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spygirl

Companies ... exploiting women...

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-43070581

'Zoe Leckie is a student in Glasgow.

She turned up smartly dressed for an interview in a restaurant but was told by the company they wanted her to do a shift as part of the selection process.

She went home, got changed and returned to find herself thrown in at the deep end.

"It was very much you're now theoretically a member of staff, this is what the staff do, you'll be doing exactly the same as them, we expect you to work to exactly the same standard," she recalls.

She was told: "Just act as if you've been doing it for ages."

That might sound OK for a first day, but Zoe hadn't had any training. And she wasn't being paid.

"They had me setting tables, cleaning tables, restocking food products, serving drinks," she says.

"I wasn't even offered a break or a drink of water or anything. It was full on for six hours."

No payment for the shift was discussed. She was eventually offered the job, but turned it down after being told she'd have to be available seven days a week.

"I think it was total exploitation," she says now. "If I was to go back to that moment in time, I would have just walked out."'

Oh FFS.

You turn up. No mention of any experience.

Rather than telling you to fuck off they say fine, just work a shift and we'll see how you get on.

This is not fucking unusual in the food and drink sector - they are not exploiting you, they are seeing if, despite all your years in education you are able to pick up plates, serve some drinks and put some bottles in the fridge.

And, as she turned the job down, she isnt.

AS far as explotuitation, what about the useless gormless bint wasting the cafe owners time? Isnt that exploitation.

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3 minutes ago, One percent said:

She needed to be paid for the shift though. 

It is quite common though and some employers do use it to get a free day’s labour. 

I would not term setting on someone green as a free days labour.

You are hardly going o get your 6h worth from it.

Sure, in these situations Id expect the person to be for the shift.

If the cfe is trying to staff itself using unpaid interviewees then its hardly going to operate.

Why not get the cafe name and approach them for a comment/their side?

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4 minutes ago, Cunning Plan said:

Have you ever been paid to attend an interview?

Sort of, yes. Flights and expenses but not payment for the actual interview.

I'm with 1%, she should be paid for the shift if she did 6 hours, it is perfectly feasible for the supervisor to keep an eye on her and give her the boot after an hour if she's useless. 

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I actually think it is a good way to check attitudes as part of an interview.  Sort of a 'drop everything -- do this, right now.  No training, no experience, think on your feet, push to your limits, don't question it because there isn't time and other people (that know) think it is necessary -- we've got to do it otherwise we lose the customer'.

If I had the time I'd partner with pret a manger (or whatever passes for millenial-cool these days), package it up and use it for selection for junior management positions in blue-chips.

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1 minute ago, swissy_fit said:

Sort of, yes. Flights and expenses but not payment for the actual interview.

I'm with 1%, she should be paid for the shift if she did 6 hours, it is perfectly feasible for the supervisor to keep an eye on her and give her the boot after an hour if she's useless. 

I think you are in an entirely different pool of employee.

I have interviewed graphic designers and the best way to see what they can do is set them a brief and find out how they perform. 4 hours wouldn't be unusual and there is no way I would expect me to pay them for it.

But more importantly, what has her sex got to do with anything?

 

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3 minutes ago, Cunning Plan said:

I think you are in an entirely different pool of employee.

I have interviewed graphic designers and the best way to see what they can do is set them a brief and find out how they perform. 4 hours wouldn't be unusual and there is no way I would expect me to pay them for it.

But more importantly, what has her sex got to do with anything?

 

Nothing; that's Spy's bit of spin.  Even the So-Called BBC allows that it also affects men.

Edited by Frank Hovis

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15 minutes ago, swissy_fit said:

Sort of, yes. Flights and expenses but not payment for the actual interview.

I'm with 1%, she should be paid for the shift if she did 6 hours, it is perfectly feasible for the supervisor to keep an eye on her and give her the boot after an hour if she's useless. 

She needed paying for the shift, I also think they were taking the piss telling her to get stuck in with no notice. Fair enough if they had told her that a shift was part of the interview process, if not then they are knobheads IMO.

The catering trade is ruthless as fuck though, I know a lot of young folk that work in it and they almost always get treated like absolute shit and have trouble with their pay. I include my younger self in that description.

As jobs go, it's a good one to understand the meaning (and despair) of grafting for low pay but it's a shite industry really. One young guy of my acquaintance didn't get tips, the company collected them all and gave them to a 'charity' on his behalf. This isn't an isolated thing either.

Total arseholes.

Eta- Her sex has bugger all to do with it.

Edited by Sgt Hartman

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24 minutes ago, One percent said:

She needed to be paid for the shift though. 

It is quite common though and some employers do use it to get a free day’s labour. 

Pretty sure they don`t if you agree to do it 

Welders have to test for codes that have run out and it`s normally done with out pay ,but on the plus side that test code belongs to them if they pass so i suppose they are getting paid if they pass if they don`t the potential employer could be footing a bill of thousands with didily squat 

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7 minutes ago, Sgt Hartman said:

She needed paying for the shift, I also think they were taking the piss telling her to get stuck in with no notice. Fair enough if they had told her that a shift was part of the interview process, if not then they are knobheads IMO.

The catering trade is ruthless as fuck though, I know a lot of young folk that work in it and they almost always get treated like absolute shit and have trouble with their pay. I include my younger self in that description.

As jobs go, it's a good one to understand the meaning (and despair) of grafting for low pay but it's a shite industry really. One young guy of my acquaintance didn't get tips, the company collected them all and gave them to a 'charity' on his behalf. This isn't an isolated thing either.

Total arseholes.

Eta- Her sex has bugger all to do with it.

To me a bigger question is the training - true, you can throw someone in the deep end at some jobs but do they not need basic manually handling, food safety and hygiene, workplace familiarisation etc etc.?

I know from my days of taking on temps that this can easily occupy the first three hours. If none of this was done then the company need to look very closely at their employment / interview techniques.

 

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18 minutes ago, Cunning Plan said:

I think you are in an entirely different pool of employee.

I have interviewed graphic designers and the best way to see what they can do is set them a brief and find out how they perform. 4 hours wouldn't be unusual and there is no way I would expect me to pay them for it.

But more importantly, what has her sex got to do with anything?

 

Have you seen the So-Called BBC do a male exploitation story? Ever???

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10 minutes ago, Cunning Plan said:

I think you are in an entirely different pool of employee.

I have interviewed graphic designers and the best way to see what they can do is set them a brief and find out how they perform. 4 hours wouldn't be unusual and there is no way I would expect me to pay them for it.

But more importantly, what has her sex got to do with anything?

 

Sure but I've done that kind of work too, years back. If they asked me to do a shift as an interview my first question would be if they were going to pay me. If they said no, I'd know that I didn't want to work for them, it's a poor attitude IMO. Same goes for graphic design briefs - you're not getting my work for free would be my answer, so I guess if you were my interviewer I'd be out of the door. You have to place some value on yourself and your work.  

Employees should have a good attitude and do a good job, but an employer needs to have a good attitude too - demand a good job and reliability in return for fairness. 

Sounds like the graphic design world and catering have some attitudes in common. Especially, I suspect, in the UK.

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1 minute ago, swissy_fit said:

Sure but I've done that kind of work too, years back. If they asked me to do a shift as an interview my first question would be if they were going to pay me. If they said no, I'd know that I didn't want to work for them, it's a poor attitude IMO. Same goes for graphic design briefs - you're not getting my work for free would be my answer, so I guess if you were my interviewer I'd be out of the door. You have to place some value on yourself and your work.  

Employees should have a good attitude and do a good job, but an employer needs to have a good attitude too - demand a good job and reliability in return for fairness. 

Sounds like the graphic design world and catering have some attitudes in common. Especially, I suspect, in the UK.

If you aren't prepared to show what you can do under pressure then we probably wouldn't have wanted you anyway. But for the graphic design interviews, we would be setting 7 or 8 applicants the same made up brief. It would be of no value to us, but you cannot tell what someone is really like just from a portfolio.

IIRC, the big accountancy firms used to do two/three day rsidential interviews. They paid travel expenses only. It is not unusual

My son will have done 6 days of interviews/tests by the time he joins the navy. Should he be paid for these?

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8 minutes ago, swissy_fit said:

Sure but I've done that kind of work too, years back. If they asked me to do a shift as an interview my first question would be if they were going to pay me. If they said no, I'd know that I didn't want to work for them, it's a poor attitude IMO. Same goes for graphic design briefs - you're not getting my work for free would be my answer, so I guess if you were my interviewer I'd be out of the door. You have to place some value on yourself and your work.  

Employees should have a good attitude and do a good job, but an employer needs to have a good attitude too - demand a good job and reliability in return for fairness. 

Sounds like the graphic design world and catering have some attitudes in common. Especially, I suspect, in the UK.

Less attitude, more overwhelmed by people looking for employment.

Get rid of low paid/benefit subbed migrants and tax credits and that might change.

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I think a fair compromise would be,  the person gets the job if they complete the shift.  They get paid that shift as if it was their first.

If they didn't complete the shift or were asked not to continue half way through..  interview over.

I know nothings ever that simple..  but it sounds fair.

In this case I think she should have been paid for the shift if she had stayed..   but since she decided not to take the position it is a bit unfair on the company to set her up on their system,  sort out all the tax arrangements with HMRC, arrange for payment,  then take her off the system again..   in the end she sort of wasted their time as much as they wasted hers.  If they never had any intention to pay her for the shift regardless that seems a bit unfair.

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4 minutes ago, Cunning Plan said:

To me a bigger question is the training - true, you can throw someone in the deep end at some jobs but do they not need basic manually handling, food safety and hygiene, workplace familiarisation etc etc.?

I know from my days of taking on temps that this can easily occupy the first three hours. If none of this was done then the company need to look very closely at their employment / interview techniques.

 

Quite.

It's a good example of how some businesses will take the piss out of people who are most likely going to be paid minimum wage. The reason they didn't consider the training is probably because they don't give a shit. People like her are considered highly disposable in industries such as these.

If you're being tested on something skilled that has a commensurate salary then giving up some hours of your time to prove yourself is understandable and possibly even expected. Chucking a minimum wage pot-washer/waitress in at the deep end to test their mettle is taking the piss. I'd have a bit more sympathy if these industries wern't notorious for this sort of stuff. It's up there with 'apprentice labourer' job adverts that I've seen. Rampant in the construction/building sectors too.

Her sex isn't the issue here, it's the piss taking out of young people on minimum wage that is. 

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4 minutes ago, Cunning Plan said:

If you aren't prepared to show what you can do under pressure then we probably wouldn't have wanted you anyway. But for the graphic design interviews, we would be setting 7 or 8 applicants the same made up brief. It would be of no value to us, but you cannot tell what someone is really like just from a portfolio.

IIRC, the big accountancy firms used to do two/three day rsidential interviews. They paid travel expenses only. It is not unusual

My son will have done 6 days of interviews/tests by the time he joins the navy. Should he be paid for these?

Your last two examples are where people are trying to get positions where the employer is taking a genuine risk and will spend a great deal of money and time on training the person, so that's clearly different.

Cleaning/waiting tables or even contract graphic design work isn't comparable.

I've employed computer contractors before (or to be more accurate, have been responsible for for employing them) I just satisfied myself that they knew what they should know, pointed them to a desk and said start on Monday, if you're no good you'll be gone by the end of the week. Chose badly with one, but he was still paid for those four days, that's the way it goes.

 

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18 minutes ago, Cunning Plan said:

To me a bigger question is the training - true, you can throw someone in the deep end at some jobs but do they not need basic manually handling, food safety and hygiene, workplace familiarisation etc etc.?

I know from my days of taking on temps that this can easily occupy the first three hours. If none of this was done then the company need to look very closely at their employment / interview techniques.

 

Shes been told to serve drinks, collect plates, change tables.

Basic, bottom end stuff.

Nothing shes doing requires any skill.

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13 minutes ago, Cunning Plan said:

If you aren't prepared to show what you can do under pressure then we probably wouldn't have wanted you anyway. But for the graphic design interviews, we would be setting 7 or 8 applicants the same made up brief. It would be of no value to us, but you cannot tell what someone is really like just from a portfolio.

IIRC, the big accountancy firms used to do two/three day rsidential interviews. They paid travel expenses only. It is not unusual

My son will have done 6 days of interviews/tests by the time he joins the navy. Should he be paid for these?

Army Navy stuff, I can understand. They are dealing with a young kids who's not been tested so need to spend some time kicking tyres before committing a huge amount of money on him.

Accountancy firm. Less so. More a load BS and load of psyhco metric BS to make the HR and accountancy managers feel like a big swinging dick. Buch of wank. Ive been for interview where this sort of crap has been pitched. I ask what they are trying to test and why. And whether theirs any evidence that this sort of fuckwittery has any bearing o nthe person's ability to do the job. It normally goes a bit quiet.

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Just now, spygirl said:

Shes been told to serve drinks, collect plates, change tables.

Basic, bottom end stuff.

Nothing shes doing requires any skill.

Correct. But thanks to our wonderful employment and H&S laws there was a lot of stuff that she should have known about before she was allowed to work.

I am no expert but if she was paid, she would be an employee (if only temporary) and therefore subject to these regulations.

But six hours is way too long. I have worked in catering and you can suss out those that are just going to get in the way in an hour or two.

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34 minutes ago, dgul said:

If I had the time I'd partner with pret a manger (or whatever passes for millenial-cool these days), package it up and use it for selection for junior management positions in blue-chips.

I do wonder which these blue-chips are that require people with a "the apprentice" background / approach.

Both of the blue chips I've worked for are nothing like this..   everything is well structured and the last thing they want is young know-it-alls trying to dick about with things they don't yet understand.  New managers are either recruited with experience,  or are promoted internally after demonstrating they are suitable.   Recruiting "junior managers" with no direct experience isn't a concept I'm familiar with.   Perhaps it varies from market to market?  o.O

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Just now, spygirl said:

Army Navy stuff, I can understand. They are dealing with a young kids who's not been tested so need to spend some time kicking tyres before committing a huge amount of money on him.

Actually most of the people on my lad's recent visit were over 30. (It is officer assessment stuff)

There was only one other under 20.

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2 minutes ago, Cunning Plan said:

Correct. But thanks to our wonderful employment and H&S laws there was a lot of stuff that she should have known about before she was allowed to work.

I am no expert but if she was paid, she would be an employee (if only temporary) and therefore subject to these regulations.

But six hours is way too long. I have worked in catering and you can suss out those that are just going to get in the way in an hour or two.

I agree on 6hours.

A quite 3h shift ought to be enough.

1 minute ago, Cunning Plan said:

Actually most of the people on my lad's recent visit were over 30. (It is officer assessment stuff)

There was only one other under 20.

30s a bit too old for officer assessment.

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