Woolworths manager's note on Covid policy offends customer

Yahoo News Staff
·3-min read

A Woolworths customer was feeling "embarrassed and confused" after she claimed she received a handwritten note from a customer service manager informing her of the Covid policy on handling customer's goods.

The customer took to Facebook in a lengthy explanation stating she was attempting to use a gift card on her mobile phone in Woolworths Hornsby in Sydney when she was having difficulty scanning the barcode.

"I tried many many times and did whatever the checkout lady asked me to do. But it did not go through," the woman wrote.

A note from a Woolworths manager that reads,
A Woolworths customer was shocked to receieve a handwritten note reading ''Coronavirus, team members can decide if they want to handle customer bags, phones etc...'. Source: Facebook

The customer explained she was incorrectly asked by the staff member at the checkout to scan her phone under the Woolworths Rewards Hub scanner.

"She asked me turn my mobile vertical and the asked me turn it other ways... I tried it all. She eventually told me that it's because my password is incorrect, so the payment would not be processed," the woman wrote.

"Finally she very impatiently took my mobile and scanned the barcode from her side in front of her computer."

Woolworths staff not obliged to touch customer's property

The customer asked why the checkout operator did not take her phone in the first place and was told she did not want to touch the phone because of coronavirus.

The customer then sought out the customer service manager to confirm the correct way to scan gift cards from her mobile. She claimed he told her it can be scanned under the Rewards scanner. 

She asked what if that isn't working and was taken aback when handed a hastily written note scribbled on the the back of a receipt.

"Coronavirus, team members can decide if they want to handle customer bags, phones etc..."

The customer said that while she felt it was "reasonable" for staff to not want to touch customer's phones, she felt the tone of the note was "offensive and rude".

A Woolworths trolley
The Woolworths customer said she was given a hand written epxlination for the incident by a service manager. Source: AAP

"Because no customer service officer would tell a customer directly 'I do not want to touch your mobile because of coronavirus'."

Woolworths responds to customer on Facebook 

"Our stores have separate scanners to scan the gift card barcodes from the customers' phones. We're very sorry to hear about your overall shopping experience and understand how you feel," Woolworths wrote on the customer's Facebook post.

"Please be assured that we've already addressed this matter to our Hornsby store management team for their awareness."

Woolworths told Yahoo News Australia the safety of team members and customers is its number one priority. The supermarket supports staff decisions to avoid handling customers' phones.

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