Driver name: Georgie Kennedy
Picking store: Horley, Surrey
Delivery date: 7 March
Shopper location: Crawley, West Sussex
How long have you worked as a delivery driver? I used to be an events manager in London and became a delivery driver for Waitrose last November. I’ve always liked having an active job and have found this role suits my personality as I like to chat with customers. I always like to try and talk when I’m delivering shopping, especially while we’re all in lockdown.
You must be very busy these days? Demand for deliveries has been very high since the start of last year and we’re continuing to offer as many slots as we can. Our branch is now doing more than 1,900 deliveries per week and we offer the click & collect service, which has great uptake too. Coronavirus has also meant all of us drivers are wearing masks and maintaining social distancing, and we always do everything we can to make sure shoppers still receive the best service possible.
Has there been any hit to availability as shoppers stock up? We’ve had good availability and everyone in the branch has done their utmost to make that the case.
How do you find dealing with customers? All the customers I deliver to are always so friendly, and there are some I deliver to regularly. A lot of customers say how grateful they are for the job we are doing, which is always so lovely to hear. Some tell me the used to go into a branch to do their shopping, but the pandemic has meant that they’ve been relying on Waitrose.com over the last year, and many love to get a copy of Waitrose Weekend in their delivery as it brings back a little normality. Everyone has gone through a lot of change in the last year but from the customers I’ve delivered to, I’d say that generally our customers are foodies and that certainly hasn’t changed, especially as people have had more time to try out different recipes and products.
How have you coped with the winter weather? I found it really difficult when we had snow earlier this year as it’s not something I’ve had to do before. I was really conscious about making sure deliveries still got to customers on time, whilst also making sure I was safe. That few days of snow we had really taught me how capable I am of taking on new challenges.
Have you noticed any big trends for food orders as Easter approaches? Our Easter products have already been really well-shopped, especially our Chocolate Pomegranate and No.1 range of Easter eggs. I think everyone is focusing on having things to look forward to at the moment, and adding a few treats to the grocery shopping is helping to lift spirits.
What is your best memory of being a driver? Something I’m really grateful for is the team I work with. Some of us were in completely different jobs this time last year but we’ve all come together and worked very hard to support people in our community during these uncertain times.