British supermarket chain Waitrose & Partners has piloted a new delivery service in London, ‘While You’re Away’, to deliver groceries into customers home while they are out.
The retailer is currently testing the service with 100 customers located within the vicinity of its dotcom fulfilment centre in Coulsdon, south London.
Leveraging smart lock technology from Yale, customers need to set a temporary access code for the lock to provide access to a Waitrose delivery driver.
The temporary code will be sent to Waitrose through a secure app, which will then be sent to the delivery drivers’ device. The code will be deleted once the delivery is complete.
Waitrose & Partners business development head Archie Mason said: “There is certainly an increasing demand among our customers to make shopping with us even more convenient to fit around their busy lifestyles.
“Rather than waiting for a delivery or trying to put everything away, it gives customers more flexibility to use that time differently, including more time enjoying cooking and eating the food they’ve bought.
“The concept of ‘in-home delivery’ has started to prove popular in other countries so we are keen to establish if there is an appetite for it in the UK.”
In addition, delivery drivers will wear a chest-cam to capture the whole delivery process and will provide the video to customers on request.
Waitrose is offering the service with a minimum order value of £25 and is limiting it six orders per customer. The company expects to review this after the trial period.