Author Topic: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..  (Read 5600 times)

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #30 on: December 31, 2013, 11:15:47 AM »
There's a grocery store chain in my area that has two kinds of self check lanes: under 20 items and over 20 items.

The over 20 items is the same size as a staffed lane, and you can put your full bags in the cart during the transaction without setting off the "missing item" alert.

That would at least take care of the lack of room problem.

BabyMama

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #31 on: December 31, 2013, 11:21:55 AM »
I think the OP is completely valid. I can see steering a customer toward a self checkout if they have 10-20 items, but a huge cart? I would be frustrated too. It's incredibly difficult, in my experience, to check out once you've filled those two bags they give you the area to fill. If you take any bags off before finishing, the machines flip out, so you're left cramming everything onto the space, whether it fits or not.

jmarvellous

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #32 on: December 31, 2013, 11:40:55 AM »
I think you have a valid concern, but I think your letter is MUCH too long for a very busy manager to read and process and act on. Here's my suggested edit. I took out lots of detail that might not help the store make a better policy going forward.

I am a regular shopper at GroceryStore at Location. However, I was disappointed when I attempted to check out on DATE at 12:40 AM and the only lanes open were the self checkout lanes, and an employee, Mark, refused to open a checkout lane when I approached him with my full cart.

He dismissed my concern that I would not be able to fit all my items in the small bagging area. I went ahead and checked myself out, taking at least 10 minutes to do so. I did have to awkwardly stack several bags and items on each other. At no time did Mark come back and offer to help. Instead, he stayed at the front, chatting with another employee.

I am disappointed in this poor customer service and would like to know if it is company policy that only self checkouts are available at certain times/hours. If it is, I would suggest that this be posted prominently at the entrance. It would help customers make informed shopping decisions.

I spent $247.76 on this shopping trip, and had 72 items. Having to check out this order myself was a major inconvenience, and I may not return to Store.

Alternately:

I am a regular shopper at Store at XX Something Road, but my experience at the checkout on Date at 12:40 p.m. left me very disappointed. The store's apparent policy of refusing to open regular checkout lanes, even when customers have a full cart, as I did (72 items!), should be reconsidered. If it is indeed store policy, self-checkout-only hours should be posted prominently for customers to make an informed decision.

In particular, the attitude and behavior of Store employee Mark was inappropriate. He refused to attempt to open a regular lane, dismissed my concerns about smashing groceries in the too-small bagging area, and chatted with another employee instead of assisting me.

I hope these concerns can be addressed. I would like to continue to shop at Store, but the unavailability of regular checkouts will keep me from doing so.

lowspark

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #33 on: December 31, 2013, 11:48:47 AM »
Just as a suggestion for if you ever find yourself in this situation again. I probably would have just paid separately two or three times as needed. In other words, every time the landing area filled up, I'd pay, then remove my items, then start over again. This assumes, of course, that you are paying by CC so it's pretty easy to just swipe your card a few times. It's still a pain of course, but maybe less so than trying to pile up $250 worth of groceries in that limited space.

amylouky

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #34 on: December 31, 2013, 12:45:35 PM »
Good points, everyone.. thank you for the feedback! I am going to send a severely pared down version of the email, very close to jmarvellous's wording. Re-reading my email now that it's not the wee hours of the morning, it does come off as overly wordy and ranty.
Really I just wanted to clarify the policy so I'll know not to shop there late again.. I can never seem to get out with just what I came for.
Thanks!

AnnaJ

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #35 on: December 31, 2013, 12:51:01 PM »
Part of my irritation with situations like this is that labor is a big part of most stores' expenses, and generally stores that provide less service - fewer salespeople on the floor to answer questions, fewer checkers so that the wait time in line in longer, self-bagging - also offer lower prices.  By only offering self-checking and self-bagging, this store is not providing the service you are paying a slightly higher price for, and so (to me) falling down on their end of the exchange.


Mikayla

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #36 on: December 31, 2013, 01:09:00 PM »
I think you have a valid concern, but I think your letter is MUCH too long for a very busy manager to read and process and act on. Here's my suggested edit. I took out lots of detail that might not help the store make a better policy going forward.

I am a regular shopper at GroceryStore at Location. However, I was disappointed when I attempted to check out on DATE at 12:40 AM and the only lanes open were the self checkout lanes, and an employee, Mark, refused to open a checkout lane when I approached him with my full cart.

He dismissed my concern that I would not be able to fit all my items in the small bagging area. I went ahead and checked myself out, taking at least 10 minutes to do so. I did have to awkwardly stack several bags and items on each other. At no time did Mark come back and offer to help. Instead, he stayed at the front, chatting with another employee.

I am disappointed in this poor customer service and would like to know if it is company policy that only self checkouts are available at certain times/hours. If it is, I would suggest that this be posted prominently at the entrance. It would help customers make informed shopping decisions.

I spent $247.76 on this shopping trip, and had 72 items. Having to check out this order myself was a major inconvenience, and I may not return to Store.

Alternately:

I am a regular shopper at Store at XX Something Road, but my experience at the checkout on Date at 12:40 p.m. left me very disappointed. The store's apparent policy of refusing to open regular checkout lanes, even when customers have a full cart, as I did (72 items!), should be reconsidered. If it is indeed store policy, self-checkout-only hours should be posted prominently for customers to make an informed decision.

In particular, the attitude and behavior of Store employee Mark was inappropriate. He refused to attempt to open a regular lane, dismissed my concerns about smashing groceries in the too-small bagging area, and chatted with another employee instead of assisting me.

I hope these concerns can be addressed. I would like to continue to shop at Store, but the unavailability of regular checkouts will keep me from doing so.

I really like this!  The only change I would make is get that 72 items somewhere in the first paragraph.  A full cart can be 3 items, but 72 to be scanned?!  That's the dealbreaker. If that had been me, the morning shift would have shown up and I'd still be fiddling with it. 

EllenS

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #37 on: December 31, 2013, 01:38:57 PM »
I put this all on Mark for not giving good customer service.  If he was truly unable to open a lane due to company policy or the way the computers/log-ins' work, then he should have explained that and then given the OP the highest level of service in his own power - which would have been physical assistance with her unweildy load and helping her check it through.

If he had done that, I think OP's whole experience coming out of the store would have been how nice and helpful the staff there is, rather than how annoying and useless the store is.

Outdoor Girl

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #38 on: December 31, 2013, 01:41:49 PM »
Just as a suggestion for if you ever find yourself in this situation again. I probably would have just paid separately two or three times as needed. In other words, every time the landing area filled up, I'd pay, then remove my items, then start over again. This assumes, of course, that you are paying by CC so it's pretty easy to just swipe your card a few times. It's still a pain of course, but maybe less so than trying to pile up $250 worth of groceries in that limited space.

Hindsight being 20/20, this would have been a great idea.  I really like jmarvellous' wording for your complaint.
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Ontario

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #39 on: December 31, 2013, 01:56:39 PM »
I avoid self check out whenever possible.  Items on sale or bulk foods or scan is frozen,  just takes too long and I always need help anyway.   

regardless, looking at shopping security with the Target hacking, I found that self check out is a great way to lose items.  self check out should be watched by that staff and they should always be ready to help.  more than 20 items should not be self scan anyway.
 
I say send a short version of your letter.
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sweetonsno

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #40 on: January 01, 2014, 01:37:17 AM »
The cashier was probably being truthful about not being able to run a register, though. It was a corporate matter when I was a cashier, not a store-level issue. If you try to address THAT part as being the more serious infraction, you're not likely to get anywhere. I recommend staying on the topic of your desiring a better level of customer-service, and feel free to add in the suggestions that I gave. Maybe the store will adopt them.  :-\

Yes, this is kind of what I meant when I said I didn't think it was a valid complaint. Expecting them to open a checkout just for you (you general) or complaining that they had plenty of shelf-stackers who could have done so isn't valid, because you don't know their level of training or the store's policy. But pointing out that the checkout guy didn't help with the order is probably reasonable.

Exactly, particularly if the employees are part of a union. If someone is working as a stocker, they cannot be required to cashier (and vice versa). Additionally, they are entitled to (and required to take) a certain number of breaks per shift. If Mark was the only person currently on the clock who could operate a register, then everyone's hands were tied.

I do think Mark should have been willing to help you with the bagging and resetting the scale. If he ignored your requests for a hand, you absolutely have a legitimate complaint. At my grocery store, some problems actually freeze the transaction. It's highly inconvenient if the self-check clerk is occupied with something else.

miranova

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #41 on: January 01, 2014, 10:52:41 PM »
Stores are not doing me a favor by giving me a method to give them money.  If they can't financially justify a night time cashier, nothing is saying they have to be open all night.   Presumably they do so because it's profitable for them.  I'm sure none of us really believe that our convenience is the real reason they are open 24 hours? 

I think it's really bad business to expect to take the same amount of money per item at 1am that you do at 3pm but refuse to offer even the most minimal service in return.  A cashier is a basic, minimal level of service.  The Denney's example is actually a good one....no matter how awesome and convenient it might be for me to procure a Moons Over My Hammy at 2am, I still expect a server to come and take my order and bring me my food if they are advertising themselves as a 24 hour full service restaurant.  Don't send all the servers home and tell me you are doing me a convenience by allowing me to wait on myself for the same menu price you charge during the day.  Either the store is open all night, or it isn't.  I can totally get behind the fact that at 1am there may be a slight wait for a cashier to come up and open a lane, or that there may only be 1 lane open instead of 10.  But expecting ONE employee capable of helping customers at a 24 hour store is perfectly reasonable and not at all special snowflakey. 

Mark is employed in the middle of the night for a reason, and I'm sure it's not so he can chat with another employee while a customer, who has already asked for help, struggles alone with a system not designed for large carts of food.  We all know that an employee has the ability to override the scale so that at the very least the customer can move already checked items back into the cart.  Mark didn't even do this very easy, very basic thing to help.  Sounds to me like he just didn't want to bother.  A letter to management is definitely justified.  I'd be shocked if management replies that Mark was just following policy by refusing to help the OP at all.

LadyJaneinMD

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #42 on: January 02, 2014, 11:06:29 AM »
I've done a lot of middle-of-the-night shopping, and I have never seen a grocery store that had *only self-checkout* lanes open in the middle of the night.  Granted, the checker will be doing other things, like cleaning or stocking, but their job is to keep an eye on the front, and if anyone heads that way, they go to their lane to check the customer out.   

I think Mark was that person, and he was too lazy to do his job.   He deserves a giant kick in the.....job.

Crazy Chicken Lady

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #43 on: January 02, 2014, 11:42:50 AM »
If I read the OP correctly, Mark was overseeing the U-Scans? He may not have been allowed to leave his station to open a new lane (in my local store a U-Scan cashier usually oversees 6 lanes). What if other customers came up and needed assistance with the U-Scan? The other employee he was talking to may have been only allowed to gather carts, stock items, etc.


I think a letter to corporate just to give them a heads up about this problem would be a good idea. What if someone who had a physical issue with using the self checkouts came in at that time? But I don't think Mark derserves to get in trouble over this. Sure he could have worded his response a little better but like a few others have said, his hands were tied.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2014, 11:44:21 AM by Crazy Chicken Lady »

bah12

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Re: Need some help with email comment/complaint to grocery store..
« Reply #44 on: January 02, 2014, 11:53:31 AM »
This isn't about Mark and I don't think you should focus your letter on him.  This is about the store's seeming policy that only self-checkout lanes be open after a certain hour.  Your letter could simply read:

"While shopping at store/location on date at time, it came to my attention that only the self-checkout lanes were open.  I am wondering if this is a store policy.  If so, I would like to suggest that at least one regular check out lane remain open. Self checkout is convenient for smaller purchases, but the small turnstyles and lack of bagging/loading help make in extremely inconvenient and cumbersome for larger purchases, such as mine."