Schnuck Markets is turning to a high-tech partner to help maintain an “exceptional” shopping experience: an aisle-roving robot named Tally. Schnucks and Simbe Robotics will collaborate to test-pilot Tally at three St. Louis metro area stores beginning July 31.
During the six-week pilot, Tally will be charged with scanning store aisles three times a day to help keep Schnucks stores fully in stock. Tally will also ensure that each product is placed correctly with its appropriate shelf tag.
Tally is an innovation designed to help provide Schnucks teammates with real-time information, making it easier to do their jobs and ultimately keep shelves full for customers, according to Dave Steck, Schnucks VP of IT-infrastructure. The robot will do its daily storewide scans in the morning, mid-day and evening.
“The data that Tally collects will be sent to Simbe, which will do on-the-spot analysis and provide us with the information we can share with our vendor partners and teammates throughout our organization to help us have the right products at the right time for our customers,” said Steck. “We’re starting Tally’s pilot with a focus on in-stock position, but we’re hopeful that Tally may open up a world of other possibilities with the shelf data it collects.”
The three St. Louis area Schnucks stores taking part in the test are:
• Schnucks Richmond Center, 6600 Clayton Road
• Schnucks Woods Mill, 1060 Woods Mill Road
• Schnucks Kirkwood, 10233 Manchester Road
“We’re excited to see what this partnership brings,” Steck said. “This is just one of many ways that Schnucks is staying at the forefront of technology to enhance our customers’ shopping experiences.”
In addition to bringing the technology to three stores, Schnucks and Simbe have engaged officials at Washington University so students and faculty can benefit from pilot learnings. Some of the potential partnerships include startups/entrepreneurship, engineering/robotics and a data “hackathon” that would allow the university’s students to study the data collected by Tally and look for new ways of driving retail analytics.
Schnuck operates 100 stores in Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin and Iowa.