Complaint / review text:
I was hired for seasonal work toward the end of November 2008. I advised the manager that I would only be able to work up to 30 hours a week with two certain days off. I was advised that this would possibly turn into a part time position at the end of the holiday season giving me 2 days per week. When hired, I was advised that I would be working in the men’s department.
On my second day of training (which ironically was more for customer service and cash register operation), I was advised that I would be put in the Catalog Department, with no training and no idea of what I was doing. I thought that this was strange that they would not advise or train a person for this position as it does seem to hold a lot of responsibility, not only for sales but as customer service. It also requires strength and the ability to lift well over 50lbs. The reason being, when people come to pick up catalog orders some of them are extremely heavy. Furniture, cabinets, and other various items are expected to be loaded by the associate onto the customer’s car.
Upon my second week of hire, I checked my hours to work for the next week only to see that they had scheduled me for over 40 hours. I took the time to speak with the store manager, who in turn did change my schedule without telling me. So I showed up the following work week two hours early when I could have been home preparing my handicapped child for school. The changing of schedules seems to be common practice with this store as I was advised by the Department Manager to check my schedule every day for changes. I was advised not to discuss this with the assistant manager as he would only cut my hours to less than 10 hours a week and this would affect the department as a whole.
One day, while working in the middle of the afternoon, one of the sales floor associates was advised to remove part of the carpeting from the sales floor with solvent. The solvent was so strong that it made all of the associates in the catalog department as well as on the sales floor very dizzy. We were told to "deal with it". When an elderly lady came in to pay her bill, she became very ill from the fumes. We were not told any procedures on how to handle this, however common sense took over. First, I helped the woman to sit down. I then called management.
I was advised that there was nothing that I could do to help her. That she would be fine. I told the manager of the day that she was very sick. At this point I was beginning to get very anxious for the lady as she looked as if she was going to pass out. I was then advised to get the woman to the front of the store where the fumes were not as strong. I know that this wasn't following what management said but I decided to get the wheelchair and get the woman out of the store. I took her to her car and sat with her until her color came back and she looked better.
I then called the manager and told them that they really needed to fill out an incident report. The manager at that point very reluctantly did. On January the 1st of 2009, I came into work and checked my schedule. I was not on it for the following week (This being a Thursday and Sunday, being the beginning of the new week). I called the Manager of the Day to ask why. She said that as of Sunday, all seasonal employees would no longer be needed. I was stunned. No notice, no consideration, no respect. For me, this meant that I would be unemployed. This after being told at hire that I would be offered a position as a permanent employee on a part time basis.
I would have to find a job within the next three days (that day being a holiday) and with no thank you. I asked to speak with a manager. I was then advised that they told me that this position would end either the first or second week in January. I told the manager that was a very open end date and further more they were letting us go without any notice. She apologized and said there was nothing that she could do. I would have been more understanding except that I had been asking for the last three weeks if they were going to keep me and if not, what would be my end date.
I found upon picking up my paycheck on Saturday that this is what they did to all of the seasonal employees. They didn't give ANY of us any notice. So when thinking of working at this particular store, you may want to check that this is the way you want to be treated. Their idea team work and GREAT service is only dependent on when they want to give it. I am very, very discouraged with this store.
The consequences is that even though this was seasonal work, they never gave us any notice of the end of our employment, putting a lot of people out of work with no opportunity to find another job when this one ended. They didn't care about the health of their customers. They never offered any associate who was lifting or doing any type of heavy work any safety equipment. Wearing high heels and dress clothes, lifting a recliner to a customer’s car is apparently part of the job that I was not advised that I would have. However after being put in this position I was advised that as an associate in the catalog department that this type of lifting is expected of me, regardless of any health issue.