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    I’m currently looking at several Christmas jobs in my local area, they’re mainly retail and obviously paying wages close to the NMW.

    Now I’m a person who does not have any experience with sales and I finish this term on 12th December.

    When I discover companies who offer a Christmas job, I check the reviews of the job first. From what I have read, I have noted the following:
    -New employees don’t receive training, if not some.
    -Management pressure you to upsell customers for poor-valued products and worthless membership cards.
    -Management sometimes push you to work extra hours (often unpaid) you did not commit to during the application. (This is a concern for me since I wouldn’t want to be pushed to work extra hours then miss a lecture as a result)
    -Minimal breaks (I personally don’t have the strongest bladder, that could be a problem lol)

    That is just a few points.
    Is there anything I need to look out for in a Christmas retail job and could you provide any advice to overcome these concerns, preferably advice that has worked for you.
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    I'm not sure what companies you're looking at but they seem dodgy and the reviews seem incorrect in my opinion.

    - Surely you will receive training, otherwise how can you do your job? You'll need to be trained how to use the till, what the company policies are, health and safety regulations etc. You can't work in a retail store without basic training.
    - Yes of course you'll be asked to upsell, it is a business. The point is to make money. I have to do this in my job. It's not that hard, just mention "oh by the way we have this offer on at the moment, are you interested?"
    - You sign a contract which states how many hours you are expected to work a week. They legally cannot make you work any more than your contracted hours. They can pressure you, but they can't make you. I get pressured all the time for overtime and I say no because university work comes first. They wouldn't have hired you without knowing you're a student and have other priorities.
    - If you're under 18, then typically you will get a break if you work 4 or more hours at a time. I can work 6 hours without a break. However, you are allowed toilet breaks. I keep a bag of sweets in the stockroom so I can nibble as I go along so I don't feel faint. All I say if I need the loo is "just popping to the loo, be back soon" just so my colleagues don't wonder about where I am.

    Hope this has helped!
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    (Original post by DrawTheLine)
    I'm not sure what companies you're looking at but they seem dodgy and the reviews seem incorrect in my opinion.

    - Surely you will receive training, otherwise how can you do your job? You'll need to be trained how to use the till, what the company policies are, health and safety regulations etc. You can't work in a retail store without basic training.
    - Yes of course you'll be asked to upsell, it is a business. The point is to make money. I have to do this in my job. It's not that hard, just mention "oh by the way we have this offer on at the moment, are you interested?"
    - You sign a contract which states how many hours you are expected to work a week. They legally cannot make you work any more than your contracted hours. They can pressure you, but they can't make you. I get pressured all the time for overtime and I say no because university work comes first. They wouldn't have hired you without knowing you're a student and have other priorities.
    - If you're under 18, then typically you will get a break if you work 4 or more hours at a time. I can work 6 hours without a break. However, you are allowed toilet breaks. I keep a bag of sweets in the stockroom so I can nibble as I go along so I don't feel faint. All I say if I need the loo is "just popping to the loo, be back soon" just so my colleagues don't wonder about where I am.

    Hope this has helped!
    I read reviews on Glassdoor for companies like HMV and Carphone Warehouse. Another common concern was that stores can be short-staffed which can be problematic for someone with a lack of training. Perhaps some employees were exaggerating but I get the sense that since Christmas jobs are temporary, employers are looking to take anyone who is available and stick them right in the middle of things.
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    (Original post by jtets)
    I read reviews on Glassdoor for companies like HMV and Carphone Warehouse. Another common concern was that stores can be short-staffed which can be problematic for someone with a lack of training. Perhaps some employees were exaggerating but I get the sense that since Christmas jobs are temporary, employers are looking to take anyone who is available and stick them right in the middle of things.
    Companies still have to provide the correct amount of training. I think that might even be law. Some Christmas jobs end up being permanent ones, so training must be given. A lot of stores are short-staffed, but that's the company's problem, not a Christmas temp's. You are only required to do your contracted hours, so the fact they don't have enough staff is their own issue for them to solve. Try not to worry about it, just be firm and remind them you have other priorities.
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    You'll be paid for any hours you work, even if they're extra. It's illegal not to pay someone.

    It's a legal requirement for someone over the age of 18 to have a 20 minute break if they work more than 6 hours, you'll be allowed to go to the toilet between these breaks, though.
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    Thanks for all the replies, lots of things are cleared up but I’d like to also know when is the best time to apply for these jobs for my situation

    A lot of the jobs I have found tend to overlap with my lecture times and as I said, I finish my uni term on 12 December.

    Many of the jobs want an immediate start and that’s not suitable for me, however I have the fear that there will be a lot less opportunities if I wait until first/second week of December to apply.

    What would be the best approach? Apply for jobs with shifts I cannot do until 13 December then tell the interviewer about it?
 
 
 
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