Walmart’s ‘Ask Sam’ Helps Associates Help Customers

The voice assistant app can access store maps, prices, product locations and relay real-time emergency alerts. 

July 31, 2020

BENTONVILLE, Ark.—Walmart associates now have a new way to help shoppers—a voice assistant app called “Ask Sam,” USA Today reports. At more than 5,000 U.S. stores, employees can “Ask Sam” for help with store maps, prices and product locations, as well as get real-time emergency alerts.

Developed by Sam’s Club last year, the app “was designed as an additional way to help associates find the answers they need to do their jobs more effectively and better serve customers,” said Meng Chee, executive vice president and chief product officer for Walmart.

Shoppers won’t be able to access “Ask Sam” because the retailer’s Walmart app doesn’t carry the feature (although the Walmart customer app does have store maps and the ability to price check).

Chee indicated stores also have been using the “Ask Sam” app to communicate COVID-19 information to employees. “In addition to guidance from their managers, having access to the answers and information they need at their fingertips gives associates confidence as well as more time on the floor with customers,” Chee said.

“Ask Sam” also has an emergency feature that lets managers send alerts to associates “during high-stress situations,” Chee said. “The safety and well-being of our associates and customers is our No. 1 priority. … The Emergency Alert Button is one of the many steps we’ve taken to enhance our safety measures.”

Coronavirus Resources

NACS has compiled resources to help the convenience retail community navigate the COVID-19 crisis. For news updates and guidance, visit our coronavirus resources page.

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