Yes, a robot, named Tally, will begin scanning grocery store aisles at three St. Louis-area Schnucks stores in a six-week pilot program this week. The robot will check aisles three times a day to look for out-of-stock items and make sure items and price tags properly.
Dave Steck, the chain’s vice president of IT and infrastructure, announced a partnership with San Francisco-based Simbe Robotics stating “We’re excited to see what this partnership brings,” “This is just one of many ways that Schnucks is staying at the forefront of technology to enhance our customers’ shopping experiences.”
Schnucks is a regional grocery store chain that has close to 100 stores in Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin and Iowa. They will use an adjustable robot to monitor items on store shelves but is hopeful that the robot “may open up a world of other possibilities” with the data it collects.
Simbe CEO Brad Bogolea told the local newspaper that the robot’s ability to find items that need to be restocked and pricing errors allows employees to focus on other tasks. The robot has already been scanning aisles in other stores across the country, including some Target stores in San Francisco last year.
Mr Bogolea stated “The goal of Tally is to create more of a feedback mechanism,” “Although most retailers have good supply chain intelligence, and point-of-sale data on what they’ve sold, what’s challenging for retailers is understanding the true state of merchandise on shelves. Everyone sees value in higher quality, more frequent information across the entire value chain.”
How are you driving down cost, reducing out of stocks items? Do you have redundant programs or systems and still have out of stock items? If success does leave clues and it does could a robot look at things differently enough to edify your operation? So just who is watching your store?