Sav-a-Lot Grocery Audit

Has anyone done one of these? MSC called, added a $10 bonus for this mystery shop/audit. Yep - 2 for 1. So, now it pays $20 for what is a quick shop then audit. I just pulled up the instructions and 35 page! guidelines/questionnaire. I have to laugh at the expectations, for what was originally $10! And I assume printing out the 35 page audit form. If I'm exaggerating, let me know; otherwise, I will be cancelling.

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I did one of these audits . The company also added a 10 bonus. After completing the shop I said never again. This shop for all of the requirements is way way underpriced.
The shop takes me 30-50 minutes in the store and about thirty minutes to report, including photo management. I usually get $35 to do them (10+25) and once did 8 in a day in a city 90 minutes away.
I did three on the same day and decided never again. I know some shoppers love them. I agree with the times from elcarev68. I would not do one for less than $30.

Not my circus - Not my monkeys @(*.*)@

~Polish Proverb~
I did one for a competitor. Since there was no deli, no meat counter, and no one in the produce department, it was easy as pie. I'll continue doing them as long as the competition wants the worthless reports. Easy money for me...but again, these were competitor shops.
I have done four Sav-a-Lot audits. They are easy. The first time I took too many pictures. The next three took about 30 minutes.
They are douable. The 35 page is only to inform you what is to be expected. Even though one has to check every department. If one times their self correctly, you can be out of the store in under a hour. I agree with EC68smiling smiley
Glad I found this thread. I am shopping one on vacation Labor Day weekend. Not sure it will be worth the effort.
Once you complete 1 or 2 of these, they can be done in about 20-25 minutes in store, and 15 minutes entering the debrief. The bonuses that the MSC offers can vary widely. I have done them with 25, 35 bonuses, and the fee works out. Other times, the bonus requests get countered with measly offers. It's best to use your discretion, and if you think it's worthwhile, go for it.

Philadelphia Based, covering Eastern Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland
I've heard nightmare stories about the conditions and the staff at the locations near where I live/work so I have turned them done no matter what the bonus.

“I'm the one that's got to die when it's time for me to die, so let me live my life the way I want to.”
~ Jimi Hendrix

“The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.” ~ Mark Twain

“To the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure.” ~ J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
S2L: that is the trick, Know the location. There are two locations near me that are always clean and up to code on everything and I don't mind doing them when they are bonused enough. There are other locations I would not go into no matter what the bonus.
Jangler: I agree once you have done a couple and know what to look for, it is quite a bit easier. I can do the locations I do in less than 30 minutes in store.
The one near me is brand new and I have been in the store. It's very clean since it's new, but the MSC has to up the bonus if they want it done. It's still two shops in one and photos. Thanks everyone for your input.
I have one they give me every month so I don't mind them. It is a less than an hour and it keeps me on their list of active shoppers. They then call me when they need one done with a bonus which is better. :-) I also reuse the safety vest for other shops (and when I have to direct traffic).
I spent over an hour on the first one of these. Once you read the 35 page picture book and know what to look for, you can knock this out in about 30 minutes and take about 12-15 pictures. I made a cheat sheet in Excel that has all the needed info on one page.

My number of pictures is probably higher than some will submit, but I have very high speed internet and it's very quick to upload the pictures and they dont have to be resized from my Nexus 7 5 MP camera even.

I asked the store manager how long the person would spend before me, and was told that they were usually in and out in 15 minutes for the audit portion. Obviously, they didn't walk every isle and count the number of out of stock items on the grocery section.

I found it quite funny that the manager was trying to get ahead of me and was personally re-stocking the freezer section with one or two items for the items he had in the back room that were not out in that section. I snapped a picture of him stocking an item as I was snapping a picture of the empty spot.

I gave him a dirty look and he picked the product back up, and let me snap the picture of the non stocked location.

Then I cought him removing a product price label off the shelf and spreading items from both sides to cover for an out of stock item in the grocery section.

I think he was used to the previous auditer doing it improperly and was taken off guard that someone would actually do the audit.

This can be a 30 minute shop once you know it and still do it properly. I won't allow it to be auto assigned to me and will take it again only if bonused at least $10 and on the way to another job.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 08/30/2014 09:57PM by scanman1.
scanman, okay, I'll admit that I am slow and thorough, but I would disagree that this is ever a 30 minute shop.

First of all, you have to do the covert portion, selecting and purchasing some groceries. You leave the store and go out to your car, stow the groceries, put on your vest and go back in. (7-10 minutes?) You ask to speak to the the manager, which can easily be a 5+ minute wait. So now we're looking at doing the rest of the shop, following all of the requirements in around 10-20 minutes? No way, even if you are jogging through the store. (Just to take a pic of the produce dept, with no customers can take forevva!)

I loved doing these, but the ROI was negative, so I've moved on.


I intend to live forever. So far, so good.
I shop it when they first open up in the morning. I run in and grab boxes of Jiffy cornbread mix or some other dry goods and can snatch my huge $3 bounty of dry goods in seconds. I note the blank spots on the checkout area and am in and out in minutes. Check box the cashier interaction.

There are no shoppers to wait to move along to get the mandatory meat and produce shots. I snap two of each from both perspectives. The manager dont even know the audit is happening until I'm in the meat dept.

I'd go there to shop anyhow, and have done a second checkout after the audit with my frozen stuff. I like the mixed veggies and frozen onion rings from this chain.

I don't wear the vest inside the store. I spoke with the MSC and the scheduler said I REALLY DO need the vest for the gas stations, but not having a vest on in the store was not a "job killer" as I didnt have one and was advised to proceed anyhow.

I walk back in and tell the one cashier up front that I need to speak to the manager and start my photo shoot. The manager will find me quick enough. Why stand at the front of the store and wait for him?

He knows what time it is the minute he sees me getting the perfect angle to snap the picture of the produce. I could already be taking my required Meat dep't photo's before he knows I'm in the store.

After I touch the meat to look at a few date codes, I need to go wash my hands and he don't have time to go clean the mens room ahead of me.

Then I'm off to the dairy dep't to count the missing slots and snap 1-2 pics, and at this point, I'm half way done in the first 15 minutes. I like to reach to the back of the peghook items and look at dates as lazy stockers will NOT remove the stock and rotate those. This is a pet peave of mine.

I want this store to better itself, as I shop there regardless. So I have a personal reason for wanting it in good condition.
It's 7:00 am and I'm reading all these posts about the Mystery Shop for a grocery store. I was so upset with myself for withdrawing from this assignment until I started reading these posts.

I love, love, love this forum. I now realize I did the right thing. I haven't been a Mystery Shopper very long and in the beginning every assignment seemed to have too much paper work. I've learned that once you do a few shops the paper work is easy.

At this point I'd have to say one of my favorite companies is STN. They pay reasonable well and their bonuses are enough to make a big difference when it comes to taking a shop.

Happy Shopping all!
I loved the idea of the excell spreadsheet. I now have my Save A Lot shops down to 4 pages. The manger who stocked items from the back, they have an incentive as that affects their bonus. They are allowed 2 out of dates and not that many out of stocks.
What a world, eh? I was just chatting with my friend who does these and this thread is now at the top of the page here. Amazing. smiling smiley
I do these for a different pictures. So more than one company does these. I can see why. winking smiley I am curious as to who does the ones with pics. smiling smiley

Canuck, I agree...amazing.
i've done mercados (mexican stores) but they pay very, very little. I don't mind them when I can get some free stuff..
Less than $15 for it.

Anyone wanna let me into the secret MSC????
Nope. The forum rule about linking clients and MSCs is the same as it has been since you joined almost three years ago.

Equal rights for others does not mean fewer rights for you. It's not pie.
"I prefer someone who burns the flag and then wraps themselves up in the Constitution over someone who burns the Constitution and then wraps themselves up in the flag." -Molly Ivins
Never try to teach a pig to sing. It's a waste of your time and it really annoys the pig.
Okay, you all have had better luck than me. I spent usually 1 hour to 1 hour and 20 minutes. I think the shortest was 45 minutes. The stores I do are so inconsistent with their removal of dated same day items and their out of date items, I really have to spent a lot of time checking. I have found up to 2 cart loads of outdated or dated same day products that don't have discounts on them. So, that means a lot of pictures and a whole lot of time uploading those. When asked at the end, if I want to continue doing them, I state, "No, unless the incentive is worth it." I usually can get the incentive. They also call me when shops come back from others or shops haven't been filled and deadline looms. They are very willing to give bonuses then and they know that I will accommodate them if at all possible, so they are willing to give whatever bonus I have asked, which I keep reasonable. However, there are also certain locations I will not ever do, due to the locations and not feeling save. The MSC knows this and respects this.
I just declined a Save-a-lot that I signed up for and was assigned. When I saw what I had to do for ten bucks, it would be crazy for me to do it. I printed out 36 pages; I would have had to read all those pages; spend time at the store, go back and do the report for ten bucks? Also, what's with the safety vest? That sort of turned me off. I felt as if I needed a bullet proof vest! I hope the MSC doesn't turn me down for other jobs being I declined this job. Do any of you decline jobs once you find out what they involve? Are you penalized?
The safety vest is the orange net vest that highway workers wear to make sure people see them. It'to make sure you are seen when taking the outside pictures. 5 dollars at Walmart. It is used for gas station audits too. Well wrth the 5 dollars.

Some companies give u the option to turn jobs down after u agree to them. Usually they are okay with 1 or 2 turning the job back in. IIf u do so, do it as soon as u can. Just don't make a habit of it.
The scheduler called me today and didn't seem to mind. I don't even know if I could have read what was involved before signing up to do the shop. Some MSC's you can and some you can't.
I've done this audit three times, each time receiving $60. I wouldn't do it for less than that. Those were also done when I was just starting out with this company and new to audits.
Check the dates on the Old Bay seasoning and the Nathan's Hot dogs, I find those expired more than any other products in the 15 I do monthly. Although they are getting much better at making sure I don't catch these being expired any more. smiling smiley
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