The grocery store is a service industry. They do not need to have a secret shopper go around and try to catch their employees who are not servicing customers correctly. What a waste of time and money. All they need to do is watch their bottom line. If a customer or customers are not serviced correctly they will go elsewhere and they will complain to management. Think of this wonderful idea - the manager instead of sitting in his office could walk the store and manage by walking around the same as most industries do.
All they are doing is upsetting employees with a bad shop because maybe they did not say hello as quickly as the secret shopper wanted?? Who knows they are not told after the event so they con correct their action. My daughter works for Vons - she is on her last warning. Although the managers are agree she is a valuable employee, and they are not sure what she is doing wrong because they have seen her interact with customers and she has compliments from customers.
So who is this SECRET SHOPPER, supposedly the whole store had some faults. Was he or she having a bad day? Telling employees to ask customers constantly for carry out and they have one item is annoying, asking me if I want cheese when I came in for Ham is annoying. Shopping was much better when it was really on a personal basis and not a forced compliance for fear of the SECRET SHOPPER.
What a hoax to create a company to go around and rate your employees. A good manager knows their employees and their work ethics. Better yet all this for minimum wage and you have to pay union dues. Vons can take their job and shove it. Forced Customer Service is not Customer Service. By the way the grocery carts are disgusting, take note they use them to take out the trash then put them back in the cart rack for consumers to use.
RANCHO BERNARDO, CALIFORNIA, CALIFORNIA -- Vons constantly runs bait and switch ads for specials and fake two for the price of one promotions. Even on St. Patrick's Day - they were still running radio ads claiming to sell corned beef for $1.27 a pound despite having run out in our local store 2 days earlier. Yet the sign for the sale priced corned beef was still there. Not realizing this I selected a piece and headed to the cashier. That piece, which was right in front of the sign saying it was on special rang up at $3.99 a pound ($14.44) which I then rejected.
When I complained to the cashier, he stated "yeah we ran out a long time ago." Ok why is the sign still there; WHY DOES VONS DELIBERATELY UNDER ORDER A SALE ITEM? Leaving the store frustrated I decided this is the last visit to Vons and this is not the first time I have experienced this sort of thing there. VONS has no respect for their customers; they don't care because it's all about the bottom line with them.
And who needs Vons? Target now has a great stock of grocery item priced 10-20% lower than Vons. All items are clearly marked, they don't have fake sales and they don't try to trick you. One only needs shop Costco to realize how most items in Von's are packaged in tiny pack-sizes with a massive 300-400% mark-up, yet they endless scheme to fatten their bottom line with marketing gimmicks while they anger and disrespect their customers all along claiming to have the lowest prices.
Vons needs to take a page from JC Penney who recently stopped all the customer manipulation and sells their goods everyday at their lowest price, no games, no misleading signage, no fake sales. Everything they do makes you mistrust Vons - when you shop one day and the beer is $15.95 for a 12 pack and the very next it is $11.95.
I was speaking with a friend who works for Vons. She told me of their customer service program. They have a mystery shopper program that rates employees on service. No wonder everyone is jumpy. Each store is shopped a certain times per unit time. No one knows who the shopper is. But if the shopper is not greeted, offered a hello, and "can I show you where the product is", offer carry out.. etc. they lose points.
A negative shop gives the employee a lecture from the store management. So all these people give you a perfunctory hello. offer carry out etc.. Most people never request these services... but are offered these services without gusto. I think this makes employees less prone to offer better service on their own. In better economic times these employees were sent to corporate for retraining on company expense. No wonder fewer people were working those days... and the lines were longer....
SAN DIEGO/POINT LOMA, CALIFORNIA -- I was in Vons Groceries today and went to the deli and ordered a pound of Sarah Lee Honey Roasted Turkey Breast. I eat this sandwich meat almost everyday of every week for lunch, so I know what it tastes like. After being made to wait by a very inconsiderate manager, I finally had my order filled. When I got home and tasted the meat I realized that the manager had given me the wrong brand. Honestly, I felt like it was on purpose b/c what she gave me very much resembled what was on sale and already sliced.
The Sarah Lee was not sliced, not on sale and more of a "hassle" for her. I took the meat back and the manager proceeded to argue w/ me, insisting she'd given me the correct meat. When I asked if I could taste a slice of an unopened Sarah Lee to compare and make sure it was not I who had made the mistake, she didn't want to let me.
After I questioned why not when in the past they "offered" a tasting to help you make up your mind, she gave in. Not only did the meat taste drastically different, it even looked different. I'm convinced she knew she had given me the wrong, less expensive brand on purpose, and simply charged me the higher Sarah Lee price and labelled it as such. They'd done this to me before, but I thought it was just me.
When I voiced my complaint to the store manager, he was so busy talking over me and not listening, spouting a blanket comment he probably gives to anyone making a complaint, I realized it was useless speaking to him b/c he wasn't hearing a word I said. He was too busy telling me "let's cross our fingers and hope it doesn't happen again". What is THAT to say to a customer? It was a very frustrating experience, and both managers were extremely disrespectful. If the Vons practice is to try to cheat you, mislead you, and when you complain basically disrespect you, then they are a shady business I will never patron them again.