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 Feedback Requested: Certified Marketing Services (CMS) (2)
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Marjorie Powell
Valued Contributor

New Orleans, LA
USA
111 Posts

Posted - 02/06/2010 :  02:07:33 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Lisa, thanks. Nothing is going to happen with CMS. I refuse to lower my standards by working for a company that is so unprofessional that they would not even call the person being accused to find out if this did happen (which it didn't). No one at CMS would even discuss the issue. I was just told that I was deactivated because I was rude to one of the mgrs and would not be reinstated. It's unfortunate because there are several super nice people at CMS that I enjoyed working with but also some very rude ones. The pay is far less than other companys and the job expections are greater but I had about 40 permanent stores (18 were e/2/wks)so I ignored all the problems with the company and did my assignments because the checks were coming in. I did speak with the GM of the FD's that I was assigned to after I learned about this and she wasn't very happy that one of her personnel would do something like this. She was even more concerned that whoever did this did so without discussing it with her since it put FD in a legal position. I'm undecided yet if I want to pursue this legally because I really have no beef with FD but my legal counsel has informed me that I have a good case because I lost wages because of the alledged accusation and the tarnish on my work ethnic. It's sad that IC's have no recourse with companies like this and the IC is expected to "jump" and put up with such stress to keep their assignments.
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Gayle R
Star Contributor

Eastern Shore, VA
USA
1396 Posts

Posted - 02/06/2010 :  9:06:18 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Marjorie, my story is similar to yours. I worked for them for 3 years, always doing what they asked, always doing the assignments on time, filing promptly & rarely requesting any extra time for anything. I liked the work, did a good job & took pride in doing so. I didn't have anywhere near as many stores as you, so my loss of income is not that great. It started with the Anagram balloons. I was asked to make a precall to check on helium delivery which I did. I called CMS AND reported online that there was no helium in the store. I rec a call from them the following Sun. afternoon that I didn't answer thinking it was probably something they wanted done right then & I don't work on Sunday. When I went to check my messages later there was a message that said something like: This is ---- from Market Force & I'm calling about your Anagram Balloon Assignment for. Then there was silence for a minute or so then "Oh, never mind, I see it has been updated" Monday morning when I turn on the cell phone there is a voice mail waiting regarding the same assignment. I called them & was told that this message must be a mistake beause they have my report of no helium on file & everthing was fine. I get home that night & there is the same assignment listed as past due under available assignments. Call again, was transferred to the project manager & she can't figure out why this assignment is back on the board either since it clearly states in the file no helium. Assignment is then removed from the board. Next snafu is: I'm doing DVDs in FL 3 days after Christmas, scanning in new titles & leaving upcoming promotinal papers with store in addition to regular service. Store is very busy, I wait around a while for someone to sign papers & nobody is available. I leave the promo paperwork & the leave behind sheet which I have only done 1 or 2 times in the past & go to the next store. A week later again on a Mon. morning when I turn on the cell phone there are two voice mails. One says since I didn't have anybody sign the ppapers I am going to have to prove I was in the store or not get paid for that visit. WTH? 2nd voice message says that they just called the store & was told that I hadn't been there since mid December, that falsifying a report was a serious matter and that I was being removed from their system & would not be paid for that visit. I called them back. In order to get paid I needed to go back to the store, get a copy of the sign in sheet to prove I was there & e-mail it to them. I made the point that if I hadn't visited the store how did I report on what titles scanned & what didn't? Was told that when leaving promo mmaterial behind it was mandatory that someone sign for it. On the way to the store to get this sheet copied I got more & more teed off. Went in the store, got the sheet, had one of the mngrs verify & sign it for me (just to cover my own a--) Told them the story & they said as far as they knew nobody had called there but they would be glad to talk to someone if they wanted to call them personally. When I got back out to the car I called CMS again, let them know I had the sheet & would be e-mailing it when I got home that evening. Then I proceeded to tell them that I didn't appreciate being accused of something that I didn't do & I no longer wanted to work for them. She had the nerve to ask me if I was going to finsh up the assignments for the week. MY answer was NO, I'm done. You took me out of your system, leave me out of your system. This was just the last straw. Add to this, materials not being rec. on time, random paydates, confusing instructions, add'l tasks being added on to visits lack of help when you call, time allowances cut, low pay rate and on & on. Enough!!

Gayle
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MaryRod
Star Contributor

El Centro, CA
USA
542 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2010 :  02:08:21 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
About K-Marts Hanes reset, When I read the previews on this assignment it stated the cap time was 1.5-3hrs. Depending how large the wall display is I had at least the max of 3 hrs.
Now after printing out my instruction and report it shows only 1.5 as cap time.

In their instructions it says the product is on peg hooks, and to remove every item on the section we're starting with and place them in a cart. Arrainage the peg hooks then fill with new items and SKU tags according to POG.

Working a section at a time, yes it will take more time than planned
My POG has 13 columns of Hanes and 5 columns of JMS.

~~ Please consider the environment before printing unnecessary pages.~~
~*~Mary~*~
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Angela Harrington
Member

mid-michigan, MI
USA
43 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2010 :  07:48:54 AM  Visit Angela Harrington's Homepage  Reply  Reply with Quote
While in the store on Thursday I informed the soft lines manager about the reset and he said... HUH? nice, not even aware of it. I asked if he had received the box. Nope. I asked the Receiver she said she hasn't seen it. backroom people haven't seen it. And now the instructions say it's been there since beginning of Jan. I don't have the time to play with this assignment this week and next week I am on a business trip. my cap says 1.5 hours too. HAHAHAHA.
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Marjorie Powell
Valued Contributor

New Orleans, LA
USA
111 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2010 :  09:45:40 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Gayle...same song, different person. I was told by the supervisor that they couldn't tell me which store made the complaint because they had to protect their client. I found this very amusing because after telling me this the supervisor told me it was one of the FD mgrs. LOL...some protection of their client since I only visited FD stores on a permanent basis and had a good relationship with the mgrs and GM. The GM is going to find out if it happened from her mgrs and if so that mgr. will be terminated for not following company procedures. The GM is also going to contact the corporate office of CMS for the accusation and for giving out the name of the store and I'm going to write a letter to the corporate office of CMS notifying them of the employee's so called "client protection". I think FD is more worried about the civil aspect that I could cause for defamation of character because of the accusation, the deactivation and loss wages I lost as a result of it but we'll see. Actually now that I've cooled off about it I really realize how unprofessional some of the CMS employees are and won't lower myself to their standards. It's just another example of how no matter how hard merchandisers work and how much pride they take in their assignments some, not all companies still treat them terribly. I work for some great companies, have some of the best DMs in the world, get paid in a timely manner and when they give you an assignment enough time is allowed to complete it without extras being added at the end.
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Marjorie Powell
Valued Contributor

New Orleans, LA
USA
111 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2010 :  09:51:23 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
MaryRod...that happens all the time. The time cap stated isn't the same on the instructons as it is on the report forms but when you contact them they tell you that you can always call for extra time and it will be approved; however it has been my experience that some of the employees you speak with forget to enter the extra time and you get paid the regular time cap. I've been waiting on a shortage of $50.00 for almost 2 months now even after sending them an email from the scheduler with the increase rate on it.
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Ellinbeth
Valued Contributor

USA
129 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2010 :  11:46:41 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
MaryRod and Angela, where are you seeing a cap at 1.5 hours? My instructions say that it is estimated at 90 minutes, but has a cap of 3 hours. On the survey form in the instructions, it just asks how much time was spent and doesn't mention a cap.

Please help---I know you have to read the fine print when it comes to Certified, but I seem to be overlooking this!

Ellinbeth
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MaryRod
Star Contributor

El Centro, CA
USA
542 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2010 :  9:43:21 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
The new merchandise could of been placed out on the sales floor, I have only about four new styles in one size that is new. So You should contact Certified first and maybe work the reset with Skus for the new merchandise.
Marjorie you're correct on this written on the forms, I just don't want the same problem I had with Playtex repackage assignment. It took them up to four months to pay $92.00 I was shorted.

~~ Please consider the environment before printing unnecessary pages.~~
~*~Mary~*~
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Angela Harrington
Member

mid-michigan, MI
USA
43 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2010 :  12:26:40 PM  Visit Angela Harrington's Homepage  Reply  Reply with Quote
Ellinbeth,
I know I saw it some where else but I did find it (1.5hrs) on the LOA. I can't get the assignment details to open maybe I saw it there.

Yes I am thinking that the product is already out on the floor. I am just going to remove discontinued and then set POG. 18 columns I'm not sure how long it will take me. I am going tommorrow.
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Angela Harrington
Member

mid-michigan, MI
USA
43 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2010 :  12:30:21 PM  Visit Angela Harrington's Homepage  Reply  Reply with Quote
It was on the Precall sheet. Something like let the manager know it will take less than 2 hours.... I shooting for 1.5-2 hours. I really don't want to call
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Ellinbeth
Valued Contributor

USA
129 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2010 :  1:15:13 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I spoke to someone at Certified today who insists that you are allowed to take up to 3 hours, but that most people should finish it in under two. We shall see (I'm doing it tomorrow).

Ellinbeth
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Winona
Valued Contributor

Huntsville, AL
USA
106 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2010 :  5:00:59 PM  Visit Winona's Homepage  Send Winona an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
The undies wall was a big ol' mess when I arrived, a LOT of sorting to do with misplaced items & items no longer carried by the store, but not on today's discontinued list either. Had a bit of a wait on Mgmt, getting labels, product. And the wall is split in 2, so I had extra running back & forth across an aisle. The mgr let me use her scan gun to quickly find where each product was supposed to go- much easier than trying to match size/style or UPC. That was after I'd exceeded the cap and she felt sorry for me :( I won't say how much over I went (embarrassing!), but I did call Certified twice from the store, so we'll see what happens come pay day ...

Winona
Servicing north Huntsville, Harvest, Toney, Meridianville, Hazel Green, New Market, AL as well as Ardmore & Fayetteville, TN
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MaryRod
Star Contributor

El Centro, CA
USA
542 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2010 :  5:01:27 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
The only reason I took this assignment is because it was capped at 3hrs. I wouldn't do it for any less. The POG doesn't have the item numbers to verify the packages. I'm not printing all pages they're too many for me, just the important ones, so I took notes.
I'm including the time it took me, to my project time at store.

~~ Please consider the environment before printing unnecessary pages.~~
~*~Mary~*~
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Winona
Valued Contributor

Huntsville, AL
USA
106 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2010 :  6:36:01 PM  Visit Winona's Homepage  Send Winona an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
Mary,
I found the POG provided by CMS to be totally useless; I used the one in the store's packet.

Anyone who hasn't done a reset at KM may find this info helpful:
- The labels have a peg number on them in addition to UPC, size, etc
- The POG starts at upper left with peg #1, goes across 2.5', then drops to next row. Top left of next section continues where bottom right of previous section ended. So, for example, you'll end with #6 being next to #37 on top row and such craziness.
- The labels have the lowest peg # at the bottom of each sheet.

Also, unless your stores are diff than mine today, you'll need a step stool for the top row (I'm 5'6" and could hardly reach it)

And, 2 (or 3?) columns of existing FOL are being replaced by Hanes product.

(Hope the above tips make sense, all the panty play has made my brain mushy, lol)
**********

Want to hear something funny? After I finally finished, the Mgr let me know the whole area is getting reset TOMORROW!!! Everything I did today will be redone then.

Winona
Servicing north Huntsville, Harvest, Toney, Meridianville, Hazel Green, New Market, AL as well as Ardmore & Fayetteville, TN
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Bridget Claire
Member

IL
USA
34 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2010 :  08:09:50 AM  Visit Bridget Claire's Homepage  Send Bridget Claire an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
Did anyone else do the covert toilet paper assignment? I did three of them yesterday, running all over the place to get done before it started snowing. It's really, really difficult to take photos in Wal-Mart without anyone seeing you. I would wait until the aisle cleared out to snap my photo; then I would look up and see three people walking around the corner. I wonder how many people went home last night and told their families about the crazy lady taking photos of toilet paper at Wal-Mart.
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MarlaB
Star Contributor

Attica, IN
USA
2843 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2010 :  1:08:05 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
In my WMs, you could get thrown out of the store for taking photos. I have 1 company that used to ask for photos in WM, but they also understood that WM did not want photos.

I would not take photos in WM just for 1 assignment. I do too much work otherwise to lose them.

Marla
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Ellinbeth
Valued Contributor

USA
129 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2010 :  1:22:22 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I agree! I will take photos of the Sony displays since I am directly responsible for them and have LOA, even though the grocery stores don't like it---but the covert TP assignment was just too much for not enough pay. Covert auditing is one thing, but actually changing/rearranging a display without their permission and then taking photos is asking too much of us---and with no additional pay for doing this!

I completed the underwear job today. The wall wasn't that big, but it was time consuming. It took me four hours but I only put in for three since it's too frustrating to call them and beg for additional time and then get paid. The survey form made me justify why it took me over 60 minutes---when the cap was 3 hours and the estimate was 90 minutes! What's up with that?

I don't know what to suggest for those who haven't yet done this. It's difficult to match the UPC numbers on the packages with the shelf tags. Bring magnifying glasses! And of course, the KM POG doesn't match Certified's. I did what I could, especially considering the box of new stock couldn't be found. I found some of the discontinued products to send back. I really tried hard, but with lots of missing stock/styles/sizes, it couldn't be set perfectly to the POG.

Ellinbeth
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Angela Harrington
Member

mid-michigan, MI
USA
43 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2010 :  4:13:41 PM  Visit Angela Harrington's Homepage  Reply  Reply with Quote
Ellinbeth, I did mine today too. CRAZY. I didn't even do the JMS. Manager said leave it alone. OK. It took me over 3 hours to do the POG. 1st hour I spent discussing with the manager the nonsense POG I printed out, searching for the boxes, waiting for labels, and shaking my head that I'm attempting to do this. Then I began to sort. as the staff laughed at the mess I had to sort out.

I came here to tell all that my survey said "capped at 180 minutes"

I didn't get very far with calling & the manager said doing the Hanes part was fine, and I noted it on the survey.
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Angela Harrington
Member

mid-michigan, MI
USA
43 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2010 :  4:38:37 PM  Visit Angela Harrington's Homepage  Reply  Reply with Quote
This just came in my email ....

On another note, you MUST stay until your visit is completed. If you find you are running out of time, you must stop and contact us at 1-800-320-1290 Option 2. This is the only way we can keep track of compensating you for the additional time needed in store

I love getting these messages after I get home.....
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Dar-L
Star Contributor

USA
1031 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2010 :  5:14:37 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Calling them (CMS) so often has bumped my cell phone plan up to the next higher level!
Almost invariably have to leave a message. Do they call back?
Very seldom, and if they do it may be several days later.
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