Monthly Archives: September 2016

Target Aims to Improve Fresh Produce Aisles

Minneapolis-based retail giant Target could face an uphill battle as it seeks to improve the performance of grocery departments at its nearly 1,800 U.S. stores.

Target announced recently a number of changes aimed at enhancing grocery in its stores: staff members who only work in grocery, executives charged with examining the supply chain, more items that are organic and gluten-free. The company is also testing presentation changes in Los Angeles and Dallas.

The changes were spurred in part by Target’s second-quarter earnings report, which showed comparable sales were down 1.1% from the previous year, and grocery was spotlighted as an area in need of improvement.

What complicates the company’s grocery efforts to some degree, Kantar Retail analyst Amy Koo said, is that Target has limited interest in grocery.

“They’re straddling the line right now where they don’t really want to be in grocery fully, but they also don’t quite know what to do with it,” Koo said. “The idea is … it’s not about the grocery — it’s about getting people into the store to look at other things.”

Target has made no secret of this strategy, but it hasn’t been working particularly well, Koo said.

“Ironically, Target has never been able to use food as a trip-driving mechanism,” Koo said. “It’s really almost on the other side, that they go in for general merchandise or other items, and then they happen to stop by and pick up groceries — kind of opposite effect of what they were hoping for.”

Koo said part of the problem for Target is that customers approach shopping for discretionary items differently than they do shopping for groceries. At the Los Angeles stores in which the company tried out some presentation changes, shoppers commented favorably about the separation between the revamped grocery departments and the rest of the stores. That might not be positive for Target, Koo said.

“I don’t think that’s really ideal because it psychologically also separates Target shoppers from visiting the rest of the store,” Koo said. “They’re very much in the mindset of ‘I’m getting my groceries.’ They’re not thinking about, ‘I’m going to take a look at these dresses,’ or ‘I’m going to swing by the electronics section,’ or anything else of that nature. I think it is they’re optimizing the different parts of the store but they don’t necessarily work well to optimize the full experience.

“They’ve been putting up vignettes or mannequins (in other departments) to make the experience more shoppable and upscale, and (what) they did in the L.A. stores (in grocery departments), which is different wood flooring, just the look and feel being slightly different, that’s also making the experience of shopping that area better, but it is not helping the cross-shopping,” Koo said, “and I think that’s ultimately the tension that Target is going to have. They want it both ways, but they can’t.”

Grocery as Target does it now simply doesn’t fit comfortably into what the company does, but Koo said grocery will be critical due to Target’s emphasis on health and wellness.

“Because Target is pivoting toward this health and wellness front … food does have to be part of that discussion,” Koo said. “Perhaps they need to reevaluate how that integrates, but food is so critical in general to when we think about wellness, it has to be part of it.”

Just because Target hasn’t found its footing in grocery yet, of course, doesn’t mean it won’t do so at some point.

“They’re behind the general industry for being able to manage these food aspects, but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t expertise that they are either able to hire or train, which they seem to be doing right now,” Koo said. “Nevertheless, this is not a strong suit on Target’s part, and I think it’s very much noting in the last two quarters that this particular challenge of getting people to find it convenient or a regular trip, shopping trip, is a little more challenging when you have that limited assortment.”

Koo said changes in operational aspects of the grocery department will be more likely to influence customers than wider offerings or presentation enhancements.

“They are doing things that are improving just general performance, like having staff that is going to be trained in knowing how to handle produce, how to rotate, how to make sure all those items are treated the way they need to be,” Koo said. “That’s just going to inherently improve just the operational aspect, which frankly will move the needle at least a little bit in terms of a shopper picking up those items — or having them in stock, for example, or in good condition (so that people) even want to buy them.”

Story from Thepacker.com

 

USF Fall 2016 Career Services Job Fair

USF Career Services presents Fall 2016 Career Fair Week! Each fair is a great way to network face-to-face with local and national employers interested in hiring USF students and graduates for full-time, co-op and internship positions. Because there are so many employers here on campus throughout the week, career fairs are a very efficient use of your job search time!

Career Fair Week is sponsored in cooperation with the USF Alumni Association.  Career Fair Week events are exclusively for USF students, with valid student ID, and alumni (please bring a current resume that includes your USF degree information).

WHY YOU SHOULD ATTEND

  • Discuss employment openings with employers.
  • Distribute your resume so be sure to bring lots of copies!
  • Share your qualifications, skills, and academic background.
  • Network as you obtain company information and business cards of the organizations that interest you.

EVENT INFORMATION

Professional dress and resume are required for entry into all fairs.

Fall 2016 Career Fair Week Dates

All Majors Fair
Wednesday, September 21, 2016
10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Marshall Student Center Ballroom

BEFORE YOU ATTEND

  • Log-in to and complete your profile within Handshake.
  • Update your resume and make sure it’s uploaded into Handshake.
  • Have your resume critiqued by an employer before the fair at a resume critique event.
  • Attend a Prepare For the Fair Week workshop or event.
  • Research the websites of employers who will be attending.
  • Prepare and rehearse a one-minute introduction or “elevator speech.”
  • Practice answering possible interview questions.
  • Make sure your professional attire is ready to go.  Need professional attire?  Borrow it for free at Suit-A-Bull.

Please stop by the ReedTMS booth and ask us what we can do for you! We look forward to seeing all of you and wish you good luck!

 

National Truck Driver Appreciation Week Sept. 11-17

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In recognizing the 7.3 million trucking industry employees who move America’s freight, the American Trucking Associations (ATA) is encourages industry stakeholders to prepare for the upcoming National Truck Driver Appreciation Week, scheduled Sunday through next Saturday, Sept. 11-17.

“Those who work in the trucking industry or personally know a truck driver understand the important work that these men and women do on the road each day,” said ATA President and CEO Chris Spear. “Truck drivers are safe, dedicated individuals who help provide our daily goods and I hope the public celebrates and thanks all 3.5 million of them during National Truck Driver Appreciation Week.”

The trucking industry, which provides one out of every 16 jobs in America, moves more than 70.1 percent of the nation’s total freight tonnage. Further, more than 80 percent of U.S. communities rely exclusively on trucking for delivery of their goods and commodities — providing access to 21st century products to both remote rural communities and urban centers.

In recognition of the week honoring the trucking industry, morning shows throughout the country are broadcasting live via satellite from ATA First Vice Chairman Kevin Burch’s Jet Express facility in Dayton, Ohio, where America’s Road Team Captains will discuss the trucking industry and the professional truck driving career. Motor carriers and industry suppliers are encouraged to browse ATA’s NTDAW Event Ideas and host appreciation events as a way of saying thank you to truck drivers and their families.

“Truck drivers are incredibly vital to our economy, but they’re also valuable members of their communities, oftentimes serving as baseball coaches, pastors and volunteers,” Burch said. “That level of civic engagement is a unique foundation of the trucking industry, and whether truck drivers are delivering FEMA disaster relief aid or dropping their kids off at school they are focused on safety at all times.”

The official 2016 NTDAW logo can be downloaded on the ATA website. The site also offers resources ranging from state proclamation drafts to examples of editorials for trucking industry affiliates to enhance their driver appreciation events. ATA provides these resources to the industry to make it easier for passionate industry professionals to engage their communities in this important week. These resources improve the image of the professional truck driver and demonstrate community support for the challenging work that drivers do each day.

Story from Truckingnewsonline

August’s Employee of the Month

Congratulations to Kevin Schrock, ReedTMS Logistics’ employee of the month. Kevin has been an employee who always shows an extremely positive attitude and seeks to help the company in as many ways as possible. Last month, despite a couple unforeseen leaves of absences Kevin’s department exceeded expectations in large part due to his diligent work.

Some of the comments were as follows:
“We had quite a few associates on vacation in the month of August and Kevin stepped up on the operations side with booking freight in every zone imaginable. He did everything that our management team asked of him without question and kept a positive attitude the whole time without allowing us to fall behind.”
“Kevin is an incredible employee who always displays a positive attitude. It’s remarkable the amount of work he does.”
“He knocks loads right out of the park and help assist in other lanes when need be!”
Thanks for all you do Kevin, keep up the good work!