STARBUCKS employees have attacked the coffee chain’s employee rating system, meaning they can lose hours if customers give them a poor rating for service.
If a store’s or employee’s “connection score” fell below a certain threshold, workers would reportedly be penalized with fewer hours.
More than 20 former and current Starbucks employees sat down with NBC News to discuss the rating system and its impact on their work lives.
Starbucks uses connection ratings – based on customer ratings – to determine how all of its coffee shops in the United States are performing.
Several of the workers indicated that in many cases, a low connection score directly impacts the number of hours employees have to work.
“You only pump out drinks. I think a lot of people just get into a groove,” a Cleveland Starbucks employee told NBC.
“But somewhere in the back of your mind, if you’re not saying hello to everyone or not having a little conversation with everyone in between all this hustle and bustle and noise and other things, it’s like, oh, you know, that’s going to affect my store numbers impact.”
While employees say Starbucks won’t directly cut your salary if your connection score is low, they will cut the number of hours your store is open.
With fewer hours, you have fewer opportunities to schedule shifts, resulting in less income.
A Starbucks spokesman has repeatedly denied that connection results affect store hours.
When it comes to survey feedback, such as B. connection rating rankings, the results are not always the most accurate.
Researchers say people can be influenced by prejudice, including an employee’s race or gender.
“Customer feedback is notoriously unreliable and discriminatory, particularly towards women and people of color,” Dallan Flake, a law professor at Ohio Northern University, told NBC.
“Yet, companies are increasingly relying on it when making employment-related decisions such as promotions, terminations and pay rates.”
Starbucks collects score ratings by sending email surveys to those on its email list.
The survey includes questions on a scale of 1-7, ranging from completely disagree to completely agree.
Questions range from drink and food tastes to the cleanliness of the store to questions like “Did the staff make an effort to get to know me?”
Results are updated at the beginning of each week and use the last eight weeks of results data.
“It was a lot of shame for those of us who got low scores,” former Starbucks executive Heather Weizsacker told NBC. “Sometimes other managers would even ‘joke’ it – very demoralizing.”
Other employees say they have to engage in fake conversations with customers to maintain their score, which makes them feel weird and uncomfortable.
Having these conversations to improve their score also hinders the speed at which they can move customers out the door.
“It’s frustrating because there’s a lot of pressure and drive to focus on speed and volume, but at the same breadth, we need to make those connections with people,” said Olivia Lewis, an associate at Starbucks in Boone, North Carolina.
“We want to do that. We are in the service industry. We love talking to people. But you can’t do both.”
Researchers point out that by adding an extra task to employees’ jobs, giving speeches and serving coffee, Starbucks contributes to rapid employee burnout.
While Starbucks denies the allegations, some employees claim connection points are also linked to employee bonuses.
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https://www.the-sun.com/lifestyle/5446886/starbucks-worker-customer-service-score-employee-hours/ I work at Starbucks, and the company’s connection scores mean we can lose hours when customers leave bad reviews