Apple Retail Employee Concerns

the_mole1314

macrumors 6502a
Sep 16, 2003
774
0
Akron, OH
Yeah, that seems awful! One guy sold half a million in sales, and only got a quarter of the bonus he was guaranteed! Talk about rude! No wonder many Apple Store employees are mad....
 

sickracer2015

macrumors member
Apr 14, 2003
55
0
I used to work for an apple store and I remember this bonus as well.. the bonus stated "$1000 in your pocket" but after reading the fine print, only managers received the $1000, full time employees received $500 and part time employees that worked a certain amount of hours received $500 anyone who worked less than that set amount of hours only received a percentage from total sales. it really wasn't a deal.
We couldn't give tech help over the phone, no matter how easy it was, we had to tell them to call apple and either pay for the support or use applecare. I personally got fired for giving tech support online, and telling people how to mod areas of panther (macosxhints.com) I never told anyone who I was or that I worked for an applestore and I used a surname.
 

Diatribe

macrumors 601
Jan 8, 2004
4,229
24
Back in the motherland
Why is it more and more like Apple makes awsome software has awsome design and is so bad that it's not even funny when it comes to quality assurance, acknowlegding problems and service unless you pay for it?
This is so funny when compared to Microsuck. They make ****ty software, their design is all right, nothing fancy. But they are acknowledging problems, although they don't solve them right away, and they have an awsome service.
I guess its impossible to have the best of two worlds. I still think Apple is screwing everyone over when they charge so much for phone support etc. Every freaking display manufacturer gives you 3 yrs. warranty Logitech even gives you 5 yrs. Why the hell can't Apple do that?
I mean I love the stuff Apple makes, but some things are just overly annoying.
 

Stella

macrumors G3
Apr 21, 2003
8,442
5,097
Canada
From what I've heard, Apple is an awful employer, with this example and others:

There is also the case where Apple state in employees contracts that any software they write *IN THEIR OWN TIME* belongs to Apple...

There have been a few recent examples of Apple employees having to finish developing their shareware apps because of this.

Apple absolutely suck as an employer, some one should stand up to Apple and get them sorted out.
 

arn

macrumors god
Staff member
Apr 9, 2001
15,241
3,360
Originally posted by Stella

There is also the case where Apple state in employees contracts that any software they write *IN THEIR OWN TIME* belongs to Apple...
From what I understand, this is not unique to Apple.

In fact, Steve Wozniak had to give HP (his employer at the time) "first dibs" on the original Apple Computer due to similar contractual obligations. HP passed on the product.

arn
 

lind0834

macrumors regular
Oct 21, 2003
197
0
Ultimatly, in the retail markets the employees are under the local managment. Local managment likes to screw around with everybody's money. Anybody who ever worked anywhere retail or food service will tell you the managment practices are screwed up (I know I've seen it first hand lots of times).

If anybody had a list of all the employees of an Old Navy who were mad at them, nobody would care to much. Really doesn't seem newsworthy to me.
 

Stella

macrumors G3
Apr 21, 2003
8,442
5,097
Canada
I cannot see how this can stand up in Law... maybe its just US law.

If Apple were in the UK, I don't think Apple would have a leg to stand on. Anyway, they are not.

I know in the UK, companies have rights to software if the employee uses knowledge they gain from their job... (even then, I think Apple would still lose if it came to court - due to unfair contract). Is this the same as the US?




Originally posted by arn
From what I understand, this is not unique to Apple.

In fact, Steve Wozniak had to give HP (his employer at the time) "first dibs" on the original Apple Computer due to similar contractual obligations. HP passed on the product.

arn
 

arn

macrumors god
Staff member
Apr 9, 2001
15,241
3,360
Originally posted by Stella
I cannot see how this can stand up in Law... maybe its just US law.

If Apple were in the UK, I don't think Apple would have a leg to stand on. Anyway, they are not.
I don't claim to know the law... so I can't really comment.... but I'm just pointing out it's not unique to Apple.

arn
 

Gizmotoy

macrumors 65816
Nov 6, 2003
1,081
118
Originally posted by arn
I don't claim to know the law... so I can't really comment.... but I'm just pointing out it's not unique to Apple.

arn
Its true. This is standard practice in the computer industry. Most large firms require you to sign such agreements.

The catch is... no company has ever successfully sued an employee for the rights to a program developed on personal time. Companies consistantly lose these cases... so only those who can afford to fight them can continue development/keep their programs. Although, I'm sure many employees have given up developing outside software or the rights to that software instead of taking the risk of losing their job (which would seem likely).

So basically Stella was right, even in the US. However, few such cases actually make it to trial.
 

Snowy_River

macrumors 68030
Jul 17, 2002
2,519
0
Corvallis, OR
Originally posted by Stella
From what I've heard, Apple is an awful employer, with this example and others:

There is also the case where Apple state in employees contracts that any software they write *IN THEIR OWN TIME* belongs to Apple...

There have been a few recent examples of Apple employees having to finish developing their shareware apps because of this.

Apple absolutely suck as an employer, some one should stand up to Apple and get them sorted out.
This is a standard practice across many industries. In engineering the practice has even extended to saying that any patentable invention belongs to the employer, in extreme cases. More common is to say that any patentable invention that is in some way related to the job belongs to the employer.

While programming is a little different, the parallel is in the ownership of the copyright. And, as most programming has relation to other programming, it's not a hard stretch to argue that case law applies.

Originally posted by Gimzotoy
The catch is... no company has ever successfully sued an employee for the rights to a program developed on personal time...
Are you sure about that? I'm sure I've read of such a case... I'll ask my Patent/Copyright professor tonight...
 

bousozoku

Moderator emeritus
Jun 25, 2002
14,132
167
Lard
Mostly, when I've signed on with a company, I've had a non-compete clause. For two to three years after leaving a company, I must not work in their industry. This hasn't been a problem under most circumstances, but I can't imagine how the two Borland engineers who just went to Microsoft could get away with it.

The companies where I've worked have stipulated that they have the rights to anything I develop on their machines, even if it's on my own time. If I develop it on my own machine, I'm in the clear.

Apple does seem to have horrid policies but as far as sales incentives go, I doubt they're much different from the horror stories I've heard from CompUSA and Best Buy.
 

DharvaBinky

macrumors member
Jul 18, 2002
89
0
Lafayette, LA
Originally posted by arn
From what I understand, this is not unique to Apple.

In fact, Steve Wozniak had to give HP (his employer at the time) "first dibs" on the original Apple Computer due to similar contractual obligations. HP passed on the product.

arn
It is definately true of all universities, too. In fact, universities own all faculty, researcher, and student works.

I've had conversations with my boss about IP issues, since I have a little webapp development biz on the side and at work, we write data-driven web apps.

Dharvabinky
 

Spock

macrumors 68020
Jan 6, 2002
2,093
1,503
Vulcan
Yeah Apple took the peice of software from me that I wrote while working for Apple it was called iTunes. I wish I got somthing more than a slap on the back
 

titaniumducky

macrumors 6502a
Nov 22, 2003
593
0
Originally posted by Spock
Yeah Apple took the peice of software from me that I wrote while working for Apple it was called iTunes. I wish I got somthing more than a slap on the back
Seriously? You wrote iTunes!? I think you're joking, but someone had to write it.
 

Fast Shadow

macrumors 6502a
Feb 9, 2004
617
1
Hollywood, CA
FWIW I believe Apple Retail and Apple Computer are somewhat isolated from each other. My company has a business relationship with Apple and things like discounts, etc, can't be extended through the retail stores, just via direct order from Apple. Our account rep indicated there's quite a bit of separation between the two. As a comparison, Volkswagen of America and Volkswagen of Germany are completely different companies, where the VWoA basically has license to award dealerships and distribute VWs in the USA.. I wonder if Apple's set up the same way with their retail outlets vs. the mothership.
 

gotohamish

macrumors 65816
Jul 15, 2001
1,071
2
BKLN
At the soho store, I've been chatted up, flirted with, and given the pro service in the private office, and on other occasions, I've been insulted and given the most stupid advice or ideas.

Kinda weird, I still go back though- I just research well, and... check my email.
 

Snowy_River

macrumors 68030
Jul 17, 2002
2,519
0
Corvallis, OR
Originally posted by Gimzotoy
Companies consistantly lose these cases...
Based on my conversation with my teacher, who is a patent/copyright attorney, I find this hard to believe. If the employee signed the contract, then there's little ground for defense. When you sign an agreement, it doesn't matter much how outrageous the agreement is, you've made a legal declaration of consent to that outrageous agreement. You'd have to show that there was some level of subterfuge, coersion, or some other extraneous circumstance to have a defensible position in the face of a contract.
 

djkny

macrumors 6502
Sep 30, 2003
460
0
All starts with the top.

Steve Jobs seems like a total megalomaniac ______.

The mighty will fall, and how great will that fall be ....

Remember the power struggle?
 

joeconvert

macrumors 6502
Nov 18, 2003
299
0
TX
intellectual property

Originally posted by Stella


There is also the case where Apple state in employees contracts that any software they write *IN THEIR OWN TIME* belongs to Apple...

Almost all technology companies have similar clauses.
 

Doctor Q

Administrator
Staff member
Sep 19, 2002
38,198
4,598
Los Angeles
From the appleinsider report:
Apple retail employees reportedly do not work on commission and are paid out between $8 and $12 an hour. "One fellow employee sold $500,000 worth of product in a single quarter and got a $500 bonus," one source said. The kick-back amounts to less than 1% of the total sale of the merchandise.
If the bonus should be proportional to the employee's sales, as this seems to imply, how, in principle, is that NOT working on commission?
 

laserbeahm

macrumors member
Feb 4, 2004
93
0
Central Valley, CA
Whether the employees were getting paid $500 or $1,000, that is a crummy bonus for making $500,000 in sales. .1% really isn't good at all. As other people have said, I'm sure that kind of thing is going on a lot of other places.
 

bousozoku

Moderator emeritus
Jun 25, 2002
14,132
167
Lard
Originally posted by titaniumducky
Seriously? You wrote iTunes!? I think you're joking, but someone had to write it.
I take it that you haven't met Spock and his hamster-powered PowerBook. :D

Doctor Q:

Commission would be available on an ongoing basis, not a temporary promotion. When I worked in retail selling cameras, I would receive 6 percent on any photographic equipment, but I also could receive instant bonuses for special items which the store and the manufacturer would pay.
 

iJon

macrumors 604
Feb 7, 2002
6,565
152
Originally posted by Spock
Yeah Apple took the peice of software from me that I wrote while working for Apple it was called iTunes. I wish I got somthing more than a slap on the back
thats means you used to work for cassidy and greene too, cause they designed soundjam mp, who also designed intunes after they were hired by apple.

iJon
 
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