Case Studies

Customer Story: Regional Grocer

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1 Challenge Industry Company Solution Results Major Grocery Retailer Retail Provide business training and professional development for their community of small business suppliers whose goods populate the shelves of more than 400 retail locations. OpenSesame content allowed a major grocer to launch a training program in their existing learning platform, creating a pilot initiative to support small business suppliers with training in the key areas of Professional Development and Business Skills. • Quickly deployed pilot learning program, which quickly created demand from other communities for a similar program. • Identified opportunities for other areas of training across the organization • Created a path for scalable improvement and broadening of their learning program Regional grocery chain empowers their diverse small suppliers with hybrid training. Even with more than 400 retail locations, this popular grocery chain's commitment to people permeates their organization. Their vision statement even prioritizes people as their actual core business, with groceries as the secondary focus. Today's new supply chain realities, beginning in the pandemic, provided an unexpected stress test for that ideal: How can one of America's largest private companies continue providing local, fresh and high-quality products to their customers from the myriad of small businesses that produce those goods? In response, the Grocer initiated a program to develop those vendors-not just to keep the store's shelves stocked, but so they could each continue to grow as independent and sustainable businesses. Understanding where the gaps really are The Grocer's HR team had an existing platform to provide training for internal employees, covering fundamental topics like harassment, safety, the Code of Conduct, etc… and while it was helpful for compliance and organizational alignment, it became increasingly clear that there was a disconnect in the communications between the buyers and the external suppliers. The Grocer's procurement teams were immersed in the day-to-day practice and jargon of business and production, but the small-business suppliers were - in some cases - complete novices with retail vocabulary and processes like invoicing, purchase order execution, forecasting and business models, inventory management, and leveraging capital. The pandemic 'ripped the band-aid off' and exposed where these small businesses were most under-prepared. The Grocer's Supplier Diversity department saw the gap as an opportunity to provide value and be of service to people in the communities who needed more fundamental training. These small brands were experiencing the acute growing pains of needing to quickly scale from a stand at a farmer's market to being on shelves in 150+ local stores. Business and retail-specific expertise were desperately needed, so the learning team worked with OpenSesame to identify 25 learning modules to integrate with the Grocer's learning platform. The training gives those suppliers a one-up in their businesses - the content we get from OpenSesame are those courses that they would need to pay for at a University" Supplier Diversity Manager

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