With summer now in full swing, we here at the Co-op are gearing up for the busiest time of the year. This is the perfect opportunity to share a few of my tips for shopping the Co-op.
Quiet Times to Shop
Early mornings are a great time to do larger shops. Enjoy your favorite coffee drink as you shop – now that’s a beautiful thing!
During the school year, the after school rush is between 3:30-5:00pm. When school is out for the summer, those hours are a bit quieter and comfortable to make larger shopping trips.
Another opportunity to catch the Co-op at a slower pace are the last few hours before closing at 9pm. But allow yourself enough time to complete your shopping so you aren’t cut short when closing time comes around.
Save Time at the Deli
A simple way to ensure a short wait at the Deli is to call ahead and place your order. They can prepare both hot and cold sandwiches and have them ready to rock for you when you enter the store for your lunch break. As we all know, that is the busiest hour of our day! You can find the sandwich menu here on our website.
General Shopping Tips
Do returns before you shop; credit will then be immediately available for your next purchase.
When you bring in your own bags (which we love), keep them easily accessible when approaching the cashier stands. The bags can be handed off and bagging can start right away as we maneuver through the checkout process. This being said, we also ask for shoppers to avoid shopping into their bags. This makes it easier for staff to recognize potential threats of retail theft.
Parking at the Co-op can be a challenge as well. Co-op staff are happy to hold your groceries in the store as you retrieve your vehicle when you are parked in the East lot. We will watch for you and bring your groceries to your vehicle right in front of the store.
I would like to share with you a few changes that are in the works here at VFC.
One really exciting thing is the arrival of the new Point of Sale System known as SMS. VFC Management, Buyers and Cashiers have been training vigorously to learn all of the cool nuances of this new cash register system. Touch screens will give a new look to the front line and will ensure speed and accuracy at the checkout. One of my personal favorites is the integrated Credit Card Terminals to the Point of Sale System. Be prepared to swipe your own gift, debit and/or credit cards – how cool is that! Finally! Please be patient with us as we learn the new system, and if you haven't memorized your owner number, now is the time to do so. The new system is able to find your account more quickly by your owner number.
Cross training is the norm here at the Co-op. Cross training is the opportunity for staff to be well-versed in many areas in the store. In the event of illness or vacation, we feel confident in knowing there are many staff that can jump into another department to offer support at any given time. This also brings a greater understanding of each department and sometimes enables us to give employees full-time positions who wouldn’t otherwise have the opportunity. Also, it increases our ability to give you top-notch customer service. Knowledge is power!
With that I would like to put a huge shout out to the incredible VFC Staff. They represent our mission with Superior Customer Service in its finest form. These folks really enjoy their work and it shows. Many a giggle can be heard throughout the course of any given day. I know it is my happy place, and we strive every day to make it one of yours. It is our great pleasure to serve this incredible community.
Go Viroqua Food Co-op!
Jackie Rebman, Customer Service Manager
11 years and running!