“Based on the successes we’ve had with Upright Labs this year, we’ve gone with a much more aggressive growth plan next year.”

Summary

  • New leadership at Goodwill of Southern California sought a more streamlined, process-driven operation for their e-commerce department in the face of impending minimum wage hikes.
  • Goodwill of Southern California’s e-commerce department was labor intensive and lacked the toolset to meet their daily listing goal of 70 items/employee.
  • Implementation of Upright Lister empowered employees to exceed their daily listing goal by 25% in the same period while headcount decreased.
  • Working in close partnership with Upright Labs, Goodwill of Southern California continues to make operational improvements and plan for aggressive growth via the Upright Lister platform.  

Before Utilizing Upright Lister

  • E-commerce averaged 50-60 daily listings per employee and struggled to hit their minimum goal of 70 daily listings/employee.
  • Employees lacked streamlined processes and were using a clunky interface and lengthy forms with numerous, unnecessary drop-downs to list items online.
  • E-commerce operations were labor intensive and faced statewide minimum wage hikes that would jeopardize the profitability of doing e-commerce.
“When you consider the productivity gains versus the investment you have to make in the software itself, it pays for itself in weeks, let alone months. It’s a slam dunk from an ROI perspective.”

Background

Goodwill Southern California operates over 80 stores, 46 donation centers, 3 campuses, 5 Career Resource Centers and 3 WorkSource Centers throughout Los Angeles, Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

In 2017, new leadership within the online e-commerce department was tasked with improving operations in the face of rising labor costs due to minimum wage laws that threatened the viability to operate the e-commerce department without losses. Goodwill of Southern California made a variety of changes to streamline and focus their operation but still averaged 50-60 daily items listed per employee and struggled to meet the minimum goal of 70 daily listings per employee.

Goodwill of Southern California’s Director of E-Commerce, Kevin Biely summed it up as “the general problem was using the native interface; it was a little bit slower, a little bit clunkier than we wanted it to be”.

When thinking about the ideal software solution, Biely stated “it would look virtually identical to what Upright Labs produced".

“It’s great to have a product that works, but it’s better to have people that work with you”

Solution

While looking for additional operational efficiencies, Goodwill Southern California was referred to Upright Labs’ listing platform and “it just made sense,” said Biely. “Right from the get-go, we knew we were making progress because over the same time frame I lost probably 25-30% of headcount due to natural attrition and didn’t see any drops in productivity or output,” added Biely.

Upright Lister enabled employees to decrease the time it took for 250 listings from 120 labor hours/day to just 90 labor hours/day, improving efficiency by 25%.

Upright Lister provided tools and process efficiencies such as predictive search, brand information database, category templates and easier photography that assisted Goodwill of Southern California to meet their daily listing goal of a minimum 70 items/employee.

Upright Lister’s implementation was straightforward with minimal IT involvement and employee training. “Once they saw their number 1 pain point was solved, they just bought into everything else” mentioned Biely while talking about employees using Upright Lister’s photography feature.

“If I was going to highlight something, it’s really the highly collaborative nature of working with Upright Labs.  You feel like they are a true partner.”

Aside from listing efficiency, Goodwill of Southern California also found a partner in Upright Labs as Biely mentioned “If I was going to highlight something, it’s really the highly collaborative nature of working with Upright Labs.  You feel like they are a true partner.”

Heading into 2019, Goodwill of Southern California is projecting “a much more aggressive growth plan” finished Biely, “based on the successes we’ve had with Upright Labs this year.”


About Upright Labs

Upright Labs (www.UprightLabs.com), based in Washington DC, launched in 2017 to help companies navigate their e-commerce journey. Upright labs signature products, Upright Lister and Upright Local help secondhand retail stores list inventory online.

Upright Lister, enables e-commerce divisions to track inventory from donation to outbound end shipment while efficiently and consistently enabling inventory to list online to multiple platforms. To-date, over 285,000 items have been listed online to ship to an end consumer.

Upright Local helps drive traffic from the local community into retail stores based on the items for sale in the specific store. Stores can list an item online in under 1 minute and hyper targeted interested customers in the product. Interested customers, visit the retail store to purchase and pay for the item in person.