Kroger and Employee Uniforms

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storewanderer
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Kroger and Employee Uniforms

Post by storewanderer » July 10th, 2019, 10:40 pm

I have been noticing at Smiths lately that a number of the employees seem to be wearing whatever shirts and pants they want and then just have a small Smiths apron on.

I thought maybe it was something temporary but I guess Smiths has basically eliminated requiring any formal uniform (beyond the apron for floor or cashier) for employees... it looks like meat and deli may still be in uniforms.

I don't know what I think about this. I guess as the workforce continues to go more and more part time, this sort of thing is easier on the employees.

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Re: Kroger and Employee Uniforms

Post by SamSpade » July 11th, 2019, 9:13 am

It may help employees be cleaner. As someone that knew someone that worked at Kroger and had *one* work polo, it got pretty unpleasant after a few days wear.

It seems to be a reflection of many companies "relaxing" retail dress code. As mentioned here, one can see it at Target, Starbucks allows tattoos and certain colors of shirts now (not just black).

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Re: Kroger and Employee Uniforms

Post by Brian Lutz » July 11th, 2019, 9:33 am

It probably also has something to do with general labor shortages. A lot of the major retailers are having trouble finding and keeping employees, so relaxing dress codes is probably preferable to operating short-staffed.

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Re: Kroger and Employee Uniforms

Post by pseudo3d » July 11th, 2019, 8:09 pm

Brian Lutz wrote:
July 11th, 2019, 9:33 am
It probably also has something to do with general labor shortages. A lot of the major retailers are having trouble finding and keeping employees, so relaxing dress codes is probably preferable to operating short-staffed.
Any business with a high turnover that isn't the nature of the business itself only has rapid turnover if it's a bad place to work, and grocery stores (and retail in general) have really deteriorated a lot on that front. Arguably, the whole "Retail Apocalypse" is not due to online storefronts per se, but the "chickens coming home to roost" from decades of whittling away at the underpinnings of what made the stores successful in the first place.

A few better-run chains, like H-E-B, can keep and retain a lot of their older employees, but if turnover is high, it's a bad sign. Specifically, Smith's, and surely that Visa card ban is hurting the chain somehow, though it remains to be to be seen as to why they did it in the first place--they had every advantage over Vons/Albertsons when this thing started out.

storewanderer
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Re: Kroger and Employee Uniforms

Post by storewanderer » July 11th, 2019, 11:00 pm

pseudo3d wrote:
July 11th, 2019, 8:09 pm
Brian Lutz wrote:
July 11th, 2019, 9:33 am
It probably also has something to do with general labor shortages. A lot of the major retailers are having trouble finding and keeping employees, so relaxing dress codes is probably preferable to operating short-staffed.
Any business with a high turnover that isn't the nature of the business itself only has rapid turnover if it's a bad place to work, and grocery stores (and retail in general) have really deteriorated a lot on that front. Arguably, the whole "Retail Apocalypse" is not due to online storefronts per se, but the "chickens coming home to roost" from decades of whittling away at the underpinnings of what made the stores successful in the first place.

A few better-run chains, like H-E-B, can keep and retain a lot of their older employees, but if turnover is high, it's a bad sign. Specifically, Smith's, and surely that Visa card ban is hurting the chain somehow, though it remains to be to be seen as to why they did it in the first place--they had every advantage over Vons/Albertsons when this thing started out.
The Visa thing has impacted some Smiths locations and has not impacted other locations. It is interesting. You can look at their ads, constant 2 and 3 day sales, constant multipliers on fuel points, constant issuance of $5 off $25 coupons via the Catalina Coupon machines and via the digital coupon site, etc. to assess how this is impacting them overall. But their stores up here in Reno still seem very busy to me; much busier than the competitors.

The irony is all those $5 off $25 coupons and fuel point multipliers, I estimate I have gotten at least $60 of extra discounts from them since this no Visa rule took place. I've spent probably $300. Assume it cost them about $7.50 to process $300 worth of Visa Cards... so it seems to me they are not coming out ahead here. And I kept paying them with a credit card, probably that has higher fees than Visa... arrogance is bliss.

My observation in Smiths at least in my area is the stores have a large core base of employees but about 25% of the employees are constantly turning over. They are much better run than Safeway (I cannot stress how poorly Safeway is run in my market, it is pathetic) and certainly no worse than Raleys or Save Mart.

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Re: Kroger and Employee Uniforms

Post by CalItalian » July 31st, 2019, 9:50 pm

Ralphs employees at many locations are also wearing whatever they want - sometimes without any identifying uniform other than a nametag. I don't like it. Vons & Albertsons (Southern California) recently changed uniforms and they look good. Stater Bros., the best, although not allowing most facial hair is a policy they need to end.

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Re: Kroger and Employee Uniforms

Post by storewanderer » July 31st, 2019, 11:01 pm

CalItalian wrote:
July 31st, 2019, 9:50 pm
Ralphs employees at many locations are also wearing whatever they want - sometimes without any identifying uniform other than a nametag. I don't like it. Vons & Albertsons (Southern California) recently changed uniforms and they look good. Stater Bros., the best, although not allowing most facial hair is a policy they need to end.
Same for Fred Meyer... but the dress code at Fred Meyer was always a little more relaxed for employees in the clothing department (seemed to be whatever they wanted plus apron)... now it is most of the store.

Interesting this happened at Ralphs. I guess a uniform is not part of the union contract? 15 years ago the California Rite Aids had Rite Aid polo shirts but the ones here in Nevada kept wearing the 80's looking blue smocks. I asked and was told the union brokered a deal where the employees got a company issued polo as part of some contract.

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