Apple Inc. Staff Complain That They Are Treated Like “Criminals”

Apple Inc. Staff Complain That They Are Treated Like “Criminals”
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Apple Store employees wrote to CEO Tim Cook to complain about security policies at retail locations.

The email came to light due to an ongoing lawsuit which was filed against the company in 2013. The email was unsealed during a case at a federal court in California, related to accusations that Apple Store employees were forced to wait on their own time while bosses checked their bags for stolen goods, writes David Goldman for CNN.

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Apple employees complain over bag checks

Employees claim not to have been paid for time spent waiting for the security checks to be carried out. The email was sent on April 2, 2012 by an unnamed employee who told Cook that the security policies are “both insulting and demeaning to Apple employees.”

Apple Store staff are given a card on which the serial numbers of their personal Apple devices are written. Managers request the devices and cards when staff leave the store, before checking their bags. The employee alleges that the checks are often carried out in the presence of “gawking customers.”

“These procedures imply that Apple doesn’t trust or respect their employees,” the person wrote. “Managers are required to treat ‘valued’ employees as criminals.” Upon receiving the email, Cook asked for clarification from the heads of retail and HR.

Another email from an Apple Store employee in Beijing also complained about the bag check policy. The message made Apple HR chief Denise Young Smith write to strategies head Carol Monkowski proposing that the company change its policy. It is unclear whether the policy has officially been changed, and an Apple spokeswoman did not immediately comment on the matter.

Separate class action lawsuit alleges labor law violations

The lawsuit was filed by two former Apple Store employees who claim that the time spent waiting for bag checks to be performed added up to $1,500 in unpaid wages per year.

Another class action lawsuit has been filed against the company by retail employees who claim that the company violated California labor law by denying them meal breaks and rest periods. Employees allege that they were made to work for over 5 hours without meals, and were not allowed to take breaks on shorter shifts.

Worryingly the lawsuit also alleges that the company discourages discussion of labor conditions among employees, enabling Apple to “invoke fear into the class members that if they so much as discuss the various labor policies, they run the risk of being fired, sued or disciplined.”

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  1. Home Depot has always done this as does Target. As a contractor I had a bag check just last week. You’re clearly not qualified to comment on this so stop commenting on it.

  2. Dude, if you’re stupid enough to walk into the shop of a company you clearly despise and part with several hundred bucks for a product you clearly didn’t want, then it’s no surprise that you’re also too stupid to work out how to operate a product that is notoriously designed to be simple enough to learn to use *WITHOUT* a manual.

    Even a grandma can work an iPad out.

  3. Indeed Russell – I just went to ‘Microcenter’ today – a larger computer store in my area. I’ve know a number of people who work there. The registers are near the exit – but there are no bag checks for customers for certain; and to my knowledge – there are no bag checks of employees either.

  4. The deal is that these companies are requiring employees to spend their time completing these checks, but aren’t paying them for the time. Any time your work requires you to do something they should be paying you for the time it took to do it.

  5. I know that Neiman Marcus and Saks has this rule, also pretty sure that Nordstroms and Macy’s does as well since know people who work at these stores. Employee theft IS a problem and there needs to be security to keep it in check, but there should also be checks within the management as managers are not immune to stealing either!

  6. “Every responsible retailer on the planet has employed tis practice since 1975!”

    Michael Suozzi apple fanboi lying again.
    Target, Home Depot, Macy’s, Nordstrom, Safeway, Von’s…. don’t do that.

    “Honest employees would rather endure loss prevention and reap the benefits of a more profitable employer.”

    Like No Poach Agreements? Or being denied meal and rest breaks?

    On July 21, 2014, in Felczer v. Apple Inc., Judge Ronald S. Prager of the Superior Court of California granted class certification as to a class of approximately 21,000 current and former Apple retail and corporate employees on claims alleging Apple failed to provide timely meal and rest breaks as required under California Law.

  7. “This is not only Apple.”

    Just because other companies break laws doesn’t make it ok for Apple to do the same.

    “All retail stores have bag checks and security when leaving the stores.”

    No they don’t. Which store do you work at?

  8. This is not only Apple. All retail stores have bag checks and security when leaving the stores. Employee theft is a retail company’s biggest problem. That is not saying all employees steal, far from it, but the bad apples spoil the experience for all the good employees.
    Once the employee punches out they need to go through a bag check when leaving. I guess there are numerous employees leaving at the same time and there must be a line to wait in. What’s the big deal? If you don’t like it quit.

  9. You never went to an Apple store and what a moron. You bought a new iPad and it does not sync your Pics off your iPad ? Go to your GOOG forums, troll.

  10. You made a lot of false assumptions. As a matter of fact every one of your sentences is ridiculous. Why would the accomplice wait inside? So can one poop break be phone out the door too? Can you help cite your 1975 figure? I knew that retail theft was rare before 1975 but you clearly know what your talking about better than me.

    Retail employers do not share the profits gained from minimizing theft. Profitable employers only share their profits with the employees that have leverage, aka highly skilled and sought after. Retail employees are at the bottom of the food chain, they are among the easiest to replace and strong-armed in negotiation.

  11. I had a frozen iPad, it wasn’t powering on. I took it to an Apple Store and an employee said I need to book an appointment for any kind of troubleshooting. I explained what the issue was and she seemed nervous for a moment but then pressed the power button and home button down at the same time for 10 seconds which rebooted it. I wasn’t aware of that procedure until I saw her do it. Problem solved! I hope she didn’t get into trouble for breaking their protocol.

  12. If Apple was paying for the time spend searching the bags as hours worked, this lawsuit would not exist. it’s not about the search, it’s about labor law violations.

  13. The gawking customers are actually the waiting accomplices. One cigarette break can be one phone out the door. Every responsible retailer on the planet has employed tis practice since 1975!
    Only the thieves are complaining. Honest employees would rather endure loss prevention and reap the benefits of a more profitable employer.

  14. No, you were not shopping iPad Mini’s.

    If you’re trying to troll, don’t be so much of a try hard, you are just wasting your own time.


  15. So the store employees hate working for Apple. Guess what. This customer hates the experience of going into an Apple store.
    So I’m shopping iPad minis. And there are a pile of tampons chained to a table. No signs indicating what they are or how much they are or what features they are. I summon over an iDiot. She explains that this iPad on the table is showing the info about the other items on the table. Um… No it’s not. The picture on this item is not similar to the devices on the table. Oh sure it is, if you know what to look for. And how am I suppose to know what to look for? Why you look it up on the net. On a non-Apple web site because the info isn’t on the Apple site.
    So I very stupidly got an iPad mini 3. Hate it. Despise it. It won’t charge off a USB port. Proprietary connectors that can only be replaced at the Apple store. No user manual comes with. Not even cheap ear buds come with. Can’t connect to my computer unless I install a 200 MB download pile of pooh called iTunes. And iTunes won’t copy files it “synchronizes” files. Meaning now I can’t even delete photos off my iPad if they are synched with my desktop computer. All their software is adware. You can’t write a program for it unless you use their software. You can’t distribute it once you have written except through their app store.
    So I wanted a set of headphones. Go to the Apple dungeon. They have a set of headphone ear buds. Cheapest is $60. Fine, you should include that in the price of this device since I can’t use it without the headphones in the situation I want to use it. And I look for a cash register. There is none. They have slot-machines on their belts. They want me to hand over my credit card to their store iDiot in the middle of a crowded room. Nope. Went to a competing electronics store and got knock-offs for $22 that work perfectly. And fit perfectly.
    Not one dollar more for the worm infested Apple. Not a dime.

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