Friday, July 10, 2009

Not so Super of a Store

You've seen the commercials, the one where one of the richest men in Canada happily tries to sell us rice and ice cream and make us think that his store is reason to switch supermarkets for. Makes us think he's a regular guy, just like you and me. But I wonder, has he ever shopped in one of his stores? Has he ever had to stand through a long and pointless price check while his children want to leave? Has he ever experienced the "service" his front end staff provide to customers? I think no. Or perhaps yes and he is a heartless bastard who doesn't give a crap about service, as long as the money keeps rolling in and those commercial spots have us all fooled.

I don't generally frequent this store anymore. Lately its because Wal Martin hasn't had any stock of the diapers I like. So on Wednesday I packed up the 3 and off we went. I don't generally grocery shop with all 3 any more, there are advantages to school apart from learning stuff.
There were some bumps in the trip, hands on other people's bodies, hair pulling, cookie and snack requesting. The usual stuff. So by the time we were done the gather of the groceries, they kids were done. Well I always forget to budget in for time the check out. It was rather busy that day and there was a good 4 people deep in each line up. Great. The cashier I choose was mid-price check when I got in line. Didn't think this would be a problem, but it took 10 minutes. The lady who was buying it turned and apologized and I shrugged. Its not her fault, but I was secretly hoping she would just say leave it so we could get the show on the road.
The price check system is so flawed there. They shouldn't have to come to a grinding halt to get a price.
So on we go to the person in front of me. I am starting to hear things about the debit machine. Bad things. Like debit is down. But the lady in front of me paid no problem. Well I pulled the short straw that day because debit did not work for me, nor did credit. Now I am unhappy. "Would you like to go to the bank machine?" "Well I guess I don't have a choice" So gather up my children and truck over to the machine. Luckily there is no wait, because everyone behind me has to wait til I get back with the cash for the transaction to be finished before the line moves again. I hand over the cash, put Kaylum back into the cart (the last place he wants to be) find a snack in my purse to occupy him and finish packing my groceries.
This annoying beeping starts to come from the girl's till, the till is jammed and won't open for her to get my change. WHAT!? I just want to pay and go. I am beyond mad now. The girl is just standing there stunned. I said, "Can you call someone?" She says, "They won't come." I said, "How do you know, you haven't called them!!!"

Then I started getting lipped off by a lady in the line up. "Its not her fault!" She says. "Yes I know, but standing there isn't going to solve the problem." We went back and forth a few times before she finally tells me she's done with me.

So now we are standing there, my groceries packed, my son climbing out of the cart and this stunned cashier holding $220 in one hand and her other hand on her head. So call someone!!! Paige someone!!!! She doesn't.

Why I just didn't leave then, I don't know. She had my money, albeit $12 more than the bill, but I could have just left. I paid, right. Well I didn't. I went over to get the front end supervisor to open her til. "Oh I can't. If the till is jammed, I can't do anything." She told me to wait until she was done checking an customer and we can see what she can do. No. Now I am so mad and frustrated I am shaking. The kids were angels through all this. That was awesome. I walked back to the cart and proceeded to dump out my groceries on the lane and asked for my money back. The people behind me, started packing up their cart to move lanes. Kylie was rather confused why I did this.

So after getting cash, paying $1.50 sevice charge at their ATM for the cash I couldn't use, I walked over to customer service for my $1.50 back and to talk with the store manager. By now the store is in chaos. The whole debit/credit system is down and there is a giant line at the ATM. The supervisors are making lovely announcements about this debit not working, but its no good to those already stuck at a till. Customers are pissed and just walking away from lanes and their groceries.

I am thinking to myself, I have already invested an hour and a half into this trip and now I have to go and do it all again!?! UGH! The manger came down and I explained what happened to him, he asked where my groceries were. Over there on the lane. "Oh no, no. That's no good! Don't leave," he tells me. He calls someone to come over and gather my groceries and to check me out at the customer service till. Well clearly she has a comprehension problem (I'm being facetious). "Where are your groceries?" She asks while looking at my cart and very confused. AAAHHH!! Now I am done, so mad that the tears are about to come out, but I won't let them because its just stupid groceries. The manager slowly went over his instructions again to her and assured me that the original cashier would be dealt with later. All the while I am getting dirty looks from that cashier and her front end supervisor, probably because she knows she's gonna get dealt with too.

So this lady that has been assigned to help starts loading the groceries in my cart. The EMPTY shopping bags were on the bottom level, so she felt in necessary to cram everything on the top level. UGH! She checks me out and I re-pack everything, all the while thinking, I've already DONE THIS! The store manager comes over again to apologize, reassure me there will be a reprimand and sent another nice lady over to help me to the car. I refused, its easy sailing now. But he insisted, "Take care of your kids." She was really nice and even loaded the groceries into the van for me. Total time from entering the line to getting in the van, 1 HOUR!! That's right. 2 pm! Way past lunch time and way past nap time. Good thing I have good kids. They were really patient through that while extra 45-50 minutes it took to check out. Thank goodness!! Otherwise I probably would have cried.

So, this real Canadian StupidStore can stick it! I am never shopping there again. And while I appreciate what the manager did, in the end, its not going to change anything. He's been managing well over 10 years, I know, he was my store manager when I worked there. And unless there is some massive policy overhaul, they will not change the way their service towards customers is.

So I ask Mr Weston, are you proud of how your company runs? Do you care, something must be right if you are one of the richest men in Canada? Should we care that we get no service but your prices are good? Is this Karma coming back to me for my lack of service some 10 years ago?


Kerry said...

Whewwww...that was one rough trip. They really should have compensated you somehow (they seem to give away gift cards with certain $ purchases, so how hard would it have been?). It's just customer service to say yes, we eff'd up and here's something so that maybe you'll come back.

So a big BOO to them. I rarely shop at Superstore because I feel so under the gun to jam my groceries in a bag while at the checkout. That and their dairy section is disgusting (um, rotten milk smell all the time?) and I can't bear to watch all of the crabs and lobsters they cram into such a small tank (not humane in my books).

Only saving grace for them is they make one hell of a cheesy bun, their deep dish frozen pizza is tasty and that 'Joe' line sometimes has fun pj's. (Oh, and for pure entertainment, sometimes I go to the bakery section just to point and laugh at the donuts that have the chocolate glaze on them, they always look 'schweaty' and the icing is almost slug-like, trying to slither off the dough. LOL)

Sarah said...

Thanks Kerry! I totally thought they could have given a gift card. Its gets me back in the store right!!?

Rotten milk, its funny you said that b/c my daughter said the same thing when we were there!

Robin said...

Boy, Talk about venting.
We haven't been in that awful store in months. Do you believe it! Too bad you couldn't email your post to the evil that runs it all.

ariosa said...

You know, I think Mr. Weston has forgotten all about Western Canada -- or doesn't care, because I find his stores back east are remarkably well tended, and in much better shape than the StupidStores out here. Or maybe just in the rich neighbourhoods! The few Loblaws I've been to were really nice. You should send him this in letter form. What you went through was totally uncalled for. But what you wrote is well-written! Thanks for letting us know about it-- I rarely step into StupidStore anymore myself. Can't stand the layout at all.

Hillary said...

I agree 100% their service sucks. I still don't understand why oh why the customer has to bag their own groceries? They are not any cheaper than walmart and they bag your groceries.

A couple of months ago I went to customer service to return something, and it wouldn't scan. She looked at me and said "oh it won't scan, can you run and get another one and check the price?".. me with my 2 kids "um, you want me to go get it?"..."yes, I cant leave"
I don't know what possessed me, but I did go and check and when I got back she was helping the next person in line, I went right up, plopped it down in front of her and she said, " I will be with you in a minute"

I just shook my head and walked out the door. I should have asked to speak with a manager, but I was already in a bad mood.
Booo superstore
I hope you write in a complaint.

Michelle Kehler said...

here here! I too don't shop there purely do to their lack of customer service. Did you send anything into the company?

Shawna said...

Bah Ha Ha -- that story gave me the laugh of the day! Sorry it was at your expense!

You should really just relay this post directly to Mr. Weston. Just as it is!

Keep us updated on what you hear back!

Claire said...

Oh man...that sounds nightmarish! Bless your kids for being so good though!