Friday, July 13, 2007

Shopping cart collection

Let's see how much I can write in half an hour time. Being away from the internet is like the life being cut off from the outside world. Mr. Awaara called the service provider and was told that it needs 15 working days to get the connection. 15 days!!! can you believe it? I am a little shocked. What is there they need to do for 15 days? In Providence, it is the same day i remember. Why does it need so many days?
One reason was convincing about the service sector less efficient and higher cost is about the Dutch language. It is a language spoken by 16 million people in the netherlands and some in Belgium. Although almost all dutch can speak English, they are proud of their own language, and they want immigrants in their country to learn to speak dutch. As a result not like US, all customer service lines can be outsourced to Indian. Dutch have to do it by their own people. This might affect their lower ability to hire more people because of high cost of labor in this country.
As we are here in this country for a while, we are discovering things that are different from US. It is hard to see which one is better, maybe you can judge based on what I am telling.

One interesting thing is about the supermarket shopping cart collection. People living in US must have the experience of going to the market with a shopping cart. Bringing everything you bought in the store with the cart and dump them in front of your car trunk. And then? If your car was happening to park close to a cart collecting point, you might push it there. If there is no collecting point or it is too far away, you will see carts are literally scattered around the huge parking lot. Then, a working position is also created: a shop assistant specifically in charge of collecting all those carts.
Here in the netherlands, things are different. You don't have to pay for using a shopping cart over a shopping basket, but you are bound with the responsibility of return the cart to the original place by paying a deposit for using it. The deposit was a coin, can be either 50c, 1 euro, or two euros coins. All carts are parked with a chain locking them together. Inserting a coin in a slot on the chain can allow you to free one of the shopping cart. After returing it back and locking it back to the chain, you are able to get your coin back. It is a simple idea, but it does make a lot of sense. It saves a labor in the shop to work on it. Stores here are usually more crowded shelfed, this way also discourage the use of cart and encourage the use of basket. The trick is only the design of the chain.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

o, i didn't know that.