Archived Is everyone getting their breaks? General Question

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Sep 27, 2011
Hi, by way of introduction, I am John A. I am new to forums and this site – stumbling my way along lol. So I have a question that the administrator said would be best to be posted in the forums vs individual PMs.

While we know Target is a good place to work, just like any business, there are going to be issues that come up. I guess I have always been a person to do the right thing and make my home, work, and environment a better place. I am not a “sh..t” disturber – but I do believe we need to be heard when there are problems. Please be nice and don’t attack me for asking.

A couple of employees have voiced a concern that our breaks are not always honored, whether on time, or the length, or even being asked from time to time to help finish things up. One of my friends was not happy because she already clocked and was leaving and she was asked to help with a few things as she was leaving. It wasn’t a big deal, but still somewhat frusterating.

I have been around the block a few times, and we all know that we can go to our supervisor or their supervisor, but I think you and I know that doesn’t foster good relationship and definitely won’t put us in the front of the line for a promotion.

So I am wondering if anyone else is experiencing the same thing? I was somewhat disappointed when I asked someone on the board that they harped on me like I was saying a curse word in church. If there is a problem that needs to be dealt with, then we as employees, should address those. Asking is not a sin.

So I can just say nothing or ask to see if others are experiencing any such problems. If so, maybe someone could help me write a letter or contact someone at Target to address the concern. It would be more effective if a group of people experiencing the same thing co-authored a letter than letting a single employee have to deal with this individually, right?

I am sorry if some feel offended just by the fact that I ask. But the bottom line is the reason companies offer good working conditions is because of the employees that ask questions right?

Thanks for any feedback. Good or bad, I am happy to read your responses. If you are concerned about privacy, feel free to PM me. Thanks for reading my post :)
As for my team. I make sure all of my people get breaks. Some still see me as the cashier who doesn't enforce rules so they feel like they can take 45 min breaks. But when it comes to ME, I get all my breaks and I give my team breaks. No team member should be asked to work off clock and if that is the case, serious action needs to be taken.
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Working off the clock is highly frowned upon. Years ago I was about to hit overtime & I clocked out. (Overtime was not allowed at that time) Then I came back to help the clean up process. When my ETL-LOG found out he fussed at me for doing it. (I can't say yelled, he was very nice about it)He told me to go home & they would finish without me.

As to the breaks, Flow team takes their breaks as a group pre-ceeded by huddles when we have one. It's our responsibility for our second breaks. When I worked sales floor I often missed taking my breaks. I would tell my TL I was going on break and she would say, we need to get this done or that done. Don't think I've missed but a few since being on Flow compared to almost every day on sales floor. :(

Edit: Forgot to welcome you to our forums. Happy posting!
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it varies and is my pet peeve as well.
our etlge sent out email a few weeks ago about breaks. saying that some people are getting 2 15 min breaks on the salesfloor for a 7 hour shift, and her cashiers were complaining because they were not getting their extra break. when technically, you're supposed to get 1 up to and including 7 hours.
so i had to bite my tongue. my viewpoint, if we have an electronics person scheduled 7 hours, they're NEVER going to get out until 4:15 because the closing lod insists on huddling and leaving the person for coverage. thus, they worked 7 hours 15-20 min, and he/she gets another break. so i always gave them one. our cashiers high tail it out of there, and they are usually walking out the door a minute early. i reminded her, very brandly, that it is based on hours WORKED, not hours scheduled.
i cant ever take breaks in the building or my etl/stl/random vendor tracks me down and harasses me. so we've taken to storing folding chairs in the trunk, and we go sit under the trees next door behind the building. very peaceful. i actually got talked to about leaving the building during my break. i politely pulled best practice--no walkies, no phone calls, no questions, don't think read and khaki in my direction. :D
I work 8 hours every day, and honestly I only take my mandated 30 minute break. The usual custom for 4am crew is to take a second 30 minute break (because we work till 8 with no 15, so the 15's are combined) but I'm often too busy to afford another half hour of idle time. Sometimes if I'm feeling really dead and I'm at a stopping point, I'll run up front for 10 minutes, but I'm usually using that time to sit at a computer and place orders, check email, etc.

I guess that's not very cool of me to ignore my 15's like that but at the same time, I have a lot of things to get done.
Lol thanks AsAdvertised.... I like my name and I don't think the company is going to can me for asking a question on a private site. But I understand your point :)
While this site is privately operated, do not assume that Target Corporation will not take action if you reveal confidential company information, including incidents regarding guests or team members at your store or other stores. Best to tread lightly and as the old adage goes, better safe than sorry.
I am absolutely adamant, as is my store, about breaks. If anything, employees are the ones that often muck it up rather than the managers, as best practice states it is the team member that has to pay attention to the frequency and duration of their breaks, the management only approves or denies the request/organizes the break schedule. That said, I work 8 hours and get both of my 15's AND my 30.

As for working off the clock, hell no. The ETL-HR or Integrity Hotline should be contacted if you are EVER asked to work off the clock, and you should tell that to your friends. Target is very strict (in a good way) about breaks AND working off the clock, but this does not mean human error can't muck things up.
At my store, the breaks aren't enforced very well. Most people aren't interested in taking their second 15 minute break they just work through it.

However if any of the ETLs ever caught you working off the clock, both you and the person asking you too would be coached. It's your responsibility to tell someone you're off the clock, and if they still insist take it to the LOD and they should handle it. Working off the clock is on of Target's biggest no-nos corporate wide.

If your team is being asked things while they are on break / lunch, tell them to turn off their walkies and not respond. Policy is not to interrupt / talk about work related activity while on mandated breaks.
I'm a cart attendant and I usually skip my breaks because of the amount of work I have to do.

I have to get carts, then do the restroom checks and have the gstl check the restroom after we clean it, then do a safety walk around the store, then repeat. But alot of times I'm asked to clean up spills, help with carry outs, respond to 1 plus 1, so if I take both my breaks I can fall behind in carts.

So I usually take my first break only if another cart attendant is there to cover me and I usually never take my second break. I only take my lunch every shift most of the time.
We do the combined 15's in the morning then take out required 30 for lunch but I tend to skip my 15's on really heavy days and on adset days (every Sunday).
This may be off topic but where on work bench can you find best practices for all of targets positions?

I might be mistaken but I believe they are in HR Zone, which TM's have limited access to.
Depending on your work area, you may want to take some responsibility for not getting your breaks. You work in a retail environment, and things can get hectic and the TL or LOD can forget to say to take your break at the scheduled time. So they just need a friendly reminder.

If your operators, TLs or ETLs make out a break schedule, and they don't communicate to you its time for your break, you need to communicate to them that your break is due or over-due. Usually I didn't say anything until 15-30 minutes after my scheduled break.

There were nights where there was no TL for Hardlines, and all of the TMs and I decide together on what times lunches and breaks were and confirmed it with the LOD.

I say if you are scheduled to work the front or floor and working long enough for a lunch, take you lunches first. Then take your breaks by 30 minutes before closing. But always keep coverage.
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I get my breaks and my lunches on time. As for the OP, I'm pretty sure there is a large probability he is a laywer looking for a class action lawsuit opportunity.
Thanks Sigma. Not a lawyer- and Target like many companies have already been the Target of a class-action suit for many reasons, including wage/hour issues. So the subject is nothing new. Target seems to want to comply with the the policies, but it doesn't mean that individual stores or supervisors are always following all of the rules. I just tend to be outspoken and like to stand up for our rights and when people are nervous to talk, help them vent. I have been contacted by class action attorneys in the past and say hey if they are doing something wrong, then go fix it. If they are not, any lawsuits will have no basis. Nothing wrong with protecting our rights, right?
My STL actually told me one day, when I had a 7 hour shift, to take my half 30 minutes after I came in and to skip my 15.... all because they didn't want to call someone else in to cover Starbucks breaks.
Lawyer or not some states may be different, in IL every 4 hours you're entitled to 1 15 minute break, anything over 5 hours 1 30 min unpaid lunch. Now, I have had many times before where I personally have not taken my 15 min break because I have been too busy at my tasks, but in no way have I ever been told "No" to a break request. As for lunches, they are not easy to skip as every TL/ETL's lpda tells them someone missed and needs to take it.

At my job now, 911, we don't "get" our breaks per se. Our lunches are built into the end of our shift, we are scheduled 8.5 but we leave at the 8 hour mark, and because of that we can't go anywhere for our lunch (we are allowed to go on a food run) and we eat at our consoles. We are allowed to go out and about to smoke but if you're not a smoker you really don't get a break.

The most important thing is your 30 minute unpaid lunch. If that is being skipped over you are looking at being non-compliant in the eyes of the state labor laws. Breaks should not be denied as long as they are at reasonable times.
I assure you I am not a lawyer. If you want to call me, I am happy to provide my #. I am sure there are others that are experiencing the same thing, but sadly it seems everyone is afraid to speak up! I wonder though, even if a lawyer was on here or a union type of person, whats the problem? I fully support people that try to make a company a better place to work.
over nights at walmart we are responsible for taking our breaks an lunches. No one babies us by making sure we get a break (unless you are a cashier but even then you are responsible for letting the CSM know) and I think thats better. I mean we are all adults. We should be responsible for that sort of thing right?
^^^ people forget. It happens.
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