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Page Title: Chapter 6 Ship's Store Operations
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CHAPTER  6 SHIP’S STORE As a senior Ship’s Serviceman, you will have ever-increasing  responsibilities  for  the  supervision of  the  retail  store,  vending  machine,  and  foun- tain   or   snack   bar   operations.   In   each   of   the following   sections,   the   principal   factors   with which you, as a supervisor, should be concerned are discussed. SALESROOM  SUPERVISION As a supervisor of the retail store operation, you will be concerned with selecting an effective store  operator  and  improving  the  relationship between the operator and the customers. You will have   the   responsibility   for   improving   the appearance of your ship’s store through effective visual  merchandising  (displays  and  signs).  Finally, you will bean assistant to the ship’s store officer in maintaining strict financial control of the store operation. THE  STORE  OPERATOR As a senior Ship’s Serviceman in the sales divi- sion,  you  will  be  responsible  for  assisting  the ship’s   store   officer   in   selecting   a   ship’s   store operator. Also, you will have a continuing respon- sibility for training the store operator. You must train   the   store   operator   to   operate   the   retail activity according to proper procedures. You must also convince the store operator of the importance of  good  customer  service. Selection The  most  important  problem  you  will  face initially  is  the  selection  of  suitable  and  capable retail  store  operators.  Based  upon  fleet  experience, the best policy you can follow is to make certain the operator of a retail activity is rotated at least every two accounting periods, In fact, some type commanders  make  this  a  requirement.  After  8 months’  experience  in  the  store,  a  retail  store OPERATIONS operator  will  usually  have  a  good  knowledge  of the  retail  operation  and  the  associated  controls and records. Some individuals will be affected by this knowledge to the extent that they may try to beat the system. They may use various methods that they hope will result in the undiscovered theft of money and/or materials. Leaving one operator in  the  store  indefinitely  also  invites  collusion between  the  operator  and  the  recordskeeper  as these  two  people  become  used  to  working  with one  another. Selection  of  the  proper  person  as  store operator  greatly  reduces  the  chance  of  financial loss in the store. To this end, there are some points that   you   should   keep   in   mind   when   you   are making your recommendation to the ship’s store officer.  The  person  you  select  should  be  honest, dependable,   and   free   of   excessive   financial worries.  While  a  retail  store  operator  does  not have  to  be  a  genius,  this  person  should  at  least be  able  to  perform  simple  addition  and  make change  with  accuracy. Selection  of  the  proper  person  can  also  have a great effect on sales and customer satisfaction. The   operator’s   personality   should   be   basically pleasant,  or  at  least  inoffensive  and  consistent. It is not necessary that the operator be a friend to  everyone  aboard  ship  or  even  be  known  to them.  In  many  cases,  it  is  better  to  have  an operator  who  is  somewhat  unknown  as  this  will eliminate a great deal of conversation time in the sales  line  and  reduce  special  favor  requests.  In terms  of  personal  habits,  the  store  operator  should be  clean  and  neat.  The  person  selected  should  also be  willing  and  able  to  learn  and  apply  some of   the   principles   of   salesmanship   and   visual merchandising. To  find  such  an  individual  aboard  ship  is sometimes  difficult.  You  should  try,  however,  to recommend a person who shows as many of these qualities   as   possible.   Many   qualities,   such   as honesty, are not readily apparent. This is where your ability as a leader and judge of your people will  come  into  play. 6-1

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