Albert Heijn has decided it actually doesn’t want semi-naked photos of its employees

The Dutch supermarket giant, Albert Heijn, requested staff to upload semi-naked photos of themselves to trial a new app that could work out uniform sizes for employees. The supermarket has subsequently retracted its weird demand after wide-spread criticism. 

What on earth…?

Albert Heijn were trialling a new app at a branch in Nijmegen. Many of the staff got the impression participation was mandatory but Albert Heijn say they never intended for it to be so, NRC reports.

The poster, put up in effort to recruit willing employees, read “Wear underwear or close-fitting sportswear to be able to measure the contours of your body as well as possible. And ask someone to help you take the photos.”

A spokesman for Albert Heijn told Dutch media that the company wanted to find a more efficient way of collecting all the sizes of its 100,000 workers. They believed using an app would be better than sorting through thousands of emails, the BBC reports. 

Confused? So are a lot of other people

One staff member who works at the Nijmegen supermarket told NRC “At first I thought it was cool, because we are the first to wear new clothing. But when my mother took a picture of me in underwear, it felt a bit strange. ”

Hundreds of others took to social media to discuss the incident. Some were shocked by the move…

Whilst others were willing participants…

The Data Dutch Protection Authority speaks out

They said the decision was “bizarre” and continued “As an employee in an employment relationship, you can never give free permission because the relationship is hierarchical.”

Albert Heijn’s response

Albert Heijn has cancelled the trial on Monday but already over 400 staff members had uploaded photos. “We have cancelled the pilot and we apologise to all involved.” A spokesperson said.

What do you think of this initiative? Efficient or bizarre? Let us know in the comments! 

Feature image: Abuzer van Leeuwen/Supplied. 

Freya Sawbridge
Freya was born in Edinburgh but raised in New Zealand (cue every person she meets saying “oh I have always wanted to go there but it’s so far away!”). A restless and curious nature has led her to move countries 5 times in the last 3 years in attempt to find a place she can call home. She contacted DutchReview on a whim and arrived in the Netherlands in summer 2019 to start her internship.


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