Mark Cuban hires secret shoppers to see if Dallas businesses are following protocols while reopening

As Texas starts relaxing COVID-19 restrictions and allowing businesses to reopen, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban hired a company to see how local businesses are responding, and how they are protecting customers and workers.

“I wanted to get an understanding of what opening meant to businesses around Dallas. Were they opening? What precautions were they taking? Were employees in safe environments? And bigger picture, I wanted to know if these are places that I would feel safe taking my family to,” Cuban said in a blog post about his study’s findings.

To do that, Cuban hired a company, Shiftsmart, to help find out how businesses were responding to reopening.

Calls were made to 1,000 Dallas restaurants and retail businesses to find out how many businesses were reopening the weekend after restrictions lifted.

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They chose businesses based on popularity by using reviews on Yelp.

It was found that only 36 percent of businesses reopened the opening weekend (May 1-3).

Cuban said they also sent secret shoppers to 300 restaurants and retail businesses to find how many locations were in compliance with state reopening protocols.

The findings were “not good,” Cuban said.

It was found that 96 percent of businesses were non-compliant with at least one of the mandatory protocols established by Governor Abbott’s office, and about a third weren’t even up to 50 percent compliant across all mandatory protocols.

On average, stores followed only about 58 percent of the recommended safety protocols.

At-risk group hours and contactless payments were the protocols with the highest rate of non-complaince.

Compliance discrepancies were also found between franchise locations of the same companies.

Cuban said they will do this a couple more times in order to determine trends and study them.


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