Monday, 29 September 2008

Sloppy Management

I’m very disappointed by what seems to me the continuing decline of standards in Gateshead’s Tesco store. I’ve been a customer of Tesco at this store for 28 years and I can’t ever remember it being as bad as this.

I went shopping there this evening. There were no bananas (something I consider a staple) at all on the shelves. Empty goods trolleys used to stack the shelves seemed to be littered everywhere, most with no staff visible near them, making it very difficult to navigate the aisles. The fridges looked poorly kept, with lots of frost on the frozen food. I could not find any lower fat or chicken sausages more than a day or two ahead of their “sell by” date, making them no use to me, as I shop for food several days ahead.

At the till, I pointed out that I had four bags to reuse from previous visits but, when I checked my receipt, I found that the cashier hadn't given me my clubcard points. I then had to queue at the customer service desk. After bypassing the last customer of a queue who were all buying lottery tickets and cigarettes, I walked on to what used to be the Customer Service desk. After being ignored by three staff for five minutes, I was then told I was in the wrong queue. If I was meant to queue at the till for lottery tickets and cigarettes then this was not clear, and means another drop in service standards. Baffled, I told the member of staff “You’ve lost me” and left.

Tonight was not an isolated incident. In a time when some of Tesco’s goods such as margarine are 80% more expensive than last year, I increasingly doubt whether it gives value for money. I’ve written to Tesco about the “trolley clutter” problem before but, despite the suggestion on the slip that I would get a reply within a week, I had no reply at all.

If goods are out of stock, it’s difficult to get around the store, staff are not helpful and prices are higher, wouldn’t I and customers like me be better off just going to Netto?

You might be able to tell from the above that it was originally intended to go directly to Tesco themselves. Since they don't even seem to allow the public to contact them by E-mail, and evidently don't reply to the small slips you can pick up in the store, you're getting to hear this instead...

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