SHIMACHU CO., LTD.
https://www.shimachu.co.jp/en/
This is a guide to Shimachu stores and the online shopping site "Shimahonet", which operates furniture specialty stores and home centers "Shimachu" and "HOME'S" mainly in the Kanto and Kansai areas.
LocationJapan
Industry
Retail
Solution
Store operation
Start time
11/2018
Dissatisfaction before
Large-scale stores have more than 100 intercoms, but the intercoms often break down, and we were having trouble keeping up with the periods when they were not in use. Also, they were costly to repair. However, PHS alone is a one-on-one communication system, which slows down the transmission of information.
Circumstance
We chose Buddycom when our previous intercom system became outdated. We chose Buddycom because of its sound quality and ease of use, as well as the ability to combine all of our business functions into a single smartphone. We looked for sound quality close to carrier voice because noise and inaudibility would interfere with our work and cause stress for our sales people.
How effective?

Consolidate everything on your smartphone, starting with extensions and intercoms

■ Improve communication
We've been able to introduce intercoms in our furniture department and stores, where we didn't previously have them. We used to use PHS to communicate individually, and it took a long time to share the information we wanted to inform all of our employees, but with Buddycom, we can now easily communicate with them.
Also, if I have trouble hearing the content of a call, I can use the recording and playback function of the chat room to check the content. This is one of the features I use very conveniently.

■ Expanding the scope of communication
In the home improvement department, you may need to contact an in-store employee when you're out and about or when you're delivering an item to a customer's home.
In this case, it is very convenient for them to be able to get in touch with the employees and ask them directly about what is going on in the store and receive various inquiries.

■ Reducing the burden on employees
FMC technology was used to convert the PHS extension line to an extension line and the intercom (Buddycom) to a smartphone, successfully reducing the amount of equipment needed to carry around.
Now that we only have one smartphone, the workload on our employees has been greatly reduced.

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The appeal of Buddycom

Anyway, it's easy to operate!

■ Site
The system is simple and easy to use, and can be operated quickly with a single smartphone. In the past, employees used to carry a lot of PHS and intercom devices, which meant they had to carry a lot of luggage and work on their feet all day, which put a heavy burden on them, but now it's a lot less of a burden.
Newly hired employees are taught how to use the equipment by younger employees in the stores. We have employees of all ages and genders, so one of the appealing features of Buddycom is its ease of use, which makes it easy to teach any employee how to use.

■ Administration
There are about 3,500 Buddycom accounts, and it's very easy to manage all the Buddycom accounts used in all the stores in one management console.
Buddycom's management console is also developed for large scale operations and supports CSV user & group additions and changes. If an employee moves on, we use RPA to make changes to their account information, which is very easy to manage and operate.

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Usage scene

All SHIMACHU and HOME'S stores are now using Buddycom

[Furniture]
We use it to call up employees when dealing with customers and to inquire about products.
If you don't know where the product is, or do you have this kind of item for the customer? I use this service when I have an inquiry about.

[Home Depot]
When the cash registers are busy, I call the employees around me for assistance, or when a customer asks me about an item I don't know, I contact the person in charge of the department so that I can guide the customer smoothly.
For example, if a person in charge of the interior design department is asked about a product on the horticulture floor that he doesn't know about, we use Buddycom to keep in touch with other employees so that we can guide him smoothly to the customer.

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Future use of Buddycom

IT and analysis of customer connections with Buddycom

We're also looking at making it happen with Buddycom for customers to call their employees.
Right now, we have call buttons in the store, and when a customer presses one of those buttons, an employee call-out sound is played over the building's public address system. We're considering replacing it with a smartphone and Buddycom.

We're still in the experimental stage, but if this is successful, we'll be able to consolidate all of our store equipment on smartphones, which will lead to cost savings.
With Buddycom, we can analyze call data and other data, so we can improve customer service by analyzing which sales floors are most frequently called up and at which times of day.

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Message
Buddycom is not only an intercom system, but it has many features and extensions that allow it to be used in a variety of ways. If you're thinking about implementing an intercom system, why not consider it?
Masato Izumi

Masato IzumiSHIMACHU CO., LTD.
IChief of System Development Section, Information System Reform Department

Buddycom made it
We have a wide range of ages in our company. During instructional training, Buddycom is intuitive due to the simplicity and clarity of its screens.
Tetsuro Fukushi

Tetsuro FukushiHome Depot Chief.

What we can recommend
When I used to use my old intercom, there was a lot of noise and loud noises coming in, but after I switched to Buddycom, those things stopped coming in, so it's been very popular.
Erika Okada

Erika OkadaFurniture Sales Representative

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