Carphone backs retail pay scheme


A number of Carphone Warehouse retail staff are to take an enforced temporary pay cut as the company prepares its new monthly bonus scheme, they complained last week.

Carphone retail director Steve Blan notified staff Carphone requires three months of store data to compile its new profit share scheme, which will see staff share two per cent of their store profit if the store hits 100 per cent of its sales target.

An interim bonus scheme for store staff has been agreed by area managers for the intervening three-month assessment period, running from August through October. Details of the bonus scheme were issued to staff via Carphone’s intranet system CPWTouch, explaining the profit-share bonus will be paid three months in arrears. Previously commission was paid one month in arrears.

Carphone ended its commission payment scheme on July 5, and staff will receive their final commission pay out at the end of this month (July) based on sales made in June. Standard commission was reduced by half in June and staff monthly wages were increased as the company readjusted.

Staff said they were not informed of the three-month switchover when they signed up to the new bonus scheme in consultation with store managers, and that staff in bigger Carphone stores will be hit in the short term.

But Carphone disputed any staff will see a shortfall in their wages. A spokesperson said: “It’s certainly not a pay cut. Until now staff always got their bonus a month in arrears, which is coming to an end – no commission but a hike in their salaries.

“The team bonus is paid three months in arrears, so there is a three month gap before it comes into effect. So staff will be paid an interim wage. Most staff will be covered by the interim payment as it is an average, and in some cases staff will get more.

“But if a staff member is down by any amount, they will get that back, but just in a couple of months time. Nobody is losing out.”

But staff said Carphone has had since October, when the scheme was first trialled in London, to calculate rates of pay based upon store profitability.

Carphone is understood to be calculating store sales and monthly customer service scores, the latter which is based upon feedback from 30 customers on five ‘compass’ points.

Staff must achieve 100 per cent sales targets and 80 per cent of customer service targets to qualify for the profit share.

Carphone is also collecting data on returns and clawbacks.

One staffer said: “It’s had this plan for ages. It should have gathered this information by now. I’ll be £250 out of pocket.”

Another said: “Most of my staff are now earning less as a result, which is something we were assured wouldn’t happen if we kept hitting targets. I’m personally around £200 worse off for the next three months.”