Post # 1
Okay so I am not sure if there is anything I can do about this. I started a new job in a really busy cafe which is brand new. So all staff are new and everyone has to ‘learn as they go’. Obviously when all the equipment is new there are going to be mistakes made.. anyway the rules are that whenever the money in the cash register doesn’t balance, all employees that worked that day have to pay a portion of it out of their own pocket to make up for the ‘missing’ money. So if it is down $100 and 5 people were working.. each employee owes $20.
So what I would like to know is.. can they make us do this? Like even people that didn’t touch the register have to pay (ie. wait staff that have ben clearing tables/bring out food have to!!) I understand that it may sound like a good idea in theory as it is a good way to punish people that may be stealing… but I just feel like it is unethical?? However that catch is.. before I started everyone had to sign this company booklet that outlined all the ‘rules’ like clocking on/off, uniform, hourly rates, and I think that this was mentioned as one of the conditions.. So if I don’t want to pay the money I apparetly owe.. can they fire me? At the moment I owe them just over $50.. I haven’t paid anything yet and was going to wait until they confront me..
What should I do about this? 🙁
Post # 3
Sounds like someone is stealing from the company.
Ask to get the company book and read it again. This doesn’t sound legal to me, and I used to work in retail management. There’s also no harm in calling up a lawyer and asking.
Post # 4
Thanks for your feedback. I have sent an email to my friend who is a lawyer.. so hopefully he has some kind of resolution for me. It is just really stressing me out because I have never heard of this happening at any of my past jobs.
Post # 5
I don’t think this is legal, and I’ve been in retail management for years, in several different jobs. Also, how is this really punishing the person that is stealing? If they stole $100 but 5 people were working that day and everyone had to pay $20, the theif would still be up $80. Doesn’t make sense to me……
Post # 6
This sounds horrible! I don’t think they can do this, it sounds off. I’ve worked in the restaurant business for many many years before my current job, even ran a restaturant/cafe myself and family for a decade, and this sounds so wrong! Don’t pay them, you don’t owe them, and keep us updated on what your lawyer friend has to say.
Post # 7
Are you sure the owner isn’t stealing from himself? 😛
I would not work in a place like that, especially if money seems to go missing a lot.
Post # 8
contact the fairwork ombudsman for advise (as you are in australia) – my straight out answer is hell no this isnt fair or right but they might be able to get around the rules because no one has ever stood up to them before
Post # 9
Here in Nebraska they can require it, but I don’t know about Australia. Here they already have to have a practice in place that they give the overages to the employees, if they don’t have that in place first, all they can do is write you up.
Post # 10
UPDATE: Thank you to everyone for your advice and feedback 🙂 I have spoken to many people about it (lawyers,business owners, etc..) I have recieved a lot of mixed feedback. Some people say it it illegal, some believe it is normal, some say it is OK as long as they also share tips/surplus money in the till with each employee. The company I work for DOES NOT share any tips amongst employees and just keeps them all. With that into consideration.. I don’t understand why they cannot use the tip money (sometimes over $100) to cover any shortfalls!
Anyway, it has come to the point that I am getting angry and despising my workplace and my boss. I believe it is unethical that someone should have to make up the till balance when they did not touch the cash register/all transactions were correct and can be proven. After a lot of stress I have decided to resign from this position and after a long discussion with my SO.. have also decided to pay them the money I ‘owe’. It annoys me but once I have done it I can stop thinking about it and move on (it is not worth making myself stress over). I will be going in tomorrow with my letter of resignation and the money and informing them that I will be leaving after my last rostered shift (which is the next night). I don’t wish to give them much notice because the way I see it is the longer I work there.. the more money I will ‘owe’ them.
I am happy to say that I have already found another job and start Monday 🙂 I guess it was meant to be !!