Employee Focus

Kroger Rewards Workers During Coronavirus Outbreak
Kroger is showing some financial appreciation for its hard-working employees. The company said that it would provide a one-time bonus to every hourly front-line grocery, supply chain, manufacturing, and customer service associate who has worked during the coronavirus pandemic. Kroger is giving full-time workers a bonus of $300, and part-time workers will get $150. The brand has also expanded its Coronavirus-related emergency leave guidelines to include PTO for workers experiencing symptoms that are verified by a medical professional, and for self-isolation. Workers will receive their standard pay for up to two weeks.
 
Corporate Social Responsibility

Checkers & Rally’s Partners with No Kid Hungry
Checkers & Rally’s is partnering with No Kid Hungry, a national campaign to end childhood hunger in America, and donating $100,000, enough to provide up to 1 million meals to children in need. “Checkers & Rally’s is deeply committed to the nearly 900 communities we serve, and by partnering with No Kid Hungry, we are able to make a big impact toward connecting kids with nutritious meals so that no child goes hungry,” says Checkers & Rally’s CEO Frances Allen. “We’re proud to be partnering with a campaign that does so much good for so many children and families in need.” More than 11 million children in the United States live in households that don't have enough food for every family member to lead a healthy life. No Kid Hungry is ending childhood hunger through effective programs that provide kids with the food they need, such as school breakfast, and afterschool and summer meals.
 
Gannett Launches ‘Support Local’ To Help Small Businesses
Gannett today announced the launch of Support Local, a platform to help communities support and access small businesses all across the nation that are facing significant economic challenges due to the spreading Coronavirus outbreak. In the United States, small businesses with less than 20 employees make up almost 90 percent of all U.S. business enterprises in the country, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. Gannett created Support Local to provide communities with an easy way to discover opportunities to help their favorite local businesses and access special services they may be providing during these times. The site, which offers free business listings, allows readers to search by city, and filter by categories such as restaurants, bars, cafes, and bakeries. It currently promotes the purchase of restaurant gift cards and will be adding additional features like special hours, remote access, delivery services, and special offers as alternative means to provide support.
 
Grocery

Instacart is Hiring 300,000 Full-Time Grocery Shoppers
Instacart plans to hire an additional 300,000 full-time contractors to help it deliver groceries as many individuals and families are stuck inside as a result of social distancing measures and shelter in place orders. Instacart says order volume has significantly increased over the last few weeks, with people buying more per cart as well. The company currently operates in about 5,500 cities across the United States and Canada, but it will hire broadly in states like California and New York. In the former, for instance, it plans to bring on approximately 54,000 new full-time shoppers. In other states like Texas and Florida, it will hire thousands of new contractors as well, and provide them with paid sick leave if they are diagnosed with COVID-19 or need to self-isolate.
 
Customer Experience

Coronavirus Emails from Companies May Not Be Calming to Customers
Businesses, large and small, have been sending emails to reassure customers during the coronavirus pandemic, promising clean counters in kitchens and hand sanitizer in stores. But experts say that while companies are trying to inform and reassure their customers, there is a fine line between keeping them in the know and adding to the noise. While communication is warranted in circumstances such as store closures, the emails may not be as comforting as companies hope, experts said. Lloyd Rang, CEO of Lloyd Rang Communications in Toronto, says a lot of companies aren’t reading the room correctly. “Everyone is anxious, so you’re talking to an anxious audience,” he said. “And if you as a company are contributing to a bunch of emails that are flooding peoples’ inboxes, you have to ask yourself the question: Are you helping or not?”
 

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