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Being a customer-driven company means we’re always striving to go the extra mile for our customers, listening to what they need and helping them make sustainable choices. We’re committed to nurturing our customers by providing exceptional shopping and food experiences and putting their needs and their family’s needs first. Our customer commitment shapes the work we’re doing today and tomorrow, touching everything from the great service we offer in our stores everyday to the innovation we’re adopting to take customer experience to a whole new level.
Delivering for our customers is at the heart of our business culture and strategy. In fiscal year 2021 we continued to embed this commitment with our teams by rolling out refreshed customer service training to all our retail teammates. The CARE (Customers Always Receive Excellence) Program is part of our required training programs for teammates, including annual recertification and recognition through awards for high-performers.
Customer-driven initiatives are also core to our current business strategy, Project Horizon. We’re investing an average of $700 million annually over the next three years in capital spending to accelerate investments in our stores and tools to better serve customers. We’re accelerating plans for our remaining two Voilà e-commerce Customer Fulfillment Centres (CFCs) — for a total of four CFCs across Canada. And we’ve started to introduce our e-commerce partner Ocado’s proven store pickup option to serve customers in areas where the CFCs will not deliver, or are not yet built. We’re growing our Own Brands portfolio with new and more innovative options for customers. And we’re investing in analytics and technology to deliver world-class personalized offerings for our customers in future.
Some of the innovative ways we’re offering exceptional experiences for our customers include:
We’ve launched Voilà, the best online grocery delivery service in the world to the Greater Toronto Area with plans to expand to other cities under way. Voilà by Sobeys fulfils orders from a state-of-the-art customer fulfilment centre that uses robots to pack orders. The vast selection of products have affordable prices, no hidden fees, a freshness guarantee and arrive within a one-hour delivery window. Voilà also includes a curbside pickup option.
We’re rolling out Rachelle Béry boutiques in neighbourhood stores across Canada. Drawing on more than 30 years of health-and-wellness expertise, the Rachelle Béry team is ready to help customers choose from a selection of natural, organic and vegan supplements, sports nutrition, hair, body and skincare products — all made with clean ingredients to the highest standards of quality and ethics. In fiscal year 2021 we opened eight Rachelle Béry boutiques and plan to launch another 38 in fiscal year 2022.
We’ve partnered with infarm, one of the world’s most advanced and fastest-growing in-store farming platforms, to grow and harvest a range of fresh produce in select Sobeys, Safeway and Thrifty Foods stores across Canada. This win-win initiative for customers and the environment delivers delicious fresh greens while dramatically reducing water and energy use, and other impacts.
Sobeys Smart Cart
We brought the first intelligent shopping cart to Canada with a pilot of the Sobeys Smart Cart, a tech-enhanced one-stop shopping cart that scans, weighs and allows customers to pay for products. As part of the pilot, customers in Oakville, Ontario skipped the checkout line with this fun, interactive shopping experience.
Sensory Shopping Hours
We’ve introduced Sensory Shopping Hours in our stores nationwide to create dedicated times each week where we dim the lights and turn off the music, making shopping more enjoyable for people with autism and other sensory conditions.