* Prices may differ from that shown
Sainsbury's has become my favourite supermarket. I have tried all the others but have stayed loyal to Sainsbury's now for several years. I like the friendly atmosphere of the store and the well laid out and easy to find products. There is a range for every one's pockets and the quality of the produce is always good even when purchasing from the basic range. I usually go for the mid price range of most things and have never had cause for complaint. The staff are very helpful and look as though they actually enjoy their jobs. I also am a regular customer of the cafe in the store that I visit often and always enjoy a nice meal in clean and friendly surroundings. The staff always welcome myself and my family whenever we visit and we always feel like valued customers. The meals are well cooked and the beverages are always well made. I look forward to my cafe treat before doing my twice weekly shop. At the checkout there is always someone on hand to oversee that we do not have to queue for long. I really feel that Sainsbury's do a wonderful job for all it's customers and make shopping there a better experience than most stores. I also love to visit the home and clothing departments and find the quality of the clothes to be good value for money and the 25% sales that they regularly have is a huge help when on a budget. I have bought several items of clothing from the TU range and have found everything to be of good quality and very stylish. I would recommend Sainsbury's to any one as it offers something for every one.
Sainsburys has always been a good and trusted supermarket for donkeys years, and I feel they have continued to keep their standard which is good quality and reasonable price. Out of the major supermarkets I would rate them far higher than tesco and asda but not on a par with waitrose. Therefore a good 'middle class' store.
The supermarket is home to not only food and general groceries but also clothing and electrical goods as well as homeware.
The clothing which is called the TU range I find excellent quality and whilst some of the adult clothing can be a little old fashioned the childrens clothing only seems to get better and better, and again is excellent quality and good price.
The food overall is good, welfare standards are ok but could be a lot better but they are 100% better than tesco for welfare and food standards. Tesco can be quite horrifying with their standards and do not meet the standard of sainsburys at all.
The store is always slightly more expensive than asda and certainly more expensive than aldi and lidl, however everything can pretty much be bought in store and again it comes down to quality for price.
The reward scheme for shopping at sainsburys is the nectar card which I find great however the points system is dropping this year (2015) which will mean less points for your money but still the card can be used in many other outlets and is a great reward scheme especially if you can build up the points for christmas. Many sainsburys have their own petrol stations and I always find their petrol of a very good rate and again the nectar card can be used here also.
Overall a good and trusted supermarket and is certainly worth the slight price increase over asda and tesco.
Been working for sainsburys for the best part of a year now and really am of mixed opinions of it.
Firstly the good parts:
I have met some great people, several of which I socialise with outside of work and many I have a chat with in the actual store on a regular basis. I'm 19 and the majority of people in my store are in the 16-25 range so it's easy to have a chat with people when you're either bored or not busy. Unfortunately I see a lot of people, including my own department, who literally just come into work, do whatever needs doing, not really interact with anyone else and simply go home. To each their own, but this is kind of sad.
The holiday entitlement is very good. I work part time, 8 hour shifts and I believe I had about 23 days holiday for the financial year. I think it equates to about 6 weeks holiday depending on your hours.
Very simple job. Unless you work in the bakery or another department that requires some sort of trade, the majority of the work you do is very easy and straightforward. You'll be more pressed for time then difficulty when asked to do something.
Now the bad parts:
Customers. Oh god the customers. Sometimes you can have really nice people come to the checkouts or come up to you on the shop floor and either ask you politely for something or make some small talk. But the vast majority either treat you like dirt on their shoe or are just generally unpleasant to either look at or talk too. Now typically I'm either working shop floor, or on the tobacco kiosk. More than half the customers on the tobacco kiosk are incredibly rude. An example is when you say hello they don't even look you in the eye, or maybe make a mild grunting sound. A please and thank you really goes a long way in retail, but you seldom hear it from the customers as regardless of how they treat you, you are still obliged to serve them.
And since you are wearing the beloved uniform of sainsburys, you are automatically at fault for any problems the customer has had, regardless of your involvement. So if the self scanning machines are playing up, it's still your fault even though the system is fully automated and this it's clearly a technical problem.
However, this is retail. If you are experienced with serving customers or you can handle this sort of environment, then it'll be fine.
Unfortunately, sainsburys take customer service to a whole new level, to the point of stupidity. You are expected to have some cheesy script memorised of how you address customers. "Hello sir, how may I be of assistance", and "thank you for shopping at sainsburys, have a nice day" are prime examples. And there are external checks on if we are using these sorts of cliché lines, in the form of 'Mystery customer measure' or MCM for short, which also dictactes your bonus. It's simply a sainsburys employee coming in, disguised as a regular customer but what they're really doing is marking your performance and report whether the service was satisfactory. And the marking system is just terrible, we got marked down once because the colleague failed to converse with the customer during the transaction (this was on self scan) and they left too soon after the prompt.
The management are a bit of a joke, at least they are in my branch. Most of the time they are either completely clueless, expect miracles even after cutting staff/hours and just generally pay no attention to you unless you have caused a problem or they have something they should be doing but too lazy to do. Luckily I'm not usually the victim of this, but a good friend of mine is basically a one-man department and when he is asked to do other aisles or do something else menial it really messes with his schedule, but he's still expected to finish what he's doing.
The 'training' you receive is kind of comical. You have a two day induction where they cram all the boring stuff, legal requirements etc but you're basically thrown in the deep end after that and just have to pick it up as you go along. You're supposed to complete a booklet to certify you're trained to do this task e.g man counters, work in the warehouse, operate the tills etc. I never had to do that initially. 10 months in to my job, I had to complete 6 different booklets to 'complete' my training which really confused me. You guys know I am trained, I've worked here nearly a year, why do I still need to do this...?
The pay is 'okay'. Currently I'm getting paid £6.95 which I believe is a lot higher than some places, but in my area this is pretty bad. Tescos and aldi both pay close to £8 in my area but honestly it's a job and it's so difficult finding any work these days so I can hardly complain.
Oh and if you come into work already having a bad day or have some personal issues, expect problems. If the customers don't notice it, your colleagues will, which will probably end up making you feel worse.
Should you work for sainsburys?
Yes I would recommend working for sainsbury's, but do not make this a long term career (I certainly don't intend to.) Make this something for the interim while you can find a different, more satisfying job or until you finish education. Get on with your colleagues, don't take the job too seriously and just crack on with your work and it really isn't all that bad. 10-15% discount after 6 months is always nice too.
i have been with sainsburys for about 3 years now and i must say it sounds like management are the same in every store..at my store (i will not name it even though i think i will be sacked soon! its in a big city lets say..) the boss and his deputies are the most ignorant people alive!! they only talk to us when we have a visit from area manager or they want something doing urgently. the 'deputy' manager at my store thinks she in indeed called God,she stays in front of the computer all day and only leaves to have a go at someone,apparently one of my,since dismissed,colleges called her a bi**h and she replied..no no i am THE bi**h hahaha says it all. the only thing good about sainsburys is the job security but this can be a problem too..they know we are in a recesion so they think they can treat us anyway they like,usually badly,coz there are not many other jobs out there of course. i am constantly pressured to work faster and do more because they have not replaced staff that left before,i have to do this or i will be replaced but i do not have a pay rise for my troubles..in fact i think my pay has gone up a massive 6p an hour in 3 years!! we dont get christmas present like say tesco and asda workers do and we get bonus but only if we work extra hard for 12 months..grrrrrr! i am not disgruntled employee but since i have friends who work for our competitors and usually laud it up to me how better they have it there, i am feeling more and more angry at my situation..specially when our good friend Justin cannot wait to tell us how much money the store makes every year,week,month,minute in those stupid letters we have in the canteen!! if we make so much mr king then give some back to the people who make it for you..namely the employees!
GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR and to think i will have to dress up like a twat come red nose day again.. good times!
Started working for the company some 16 months ago, as a mature graduate must say all in all they have been one of the better companies that i have worked for, OK they want you to graft for your money! isn't that what we get payed for, the working conditions are good, uniform provided, the holiday entitlement is excellent and the training is pretty good to.
I am currently moving on to night shift as team leader and the pay for this part of the country is very good, i have met a lot of really nice folk while working for this company, it gave me a bit of pride and secure employment so i rate them very highly, and i also received allot of personal support when needed. If a colleague should need help, ask around in the store, there is always someone that will be able to put you in touch with the right person. There are a lot worse places to work, cheers to everyone at Sainsbury's.
What a god awful company to work for. I don't know whether my issues (or I should say 'our' due to the complaints all my fellow colleagues have) are just store specific, but they seem to originate from higher up the chain.
First I'll point out the positive, it will be short and sweet, so I'll get them out the way.
*Holidays: You get more than most, compared to what my friends/family have.
*Break allowance: Same as above. For a 9hr shift, you receive 1hr30min. break.
*Flexibility: My store are good at letting you swap shifts with another colleague if required.
I want to point out that I am not a disgruntled employee, I am not out to paint the company as being evil, I am not hear to have a rant based on one bad experience, but I am here to give my honest opinion on on the company I've worked at for the last 5 years, and the ways in which they have dealt with our issues (which, in short, is nothing).
I started at the age of 18, and quite enjoyed the job, the atmosphere, and my store. The pay wasn't great (and to be honest, still isn't), but it was a job. We had a good amount of staff required to keep the whole store running efficiently, and a good store manager who kept the place in check.
Now, at the age of 24, I have saw the store (and dare I say the company) over the last 3-4 years rapidly decline in the way they treat staff and the working conditions we have to put up with.
Staff and the hours allocated to each department have been cut significantly, apparently on the orders of our regional manager. In the past year, on my department alone, five members of staff have left due to various reasons, and we have had just one full time replacement to cover them all.
Colleagues on other departments have had 'hour matching' which has resulted in hours being cut back, and overtime all but none existent.
This is the number one moral killer in our store: staff are now forced to do the work that would typically take 2-3 people to complete (that is no exaggeration). This is a long standing issue (now over 2 years now) that causes mass amount of stress and guilt among staff working on shop floor who know they are facing a lose-lose situation daily, but trying their hardest to get on top of things so not leave staff the next shift coming in with a complete mess.
The majority of the shop floor staff who are checkout trained can spend a vast amount of their replenishing time sat on a till, only adding to the stress of understaffed departments struggling to complete their replenishment tasks; if, and this happens very regularly, a section does not get completed, other subsequent tasks (FOA walk, MAR reports etc) can not be completed.
This issue has been brought up with out store manager whos only response is, along the lines of: "your checkout trained for a reason, you will go down when they need you".
And yes, regardless of age, you are spoken to like a school child.
Store management, in my store, are rarely seen on the shop floor. We have one lady duty manager in particular who (and this is the truth) will never venture on shop floor to see how department are doing, even if she has been left in charge of running the store.
Her time is spent in front of a computer in the general office; whilst I understand management have computer based tasks to complete, her presence never being felt on shop floor annoys so many, yet even after a year, nothing has changed.
Training is another bad point. Although I have been there many years, and have watched the 6 monthly refresher videos many times, and my trainer may think I know all the answers to the question booklet (which is a filed legal document I believe), on the last two occasions she has just presented me with the answer booklet and told me to "re-word the answers" and not even bothered to push "play" on the DVD player. Sure it saves me 10-15 minutes, but it is awful practice.
This sort of behaviour also happens elsewhere. I am not a team leader, nor am I a manger, yet I am pressured into filling out legal documents (Safe and Sound) every weekend on a day when we have no team leader or manager contracted to work on my department (that in itself is bad).
It is a task I do not mind doing (besides the fact it leaves me less time to help my fellow colleagues), but I feel uncomfortable in filling out a legal document when I have had no training on it, and not authorised to do so, and am just told to "try and copy and reword the last few days answers").
The equipment at my store is not all that bad. We have many hi-visibility clothing available, albeit it may be slightly ripped/torn, but it does the job.
We had one of our plastic bailers brake over two months ago at one end of the store which has yes to be replaced. Meaning either a regular walk to the other end of the store to use the one that other departments share, or just dumping in a corner, which is most often the case.
One of the doors to the fridges has also been broken for some time, it has been fixed many times, but after a few days, it falls of it hinges and becomes a struggle to open.
A complete bracket and rail replacement is needed, but the company won't pay for that; each time it is put back on, the bolts tightened, and it fails, which has now lead to the wooding on the side of the door becoming badly split.
Our shelving is disgusting, I feel so embarrassed in working for store because of how bad it is, especially when customers comment on it. It is badly scratched and very old, you would struggle to find a section of shelving that doesn't have broken plastic ticket holders. I have pointed it out to management on many occasions, fair play to them, they did eventually order some new ones, however it was of the wrong size for my departments shelves, and has still yet to be replaced.
I could go on with the problems I've been experiencing over the last couple of years, but I won't. The worst have been outlined.
As I say, I don't know whether all this is a company specific thing or just my store, but judging from other users comments on here, I'd say some of it certainly is, especially the understaffing, and "lazy" management issues.
What I would say it for any one looking to get a shopfloor/checkout based job here, please reconsider.
Out of the top 5 supermarkets, Sainsbury's is last but one in the amount your earn per hour; Aldi pay over £8p/h for the same job/treatment (according to my friend), and 7.24 at Tesco (according to another friend). My wage at Sainsbury's after being there over 5 years is ~£6.78.
I have been working there for almost 2 years now and everyday just gets worse and worse. The first 6months or so was not too bad, alright money for someone my age ( 17 ) but more recently, like the last 9 months or so have just been horrible. The manager is a complete racist, he will let all the asian employees get away with murder and will bully the white workers. Me being a white english male, working for him is awful... he constantly picks on me and will give me the worst jobs to do and expect me to do most of the work while he and he " friends " will do nothing. The other team leaders and mangers are almost as bad, worst place to work... will be quitting as soon as i find another job
Never again will i work for sainsburys... worst 2 years of my life
I got a contract for Christmas period and I am not going to do this mistake again!! Sainsbury's sucks, my mnager did not liked me at all maybe because I was romanian I do not know but she never hidden the fact that she did not like me. A lot of gossip between the staff, however no stress at all work wise and quite good money. But never ever again I'll work for Sainsbury's!! I was in the online department and I worked ever so hard cause you can imagine how christmas period is but they did not see how hard I worked, people just don't care. One night I came from 12.30 I was on the rota until 8.30 morning and nobody was in, aparentely my manager forgot to mention to me that I should not come that if you take in consideration that I called her during the day and she said yes I have to come. No apologies and no money. And other thinks like that happened but they did not care about me so no way I will work for them again.
Having given part of my working day life to "Sainsbury's Super Store" for the best of 16yrs!!!! and also have seen lots of changes across the board, It never surprises me as too how its the shop floor staff that are left behind for example: Manergerial staff cannot liase with staff/communicate amongst staff/break staff confidentiality to the extent of communication is a "No" No" When will manergirial ralise that if!!! it wasn't for the every day shop floor worker including the tea lady the "Bosses wouldn't be in their leather chair" And having seen with my own eyes plus actual experience on these matters, until manergrial get to the root of the every day problems amongst the working staff, there will always be a unhappy environment on the shop floor. And I think its about time somethink was done!!!!
I worked for Sainsburys just under 2 years ago, and I must say I am so glad I am no longer working there. As a company, not so bad, but the store I worked in could have been run better by monkeys I think.
I started working in my local Sainsburys when it opened up in my town in November 2008. I started 2 days after the store opened, and was due to work 2 evenings and 1 day a week as this was all they had available. I was working on checkouts, but was soon made to be supervisor, more for the fact that they had no one else old enough on the evening shifts. I felt more like a creche manager than a checkout supervisor, and at 23, I shoudn't be feeling old surely? My checkout manager was a complete waste of job space, she had been sent over from a different store, funnily enough where her boyfriend was a manager, and the fact she was a few years younger than me made most of us wonder as to how she actually got the job (any guesses?) She has since been moved to a different store, due to most of the staff actually hating this one person.
In fact, most of our managers were replaced quite easily and quickly. Since I have left there has been 2 more checkout managers, the checkout supervisors are always changing, and more and more people are just walking out of the job. The deputy manager was replaced within a month of the store opening, as she truly was an incompetent, bitch who had no people skills what so ever, the only decent manager of any kind was replaced and we have no idea why! Shame they never bought him back, he knew what he was doing.
The treatment of staff in that store was terrible. I got injured (not actually in work) and when I came to work on crutches, I was whinged at and told I should have stayed at home, yet when I asked to go home as I was in a lot of pain, I was told it was my own fault and that I would be put into a disciplinary hearing should I wish to go home before the end of my shift! I was moaned at for not having the correct uniform black trousers (I wore my own) but when ever I asked for a pair of uniform trousers, no one ever bothered to get me some. My name badge was printed wrong twice, and I ended up printing my own just to get it right.
I got put into a disciplinary hearing for being ill, because I had not phoned in sick before my shift started, yet I had been sent home ill by my manager during my shift! I was actually given a verbal warning and told that any more abscence could result in a written warning, surely that is not fair?
The worst treatment I saw in the store was actually to my partner. We both worked in the store, and so we both booked off the same holiday time to go to Spain for a few days. Whilst in Spain I actually got majorally injured (ACL!) and my partner asked for time off work to look after me as I was unable to do most things for myself without falling over or dramatic amounts of pain. I was told I could not have time off without a disciplinary, even though I couldnt walk and had doctors notes to say I needed time off, so I told them to stick their job where the sun don't shine. My partner was then asked where he had been for 4 days, to which he replied, in Spain, you knew this. Suddenly all knowledge of my partner even mentioning Spain was denied, and the holiday he had booked was magically never asked for, yet we had the confirmation 4 weeks before going.
They decided a disciplinary hearing was needed as they were adament my partner had not booked this time off, and was in fact just skiving work! They even went so far as to say my injury wasn't real, even though doctors notes, scans, xrays and the wheelchair said different. He then also told them where they could stick their job.
We put in a formal complaint to head office, which was ignored even though we put in 6 formal complaints, and we are now in the process of taking this further! I would not bother working for these guys again.
I've worked at Sainsburys for just over two years now and have decided I can't bare it any longer. Quite frankly I'm surprised at the average 3 star rating it has at the time of writing. Let's get the good points out of the way first.
Pay - The pay is pretty decent for a student such as myself and probably for the average worker. It's above minimum wage I'm not sure by how much. I just know that when I was 17 I was earning around £5.80 and now I'm earning £6.08.
Holiday Allowance - There is a paid holiday allowance of 6 weeks. Ok I'll hand it to them this is pretty darn nice. It doesn't have to be paid and it doesn't have to be 6 weeks so my hat comes off for this one.
Other benefits are claimed by the company but they are a bit desperate such as 'staff social events' and wait for it ... 'free uniform'. Have you seen it?! You wouldn't be paying for it that's for sure! There is the staff discount which is a mere 10% or 15% at certain times such as christmas. But when the supermarket is priced above the competition you end up paying around the same as you would at Tesco anyway.
Ok so what grinds my gears about the store I work at?
Treatment - As a Sainsburys worker wearing the uniform you are treated poorly. Customers look on at you as if you've failed your life and management speak to you as if you're a trained monkey. Even those staff just one rank above you such as 'team leader' will delegate their own less desirable jobs to you "When you're done with that roller do mine as well will you?" clearly they have something more important to do such as sit down and chat.
If you work on a checkout I'm afraid it's only worse. You sit there for hours on end as an endless flow of the weirdest people on earth come through with their shopping. I guess that's not their fault but it's not pleasant anyway.
Mind Numbing Tasks - Putting food on the shelf, cleaning out freezers, scanning and bagging. I know it's what I signed up for but I couldn't imagine how soul destroying it is to carry out such meaningless unrewarding jobs. Even when helping customers you don't get a thanks for it, as soon as you've showed them where they need to be you become a nuisance. It really is the look of "that will be all peasant". On the checkouts I even have to play 'time games' my favourite is called 'don't look at your watch until you've tallied 50 customers'. Good times :(
To work at Sainsburys really isn't worth the increased pay. I'm moving on now to a job that pays less and offers less 'benefits' just for the better environment and nicer treatment. So for the last time "is there anything else I can help you with today?"
I have absolutely nothing to knock Sainsbury's for employment-wise. I worked for them as a Holiday Casual when I came back from University during term breaks. I worked on the Night shift, which goes from 9pm-7am, and although these shifts can be a bit dreary, I found the staff very affable, and the work and subsequent pay were both fine.
After getting the job, I came along to an induction, where I was shown a horribly cheesy video about the various health and safety aspects of the job, which was very boring, but I was at least paid for it. About a week later I started work on the shift: it basically started by going to the back-store section and meeting with the manager and other employees, who would let us know anything special about the shift, like if an area manager was visiting in the morning. Then we'd all be assigned to our sections and be sent on our way.
We typically started our shifts by pulling out newly delivered stock or carrying on from what the day shift have done, and after the shop closed at 10pm, we would periodically get 2-3 deliveries, which we'd have to drag out to the corresponding areas. The stacking work is very easy: you get the hang of where everyone is quite easily, and even if you don't know, you're often working with someone else so can ask them. Because it's a night shift, it's very stress-free; nobody is angry or aggressive, and there's not really any pressure on you to make sure you get every last thing put out, as the morning shift will come in and relieve you anyway.
I was paid £7.56 an hour, which apparently isn't very much for a night shift, but I thought it was fine. I have to admit that it took quite a lot out of me, and obviously messed up my sleeping pattern, so I can't really recommend this type of work for everyone, but it was very easy, and given how I don't really like talking to customers, all I had to do was talk to my colleagues, who were for the most part very affable.
It might be menial work, but it's not at all stressful, pays well, and doesn't make me want to die every time I go there. However, breaks are very frequent, with one 15-minute break at 12:15am, and another at 4am.
My brother has Downs Syndrome, which in these politically correct times is quaintly described as a learning difficulty. The reality is probably much closer to the historic descriptors of 'mentally handicapped' or 'mentally retarded'. However he is fortunate in that he does go out to work independently to a proper job at a local Sainsbury's supermarket. Indeed he has been working in the retail sector for most of his working life, although it has only been at Sainsbury's for the last few years due to TUPE transfer from Safeway via Morrison's. His employment experience also includes Tesco and Marks & Spencer.
*** Job Role ***
He is employed as a General Assistant, competent grade within the checkout department, working 24 hours per week spread over 4 days. This competent grade is important since it determines that his hourly rate is paid at a premium over a new team member or someone who has not completed all their training. His current rate is £6.08 per hour which is above the National Minimum Wage rate of £5.73 per hour meaning that Sainsbury's are actually rewarding him above the minimum they would be obliged to honour.
Although he works within the checkout team, there is no way he would be competent to be left unattended on a checkout. Whilst he could operate a scanner and count money, he would be slow with change, and any complications would completely fluster him, whereby the queue would be snaked back to the car park. Consequently his role is based around collecting baskets, returning them to the entrance doors, removing and returning any abandoned items, and assisting other disabled people either with their shopping or helping to carry out shopping to their cars/taxis. He can direct customers to specific items in the store and assist with stock replenishment. However when left to stack the toilet rolls, heaven help any poor customer who wants to disrupt his military precision!
Like all staff he has to clock in and out whilst working so he needs to be able to manage time., as he is paid directly from his recorded hours. .A typical shift starts at 0930 and then he takes a 15 minute tea break (which is paid) at 1115. Normally a lunch break of an hour between one and two o'clock, is taken in the staff canteen, where there is a good choice of fresh rolls, sandwiches, snacks and hot meals at subsidised prices. He will typically choose filled rolls knowing he is coming home to an evening meal! No doubt it is cheaper too!! His shift finishes at 4.30 whereby he clocks off and can then return home. Whilst the store is on a bus route, it is not frequent nor easy to connect to where we live so typically he will get a taxi, which costs about £5 per journey.
Along with all other staff members he is issued with a uniform, of which he is fiercely proud. It comprises black trousers (which have to be taken up significantly to accommodate a 24 inch inside leg measurement), blue polo type shirt, dark blue fleece V neck sweater or orange thick fleece zipped jacket and the all important name badge. The name badge is just like one of those fiddly things you get at conferences whereby the pin is much smaller than the badge and hidden underneath. It is a total pain to get straight in relation to the Sainsbury's logo embroidered onto the fleeces or shirts, and this is an essential part of the pride in his uniform. Many arguments have ensued as to whether it is wonky or not, a concern completely lost to most people! Fortunately he has to provide his own black shoes since I suspect size 5 "H" fitting would be outside the normal range for typical menswear uniform.
*** Pay and Benefits ***
As I mentioned earlier, Sainsbury's pay an hourly rate of £6.08 per hour, paid by BACS to his bank account every 4 weeks. It is always reliable and transferred on time, and a simple payslip is electronically produced with all the statutory data, which is picked up directly in the store from the personnel team. He is a member of the Sainsbury's Final Salary Pension Scheme, and has recently been able to opt to reduce his contributions to a career average scheme which is beneficial in his case since he will never be a high earning employee. Also he gets a staff discount card which is typically 10% but occasionally rises to 15% discount on purchases including online shopping. As you may imagine we take full advantage of the shopping benefits.
The shop is a nice clean fresh and warm working environment, and there is excellent contact and interaction with both other staff and customers to act as a stimulus. Indeed at Christmas time he will often come home with tips and cards that he has received from customers. Often when out and about in the town people will approach and say "Hello" since they are familiar with seeing him at the supermarket.
Whilst he only works 4 days per week in the store the Wednesday is spent at college., where he is doing an NVQ entry level course to adult literacy. Although Sainsbury's do not sponsor him as such since this is a community based course provided by the local council, they do always ensure that his schedules are such that he can attend the classes and are keen to record the certificates of achievement at each stage.
The schedules are probably the most complex area for a mentally handicapped person to handle. Booking leave is complex even for me to understand since all the hours are annualised and include the statutory holidays. This means you have to plan carefully ahead to ensure that leave is correctly booked out so that holiday pay is not missed, and typically about February time you are asked to request all your leave days for the next year which runs from April to March, sometimes including Easter and sometimes not, depending on where it falls. As I say this is where a disadvantaged person would certainly need help.
He is treated just as anyone else so far as time and attendance is concerned which is a very good thing. This even extends to losing 45 mins pay when his taxi was late in the recent snow, since it could not negotiate our local hills. I say this is a good thing since he has to live in the real world and there are consequences which make him realise how important time and attendance is. The reality is that he has a mindset that would rather be early than late which can be no bad thing.
I have to say his department manager and the personnel team are all very helpful and supportive, which makes all the difference, since obviously training (whether it be Health & Safety or compliance training) is going to take longer and be more difficult to ascertain that it has been absorbed. The only concession as such that I am aware of relates to him having his own Personal Evacuation Plan in the event of fire or similar emergency since he would be like a 'rabbit in the headlamps' and certainly no use to assist with the evacuation of customers.
Finally the local store he works in has a fairly active social and participative attitude. My brother loves taking part in store events, dressing up for Halloween, Christmas, Red Nose Day, St Georges Day etc etc, and being included in parties, bowling events and BBQs. He feels part of the team and is very proud and loyal to be working for Sainsbury's, and looking forward to receiving his 15 year service award, which is a new badge he can wear on his uniform, replacing the 10 year one.
If you look on the corporate website maybe as a prospective employee you will see the following statement:
" 'Respect for the Individual' is one of Sainsbury's core values. We are committed to putting that into practice, creating a working environment where everyone has the opportunity to contribute, is valued and respected. "
From the experience of my brother's employment, his store is certainly trying to live up to this value and I thank them sincerely for this commitment, as it has enabled an otherwise disadvantaged individual to realise his potential.
Thanks for reading
Posted on Dooyoo and Ciao under the same author
On checkouts awkward customers are actually an advantage because they make the day go faster.
I had two customers ask for change in advance of actually handing over the money: one was a wnker who started trying to negotiate what percent of the bill I could have before the receipt, I think the other was going to run.
There are a few who are just crazy; one woman came to the till to ask permission to lift her daughter out of a freezer she'd climbed into.
Most days are unbelievably boring but anything is bearable for a few months.
When I worked checkouts the starting rate was £5.70. This rises with time and apparently also with the training you do although no one seemed to know how much each capability contributes.
When I had been there six months and trained for petrol station I was making £6.08.
You don't get paid more per hour for overtime but there are a lot of shifts available. Working Sundays and bank holidays adds a little: seven hours on each of four Sundays makes about £20 over standard pay.
Holiday is excellent, six weeks (inc bank holiday entitlement) and while they say it has to be booked in one week blocks with so many blocks in each season in reality you can put what you like, even take a few hours off the start or end of a shift.
They are just as flexible when it comes to moving shifts, normally this is arranged in a couple of days - sometimes it is done in hours.
Training is poor and growing worse: it is meant to take two days but it is crammed into two hours. When I was first put on a till the customer showed me the technique for opening bags.
There is a pension but the employer match is only 10%.
The shares scheme is very good, it offers shares at a 20% discount to today's low price but you have to stay with the company three years so I never used it.
If you do stay there a year you become eligible for a store performance linked annual bonus worth up to 10% of salary.
After your first six months you get a discount card (10% normally, 15% at certain times like just before Christmas).
For an eight hour shift you get half an hour paid break and sometimes an hours unpaid lunch.
The work of operating checkouts is extremely tedious. The best role is probably stacking shelves because you have more freedom and when you interact with a customer it's because of a problem so it's more interesting.
I started working part-time for Sainsbury's whilst I was at college doing A Levels. I was given a part-time contract (12 hours per week) which suited me fine as the shifts didn't collide with college and still let me study and write essays most nights of the week. The training I recieved was brilliant. When you first start you have a two day induction which is usually 9-5 for two days. This is the most boring thing I have ever sat through and most of it was simple common sense. But I was getting payed for it so I sat in my chair and attempted to look interested.
I was put onto the fresh food department (fresh meat and fish/deli counters) and as such I recieved a lot of Health And Safety training, along with training that was specific to the department. After one close down shift with another employee I was chucked into the deep end. However I soon picked everything up and I am now fully trained and confident in all aspects in my department.
So the job was good, even if I was working nights on the weekend. The pay is competitive for the area. (£5.70 an hour for the first 6 months then £5.85 after) and most benefits such as holiday etc are very good.
The staff I work with are some of the best people I have met in years. I go out with most of them on a regular basis and enjoy working with all of them. However departments are very seperated. You stick with your own basically, so you can't really meet people from other departments unless you are on the shopfloor all the time.
There are only a few things I have to say that are bad about working for Sainsburys. The first is their extreme dedication to customer service. Now don't get me wrong, I am polite and friendly to all customers but this isn't good enough for Sainsburys. You are given a script to work from (this isn't a lie) and it goes like this.
Customer: Hello can you tell me where the pasta is?
Me: Hello sir/madam. The pasta is in aisle....34. Would you like me to show you?
Customer: Yes please
Me: If you would like to follow me please
Now you take them to the item.
Me: There you are sir/madam. Would you like help with anything else?
Customer: No thank you
Me: Ok, thank you very much. Have a nice day.
Now this doesn't sound hard does it. But it is when you have people observing you all the time. They do colleague observations at my store and people who do not follow this script are sent to the managers office. I even heard someone got a disciplinary for not saying exactly what they were told to say. It is just stupid. Sainsburys spend so much time on customer service that everytime you are asked something you spend about 4 mins talking to the customer when you should be doing something else.
The next thing is breaks. On a four hour shift you recieve no break what so ever which is a pain if your a smoker. On 5/6 hour shifts you get 15 minutes. On 7/8 hour shifts you get half an hour and on 9 hour shifts you get two 15 minute breaks and an hour unpaid lunch break.
The next thing is how repetitive the work is. As said before after a while you do chuck yourself into auto pilot. After long days 9-6 you just find yourself being so drained you cannot be bothered to do anything.
But overall the job is ok. I am now working basically full time hours and am finding it ok. The moneys ok, so are the people you work with. But with all corporations you do get abuse because your the first person people see. Normally its about the price of things. I understand that, most people who work at Sainsburys shop at Tesco's because we can't afford to shop at work even with 10% discount.
So basically if your thinking of working for them do it. It's not that bad a job but there are better ones to be had