Gransnet forums


Shame on you M&S

(13 Posts)
Kiora Tue 08-Apr-14 17:26:37

To be appalled by how marks & spencer are treating their staff. I have always thought of them as being an ethical company who treat both customers and staff with respect. Not so now apparently they have jumped on the zero hours band wagon. I have heard that they are forcing changes to their employees contracts that will force them to work when and where the company say so. Leaving very little choice. So for instance if a long term 50+ none driver is not able to comply and unable to travel to another store then they will be forced out. These mostly women who now get extra pay for weekend work may loose their job. Saving M&S a fortune because the jobs will go to a member of staff on the minimum wage. The company will save money on the run up to Christmas by not employing temporary staff but forcing their part timers to work longer hours even if they struggle with child are. I'm sick of these big companies treating people in this way. I stopped using amazon because of it. But at least I didn't have to look their people in the eye knowing I was helping them be exploited. I shop in m&s their staff are always lovely. If I and others stop shopping wouldn't we be putting these jobs at risk. So what's the answer? ( sorry for being so long winded but I am really angry) angry

janeainsworth Tue 08-Apr-14 19:52:37

I'm afraid I've already stopped shopping there Kiora.
Perhaps a lot of other people have too, and that's why M&S are doing this.
I agree it's very sad for the employees.

rosesarered Tue 08-Apr-14 20:03:04

I have just about stopped shopping there [ the clothes are not great this year] but like to buy some food there from time to time.Do you know somebody who works there*Kiora*? Perhaps M&S have to do cost cutting because of falling sales?The only answer is for M&S staff to stage a revolt and all sign a petition to be handed in to make the bosses realise how they will be affected.In a free market, stores will always do what is best for stores, but the staff could still stage a protest.

Ana Tue 08-Apr-14 21:06:53

I did some food shopping in M&S today and received an invitation to take part in an online survey (and I might win £250!!). Haven't looked at it yet, but I will do - they're obviously worried, and rightly so.

JessM Tue 08-Apr-14 21:57:43

They have a vast amount of floor space covered in not very appealing clothing. I am amazed they are still in business.

Deedaa Tue 08-Apr-14 22:16:20

I must ask some of my friends what's happening. I know no one seems terribly happy at the moment.

Kiora Tue 08-Apr-14 23:04:19

I was out shopping with my sister in bluewater and overheard a conversation. being nosey northerners we joined in and were horrified. We did once have a relative who worked in head office a few years ago. so knew M&S once had an enviable reputation akin to John Lewis for their treatment of staff. I checked the information out with a friend who has a part time job on m&s shop floor and she confirmed the conversation. I really don't think it's because they are loosing sales. I think big firms know they can get away with treating staff this way so they do,and we let them. That's what makes me feel so angry. I'm at the end of my working life so it won't affect me. Big firms are behaving every bit as badly as the unions did back in the 60,70 & 80's. I hear it all the time from friends who work for the local council ( they used to be really good employers) who's contracts are changed all the time. The stress and unfairness must be terrible. Oops I have to get off this soapbox. blush

Anne58 Tue 08-Apr-14 23:38:05

A friend works in an M&S Outlet, and yesterday she was telling me that there is a big push to reduce staffing costs, so they are "asking " if anyone wants to leave and also for volunteers to agree to fewer hours (nearly put "less" then!)

So, basically it does look as if it's true.

harrigran Wed 09-Apr-14 00:14:35

I filled in one of their online surveys and told them why I do not buy their clothes. I do not want inferior fabrics with garments made in Bangladesh. M&S used to be known for their quality sad

Ariadne Wed 09-Apr-14 07:03:52

I have become increasingly cross with M&S; as a student I worked for them in the holidays and they treated their staff wonderfully.

I e mailed customer services recently, and directed thenk to GNHQ, telling them that they should take heed of an articulate group who would have a lot to tell them. And we would!!

annodomini Wed 09-Apr-14 07:32:20

Union membership has plummeted so much that the workforce has no support when employers resort to unfair measures like those referred to in the OP. When I was a CAB adviser and a client came with an employment issue, the first question I asked was whether they were in a union. Very rarely a positive answer. The balance between employees and employers has swung too far in favour of the employers.

FlicketyB Wed 09-Apr-14 08:06:32

annodomini hear, hear. I have retained my union membership as a retired member long after I have stopped work. Too many people judge unions by high profile strikes and union leaders like the late Bob Crow. In fact most of their work is the day to day support and help they give members in difficulties in work.

I was very glad of the support my union rep gave me when a new manager started trying to bully me.

janeainsworth Wed 09-Apr-14 16:29:32

Anno I agree with you that may be the case with large corporate employers.
But most small employers struggle against increasing burdens of bureaucracy, having to act as unpaid tax collectors, benefit administrators, checking the residence status of foreign employees etc, and would do anything to avoid falling foul of the nightmare that is employment law.
Witness the number of firms now in business simply to help small employers comply with all the regulations.