Symposium Cafe Restaurant & Lounge Employee Reviews

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Productive fun and great to work at.
Server (Current Employee) –  Ajax, ON3 August 2018
I had a great experience , loved the food , amazing staff , managers are awesome. Good hours and they work around your schedule for the most part. Good tips too.
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It’s a good place to work and it’s fast paced. You get a lot of tips!
Server (Current Employee) –  Ajax, ON3 August 2018
Great place to work at overall only for hard workers though. Good hours. Good money. Very fast paced environment at this location. Very high turnover for tables.
Pros
Good hours. 50% off meals. Amazing management!!!!
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Make it up as they go along
Manager (Current Employee) –  Milton, ON30 July 2018
No communication amongst upper management. You get sent to the flagship store in Milton for "2 weeks" of training. Most people end up getting their time extended to 4 weeks, I've heard as long as 2 months. This is because trainers are unsupervised and can decide on a whim if you should be "certified" or not on different stations.
If you do well and get good tips they keep you longer (because you don't get to keep your tips while training..), so really that just encourages you to just barley pass their standards in order to move to the next training station, except management can just put you back on a previous station to cover for their regular staff — this wastes days of what should be new training.
They do this freely because your hours don't come out of the Milton store's budget. You get paid by the store that your supposed to go work at after your training, so you're basically free labour for the Milton store and that's exactly what they treat you as.
Be prepared to fight for your wages. Get everything in writing and keep copies of any and every agreement you make with everyone you talk to. There is terrible communication between managers, supervisors, general managers and store owners — sometimes they haven't even known what positions people were training for after a week of shifts.
If you're choosing between Symposium or anywhere else then choose anywhere else. $45,000 part-time managing is just an outright lie, they will never agree to that rate
Pros
Easy
Cons
Uncertainty
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Stoney creek Management is brutal
Line Cook (Former Employee) –  Stoney Creek, ON14 July 2018
Management at Stoney creek location is extremely narcissistic and controlling.
Schedule comes out LATE, work hours are extreme due to understaffing, and illegal paycheque deductions.
Multiple broken appliances that owner refuses to fix, including vantilation system and fridges.
Pros
Nothing
Cons
It’s like being in an abusive relationship
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Productive and fun place to work at
Regional Manager (Former Employee) –  Mississauga, ON4 July 2018
Productive and fun place to work at, management are involved with the staff with strict workplace culture. the hardest part of the job is to be consistent with the customer service.
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No appreciation
Server (Former Employee) –  Mississauga, ON18 June 2018
This establishment has good working people, unfortunately management is nowhere near where they should be. There is no appreciation for the work done by servers. Management expects servers to give and give with no incentives. Pay is usually inaccurate and there is no open door policy as concerns go unanswered or ignored. This place has increased anxiety levels significantly.
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Shady management & nasty practices
Front of House Staff (Former Employee) –  Georgina, ON4 June 2018
Not worth it if you are trying to make decent money consistently.
What you are scheduled is not what you work and more often than not tips won’t even cover gas for the week.
Because of company culture many senior staff and management have uppity attitudes and are unwillingly to provide feedback or tips to do better even when repeated asked.
Hours worked and pay received often don’t match and one must check the schedule and pick up cheques on days off Definitely eye opening to see that servers acts as dishwashers and the kitchens with cramped and breeding grounds for cross contamination.
Ultimately not worth the effort and definitely needs an inspection from BBB and MInistry of Labour.
Pros
Cash tips (which is illegal at the moment)
Cons
Incorrect payment practices, aggressive and negligent management
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Fishy practices and terrible training
Server (Former Employee) –  Keswick, ON29 May 2018
prepare for no breaks, going home earlier or later then you are scheduled for, and paying for mistakes that were not your fault. Training was horrible.
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Great learning experience
Barista/Server (Former Employee) –  Stoney Creek, ON8 May 2018
The job is busy and teaches you a lot about serving and bartending in a smaller resturant.

It is a steady pace, which can be easy to keep up with, although it can feel understaffed at times.

Management can be a little demanding and can sometimes not try to provide individual management needs.
Pros
Discounted lunch, hours, tips
Cons
Management techniques, long (alone) hours
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Way too many rules and expensive uniform
Server (Former Employee) –  Barrie, ON10 April 2018
Be prepared to work lots of split shifts and pay 200 bucks for a uniform. Its okay if you've never served before but if you're an experienced server the tips are kind of mediocre. Not piercing or tattoo friendly, and a bunch of other rules (ie if you're a male server you must be clean shaven or take time off to grow a beard). When you first start look forward to a huge booklet of homework and no tables of your own for 2 weeks. Also if you double punch 2 separate orders you will lose your tables to another server. If you don't follow steps of service or miss one during a surprise evaluation they can terminate you on the spot. Lots of turnover.
Pros
Great for those without serving experience.
Cons
Overpriced uniform, homework, mediocre tips, split shifts, some weird rules
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Great Place To Work!!
Server (Current Employee) –  Barrie, ON22 March 2018
My experience with this company...

Shifts are very flexible, management is very understanding and accommodating at this location. Staff are very friendly and work together as a team. The work environment is positive and professional with lots of opportunities to learn and grow. Symposium steps of service set you up for higher check averages which in turn allows you to earn a bigger tip.

Overall a very positive experience working for this company.
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I would recommend
Server (Current Employee) –  Barrie, ON22 March 2018
I have worked at symposium for over a year now and I would definitely recommend working here. The smaller scale restaurant is nice and cozy and staff and other employees are friendly and always accommodating!
Pros
Friendly Staff
Cons
Schedule comes out week of
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Productive and fun workplace
Server/Desserts & Barista (Former Employee) –  Bolton, ON26 February 2018
I made specialty coffee ex, latte, cappuccino, espresso.
I worked on desserts preparing cakes, brownies, cookies, fruit.
helped with expo and serving tables
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Great place to work
Barista and Server (Current Employee) –  Toronto25 February 2018
Symposium has an amazing atmosphere and the management is great. Everyone here is very professional and makes working here a great pleasure. Great hours, pay is always on time. The other employees are great and amazing to be around. Good team spirit. If you want to work at a great establishment and have a great working experience this is the place to be!
Pros
No cons
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Definitely not the most stable work environment
Server (Former Employee) –  Stouffville, ON29 January 2018
Mind you, I came in the middle of a few transitions. During my one year stay at Symposium, management had switched twice. Head office took over and things were TENSE.

Generally, most of the head office staff consisted of unpleasant people. They also had unreasonable demands of their staff, often making us stay way past our scheduled shift time to clean WITHOUT PAY.

I hope it's gotten better now that new management has taken over the franchise, but this place left a sour taste in my mouth.
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Best place to work,,
Cook (Former Employee) –  Milton, ON18 January 2018
It was a good place to work, .paid on time,..plus tip out,, helpful co-worker and nice owner, number one. pay is good and on time, your food is free, and learn a lot.
Pros
Good pay
Cons
Nothing
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So far so good!
Barista (Current Employee) –  North York, ON3 January 2018
I've been working at the Symposium for three months as a barista/desert artist and it has been great. Everyone is kind and encouraging and helpful during a rush.
Pros
Tip Out Bonus
Cons
access to too many desserts
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Uplifting, Organized, Fast-Paced Working Environment
Server/Hostess (Former Employee) –  Brantford, ON29 December 2017
As a server/hostess at the Symposium Café I had many different opportunities within the work day. I learned new skills, I gained knowledge on many things that will further help me in the work field.
Pros
Management, Food, People, Atmosphere
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not the greatest
Server (Former Employee) –  Milton, ON24 December 2017
worked with some great people and some not so great ones too. keep track of hours or you will be stolen from. owner is nice to your face but not so much when your not around
Pros
great coworkers
Cons
disorganized
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I enjoy working in Symposium
Manager (Current Employee) –  Oakridge, ON13 December 2017
- Good opportunity to growth
- Good wages
- Good environment
- Good business to learn everyday something new
- Flexible hours
- Easy to run any shift any position if you follow the system and policy
- Businesses on Growth
- No surprise
- Moving on by market demand
Pros
Somthing new and positive different in resturant industry
Cons
All is good no missing from my point of view
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Overall rating

3.4
Based on 63 reviews
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Ratings by category

3.3Work/Life Balance
3.0Salary/Benefits
2.9Job Security/Advancement
3.0Management
3.3Culture