John Lewis & Partners’ new ‘customer hosts’ have proved popular on the reopening of its first 13 department stores in mid June. A week after the first re-openings Bérangère Michel, executive director for customer service at the John Lewis Partnership spoke of an ”overwhelmingly positive feedback from both customers and partners”.
The ‘hosts’ help customers ‘adapt to the new social distancing measures and new ways of shopping – ensuring customers have an enjoyable experience. ‘
A further nine John Lewis stores in England opened today (June 25) as the department store continues its phased reopening (Cribbs Causeway, Leeds, Liverpool, Milton Keynes, Newcastle, Peter Jones, Southampton, Tunbridge Wells and York).
Learning from the initial re-openings, Bérangère said: “We found that in some shops we were able to increase the number of customers and still maintain robust social distancing, and made our signage clearer in order to help customers navigate the changes.”
She emphasised: “Although we are not able to offer every single experience that we used to, we are still managing to offer customers a really varied shopping experience that is as close to normal and as enjoyable as we can possibly make it.”
* ‘Non-essential’ retailers in Wales began re-opening this week, while those in Scotland will be opening from June 29. Housewares stockist, Fiona Fabien, owner of Papryrus in Glasgow commented: “I’m so relieved to know that we can open from June 29, although disappointed it can’t be sooner as we were hoping we would be open for Father’s Day. We have implemented new social distancing measures and are really looking forward to welcoming our customers back.”
Top: New ways of shopping – one of John Lewis’ new customer hosts welcomes a customer.