One Upgrade Ahead of Change: OCR Canada Implements Nationwide Curbside Service in Less Than 10 Weeks

During the COVID-19 outbreak, retailers nationwide experienced a sudden demand for contactless shopping transactions. As a result, curbside pickup became increasingly popular since it eliminates shipping costs, surprise out-of-stocks, and delayed deliveries. However, while 80% of customers still prefer curbside service, at least 46% of retailers don’t feel ready to expand contactless operations. With at least six out of ten storefronts planning to implement curbside pickup, OCR Canada began to develop a fast and seamless way to equip major grocery retailers with the digitized tools they need to ensure customer satisfaction.

Business Challenge
Modernizing curbside service requires both time and commitment, two forces that are generally lacking in the retail landscape. During the pandemic, labor turnover rates in retail were 1.5x higher than other industries at 30.7%. This means that new solutions must be easy to adopt and versatile to accomplish more tasks without a high learning curve for new employees.

Moreover, with post-pandemic future in sight, research shows that online grocery shopping will account for 21.5% of overall grocery sales by 2025 as 40% of current customers plan to continue utilizing contactless services. Efficient curbside service technologies must be adaptive and secure to support rising activity.

A dependable tech support system is also necessary to keep updates running smoothly with minimal disruptions.

The Solution
OCR Canada worked with a large-scale grocery retailer to deploy enterprise grade hardware and services across 253 facilities. Zebra’s PS20 personal shopper was the device of choice due to the following benefits:

  • Android-powered ease of use and familiarity allows for easy adoption
  • Intelligent PRZM scanning secures more successful first-time scans
  • Integrated product availability and look-up streamlined onto one device
  • Longer battery life sustains more uptime
  • High-speed WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity keeps teams connected outside the four walls

In addition to deploying 2500+ personal shoppers, OCR Canada also installed MI9 retail software on each device to deliver actionable analytics and create a mobile solution that worked seamlessly out of the box. Moreover, all of the devices were covered with Zebra OneCare and OCR Canada TrueSupport support contracts in order to provide the customer peace of mind. Lastly, OCR Canada spearheaded the efforts to install and setup the customer’s mobile device management software on every mobile device, to ensure a seamless rollout.

Unlike competing vendors, OCR Canada was able to further expedite deployment by procuring devices and software, kitting devices for use, assembling shipping pallets, and coordinating shipments for all facilities involved. In about eight weeks, OCR Canada integrated a full turnkey solution and now provides continued helpdesk support.

Benefits and Results
Equipped with faster data processing and intelligent software, OCR Canada enabled seamless e-commerce transactions in the grocery landscape. This has allowed stores to expand their curbside service without overwhelming new employees or disrupting current workflows.

Thanks to its systematic design and deployment model, additional facilities can expect faster integration to create a curbside service solution that enhances brand identity, and most importantly, customer experience.

“Curbside service is part of the new normal. In just eight weeks, OCR Canada worked with a large team to accelerate deployment while dedicating their time to make the implementation process as seamless as possible for current and future employees.”


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