Starbucks Denies Reports That It’s Slashing Hours Chain-Wide

Image courtesy of jojoling

While Starbucks announced planned raises for employees and a loosened dress code, those changes came in the middle of rampant chain-wide unhappiness among baristas. More pay per hour doesn’t help if you can’t actually get scheduled to work, and employees complain that hours have been cut at the stores where they work.

Workers have shared their woes with food reporter Venessa Wong over at Buzzfeed, and their complaints explain why you may have noticed some long lines lately when waiting for a latte.

Starbucks uses scheduling software like many retailers, which calculates how many workers a store might need based on past traffic and other factors. These predictions can be hard to get right even if you’re not trying to fill hours with the fewest workers possible, but workers complain that the company is squeezing them so stores are under-staffed and everyone stressed out and unhappy. Including customers.

Managers told Buzzfeed that the system suddenly began giving them fewer hours to budget for similar forecasts, and it’s front-line workers and customers who are suffering. The change was as if someone on high “flipped a switch on the labor model,” one longtime manager said.

Wong has seen documentation of the problem from an internal portal for employee chatter, but anyone can see pseudonymous complaints over on Reddit.

“I know bonuses and raises and purple hair is exciting, but my store is still royally boned on labor,” one poster complained, noting that everyone in their store wants to quit, and they’re struggling to have anyone work the closing shift.

““We are not trying to reduce labor,” a Starbucks representative said about these complaints. “We want our stores staffed in accordance with what they each need.”

Here’s Why Lines Have Grown So Long At Starbucks, According To Baristas [Buzzfeed]

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