Personal Shopping Assistant (Former Employee) – Toronto, ON – 30 September 2013
I was a personal shopping assistant at Holt Renfrew. I have to say I was very excited to be working for this company but now that I have worked there I do not see it in the same way.
Compared to other companies the one nice thing about my position was that I made $15.00 an hour. However, after working there and realizing how much work is involved and how under appreciated you are as well as how badly you are treated this is not enough compensation. Seeing a shopper (who may have made their assistant pull the clothes and just shown up for the appointment) make 10% commission on a sale anywhere from $5,000 - $25,000 in an appointment anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour and a half was very disheartening. No, you do not get any commission. Working for someone who does half if not a quarter of the work and then seeing them make $2,500 while you make $15.00, sucks.
We would rarely get our lunch breaks. We were entitled to an hour a day but would be so busy that we wouldn't get the time to take it. To make up for this we would mark down that we had no lunches BUT would get lectured by our managers that we need to take our lunches. They would never speak to the actual personal shoppers and say "make sure your assistant is taking a lunch break." They made it our duty to say something, which for some people is uncomfortable when it can be busy.
All management cared about were sales. If you were making the company money they would treat you like gods, however, if you were in my position they were not friendly. They were constantly on our backs about every little thing.more... Holding meetings every so often with the personal shopper to let you know what you are doing WRONG and not showing appreciation for what you are doing RIGHT. The DVP would walk around and if you tried having a conversation with her all she would want to talk about were appointments and sales etc. She was not a friendly person and I honestly got the impression a lot of the staff were afraid of her. However, the VP was very friendly and you could always talk to him as an equal.
Overall, while this company has beautiful clothing and items it was awful to work for. Thank god I had a close relationship with the other assistants or else I would have hated going to work every day. I have never worked so hard in my life and felt so unappreciated. If I had been compensated higher I may not have minded so much. But being someone's unappreciated employee for $15.00 an hour was not worth it in my opinion.less