A recent datecheckpro.com article referenced a challenge faced by supermarkets as they strive to attract and retain customers by providing a positive shopping experience and outstanding service.
The issue-at-hand is product expiration.
At the corporate level, author Jared Krawczyk says, “expired product costs generally remain hidden. As a result of date management execution challenges, expired products end up in the hands of customers or on the back of the shelf rather than on the P&L.”
Krawczyk goes on to suggest that the true cost of customer satisfaction, or dissatisfaction in this case remains unseen as well, and cites research from Date Check Pro, the industry’s leading expiration date management software, which indicates the average supermarket has over 1,500 expired items on the shelf within the center store alone!
The article also suggests that while product expiration issues are a preventable problem, they plague many supermarkets because of:
- People management – are the right people spot-checking and re-stocking?
- Setting the wrong priorities – more urgent perational demands result sacrificing the important task of effective spot checking and restocking
- Trends toward offering a wider selection of products
Given the competitive nature of the industry and the opportunity to positively impact the shopping experience, it would seem that supermarket chains would be best-served by proactively improving these processes on a continuous basis.