The world’s most valuable company, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), now seems to be shooting itself in the foot. Though the head of Apple Store, John Browett, publicly acknowledged that the recent layoffs were a “mistake” and they have been reversed, the employees have received no official explanation on the changes. Browett has asked employees not to discuss the matter. The lack of communication and inability to discuss the situation has diminished the morale in store employees, said an insider.
IFOAppleStore reports that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is now putting more emphasis on profit margins and revenues, instead of superior customer satisfaction. Earlier, Browett had reportedly laid off a number of Apple Stores’ recently-hired staff, reduced working hours for part-time workers, and put a check on inter-store transfers to boost profit margins.
Citing the inside sources, IFOAppleStore states that the dismissed staff members were rehired and inter-store transfers were resumed. The Wall Street Journal reports that the store chain has started making new hires after the sharp criticism from employees and Apple’s top management. However, the sources told IFOAppleStore that the demotions have not been reversed, overtime is still limited, and part-timers are getting work only for the minimum contracted hours.
Another troubling aspect for employees is that the performance metrics have also been changed. Now the contract sales of iPhones and a new program called “essentials per hero product” are the new metrics of the individual performance. The “essentials per hero product” measures how many cases and accessories a staff can add to any product sale.
The employees have also been asked to encourage customers to purchase accessories using the EasyPay app. If an employee recommends EasyPay to a customer, that revenue is not considered in the sales history of the staff, so it directly affects their performance report.
The budget for store maintenance has also been slashed, which may affect the cleanliness in the stores. It would make the Apple Stores look less attractive to the visitors. Cleanliness has been the symbol of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s retail chain.