PayLess Supermarkets is continuing a company-wide improvement initiative dubbed "Raise the Bar" with major renovations at the company’s Sinajana and HagÅtña stores. As part of the initiative PayLess is investing over $3 million in store renovations and employee training. The Sinajana and Agana site renovations follow successful projects at the Oka and Dededo locations where sales increased after remodeling.

The Sinajana market renovation scheduled to begin around Aug. 21 will result in all-new refrigeration equipment as well as new shelving paint signage and floor and ceiling tiles. The store is expected to reopen two weeks after renovations begin and will be open 24 hours a day while the HagÅtña location is closed for remodeling.

The HagÅtña Pay-Less Supermarket will undergo an extensive renovation immediately after Sinajana reopens. In addition to replacing all equipment shelving floor and ceiling tiles registers customer service counters and compressors the company will expand the meat department by 50% the refrigerated dairy section by 100% and add a full-service seafood counter. Upgrades are also planned for the SuperDrug pharmacy the floral department and the greeting card section.

As part of the initiative’s employee training component Pay-Less managers recently completed an intensive customer service training program. Storewide employee training is scheduled to follow.

Kathy Calvo Sgro chair of the board and executive vice president of Payless said "Raise the Bar" was prompted by the company’s efforts to stay competitive and to show its commitment to the community. Early indications are that customers are excited about the changes. According to Sgro the most frequent comment from customers is that they believe Pay-Less is carrying better quality products than before.

"Some of our customers think we have a new supplier for some of our products when in fact we have retained the same suppliers " she said. "The brand new refrigeration equipment sustains the life of our perishable products over a longer period of time and the new paint job floor and ceiling tiles and shelving provide a cleaner appearance and our products show up much better." MBJ