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"Gordon,

Let's meet fresh!"

Connecting local

food growers with

everyday retail

customers.

Introduction:

This was a joint project with Gordon Food Services, who are a foodservice distributor based in Michigan serving the eastern half

of the United States, Relish Works, which is

an innovation hub focused on pioneering

the next evolution of the food industry, and

IIT Institute of Design.

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Gordon Food Service Retail store in Palatine.

The Challenge:

How might we (Gordon Food Service) play a significant role in better connecting both restaurant operators and everyday consumers with local food products and producers?

Research -Phase I:

To understand the current ecosystem of Gordon Food Service, we started with secondary research about the company. Based on our findings, we created the following Entities Relationships Attributes and Functions map:

For the scope of our project, we divided into teams of three and decided to focus on the retail experience of Gordon Food Service. 

Research -Phase II:

3

GFS store visits

12

Open observation sessions

5

GFS Staff Interviews

10

Customer

Intercepts

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Interviews

Observation

“Retail stores originally opened as an emergency destination for wholesale customers.”

- Store Manager

“I come for spices because they’re in good quality and cheap. I don’t buy fresh produce here.” - Individual customer

Contextual inquiry

Major findings about the retail experience:

 

  1. Wholesale customers come daily for the urgent need of certain products.

  2. GFS retail store attracts low price-conscious retail customers.

  3. Reward program for retail customers does not provide real benefits.

  4. Wholesale and retail customers have different expectations that are not well supported by store experience now.

  5. The fresh produce section is not given proper visibility to customers.

  6. GFS store employees are doing a good job in customer relationships.

Whole sale quantities dominate display

Small section of fresh produce in a corner

Warehouse style display

Based on our findings, we came up with the following 6 design guidelines:

Persona and scenario:

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Ideation Workshop:

The Proposal

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Users: PT residents

Scenario: An emergency situation related to PT resident's apartment unit or the property.

Solution: A mobile application for residents to quickly report and track emergency issues.

Opportunity in the current system:

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We facilitated a workshop to generate ideas for the solution.

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Ideas bucketed in 7 different categories

The solution:

Gordon Mobile Order Application designed for both wholesale and retail customers, with a strong focus on fresh products with source awareness, competitive price and quick delivery.

Feedback

Sketch prototype testing

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Paper prototype testing

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Feature based on  feedback from real customer