In response to a lengthy profile in The New York Times about the enormous difficulties to employees caused by Starbucks’ use of automated scheduling, the company announced on Thursday, August 14 that it would immediately begin implementing important changes in scheduling.
Although Starbucks maintained that employees received at least a week’s notice of work hours, interviews conducted by The Times with employees around the country revealed that advance notice was rarely given, and some received as little as a single day’s notice.
Out of 17 Starbucks outlets around the country, only two employees confirmed that they got a week’s notice.
The new scheduling practices will include working to update the company’s scheduling software so that managers can provide employees with greater stability, ending the practice of scheduling employees for back-to-back opening and closing shifts, and providing work schedules to employees at least one week in advance.
Furthermore, for those Starbucks employees with a commute longer than an hour, the company will work to transfer them to a store closer to their home.
“The changes are effective immediately. Our regional managers will be regularly monitoring scheduling practices and will hold store managers accountable,” said a representative from Starbucks when asked about the timing of the scheduling changes. “Many of our store managers have been scheduling partners in accordance with these practices for years, but we want to be sure these practices are clearly defined and applied consistently across all of our stores and we will be working diligently to ensure that.”