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Mercadona 'example of innovation and employment strategy', says Harvard Business Review
HARVARD University has flagged up Mercadona supermarket chain as 'an example of innovation and excellent employment'.
Researchers comment on Mercadona's strategy of 'getting the best out of all its workers' potential' and in its having successfully introduced new technologies centred on improving customer experiencem, whilst 'involving workers in the modernisation process without any redundancies'.
Harvard Business Review says the firm is 'an example' of how technology can be used to 'complement' staff roles rather than take them away.
“It helped that Mercadona has focused largely on the customer,” say the researchers from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sarah Kalloch and Zeynep Ton, who compiled the report.
“It has not only developed new strategies to make its own operations easier, but also to improve overall customer experience.”
“The humans working at Mercadona hand in hand with the machinery perform better than either one would on its own,” Kalloch and Ton say.
As staff were 'involved' in developing and implementing the technology, and nobody was made redundant as a result of its being used, they saw it as a useful work tool rather than 'the enemy', Harvard Business Revew explains.
Meanwhile, Mercadona 'took advantage of its employees' creativity' by having them make suggestions for improving products and their packaging, and even in their transport, which has allowed the firm to save 'millions of euros'.
This way, employees on the ground who get to hear about customers' wishes are able to offer solutions for them, Harvard Business Review says.
Mercadona, originally set up in the Valencia region and now present all over Spain, has long been held as a 'socially responsible' and 'staff-focused' employer.
All its staff, except for a minority of temporary ones brought in for busy periods, are on full-time fixed contracts, earning a minimum of €1,200 a month.
Some stores in Barcelona and Madrid have introduced crèches for working parents.
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