… and I feel like a complete cunt because of it.
Our wages budget has been “readjusted” by Head Office as a result of some budgetary jiggery-pokery relating to the End Of The Financial Year, with the result that we have been left without enough money to keep two of our staff employed.
Both of these guys have worked for us for ages- they’ve been in the store longer than I have, but since they’re only casuals they aren’t guaranteed permanent hours and until now, we’ve had enough money to keep them both in the store for for enough hours to cover for the days when the store manager or myself or whoever are on an RDO, or when someone calls in sick etc.
They’re both good workers and the store manager and I were pretty unhappy when we got the call from Head Office to readjust the rosters to reflect the new wage budget, and the remaining staff aren’t too happy either- they’re permanent staff, so they’re not affected by the loss of wages, but it basically means we all have to do a lot more work (ie 6 day weeks for the store manager and myself) for no extra pay.
The store manager told one of the affected staff yesterday, but since the store manager had today off to attend to some family things, I had to sit the other affected staff member down and basically say “Mate, I hate to be the one to do this, but we can’t give you anymore hours for the foreseeable future because we aren’t going to have the money to pay you.”
He wasn’t too happy about it (obviously) and understood that it really was a budgetary thing and that the store manager and I had zero input or so into it, but even so, I feel pretty shitty having to tell an otherwise decent bloke who has done nothing wrong that he’s basically out of a job because- well, because someone in Head Office changed some numbers on a spreadsheet and now the number in the “How much we have to pay people with” line is a lot smaller than it used to be for no readily apparent reason.
The store manager and I have said we’ll happily give both staff glowing references, and fortunately, they’re both still fairly young and won’t have any trouble getting other jobs, but that’s not the point, and it doesn’t make having to let them go any easier.
Apparently the wage budgets will sort themselves out in the new Financial Year (so we’re told), but everyone knows there’s about as much chance of that happening as there is me being crowned Emperor of Japan, so the store manager and I are preparing for more staff to leave in the coming weeks.
Anyway, I’m feeling pretty crappy right now- yes, I know it’s Business, and these things happen- but even so, it’s not the best way to start your weekend, especially when you’ve been working closely for months with the people you’ve just had to let go with little more than a handshake and a “Good luck and thanks” to show for all their hard work.