TOUS Prepares Store Reopenings with New Customer Safety Measures
• The jewelry firm has tweaked its production system to shore up cleaning and disinfection and produce materials to preserve in-store safety
• As of today TOUS has 53 stores open in 6 countries and plans to open 116 more in 7 countries, including Spain, the week starting 11 May
• The company will make the COVID-19 test available to its staff
TOUS, the Spanish fine jewelry and accessories brand and leader in the affordable luxury segment, has spent weeks preparing to get back to work as soon as the governments and health authorities of each country allow it. With this goal, the company put together a dedicated Occupational Health and Safety Committee to evaluate all the current protocols, both in the offices as well as the workshops and retail stores, and to propose new processes to secure employee, customer and community health.
The plan drafted by the committee includes a COVID-19 Customer Care Ritual, a protocol that unites customer care quality with safety and hygiene measures specifically for its teams at the retail spaces and which is expected to be put into effect in Spain starting 11 May when the first stores can raise their blinds and reopen for business. As of today, TOUS has 53 stores open in 6 countries, and plans to open 116 more in 7 countries, including Spain, next week. The firm plans to reach 50% of its fleet of stores in June, if the current evolution of the pandemic at the global level is maintained.
In addition to basic cleaning and disinfection measures, the availability of gloves, masks, and disinfectant gel for customers, as well as PPE for the sales team and the adaptation of spaces to ensure permitted capacity and safety distances, TOUS has rolled out other safety elements in its proprietary owned workshop to double down on the creation of a customer-safe space. The company has tweaked its production system to create 3D-printed earring modeling systems that will enable customers to try earrings on without handling them directly.
The TOUS workshop is also manufacturing methacrylate protection screens similar to the ones used in pharmacies and supermarkets, which will be positioned at the counters of all its stores. The company is also studying new safety elements to apply them going forward if necessary.
Jewelry hygiene across the entire process
The jewelry firm has been working to the highest quality standards for the past hundred years and will continue to do so, ensuring customers that all its jewelry is safe. For this, before leaving the workshop, all the pieces will be disinfected with a hydroalcoholic or hydrogen peroxide solution that ensures the elimination of any bacteria.
In-store, the jewelry will also be disinfected before and after handling by customers or TOUS personnel, using dedicated products and, in some stores, ultrasound machines, devices that enable extreme cleaning to disinfect jewelry and continue to provide our aftersales service under good sanitary conditions. There is also a solution for dry disinfection in all the stores.
All TOUS employees, whether at the retail outlets or in the main offices or workshop, will have to follow a dedicated safety protocol, such as taking their temperature daily, using personal protective equipment including gloves and masks, abiding by the permitted safety distances and capacities, and utilizing the common areas that have been adapted and adjusted to the new regulations. TOUS will also make the COVID-19 test available to its staff.
Advanced omni-channel service to the customer
Being close to the customer at all times is TOUS 'priority, that is why the company has been adjusting its systems to the new reality of each moment in order to continue offering a close and excellent service, also following the recommended sanitary measures in each case.
Thus, on the one hand, the company adapted internal processes to ensure a maximum safety and hygiene protocol in its e-commerce channel, which in April experienced notable growth of more than triple sales compared to last year. This has meant that, despite having the physical stores closed, TOUS total sales in the main markets have remained at 20%.
But in addition, at this time TOUS has opted for advanced omnichanality that has allowed the development of various initiatives to encourage retail sales. This means the launch of assisted distance sales through the phone and messaging apps, with the possibility of buying through these channels and with home delivery, or making an appointment to go to the already open stores. The company has adjusted its operational systems to apply this advanced omni-channel process for the benefit of the client, giving better advice and service, and offering all possible options for a safe and satisfactory purchase.
As Carlos Soler-Duffo, CEO of TOUS, affirms, “we have fully adapted to this new normality that is given by the current situation, driven above all by the illusion of continuing to be with our clients and offering them the best of our company, especially in this year in which we celebrate our centenary. Both the collections and the campaigns have been adjusted to the special feeling of these moments. In addition to guaranteeing a safe shopping experience, the accompaniment in the sale is also very important for it to be satisfactory. The growth of our online channel is a sign of the trust of our clients, who continue to want to be in contact with us. Our sales teams are very excited to be back face-to-face contact with their customers and offer the best service, and in this new normality, we will continue to work in parallel to consolidate the company's omnichannel approach ”concludes Carlos Soler-Duffo, CEO of TOUS.