I've been working a job as a sales associate for a huge company at one of their local stores.
It's a parttime job because they no longer offer fulltime. They schedule us whenever it's convenient for them, at times we designate. You can end up working any day or hours you allow them to put you, and it's entirely unpredictable. The same goes for the hours, anything under 29 to down to 8...
It's very hard to have a set schedule, and most employees are required to work weekends as a condition of employment. Could be weekend days or weekend nights. There's no breaking even on this job....the wages are fairly low, the same wages most of us received in the '80's....WHAT is corporate Amerikkka demanding of us? The longterm ones put up with it. I notice most are stratified on either side of the divide, either retirement age where they just need a job to supplement retirement, or young kids in their 20's. There aren't many on the sales floor who are in the middle age ranges of mid 30's or 40's...all those types are managers, with far steadier hours and salaries.
I've never worked for an employer this big. I do appreciate the diversity of the employees and working around other women, having come from construction where I've worked mostly with men. The employees themselves are pretty personable, especially the regulars.
I look at it getting me in shape to go back to construction having been on unemployment for far too long in this horrible economy. But our salaries aren't going up, and most jobs these days are parttime work with little pay and ALOT of responsibility. Most of the training is pretty impersonable on the computer, but very little 'hands on' training or communication between salesstaff and managers. Maybe because turnover is DELIBERATELY built into this system. Working hard doesn't mean a whole lot when you can't secure full time hours or liveable pay and a fairly PREDICTABLE schedule.
I like working for this company in what I do, and it taps into the knowledge of my field, so I've actually learned alot on this job by answering customers' questions, and wow, do they have ALOT of them, I've had to dredge up my training from deep inside my brain to answer them intelligently...so it's kept me on my toes.
The only thing is I wish there were more out Dykes on the job. There's one I suspect, and she's always fairly friendly to me, but no personal conversations. And while it's racially and sexually integrated there are almost NO Lesbian or Gay folks on this job other than me and her....so I miss that. I am completely out. Being married to my partner has given me this luxury, because I am PROUD to have her as my wife, and I make no bones about HAVING a wife. I don't get into political conversations or anything too personal. I'm still in the probationary period. But, I feel my loyalty waning, having found my hours going down, after working on two crews, to supplement them. And all the different hours and days I've worked is exhausting me, not to have a schedule with predictability, to give them complete license to add and subtract hours and times for 'business convenience'. Probably what infuriates me the most is their 'union free' policy. It is at odds with having been Union and still Union for the last 20 years. "Union Free" means total control, and that NOBODY is an hourly employee's advocate. No, I'm not talking Walmart here. There are MANY other companies with that same philosophy. The managers don't sit with us or have lunch with us in the lunchroom. They retreat to their own offices. This is so unlike that at least the foremen would have lunch with us daily, but above that the General Foreman and classifications above had their own construction trailer/rooms just for them and mostly never ate with us either.
So the stratification is so obvious. It saddens me what's happening to our Nation as the 1%ers don't pay their fair share of taxes, they heavily influence the electoral cycles and especially since the US Supreme Court has removed all barriers from their donations to candidates and political causes in 'Citizens' United'. THIS is corporate Amerikka, feeding on it's people, and giving back as little as possible in return.