Improving the customer experience at Valk Fresh Food Market

With 900 m2 of floor space, the first Valk Fresh Food Market in The Netherlands is not only spacious but also combines focus on small scale produced products and an ultramodern shopping experience.

Head of Purchasing and Sales Frits Schoemaker explains, “More and more people are switching to traditional, genuine flavors. At the same time, they still want to enjoy fast and top-quality service!” In addition to this, Valk Fresh Food Market also fulfils a third wish: attractive pricing.

Schoemaker continues, “I am responsible for purchasing for 34 Van der Valk hotels, and so enjoy huge economies of scale. We focus entirely on fresh products and purchase much of our goods directly from the producers. This allows us for example to stock delicious cheeses that are simply not available in the supermarket. We also stock a fabulous range of wines.”

XL Display Counter

Customer experience was the main consideration when designing the fresh food market. Fresh fish laid out on a bed of ice, butchers preparing and portioning fantastic meat while you wait, tens of meters of fresh vegetables? Careful thought was given to every aspect, except perhaps how to deal with the huge customer flow.

“The old butcher shop that made way for the fresh product market was fitted with a standard display counter. Now we have a 24 meter long display! One of our butchers argued, ‘If we don’t have a well-managed TakeaNumber system, our customers will soon be barging and shoving to get to the counter’. However, an old-fashioned ticket dispenser had no place in our fantastic fresh product market, where absolutely everything is state of the art. So I went searching for an alternative, and soon found Qmatic.”

Qmatic Customized Solution

“We asked Qmatic to create a customized solution for us. In the butcher’s department we work with seven state of the art weighing scales, integrated in the display counter. Together with our weighing scale supplier, Qmatic developed software that enables the scales and the Qmatic platform to be seamlessly combined. Customers ‘sign in’ at the Qmatic kiosk and large display screens inform them when it is their turn. The screens are visible from anywhere in the market. That means that while waiting for their turn, people can go pick up a delicious cheese or a good bottle of wine. We also have a screen in the back of the butchery department, which displays how many customers are waiting, and the average waiting time; a useful tool during quieter periods, when display counter staff can step back and help the butchers while still being able to see when it is time to return to the displays. In the future, we aim to use Qmatic to optimize our staff numbers. The platform is a valuable source of management information.”

“From every corner of the shop, customers can see when it is their turn to be served!”
Frits Schoemaker - Head of Purchasing and Sales

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