Apple Store Employees Earn Less Than Supermarket Staff

Apple Australia has struck a new pay deal with its employees that will see them earning less than comparable supermarket workers. Maybe working for Apple isn't such a Genius move.

When you think Apple Store, you probably think row upon row of polished wooden benches with the latest bright and shiny gadgets on display. It's a high-cost, high profit enterprise, staffed by high-cost employees, right?

Not so on the latter front, it seems. According to a story in the Australian Financial Review, if you're an actual Apple Store employee you're not likely to be earning much of a premium salary at all.

Mathew Dunckley reports that Apple has struck a deal with its employees which will see its employees earning a base hourly rate of $20.55 from November. The new deal also cuts down double time for Sundays to only time and a half.

To give that some context, the AFR article lists the current working agreement for a Coles employee at $773.70 per week, $23.70 a week more than an Apple employee. Australian Retailers Association executive director Russell Zimmerman is quoted as saying that the agreement was "perfectly realistic and one we should be looking forward to seeing in the future from other retailers".

It would appear that apart from folk such as Gerry Harvey (who we've noted previously gets his staff costings wrong from time to time), this is already in full swing.

We've previously seen McDonald's worker salaries, where even a 21 year old (or older) would be getting $695.41/week, or Myers staff, who, as per their agreed conditions are on $709/week.

The Apple agreement in that context is effectively equitable as long as you presume that there's not much of an actual skills gap between the jobs. Because what it does mean that the Genius fixing your iMac isn't really earning more than the person flipping your cheeseburger or selling you a blouse.

What's An Apple Genius Worth? [AFR]


Comments

    The Apple agreement in that context is effectively equitable as long as you presume that there’s not much of an actual skills gap between the jobs. Because what it does mean that the Genius fixing your iMac isn’t really earning more than the person flipping your cheeseburger or selling you a blouse.

    Par for the course really in this day and age

    Last edited 06/06/14 3:01 pm

    It seems to be pretty average really. But you fail to mention all the sales bonuses that the staff get as well as the Apple shares that you get when you join as an employee (you get more shares the longer you work there). So even if you were to get one share (at $647) that covers the difference between the Coles employee and an Apple employee for at least 6.5 months. I might be completely missing the point but I feel it's worth noting nonetheless.

      Apple Retail staff do not get any commission or shares. Pay is performance based, with no increased pay for 'extra' sales. The idea is that the incentive to get better sales is because you want to be good at it, not because you get extra money. Apple Retail employees do not get given any share packages. They can elect to have a portion of the fortnightly pay go into an employee share purchase program at a discount, but it is certainly not free.

      I worked as a business specialist at apple retail for years. You do not receive shares at all. I am not sure where you are getting your information.

      You can purchase your own shares at a (Slightly) discounted rate with the money being deducted from your fortnightly pay.

      You do not get commission.

      You get paltry product discounts (while working there i could get a better deal at JB)

      so yeah. It's just a job.

    Given how much Apple has devalued the worth of a term like "genius" I'm really not surprised. At least a Coles employee can point me to the right aisle for a product, whereas Apple staff seem to mostly flap around and defer to the "geniuses".

      Yeah! I wanna go into an apple store and see a 2 year old diagnosing/fixing problems and teaching the old folks how to use their iProducts! Now that would be something! GENIUS!

    Apple Australia has struck a new pay deal with its employees that will see them earning less than comparable supermarket workers.Maybe that's the only way they can afford to hire as many as they do. We walked past the Chermside store last week and did a quick head-count. Turns out there was about twice the amount of staff in the store than there was customers.

    The genius fixing your imac is not the person in the store, so you can not compare with a person flipping a burger or selling a blouse.
    These big organisations like apple and google are not paying their fair share of Australian Tax, you and I are paying their tax, is this is not right.

      actually yes the person fixing your mac / i device is the person in the store. all 'Genius' staff have allotted hours behind the 'Bar' and in an employee only zone where machines are actually worked on in store.

    Coles, Woolies and Aldi are all known for their high pay to retail staff compared to other companies. And why would people assume staff working at Apple are highly paid, considering they're doing the same thing as workers at Coles - scanning goods, helping customers and stacking shelves?

    And the Geniuses at Apple stores aren't the greatest in the world. Mostly they're people that can't get a job in IT support at corporations/schools/etc. They generally follow scripts - same as Optus/Telstra tech support staff on the phone.

    Worked there last year for $19.20 p/h & I'm 27. Was expecting $25, as were a few others. Quit early on. It's quite challenging work, good practice if that's what you want to do I suppose. I remember my bro was earning $21 an hour in the Coles Deli back in 2006.

    They only got time and a half on Sundays before the new agreement. Everything in the new agreement is better than the old one: guaranteed pay increase annually (previously none) 1.25 on Saturday (previously same pay as Monday-Friday), overtime kicks in 2 hours sooner and late night bonus starts at 10pm rather than midnight. Additionally, more paid breaks than before.
    Apple retail employees are on a rough deal but the new agreement is a significant step up.

    I voted for the new changes because in comparison to the old ones everything was either the same or better. We now get Saturday penalty rates where as we didn't before. There's also this myth that we are going from double time to time and a half on Sundays, which is false. We have always been time and a half. One of the main differences is the shifting of the brackets between level one and level 2 employees. Level 1 employees get more benefits and now it's more likely I will stay level 1 for longer and have a better deal.

    The minimum increase per year is 2% which is shit but I've yet to hear of anyone's increase being as low as that. They are based on performance (not sales, but usually things like your personal customer satisfaction score, and your ability to exceed expectations for innovation and teamwork etc.), and I can tell you my increase last year was WELL beyond %2. ALSO a Genius (as well as a Creative) get paid considerably higher than what is quoted there. What is quoted there are the rates for a Red Zone Specialist. Essentially the entry level guys.

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