Giant Food Incorporated

★★★☆☆

About Giant Food Incorporated

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  • Grocery Stores

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3.0 1
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Although this location is not that old -- I'd a decade or less -- it has seen a lot of changes in the past few years.

What used to be a local company that cared about employees and customers has been sold to a multinational conglomerate that cares mostly about the bottom line (even getting caught in an accounting scandal). Unfortunately, this store location is beginning to show the excesses (and omissions) of the new parent company.

Especially since the opening of the rather spectacular Columbia Palace location just a few miles away (which I will review separately), the Lyndwood Giant -- built to cater to a golf course community -- has been neglected. When you approach the store, the first thing you notice are the universally rusty shopping carts. Once you get inside... well, it's hard to put into words, and may not even be noticeable unless you know what the store USED TO look like. The produce is not as fresh as it used to be, and the selection of gourmet/unique items has dwindled considerably. The shelves are not bare, and yet they just don't seem as full as they used to. The variety and quality of items available has suffered too.

Another aspect that has changed for the worse is staffing. Giant Food used to be a strong union shop; although their prices ran a bit higher, I was confident that the difference went to better wages and benefits for the employees. Also, due to the good compensation, Giant could afford to be picky about who they hired. Nowadays, the staff is mostly inexperienced teenagers who have a lot of questions and not a lot of senior staff around to answer them! And they don't have the life experience to handle sticky customer service issues.

Unfortunately, these cost-saving staffing changes (including the ubiquitous self checkouts) have not resulted in much savings for the customer. I've grown accustomed to below-par customer service at low-priced supermarket chains -- in fact, I consider it the price I pay for the savings. But

PROS: less crowded than other locations
CONS: gourmet prices, discount service

3
★★★☆☆

Although this location is not that old -- I'd a decade or less -- it has seen a lot of changes in the past few years.

What used to be a local company that cared about employees and customers has been sold to a multinational conglomerate that cares mostly about the bottom line (even getting caught in an accounting scandal). Unfortunately, this store location is beginning to show the excesses (and omissions) of the new parent company.

Especially since the opening of the rather spectacular Columbia Palace location just a few miles away (which I will review separately), the Lyndwood Giant -- built to cater to a golf course community -- has been neglected. When you approach the store, the first thing you notice are the universally rusty shopping carts. Once you get inside... well, it's hard to put into words, and may not even be noticeable unless you know what the store USED TO look like. The produce is not as fresh as it used to be, and the selection of gourmet/unique items has dwindled considerably. The shelves are not bare, and yet they just don't seem as full as they used to. The variety and quality of items available has suffered too.

Another aspect that has changed for the worse is staffing. Giant Food used to be a strong union shop; although their prices ran a bit higher, I was confident that the difference went to better wages and benefits for the employees. Also, due to the good compensation, Giant could afford to be picky about who they hired. Nowadays, the staff is mostly inexperienced teenagers who have a lot of questions and not a lot of senior staff around to answer them! And they don't have the life experience to handle sticky customer service issues.

Unfortunately, these cost-saving staffing changes (including the ubiquitous self checkouts) have not resulted in much savings for the customer. I've grown accustomed to below-par customer service at low-priced supermarket chains -- in fact, I consider it the price I pay for the savings. But

PROS: less crowded than other locations
CONS: gourmet prices, discount service

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