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 Feedback Requested: Lawrence Merchandising Services (CRS/Lawrence) (Stravina)
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Sue A
Star Contributor

USA
450 Posts

Posted - 06/27/2015 :  5:10:53 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I worked for them from 1994-1999. At the time the only store they did was Target.In 1998 in my area they started a time check thing.
They sent us a time card and when we entered the store we had to go to the stores time clock and punch in and have a manager initial it. When we left we had to go punch out and have a manager sign it. Of course we didn't get paid for having to stand around waiting for a manager to come so that we could leave.I quit in 1999 when they hired another person in my area to help cover the store.

Sue A
Silver Certified
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Nick_S
Valued Contributor

Los Angeles, California
USA
166 Posts

Posted - 07/13/2015 :  08:49:31 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I live in Los Angeles and I have worked for Lawrence Merchandising for over 2 years. I really enjoy working for them, however I wish I could get more hours per week at the Target store that I service.

So at this point, I would love to get an additional job or two with one or two other merchandising companies (in Los Angeles) so I can maybe get about 20 to 25 extra hours (total) per week working for one or two additional merchandising companies. Mainly I am looking to zone, straighten, stock, clean, and set new POGs when required. I prefer just simple and repetitive work, where the administration time is less than 30 minutes total per week from start to finish, and where there is a minimal amount of paperwork I have to print out per week. So I am looking to do basically the same exact type work that I do at Target at another chain type store.

Ideally, I would love to be able to work at 2 other local Target stores (when they have openings for a new representative), however Lawrence Merchandising would not let me, when I asked. So I thought I would ask our group here if anyone could make any suggestions for other merchandising companies in Los Angeles, where the work is similar to the Target work (servicing the jewelry and sunglasses).

Thank you in advance for your help.

Nick
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ChrisS
Contributor

USA
89 Posts

Posted - 07/14/2015 :  4:07:32 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
SRS has a sunglass contract at Walmart, but its not going to be anywhere near the hours you want. There's also FGX (Foster Grant), everyone seems to rave about them here, but I've not worked with them due to a far flung store in the territory they have open in my area.

All the best,

ChrisS

Providing merchandising and related services to Southeastern Indiana.
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Laura_In_Az
Star Contributor

Tucson, AZ
USA
307 Posts

Posted - 07/14/2015 :  6:18:02 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
RMS,(Retail Merchandising Services) which used to have the sunglasses in Targets is still alive in Targets. They allow you to have more than 1 Target and do project work and some on going continuity work.
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Nick_S
Valued Contributor

Los Angeles, California
USA
166 Posts

Posted - 07/14/2015 :  9:43:10 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Thank you Chris, I will check out SRS and FGX. Also thank you Laura, I am familiar with RMS. I ran into one of there reps one time (over a year ago), that was working at my Target store. She said at that time, she did not care about losing the sunglasses calls, as RMS had plenty of other work to do in Target.

Well maybe if I try my luck with all 3 of those companies, I can find the 20 to 25 hours extra per week I am looking for. Yet I do know from past experience, when it comes to trying to get hired by a merchandising company, it can take several months to maybe over a year to maybe get hired. . . Yet often, an online application goes into a black hole and one never hears from that company again.

Thanks a MILLION you two! :-)

Nick
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Nick_S
Valued Contributor

Los Angeles, California
USA
166 Posts

Posted - 08/13/2015 :  09:07:01 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Has anyone currently been using the Check-In/Out option when doing their work in the field? If so, how has it been working out?

Also, did LMS send you a tablet to complete your work in the store or are you using your own tablet?

Nick
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Laura_In_Az
Star Contributor

Tucson, AZ
USA
307 Posts

Posted - 08/13/2015 :  5:19:45 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I just received an email telling me I am getting a tablet. I am not a happy camper. I live in Tucson. I work part time for LMS which means I work for other companies throughout the day. The tablet will cook or melt in the car when it is 110 outside, what will the temp be in the car? I don't want to bring it into stores for other companies. I don't carry extra stuff in. Not sure what I am going to do. SIGH.
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LuptonInVirginia
Contributor

Virginia
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 08/13/2015 :  5:43:59 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
The tablet is going to be used to track our in store time to make sure we're not reporting more time than we're actually working. I've worked for LMS for 14 years. I make less money now than when I started, I do a lot more work with zero opportunity for advancement and now I'll be tracked like a convicted felon. The good news is, according to the email they sent to us today, we've helped them become a leader in the industry through all of our hard work. Their praise alone helps make me feel better about my constantly shrinking paycheck.

Mark
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Nick_S
Valued Contributor

Los Angeles, California
USA
166 Posts

Posted - 08/14/2015 :  10:22:38 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Thank you for the feedback Laura and Mark.

Laura, for sure I know how you feel. I am not happy about getting a tablet either, as I do not want to be responsible for it, in or out of the store. MAJOR FROWN!!! :-(

Mark, I totally understand what you are saying . . . by having that tablet in-tow, I feel like Big Brother is watching . . . while keeping track of our time and GPS coordinates OR we will be tracked like a convicted felon. MAJOR FROWN!!! Yet it would be easier if they just made us wear a GPS monitor ankle bracelet . . . that way they will know exactly were we are in the department AND they will know when and how often we are moving around in the jewelry and sunglasses department . . . as they make sure that we are not sitting down reading a good book. LOL!!! Yet the pay does suck. I started out making $10 an hour (a little over 2 years ago) . . . then last Fall, I received an email (with a TON of fluff in it) from someone at LMS (that I never heard of before) stating that was going to soon be receiving a 3 cent per hour raise! Woo! Hoo! 3 WHOLE cents more per hour! Yet I ONLY get paid $10.03 per hour for jewelry and sunglasses calls only . . . but if I do other projects for LMS, then I only get paid $10.02 per hour . . . go and figure why they take that 1 cent back. UGH!!!

At least the light at the end of my tunnel is, I only plan to be doing merchandising for about 1 more year and change careers, to move on to doing something that is less demanding that pays much better.

Nick
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LuptonInVirginia
Contributor

Virginia
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 08/15/2015 :  08:25:08 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Three years ago I was getting paid for nine hours to do costume jewelry in one Target. Now I get between two and four hours to do costume jewelry AND sunglasses.

I also used to get all of the extra work in other stores in my location, automatically assigned to me. Now I get none of it because all of the extra work is placed as "opportunities" which means I have to compete with other reps to get that work.

This isn't even mentioning how they've never approached me about advancement, other than a trainer's position which meant I would be responsible for training new hires in two or three other stores. WOW!

There used to be a time a person was rewarded for his dedication to his job. The longer you worked for someone the more you could make. I've worked for LMS since it was CRS, 14 years, and I now make less than what I did when I started.

And they have the nerve to send emails out about how great a company they are.

This is not a company one can expect to go places with or be rewarded for hard work.

Mark
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Robert A. Miller
Star Contributor

PA
USA
387 Posts

Posted - 08/15/2015 :  7:00:54 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I don't think that there are many companies, merchandising or otherwise, that recognize dedication or longevity any more. All that matters is the almighty dollar.
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Sue A
Star Contributor

USA
450 Posts

Posted - 08/16/2015 :  2:18:28 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I made $10 an hour with them 20 years ago. Worked for them for 5 years and never once got a pay raise.

Sue A
Silver Certified
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LuptonInVirginia
Contributor

Virginia
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 08/17/2015 :  3:04:41 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I got a pay raise recently but they gave it to everyone. So on the hour, I make the same as someone brand new. But, considering I've done this for 14 years I make less than a new person because I can certainly crack out the product faster than someone straight off the street. Their pay system rewards someone for being slow.

Mark
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RobertH
Valued Contributor

Pinson, AL
USA
178 Posts

Posted - 08/19/2015 :  6:58:16 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Nick-

Not to make you feel worse about getting a tablet- more like "misery loves company" because everyone is getting tablets with built-in tracking- but what you're worrying about happening when you get a tablet is already happening.

Depending on what software your tablet uses to track you, your location can be determined down to roughly 30 feet, meaning that, while they might not be able to tell which aisle in Cosmetics you're in, they can certainly tell if you're standing in Cosmetics while answering questions about Cosmetics. They can also tell if you're in the store's snack bar or the restroom (though, thankfully, not which stall....yet). Your employer- and, quite possibly, the client as well- can see your answers in near real-time, as some tablets, once they log into the store's Wi-Fi, continuously transit the data you're collecting. They can know when you're answering the questions, where you're answering the questions, and if you're attaching pictures, comments or whatever.

And this is whether your tablet is powered on or not.

Robert
Over 30 years in the Field
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LuptonInVirginia
Contributor

Virginia
USA
97 Posts

Posted - 08/19/2015 :  9:21:35 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
There are approximately 1,700 Targets in the U.S. Is Lawrence going to hire someone to monitor all of those reps? Or does the device send out a notice if I report on costume jewelry while sitting in my car outside of the store?

Mark
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EdMikes
Valued Contributor

Salt Lake City, Utah
USA
172 Posts

Posted - 08/20/2015 :  4:21:28 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Lupton,


As for your question.

If you get an Ipad that polices you to a point with the GPS. However if you are smart you can turn that ability off.

I would guess they would also have managers in various regions as well to ensure the job is getting done. But I really doubt that Lawrence has the capital to do that.

So my best guess is the Ipad to prove you were at the location via GPS.

Ed Mikes
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RobertH
Valued Contributor

Pinson, AL
USA
178 Posts

Posted - 08/21/2015 :  4:06:27 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by LuptonInVirginia

There are approximately 1,700 Targets in the U.S. Is Lawrence going to hire someone to monitor all of those reps? Or does the device send out a notice if I report on costume jewelry while sitting in my car outside of the store?



Your tablet monitors pretty much all that you do during the day, and it can be set up to send the information it gathers continuously throughout the day, when you deliberately synch to transmit data, or anywhere in between. A computer monitors all the activity, including your approximate location. It throws off alerts to your supervisor on things such as not logging into your store within a set amount of time from when you scheduled yourself to be there (typically about 30 minutes), not logging into your store within a certain distance from that store (reputed to be roughly .25 miles- your results may vary), etc.

Robert
Over 30 years in the Field
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RobertH
Valued Contributor

Pinson, AL
USA
178 Posts

Posted - 08/21/2015 :  4:08:51 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
"If you get an Ipad that polices you to a point with the GPS. However if you are smart you can turn that ability off."

Ed:

I do know of one way to do that.

So does ACOSTA, and it is potentially a termination offense, even the first time you do it. They consider it THAT serious.

Robert
Over 30 years in the Field
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Cathy O
Contributor

Richmond, MI
USA
79 Posts

Posted - 08/22/2015 :  08:13:12 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
When ever I use a tablet it asks if it can use your location. It works even if you say no.

Cathy
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Nick_S
Valued Contributor

Los Angeles, California
USA
166 Posts

Posted - 08/23/2015 :  7:33:59 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Mark,that is about what I get at my store . . . almost 2 hours to do jewelry and almost 2 hours to do sunglasses, per visit. However I look at those OPPORTUNITIES as a double edge sward. I like to see what the job is and how long is it expected to take BEFORE accepting them . . . especially if the opportunity is not located at the Target I service. If I like the opportunity, I will take it . . . since I like making a little extra money when I can. Lately, the opportunities near/somewhat near me are for 60 minutes or less and often involve my having to drive 30 minutes (one way to get to the store), so I never accept those opportunities, as they are not worth my time or trouble to drive round trip for an hour only to make $10. I usually accept about 90% of the opportunities at my Target store . . . yet I pass on those that I do not like. Since I have been at my store for almost 3 years, for 2 full years I did EVERY opportunity that came available. Now after 2 years, I now know that there are just opportunities that I just do not like . . . i.e. trading cards or any assignment involving the use of that Swift Tack Gun. I HATE that Swift Tack Gun! UGH! So for reasons like that, I am glad that I usually do not get assigned opportunities . . . yet from time-to-time, when nobody in my area accepts an opportunity that I did not want (at my store), my DM will automatically assign it to me (I guess since it is at my store and no other nearby representatives wanted it either) . . . which I hate, because I never wanted that particular opportunity to begin with. UGH! Yet from reading some of the earlier postings about LMS, I have no expectations of ever getting any advancements or any other frills or being offered a position as a Trainer . . . yet they may give me another 2 to 3 cent raise in another 2 more years. LOL! But the bottom line is, no matter how successful LMS is, I do not expect anything from them on any personal level. However it is nice to get a reminder card from them each year that I am getting older (due to my upcoming birthday, LOL!). Yet it does suck Mark, the fact that you have been there for 14 years and do not even have a pay raise somewhere along the way in honor of your seniority with the company. Mark let us hope that LMS will not be too picky about where we complete our service reports. Yet for me, I am okay about completing it in our Receiving Department, since that is where I enter my weekly “0 on hand” counts . . . plus it is quiet and a ghost town in our Receiving Department since the receiving people have all gone home after 2:30 PM . . . so at least I will be compliant completing my service report “in” the store vs. in my car.

I agree with you 100 % Robert Miller when you said . . . I don't think that there are many companies, merchandising or otherwise, that recognize dedication or longevity any more. All that matters is the almighty dollar.

What a bummer Sue. :-(

Robert H, since my Target has several security cameras in the jewelry and sunglasses department, I was always aware that someone from LMS could come in and ask to see the video tape for a certain date and time . . . to view video footage for the entire time I was there and bounce that against the time I entered in NI . . . which I was always okay with. Yet I just do not want to have to deal with the burden of dragging in a tablet for a service call and also try to keep it secure while I am working . . . I just do not want the responsibility of it in the store or in my car . . . especially since I do work for other merchandising companies (at times) on the same day that I do my LMS work, so I will have to keep my tablet in my car while I am out doing other work for other companies. Yet I agree with what you said about the fine details on how they can track me with a tablet . . . yet since my first day working at my Target store almost 3 years ago, I saw those security cameras in my department and instantly figured that LMS could track me any day or time.

EdMikes, Robert H., and Cathy O, I agree with what you shared 100% in regards to the tracking capabilities.










Nick
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