"Nice to be able to help in times like these"

"Nice to be able to help in times like these"

Shop manager at work during corona crisis

During the corona crisis, approximately 90 Vodafone shops, (as well as all the Ziggo shops) remain open to the public. Entering and shopping has become an entirely different experience, though. Two people from where it’s all happening give us a view of the inside.

Danny Rongen, cluster manager Retail at VodafoneZiggo: "At the beginning of the corona crisis we had to shut down our 140 shops to guarantee the safety of our employees and customers. After a few constructive sessions with the shop employees we decided on what would be needed to reopen. The result of this fantastic collaboration was the introduction of several measures including a hygiene package for each shop and a door policy to safeguard the social distance of 1.5 m, among other things. This has led to around two thirds of all the shops now being open again."

Shop manager Giorgio Fasel was quick to implement the necessary changes in the Vodafone shop in Leiden. "We worked hard to ensure a safe environment, following all the guidelines from the RIVM and our own company. Gloves, hand gel, disinfecting wipes are at hand at all times. We have had to remove all demonstration models for reasons of hygiene. The big empty demo tables have been moved and are now used as counter. In this way people know where to go."

Sneezing, snivelling or discussions? Then no access
The door policy of the Vodafone shops is strict. "People sneezing or snivelling are not allowed to enter", says Giorgio. "Once in a while we refuse someone, because he enters into a discussion with us about the access rules. Well, if you’re not taking corona seriously as a customer, our door remains closed to you. Fortunately, the vast majority of people is understanding and positive."

80% fewer customers
Every customer is served one to one by an employee. There are three colleagues in total in the shop, of whom one is at the door. Therefore, a maximum of two customers can be in the shop at the same time. "In normal times we receive around 8,000 customers a month. In this unprecedented period we see 80% less people in the shopping streets."

Restored contact with very old mother
Giorgio is pleased that he and his colleagues are still able to help customers with sales ánd service. "We can pay extra attention to everyone coming in now. Most people have a very specific goal. Recently, a 60-year-old lady came in to buy a phone and a subscription for her aged mother. From now on they can stay in touch again, albeit virtually, now that the home where she is staying is closed to visitors of course. Fortunately, she was not met by a closed door here. We were able to help her get started so that contact could be restored. Wonderful to help someone to that end."

Working in these unsettled times demands quite some flexibility of Giorgio and his colleagues. "Luckily we’re good at improvising. We take hygiene and safety very seriously, but we also have quite a few laughs. We close the shop during lunchtime and eat together. We also stay in touch with colleagues that are home now. Sometimes there is time to do a short training to keep up our service and sales skills."

For more news and background information about VodafoneZiggo and the corona crisis, please visit