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Marks & Spencer Cafe Customer Assistant Reviews

Updated 7 September 2018
16 reviews

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Cafe Customer Assistant

2.3
StarStarStarStarStar
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Approve of CEO
Marks & Spencer Chief Executive Steve Rowe
Steve Rowe
7 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • "Older members of staff like to look down on you if you're younger than them, rude as hell snobby customers" (in 41 reviews)

  • "I couldn't fault my experience with M&S" (in 78 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Solid training provided. Management extremley supportive, always involved with staff. Great teamwork."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - Cafe Customer Assistant in Merry Hill, England
    Current Contractor - Cafe Customer Assistant in Merry Hill, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Marks & Spencer as a contractor (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Professional company, enjoy going to work every day.Found them to be very flexible and accomodating.

    Cons

    Would have liked more hours and a longer contract but this is not a fault of management, as the post was clearly statedvas part time Xmas work.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to mentor your staff as you do. Its extremley motivating to find a hands on management team


  2. "Awful"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant
    Former Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Marks & Spencer full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Hard working friendly team at low level, good benefits, good pay, good bonuses..

    Cons

    Commercial management look down on lower members of staff, hours stripped from the business making jobs impossible to complete to M&S standard.. if you take a job in the cafe be prepared to be treated as though you are not even there.. progression available but only if your face fits, witnessed many people turned away from jobs because they ‘don’t have the M&S look’.. equipment old and broken never replaced or fixed.. continually run out of basic consumables such as hand sanitiser, napkins, crockery.. management spend most of their time in the back, leaving shop floor staff to front the busiest times of the day and basically fend for themselves.. do not provide aprons for kitchen staff working with very hot food... basically if you are offered a job in an M&S cafe it will be the most miserable, stressful job you ever take

    Advice to Management

    Accept the fact that without your lowly customer assistants you would not have a job in the first place, appreciate them.

  3. "Seriously? A company which has an HR Department dedicated to OVERPAYMENT!!!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant in Horsham, England
    Former Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant in Horsham, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Marks & Spencer part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Apart from making good friends and having a very supportive section manager there were not many pros!
    20% Staff discount. (but I receive same discount in my new job

    Cons

    Where do I start?
    Treated like children by some of the middle management.
    Being overpaid by nearly £700 when I left and receiving rude and threatening letters from the OVERPAYMENT department making it feel as if it was my fault that I was overpaid.
    Not being paid the extra perhour for being a First Aider. Unsure as to whether my certificate is still valid and unable to practice my skills if required. Despite asking for this information I have not received it and my new employers are asking for it. Which is embarrassing!!!!
    Some of the customers are as rude as hell!! It is as if we are stupid because we work in a cafe and are treated as such. They look down on us. Complaining about the length of time hot food took to prepare at peak times. On the whole the customers are lovely.
    There was little opportunity for progression or extra hours and it seemed that unless you were loud and pushy you were kept in the background.... I was told by
    a former co-ordinator that being loud and pushy was being 'assertive'. Hmmmph?!!!
    I was forced to leave as I was unable to get extra hours and I was sadly getting into debt. I am even more insulted as I am being chased for being overpaid and do not have the ready cash to pay it back in one go. I am unable to make an appointment with the bank to arrange a loan to do so as I have weekends off now and my bank is closed!!! How can I possibly be overpaid when employees swipe in and out of their shifts electronically?

    Advice to Management

    For the record Managers, you lost a potentially good team member. In the three months since I have been in my new job. (I have passed my probationary period and had a long meeting with the MD of the company with regard to taking the business further) we have had a mystery customer and we scored 100%. The previous one was 67%. I was the one who dealt with the customer but the entire team contributed to the score. She commented that it was clearly a good place to work and that we all seemed happy in our jobs and environment!
    I was slightly sad to leave as I made some good life long friends and I have faith that the new Store Manager, who is young, may breath some new life into the store. On the whole though I did not see any future for progression with the company and felt my skills were wasted and not respected.


  4. "Job"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant
    Current Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Marks & Spencer part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    It pays decently, has benefits, and is flexible enough for you to choose whether to work part time (20-30 hours) or full time.

    Cons

    There is no sense of respect between management and staff, and you should not expect to be noticed for any progress you make. If anything is stolen, they will not be bothered to use what resources they have to locate it, even in the case of highly valued items.

    Advice to Management

    A very contagious habit in management is the authoritarian attitude that often leaves their staff feeling undervalued and patronized. Management would do well to better understand and be conscientious of what practices are and aren't practical during busy periods, and to treat and speak to their staff like equal human beings.


  5. Helpful (3)

    "Too few staff"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant
    Current Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Marks & Spencer full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The people i work with are lovely. The company tries to look after you offering; celebration day once a year, and they try to be flexible with things outside work. They also put on many events for staff parties or engagement evenings. They do try to engage us with various surveys on managers etc...and they also try to involve us in the store and how its doing...

    Cons

    Recent cuts in staff and changes in processes in cafe has made the job more difficult. We are constantly having to run around trying to do many jobs at once. The cafe is now looking grubby, food quality is dropping and customers are frequantly complaining and you cannot do anything to put it right, we are working as hard as we can... on one occasion i was physically running around cafe delivering food to get it out on time. A customer asked me to wipe a table as every table was dirty, i had left food cooking in the kitchen and i had to apologise because i couldnt do it .. i have always prided myself on putting the customer first but in that situation you havent the tools to do that. All we are doing is rushing around trying to survive a shift.
    Before staff cuts it was a nice job... they have however taken on staff for christmas but still on weekends the cafe relies on staff from other departments to support it.. but they are limited in what they can do as they dont have training in cafe.
    Another point is that m&s customers are challenging... they expect a lot which is understandable considering what they pay in store, but with the issues above it means we the staff receive so much negativity from customers and sometimes it can get to you. Ive known people go and hide in the toilet because its got too much...

    Advice to Management

    Increase staff again, especially at the weekend... managers should be able to see that the levels are not working or dont have a cafe. It damages the brand to have customers disappointed. M&s is not a budget brand therefore they should not run cafe on a shoestring


  6. "Great pay but bad management"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant in Edinburgh, Scotland
    Former Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant in Edinburgh, Scotland

    I worked at Marks & Spencer part-time

    Pros

    Great pay, lots of hours offered, nice team to work in

    Cons

    Bad communication between management, pressure to work more hours


  7. "Ideal place to work whilst studying."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant (Cafe) in Glasgow, Scotland
    Current Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant (Cafe) in Glasgow, Scotland
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Marks & Spencer full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Decent £8.50 wage.
    Flexible hours to work around uni timetable.

    Cons

    Customers... but thats the same in any customer service job

  8. Helpful (2)

    "Review of cafe job"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant
    Current Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    Good pay
    Flexible hours if that's what you're looking for

    Cons

    Long hours
    30 minute break despite 8 hour shift
    Poor management
    No chance to make friends with colleagues
    Constantly bossed around
    Often understaffed

    Advice to Management

    Create a more friendly environment amongs the employees
    Don't put so much pressure on someone just because the manager is not in store that day


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Nice company to work for"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant in Stratford-upon-Avon, England
    Former Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant in Stratford-upon-Avon, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Marks & Spencer part-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    - Great discount
    - Good team and community spirit

    Cons

    - Not much room for growth within the company


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Insultingly low starting wage"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant in Guildford, England
    Current Employee - Cafe Customer Assistant in Guildford, England
    Doesn't Recommend

    I have been working at Marks & Spencer (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Set two week shift patterns so you always know the hours you are to work. Colleagues are nice to work with

    Cons

    Despite having 9 years hospitality experience, I needed to be put on the base £7.20 p/hr because I've not been M&S cafe qualified previously.

    Advice to Management

    Communicate. On the first day of my induction I was taken to the cafe for an hour to observe how it is run. When I arrived the section coordinator who was MoD at the time had no idea anyone had even been hired. On the second day of my induction the women in charge of the induction failed to show up because she'd worked very late the night before.. No cover was arranged and until we went and found someone to ask what was going on., they had no idea there was a planned induction. We were then just taken to our respective areas in the store and put to work. It's two weeks later and they now want to complete the second day of induction despite working on the floor already. M&S is the definition of bureaucracy and the typical disconnect between how a store actually functions and how head office thinks it functions. COMMUNICATE.