Mystery shoppers at Starbucks.

Fri, 08/25/2006 - 5:11am -- Secret Shopper
Starbucks Forum: 

As all store managers know, Starbucks head office have been watching you for a long time, with the help of secret shoppers. Let me tell you how.

A secret shopper will go in and hang around for 10 minutes. They will watch to see if staff clear the tables and check the washroom for cleanliness.

They will then order something small, usually a tall cappuccino. They will then pay for this using a debit card. All the time they are at the counter, they are using a stopwatch to time how long it takes you to process their card, and how long it takes the barista to make the coffee. They are watching to see how cheerful you and your colleagues are, if you smile and offer them anything else to eat.

Once you have given the secret shopper their drink, and processed their payment they stop timing you. They will then ask you an inane question such as, "...What new drinks do you have?" They will record your reply word for word on the report they give.

They leave the store and vanish down an alley. Using the equipment provided they take the temperature of the coffee and its weight - this has to be done within two minutes of leaving the store. They may then drink the coffee or give to a homeless person.

Well that in theory is what the secret shopper will do. Many are lazy and dishonest and make up the results rather than do the work. Who can blame them? They don't earn much per job. It's a case of minimum wage snoopers checking up on minimum wage workers. Students on vacation monitoring other students on vacation. If a store gets a good report it can mean a bonus for the workers, or a bad one can result in job losses.

What do you think?

Submitted by surestrange on

I've never heard of workers earning a bonus for a good snapshot. It certainly doesn't happen in my store. I sort of assumed/was given to understand that the manager gets the bonus.
Thanks for your remarks, Secret Shopper. I for one appreciate the sympathy. :)

Submitted by Califman831 on

how dare they send in people to make sure you are actually doing the job the company pays you for.

Submitted by Greg2k on

I'm a simple barista. I get 45€ each month I or my fellow Partners pass a Snapshot. We pass it every single month.

So either Starbucks works a completely different way over here (I doubt it) or the store team isn't doing their job right.

Submitted by Star on

Califman831,your comments are welcome. I wouldnt worry too much about these Mystery shoppers. If the baristas are doing their very best,every day, to serve their customers with fast and customer friendly service,then that should suffice. Mystery shoppers may or may not give a neutral opinion based on their bias. The Mystery shopper may be a company manager trying to give someone bad reviews in order to fire him/her,especially if they are not Starbucks enough or whose leaning may be towards unionization at Starbucks. I support the Starbucks baristas right to join the IWW Union if they so choose. Union workers, generally speaking, enjoy better wages and benefits than non union workers.

Submitted by screwstarbucks.com on

[quote=Star]Califman831,your comments are welcome. I wouldnt worry too much about these Mystery shoppers. If the baristas are doing their very best,every day, to serve their customers with fast and customer friendly service,then that should suffice. Mystery shoppers may or may not give a neutral opinion based on their bias. The Mystery shopper may be a company manager trying to give someone bad reviews in order to fire him/her,especially if they are not Starbucks enough or whose leaning may be towards unionization at Starbucks. I support the Starbucks baristas right to join the IWW Union if they so choose.

    Union workers, generally speaking, enjoy better wages and benefits than non union workers.

[/quote]

Generally speaking? Ummmm.....the FACTS are quite different.

Submitted by screwstarbucks.com on

Here's FACTS!

Why it Pays to be Union!
Better Wages

Union Workers Earn More

Through collective bargaining, unions have helped raise the standard of living for millions of American workers. There is a distinct economic advantage in belonging to a union and working under a union contract – and particularly under an IUOE-negotiated collective bargaining agreement.

Union workers earn 26 percent more than nonunion workers, according to the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics. Their median weekly earnings for full-time wage and salary work were $740 in 2002, compared with $587 for their nonunion counterparts.

The union wage benefit is even greater for minorities and women. Union women earn 31 percent more than nonunion women, African American union members earn 29 percent more than their nonunion counterparts and for Latino workers, the union advantage totals 53 percent.

According to the latest available U. S. Department of Labor statistics (see chart 1), union workers earned significantly more wages than non-union workers did. For instance, the average union worker earned $750 per week, compared to only $617 for non-union workers. That’s a difference of $133 per week. For Latinos, other minorities and women, the wage differences for union members versus non-union workers are even greater. For the year 2000, the earnings difference between union and non-union workers was 28%, and average of $154.00 extra per week.

Submitted by Star on

screwstarbucks.com,thank you for posting the "Union Advantage". I totally agree and support the Starbucks baristas's right to join the IWW Union. As the Starbucks Union grows stronger, the working conditions and wages will improve ,as we have already seen in recent wage increases,due to Union pressure.

Submitted by sarahgillmore on

I have worked in union shops and the workers there had the attitude that their quality of work did not matter because there was nothing management could do to them. We had a couple of people who worked hard and were extraordinary but we could not reward them with increased pay or hours because the union demanded wage and hour fixes. Tell me why unions are good for the worker other than those who have no ambition or drive.

Submitted by screwstarbucks.com on

So non union businesses have all good workers?
Why is the workers work ethic the Unions responsibilty?

Come on! America is full of crappy workers! Being in a Union doesn't make a person a good or a bad worker or lazy or not.

Unions are setup to protect all workers . Most of us work in at -will states ,meaning they can fire a GREAT worker the same as a lazy worker , without any reason at all.

With a Union the lazy worker and the great workers have a process that the company has to go through to fire it's employee. Without a Union, good luck!

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