At last month’s NRF BIG Show, Executive Director of the NRF Foundation and NRF Senior Vice President Ellen Davis gave a talk about the Foundation’s RISEup initiative.
If you’re not familiar with the work of the NRF Foundation, the non-profit group is tasked with building public awareness of the retail industry, developing talent through education, experiences and scholarships, and fostering career growth among people who work in retail.
A bit more than a year back, the Foundation surveyed retail CEOs with a simple open-ended question: name three things that keep you up at night. “We got a lot of answers,” Davis quipped, but the common thread of every response, she says, was jobs.
The Foundation’s conclusion that talent acquisition is the prevailing concern of retail CIOs is far from anecdotal. Davis say that, by the NRF’s own account, some 700,000 retail jobs remain unfilled.