Attorney General of New York seems to have taken keen interest in the staffing practices of 13 big retailers that include Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT). The office of New York Attorney General Erik Schneiderman warned the company through a recent letter that showed concern about the staffing practices of the company.
The letter focused on on-call scheduling and how such practices violate New York law. It is speculated that the retailing giants are using on-call scheduling to reduce expenses on regular staffing. In on-call scheduling, the employee has to check in through a call before entering the workplace. He is then told whether he is required for the work that particular day or not. The employee has to show up for work if there is need for him, otherwise he is told to have an unpaid leave. According to sources, the retailing companies use special software that predicts staffing needs based on sells and traffic data.
With on-call scheduling, retailing companies can more easily manage their workforce. For example, more employees are required on busy days compared to slow days. Thus companies schedule the workforce accordingly. Worker advocates have criticized the on-call scheduling system. According to them, this system makes the lives of the workers unpredictable. The unreliable payment also affects worker’s financial security.
The Attorney General of New York sent the letters to 13 big retailers, warning them about the unlawful practice of on-call scheduling. These retailers include Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT), Gap Inc (NYSE:GPS), Abercrombie & Fitch Co (NYSE:ANF), Burlington Stores Inc (NYSE:BURL), Ann Inc (NYSE:ANN), Cross Inc (NASDAQ:CROX), J.C. Penney Co (NYSE:JCP), L Brands Inc (NYSE:LB), Sears Holdings Corp (NASDAQ:SHLD), TJX Companies Inc (NYSE:TJS), Urban Outfitters Inc (NASDAQ:URBN) and Williams-Sonoma Inc (NYSE:WSM).
Spokespersons of these companies have denied the allegations. Most of them said that their companies use ‘sustainable’ scheduling practices. Target Corporation (NASDAQ:TGT) said that the company informs the workers 10 days in advance. Whatever may be the case, receiving a letter from attorney general’s office concerning staffing practices is surely a red sign. The companies will have to restructure their scheduling practices soon.