PAK’nSAVE Whangarei – Reducing costs via Forsite

With bright yellow exteriors, distinctive ad campaigns and bold black signage, PAK’nSAVE is one of New Zealand’s most well-known and loved supermarket brands, not to mention 100% Kiwi Owned & Operated.

PAK’nSAVE’s policy is simple – NZ’s lowest food prices.

It’s a policy that PAK’nSAVE has been committed too since they first opened in Kaitaia in 1985 – and one for which they’ve been officially recognised for the past 11 years by Consumer magazine. *

Of course, to be able to provide customers with the cheapest supermarket shopping in New Zealand does mean there are certain things they have to do without. There’s nothing fancy about PAK’nSAVE. There are the big, wide aisles with the bare, concrete floors that lie between simple, yet sturdy shelving stacked high with a basic range of low-priced products.

When you get to the checkout, you’ll find that if you want bags for your stuff, you’ll have to bring your own or buy theirs for 20 cents each. If you’re lucky, there’ll be a spare cardboard box or two nearby, but don’t expect to find extra staff on hand to pack your groceries for you. You’ll have to do that yourself.

But when the time comes to pay for your shopping, you’ll understand why PAK’nSAVE do things the way that they do. It’s all about doing everything they can keep to costs down so that they can pass the savings directly on to the customer.

Reducing cost was critical

What New Zealanders may not know is that the PAK’nSAVE policy of keeping costs down extends well beyond the shop floor. Behind the scenes, you’ll also find management – and technology – working hard every day to reduce costs in-store.

With 57 stores located across New Zealand, from Kaitaia to Invercargill, PAK’nSAVE deals with hundreds of merchandisers, company representatives and trade contractors every week and on average, each store could induct at least two new people every week.

To keep track of and coordinate that many external company employees while also ensuring they are fully briefed on health and safety matters requires time and effort – something that can start to get expensive if it’s not done efficiently.

This was the challenge facing PAK’nSAVE Whangarei’s Compliance Manager Joanne Banks, who was tasked with finding a solution that would streamline and ensure the time-efficiency and safety of visitors to the store across a national network– and find it she did, in a solution built by Forsite.

Initially, Forsite’s technology was not in scope, but once discovered, it seemed like an ideal solution.

“Our previous method of inducting visitors was time consuming,” says Joanne; “It was a paperwork intensive, slow process that took up to 40 minutes per person – and with new external company employees starting every month, it added up too many hours of administration at PAK’nSAVE Whangarei’s cost not the visiting companies cost. Now, the on-boarding process via Forsite’s app on their mobile phones or online, we can do inductions in a matter of minutes.”

Improving visibility for better planning

Joanne estimates that accounting for the reduction in paperwork that Forsite’s app enables, the company is now saving hundreds of hours in administration costs every year.

However, unlike low food prices, it wasn’t initially easy to sell people on the benefits of the new system. On-boarding external employees brought its own set of challenges, with pushback from users who either didn’t have a smartphone or had issues with data usages or battery life.

To solve this, Forsite ensured there was an on-site maintenance manager available to assist employees with using the portal and so help keep everyone on track.

“Forsite has an awesome support team. Plus, I like that their solution is cloud-based, so we can view information from anywhere. This gives us much better visibility on our overall network, which helps us understand and plan better for the future,” says Joanne.

Being smart to keep costs down

What’s clear is that while health and safety for external companies visiting PAK’nSAVE Whangarei is never something to be done on the cheap, Forsite’s solution is going a long way to ensure that PAK’nSAVE Whangarei can continue to give its customers what they have always aimed to provide – New Zealand’s lowest food prices.

That’s something that every New Zealander can get behind – all it takes is a little Forsite.


For more information on Forsite’s site management app or to request a demo: