'Happy to Chat' badges have become permanent for Asda delivery drivers - this is what they mean

Wednesday, 17th March 2021, 11:52 am
Updated Wednesday, 17th March 2021, 11:53 am
The badges had been launched towards the end of 2020 (Photo: Asda)
The badges had been launched towards the end of 2020 (Photo: Asda)

Asda has announced that its Happy to Chat initiative has been extended into a permanent feature for delivery drivers.

Delivery drivers have the option to wear a badge on their uniform, and it allows customers to know that they’re happy to have a chat with them whilst their shopping is being delivered.

‘Positive response from customers’

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Vice President of Online Grocery at Asda, Simon Gregg, said: “As Covid restrictions begin to lift but many still feel the impact of the last year without regular contact with friends and family, it felt right to make our Happy to Chat badgers a permanent fixture to our drivers’ uniforms.

“We’re incredibly proud of all the work they do - and this badge is a symbol of their continued friendly and approachable service which can make such a difference to those who don’t have much contact with others.”

Delivery driver, Geoff Norris, said: “We’ve had such a positive response from customers since we introduced the badges, you can tell that even a five minute chat with someone whilst you’re delivering their shopping can have such a positive impact on their day.”

‘Challenging time for those experiencing loneliness’

The badges were originally launched at the end of November 2020 and, at the time, Anna-Maree Shaw, CCO of Asda, said: “It’s a challenging time for everyone, especially those experiencing loneliness.

“While Asda colleagues have always made an effort to have a quick chat and raise a smile, we want to make sure that whether it’s in our stores, at the doorstep or in the community - we’re here for customers.”

Vice President of Online Grocery at Asda, Simon Gregg, added: “We’ve always been proud to have some of the friendliest drivers here at Asda, and never more so than this year.

“The Happy to Chat badges are a symbol of the great work they do - delivering a little kindness along with their groceries to someone who may be lonely or isolated.”

Customers battling isolation

The initiative had been developed following a study which showed that almost a quarter of people (23 per cent) were only interacting with someone else once a week - many of whom were delivery drivers.

One in four people also said that they looked forward to seeing the drivers just so that they could have someone to talk to.

According to research done by the Royal Voluntary Service last year, 13 per cent of people said they were experiencing loneliness, with over a third (39 per cent) unable to see friends and family, and a quarter (25 per cent) left without support nearby.

The badges were designed for the 42 per cent of people who said that they shy away from starting a conversation because they don’t want to be a burden, and the 25 per cent of people who would be happy to start a conversation if they knew the other person was happy to talk as well.