Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 37

opportunities in more
densely populated areas.
First-time visitors to Heinen's
Currently, Heinen's
downtown Cleveland store
Chicagoland stores are
are awestruck by the grand
located in the suburban
rotunda's ornate railings,
communities of Glengilded details and stained
view, Bannockburn,
glass ceiling.
Barrington, and Lake
Bluff. However, those
areas are pretty similar
to Cleveland area stores
in that they are well
north and northwest of
downtown Chicago and in the case of Lake Bluff only
"This wasn't a great
10 miles from the Wisconsin border. According to Tom
business decision.
Heinen, the company's store in downtown Cleveland
gives the company, "a way to experience urban markets
so if and when we decide to go into downtown Chicago This was a great
we have a lot better idea about designing and operating
as opposed to suburban families. One
decision for the city
stores there based on our learnings in Cleveland."
of the early insights based on purchase
of Cleveland,"
The company has no imminent plans to make such
behavior was the need to add a hot
a move, but were it to do so, it is hard to imagine the
bar to accommodate the demand for
-Jeff Heinen, Co-President and
company could find a more challenging real estate
prepared meals and meal solutions
owner, Heinen's Fine Foods
project than what it dealt with in downtown Cleveland.
that are much greater in the urban
For example, to deliver goods to the store trucks navigate a
store. The company takes things a step further than the obvious
narrow alley that has one way in and one way out. Merchandise
use case to plan meals and incorporate ingredients based on
is dropped on one of two loading docks shared with tenants in
trends and other behaviors revealed by consumption and urban
adjacent buildings. From there, a freight elevator is only able
lifestyle patterns.
to move two pallets at a time to a basement stockroom that
"We are not really headed to creating Blue Apron style meal
doubles as a food preparation area. Products then have to be
kits as much as we are looking to create meal solutions for
brought back upstairs to either the first or second level via elevacustomers where they have choices of entrees and side dishes to
tor or stairs. The entire process is much more labor intensive
choose from and we are going to pair them more effectively than
than in a typical suburban location configured with operational
we do now," Tom Heinen said.
efficiencies in mind.
While Heinen's faces many of the same competitive chalWhile the Heinens have found ways to cope with the operalenges as other retailers and some unique one related to their
tional challenges of the unique location, the retailer has also
downtown Cleveland store, persuading employees to work at the
become a more aggressive user of data to manage assortments
unconventional location wasn't one of them. The store is staffed
geared to new consumption patterns, pack sizes and shopper
by 90 people and 55 of those positions were filled by employees
frequency. Heinen's has long used data to inform assortment
who volunteered from other stores, according to the brothers.
decision-making but now the company is entering a new era
"As a company we believe we invest way more time, energy and
of leveraging data through a partnership with dunnhumby to
money into developing the knowledge and skills of our people
drive personalization and pricing decisions. Heinen's, like many
than the average retailer and food retailers for sure," Jeff Heinen
smaller retailers, is part of the "democratization of data," movesaid. "We see people as one of the ways we truly create a differentiment that gives the company the type of data collection and
ated shopping experience so it is very important strategically that
analytical abilities once reserved for larger organizations with
our people have the knowledge and skills to do that."
big IT budgets.
Tom Heinen added, "We view people as an asset to be lever"Being small when you deal with big data is actually an adaged, not a cost to be minimized." RL
vantage," explained Tom Heinen. "Big companies are like driving
a cruise ship. We are in a speedboat and can change very quickly.
Take a video tour of Heinen's Cleveland store with
What has really leveled the playing field for smaller companies is
Tom and Jeff. Visit www.RetailLeader.com to watch
good data driven decisions."
the latest installment of The Prophets of Aisle Six
Leveraging data is especially important at the Heinen's
presented by dunnhumby. The first-of-its-kind series
downtown Cleveland store because it is such a unique format.
was created to explore how food retailers are using
data and innovation to reshape their businesses and
The store is small at 27,000-sq.-ft. compared to the typical
the customer experience.
42,000-sq.-ft. Heinen's suburban location and being in an urban
area also means serving a higher concentration of Millennials
MAY/JUNE 2018 Retail Leader.com

37


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Retail Leader - May/June 2018

Contents
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - Cover1
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - Cover2
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 3
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - Contents
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 5
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 6
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 7
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 8
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 9
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 10
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 11
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 12
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 13
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 14
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 15
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 16
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 17
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 18
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - S1
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - S2
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - S3
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - S4
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - S5
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - S6
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - S7
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - S8
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 19
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 20
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 21
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 22
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 23
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 24
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 25
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 26
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 27
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 28
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 29
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 30
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 31
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 32
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 33
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 34
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 35
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 36
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 37
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 38
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 39
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Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 41
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - 42
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - Cover3
Retail Leader - May/June 2018 - Cover4
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