion was led and additional contributed by Mr. Yap Far Loon from Aleevar Consulting.

Webinar on “The New Trend in Technology to Increase the Productivity of Retail and F&B Business”

Webinar on “The New Trend in Technology to Increase the Productivity of Retail and F&B Business”

In the webinar, panel speakers exchanged their experience use of technology, app based and staff involvement on real case studies in their organisation on tips to increase productivity of retail and F&B businesses.

Productivity score board revolves from customer journey to organisation financial gains

Productivity of retail and F&B business relates to customer journey from ordering product or service, until customer received the quality product or service on time with optimal resources. Typically, productivity of organisation can be measured with a productivity score card which revolves 4 key areas of customer, internal organisation, learning & development, and organisation financial gains.

Productivity score card

Productivity score card

The first measure of organisation health is from customer perspective measured through sales, Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI), Net Promoter Score (NPS), and service attributes provided by the organisation.

Next is the measure of critical business process provided by internal organisation comprises service attributes such as good (i.e. quality, etc.), fast (i.e. delivery, etc.) and cheap (i.e. value, etc.). Learning and development scores are measured by employee retention, skill development of employees, and training to employee for innovation.

As a result, the outcome of score card from the financial gains encircled by growth and increased in market size. This productivity score card provide a high-level overview to identify the measures as starting point to improving productivity.

Technology tool and measure are available in retail and F&B business

Technology can help to increase the productivity during shortage of manpower (i.e. F&B placing robot to serve customer, mobile app for self-service in ordering a product). Business organisation should take advantage of garnering intelligence to develop marketing activities (i.e. to increase market share, sales channels, advertising, promotion spend, programmes for trade missions) and measures brand health particularly business searchability, online share of voice (OSOV), CSI and NPS.

Automation is productivity dividend reducing data find time from 80% to only 20%

Community of Gen Z and Generation Alpha are born (between 1997 and 2022) and surrounded by technology. Their lifestyle and day to day activities can be done online such as online queue, product ordering through mobile app, cloud system to record store in and store out data, etc. However, the panel speakers pointed to take cyber security seriously because organisations have the responsibility to protect customers’ information.

This trend has now changed with massive data collected every moment, where organisations or people have reduced time spend from 80% of finding data to only 20%. This shift to 20% time has provide a productivity dividend where this remaining 80% can be put to better use especially analysing data, reporting, making decision and taking actions. This first party data can be sourced from mobile app, point of sale (POS), reviews, etc.

There are still generations such as Baby Boomers and Gen X who may still prefer the human touch.

Generations to industry shift to digitalisation and personalisation

Generations to industry shift to digitalisation and personalisation

From the perspective digitalisation and data analytics, this is a 3-step approach such as data collection, analysis, and reporting. This 3-step approach is synonym to market research (i.e., behavioural research is a bottom-up approach on data sourcing) is pervasively and easily available through technology tools.

Organisations can embrace technology quickly by understanding customer satisfaction and their brand performance. This can be done quickly in less than a working day at no cost or for free as a starter, and it can be automated.

For instance, organisations can assess the health of their product or service from crowdsourcing available customer rating or solicitate customer feedback. This is term as brand health assessment (BHA) and ultimate take actions to improve their products of services with the following exercise;

  1. Data collection from Google Review rating (i.e. CSI) with the use of the app called Google Review Scraper,

  2. Analysis through Microsoft Excel or Google Sheet with pivot table, sentiment analysis from Meaning cloud and

  3. Reporting with online visualisation such as Google Data Studio.

See the following output from the exercise of visualisation dashboard on Malaysia Retail Pharmacy location and CSI depicted in Google Data Studio.

Malaysia Retail Pharmacy Location and Customer Satisfaction Index

Embracing SaaS or cloud system productivity tool is the start of organisation agility

Organisation must up the ante to be agile by embracing productivity tools namely software as a service (SaaS) or cloud system to get their business profile listed in the internet, have a point of sale (POS) system, manage inventory and allowing employee to handle multiple tasks through technology as they can work on stock control, track data, etc.

Organisation listing on the internet from Google Business Profile

Organisation listing on the internet from Google Business Profile

Reaching out to customers (or advertising) through Facebook, Instagram and TikTok are now the mainstream communication channels. Even retail pharmacies have online business channel and public pharmacies are providing telemedicine service, virtual medicine consulting, to patients in Malaysia.

Organisations aspire to increase their customer loyalty with dynamically delivering personalised content through the preferred communication channel with product or service at the shortest moment.

This is hyper personalisation, a term coined to connect with customers in every moment by delivering personalised marketing content to a customer with one-to-one conversation to continuously improve products and services to meet customer needs across all business channels.

Hyper personalisation in customer experience and decision journey

Hyper personalisation in customer experience and decision journey

Organisations will require to examine the complete customer experience and decision journey. This entails customer stages from pre-purchase, moment of purchase, post purchase and ultimately leading to re-purchase. These sub-stages begin from need recognition, learning and compare of product or service and can lead to paying and feedback. These customer touchpoints include from word of mouth, search engine, mobile app, chatbot to physical human touch are vital resources in the internal organisation where measures can be online share of voice (OSOV), number of followers, sales, CSI, NPS, sentiments, etc.

Every touchpoint at every stage of the customer experience and journey may garner sentiments (i.e. positive, neutral or negative).

Organisation can begin the use of automation and AI (i.e. context search, sentiment analysis), centralise marketing information and implement near real-time dashboard (i.e. set important measure and capacity to drilling down information to the data level in time series manner dynamically) allowing organisation to make decision and take action.

The 3 key take away areas to look out for are;

  1. Datapoints with data digilisation and automation from utilising tool such as Google Business Profile, Google Review, Apify Scraper, Google Form, Point of Sales (POS), corporate app,

  2. Analyse and reporting data from Dattel Asia, Microsoft (i.e. Excel with add-ins Meaning Cloud, Power BI), Google (i.e. Sheet, Data Studio), and

  3. Action by providing personalise messaging (i.e. Promote relevant offer at right time, upsell offer by increasing purchasing value or frequency or timing)

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