Are Changes Coming To Cody Walgreens?
Written by Mac Watson on June 3, 2023
Walgreens is radically changing the footprint of at least one store in Chicago in reaction to numerous recent events where people are brazenly coming into the pharmacy chain and blatantly shoplifting numerous items off the shelves and walking out of the store with handfuls or shopping bags full of inventory.
But will drastic changes come to the Walgreens in Cody? Not yet. It depends on the test run happening in Chicago, if Walgreens decides to implement the new shopping experience nation-wide.
Executives at the company are making significant changes to prevent the explosion of shoplifting and thefts that have been on the rise in their stores across the country since last year, according to CNN.
In reaction to the sharp rise in shoplifting nationally, Windy City residents now have a different shopping experience in one store with a redesigned Walgreens with considerable anti-theft measures that opened last week.
Customers will not be unable to shop for themselves, being able to roam down aisle after aisle, choosing what they need and taking their purchases to the register to check out. Instead, the reconfigured store have two small aisles of “essentials,” according to CWBChicago.
ORDERING BY KIOSK
Shoppers will now have to go to a digital kiosk and choose items that they would like to purchase. After their order is placed digitally, the customer can then pick up their products at a checkout counter after an employee retrieves the order. The pharmacy at the Chicago location also has a kiosk system.
“This redesigned store will have the latest in e-commerce offerings to increase customer service, mitigate theft, and increase safety for our customers and employees,” the retailer wrote in an email. Two employees monitor the “essentials” section where you can “shop for yourself.”
A company spokesperson says the Chicagoland location is serving as a test run and that Walgreens desires to improve the customer experience with the changes. They said the retailer is “testing a new experience at this store with new concepts, technologies, and practices to enhance the experiences of our customers and team members. It will continue to offer retail products and pharmacy services, just with a new look and feel that focuses on shopping digitally for convenience.”
The spokesperson continued: “Inside the store, customers will find an area where they can pick-up orders, digital kiosks for placing an order, as well as an area to shop for essential items.”
‘TREATED LIKE A CRIMINAL’
Despite the footprint and digital upgrades in the store, as well as the efforts Walgreens is taking to ensure a safe shopping experience, customers took to social media online and ripped the pharmacy chain for the new changes, as reported by Lipstick Alley.
“This is dumb. Sadly, I can see more stores doing this. We are definitely living in the twilight zone now,” one person wrote.
“I knew this would happen. Next stop will be having to scan an ID or credit card before entering the store at all,” another chimed in.
A third added: “And this is why I do 95% of my shopping online. I don’t appreciate being treated like a criminal.”
But some online comments defended Walgreens’ decision, noting that shoplifting and crime are to blame for the new experience at the Chicago location.
“This is where we are headed. Criminality has infested American culture. Companies are going to do what they can to prevent theft, which includes making it more difficult to steal,” a shopper noted.
“This was definitely coming. Shoplifting is beyond out of control,” another commented.
“I’m not too surprised and I’m not mad at it. Stealing has gotten out of control and there is now whole online communities dedicated to it,” echoed a third.