Due to the fact that I am currently employed by this company, I will be remaining anonymous.
What I am concerned about is several things with regard to employment with this company. First of all, there are so many physical injuries that I have seen occur in the short time I have been with them. There are a lot of permanent injuries that occur in long term store managers, life changing injuries. The truly sad thing is that this company will fight them tooth and nail to avoid having to pay worker's comp or to take care of any incurred medical expenses as a result of work related injuries.
I know they have a plan for that in the change to the process of unloading the trucks-They have been telling us we will be going on it for over a year without even the slightest modifications having been made to accomodate this brilliant plan that will alleviate the store managers and staff of the difficulties of physically unloading their trucks, probably the number one cause of work related injuries I have seen.
I have also witnessed some fairly questionable terminations-I'll spare everyone specific details but suffice it to say that if they want to be rid of you, they will do it with whatever petty reason they can procure. If they cannot procure one themselves, they will locate a staff member who dislikes you and suddenly a reason will emerge that they have revealed.
Every termination I have been aware of has been put on paper in a way such as to appear that the terminated employee was in serious violation of some company policy. As most of you probably know, this prevents them from even drawing unemployment until they can obtain a new job.
Don't get me wrong-I know that if you go 100% by the book, then there are a multitude of things that could appear to be dishonest behavior. If that is the way the company wants to do it, that is their call. But what I find shameful in all of this is that I watch other more favored persons commit this same or similar crimes all the time. It appears to be you only get fired for it if your boss doesn't like you in the first place.
Another issue I have is this-When I was hired, I was informed that my salary would be based on a 48 hour work week. The job could definitely be done satisfactorily, and within a 48 hour work week for the store manager, if the company were willing to spend just a bit more on payroll hours for the rest of the staff. But of course, those hours are cut to a minimal amount, particularly in the low to mid volume stores-Leaving the store manager one of two options: Either work however many extra hours it takes to accomplish the workload set out each week, or risk disciplinary action and/or loss of employment for not performing all of these tasks (Which the company will in turn make out to be some kind of policy violation, going back to what I said earlier).
For those of you who either do not work in retail, or think this is petty whining, that if you really cracked the whip you could get it all done-Let me give you a rundown of what goes on in these stores on a daily/weekly basis: You will average $20-30,000 in weekly sales volume. 1000-2000 cases of freight unloaded and put away. Floor sweep and mop of 8000 sq ft. Which also means 8000 sq ft of sales floor space to be maintained in hundreds of product categories and sections. All shipping and receiving. Receipt of approximately 20 drop shipments (in addition to the aforementioned cases of regular freight). The handling of all paperwork pertaining to all of these shipments on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. The handling of approximately 50 other sources of paperwork, logs, and tracking information. Maintenance of fixtures, plumbing, and electric. Training, supervision, and discipline of staff. Customer service (Of course!). Implementation of anywhere from 10-100 specialty displays as ordained by the marketing department. Time involved to move all of the nonsense merchandise that has not sold from former specialty displays, and find something to do with it that does not infringe on the new plan, which takes up the majority of the space you have. Inventory adjustments, stock counts, processing of all damaged merchandise. Removal of all trash and damaged merchandise by the store manager only. Cash auditing 3-4 times daily. Deposits, till balancing, and running back and forth to the front every time an item must be voided, refunded, overridden. Maintaining stock rooms, office, restrooms and break areas. Handling of about $100,000 of useless merchandise that they have stockpiled over the years that they refuse to get rid of but want it worked onto the sales floor as constantly as possible, yet don't like the way it looks (does not compliment the NEW merchandise displays). Setting of specialty displays by season on a monthly basis as well. Attending meetings and trainings. Conducting your own store's meetings and trainings. Add to that the fact that many of their stores are in buildings that are falling apart and you may have to spend 5 to 6 hours a week just keeping your head above water with the health department.
I have not even gone into everything here, that is just some basics.
Now for the really sad part. Could you do this with, say 132 payroll hours for the entire week besides what you work? How often do you think you could do this with those payroll hours and only work 48 hours yourself?
There are those who say Well if you don't like your job, quit and do something else. But here I can go even further into my concerns. Dollar General preys upon small towns where there is little to no opportunity to make a living. If you think I am kidding, you should talk to some of the people who live around here. Smart people, hardworking people-Who have sometimes spent a year or two looking for work.
And despite these complaints, I stay because I believe things can be better. I believe I do a good job, and I am proud of my accomplishments in my work. What concerns me is this company has bar none some of the best retail managers I have ever had the privilege to know. I am not saying they are all great, but due to Dollar General's tendency to stick around a lot of small towns, they reap in some of the best retail management has to offer. Because these good, hardworking, seasoned managers have little to no other opportunities if they want to live in these places they are happy.
What a tremendous opportunity Dollar General could have to be a tremendous corporation. If they invested the time and money into their stores and into assisting their managers with the workload they face so that it wasn't so overwhelming all the time, I can just about guarantee the increase in their overall sales would offset the cost.
I wonder if they know how many managers they have out there like me, who are worn out and coming close to fed up, but still retain a shred of hope that they will step back and look their big picture over more carefully before it's too late. What an awesome company they could be if they knew.
I guess it isn't really me who is getting ripped off here. Heck, I get paid my salary even if I do have to work like a slave and I guess that's my own choice for wanting to live in the country with fresh air and no traffic.
Dollar General is ripping themselves off. They are depriving themselves of being the kind of corporation that could ascend above the pack and be a member of the few elite companies that have truly succeeded in all ways.