It is the norm that most outlets in Zimbabwe close around 5 pm. The typical opening times are 8 am; those, of course, there widely vary. This has been the norm for so many years. So much so that many people never stop thinking of the endless possibilities. Have you ever wished at times that an outlet could be open, say, at 10 pm at night? Well, I have, and on so many occasions. Would it not be convenient to have outlets opening 24 hours a day? It also can increase revenue and profits. Let us discuss that more – the concept of outlets opening 24 hours a day.
Joina City Management Is Thinking Along Those Lines
Joina City is one of the notable locations in Harare. Many people too familiar with Harare City use it as a landmark to not get lost. Joina City officially started operating in 2010. It is the biggest indoor shopping mall in Zimbabwe. You can check out more about Joina City on its website. On the 20th of November 2022, the Joina City Management issued a communique to its tenants. It read as follows:
LATE CLOSING OF THE MALL – TURNING JOINA CITY INTO A 24-HOUR MALL
Our Valued Stakeholders
In a move to increase your sales, we would like to encourage all tenants to participate in extended shopping hours for the mall. Our target is for Joina City to be the first 24-hour operating mall in Zimbabwe. We currently have tenants who are operating through the night in the Office Tower, and we would like our retail section to participate too. For a start we will open the Mall until 2200hrs effective 25th November 2022, and we are ready to adjust the times as per your recommendations. Should you have any suggestions, kindly get in touch with Sharon on 0772 634 844 or Salome on 0772 522 388.
Exploring The Dynamics Of Operating 24 Hours A Day
Realizing More Revenue Is Not Always The Case
On the surface, it seems obvious that longer operating hours directly translate to more revenue. Is it that the case, though? The truth is that is not a black-and-white answer type of question. If offered round the clock, there are products or services that might translate to more revenue. For instance, pharmacies and beverage outlets might realize more operating round the clock. Take note of this dynamic: beyond a certain time, most people will be indoors (bedtime). Thus the number of people who can come through after-hours is limited. I believe the merits have to be measured on a case-by-case basis. Not all would enjoy increased revenue.
The Tussle Between Revenue And Profits
Let us suppose that maybe you get to realize increased revenue but will you be making profits though? Opening for 24 hours means you will have to work additional shifts. These are some of the increased costs you will have to deal with. Again, it is not black and white. Some businesses can realize more revenue, offset the extra costs, and remain with profits. However, for some, the extra costs might eclipse the revenue, thus making it all pointless. Overall, there will be a delicate balance to be handled pertaining to revenues and profits.
More Risks Involved
Operating 24 hours entails several hours that are characterised by high risks. These are risks that affect the business operators and the consumers too. Consumers might find it risky to move around at night. After all, there has been a surge in violent crimes lately in Zimbabwe. As for the business operators, similar risks are at play. Armed robberies have been on the rise in Zimbabwe. Operating at night with significantly lower human and vehicle traffic makes it easier for thieves. These are some of the risk-associated variables that have a huge bearing on the 24-hour operation model.
In theory, operating 24 hours a day sounds good, but it is not for everyone. I (and many of you) would love to see many outlets doing so. However, I feel a paradigm shift in people’s general mindsets will be needed. There are numerous variables to consider. Let us wait and see how the Joina City case study is going to work out. Perhaps starting on a smaller scale with one day a month or week would provide the insight needed. In due course, we shall engage the Joina City management to hear more. From there, I am confident we will have a clearer picture of how successful or not operating 24 hours a day can be.