Sports Direct put 90% of staff on 'zero hour' contracts

29 July 2013

sports direct Sports Direct may be wealthy enough to buy Newcastle and rename the stadium, however, they're not keen on looking after their staff with 9 out of 10 employed on 'zero-hour contracts', which means they have no guarantee of work from one week to the next.

This system means 20,000 shop floor workers are expected to be available whenever they're called upon, while at the same time, having no rights to sick pay or any holidays. They're given no notice about their hours and certainly aren't offered bonuses or anything like that.

The remainder of the staff get loads of lovely bonuses in the form of shares worth up to £100,000.

Chief executive Dave Forsey said: "The share scheme glues this company together. These schemes are typically only for the executives, but this goes deep into the company. I'm surprised more businesses haven't adopted something like this sooner."

An anonymous employee told a report by MPs: "The zero hours contract and casual contracts made me feel that all the power was with employer. It’s depressing and demoralising. I feel I have no rights and constantly question ‘why am I even bothering to work?’"

Alison McGovern, the Labour MP for Wirral South, said: "It seems quite bizarre that a company would on the one hand be awarding bonuses in this way, and treating other staff in a completely different way."

"I would want Sports Direct to see if there is a possibility of more fixed term contracts. It appears this has been imposed across the board and is inappropriate. How can there be any investment in employees, or training or progression? Lots of workers in retail start off part-time on the shop floor and rise to the top, but with zero-hour contracts there is no incentive at all."

TOPICS:   High Street News   Economy

26 comments

  • Mr M.
    You don't get me I'm part of the union!
  • me
    sports direct are crap to work for and always have been and there other company heatons now thats were it gets worse but at least heatons has a 8hr contract like other companys.
  • So T.
    ^What the fuck is Heatons, and what relevance does it have to this article? Anyway, zero hours contracts are awful and should be illegal. They only benefit companies whonate in it purely to make as much money as possible at the expense of their staff. The fucking Tennant's drinkers.
  • Peter
    No one forces you to work there. All I'm saying!
  • spanks
    actually its decent, you keep the hard working staff and dont have to fire the shit. you just dont give them any work and sooner or later will get the message. its good for low paid, low skilled high turnover staff
  • I f.
    Fucking slave drivers.
  • Mustapha S.
    This is actually a very good idea. A lot of the staff are probably young and wanting to ditch the company as soon as their BSc comes in or a job they want comes up. Works both ways.
  • spanks
    out of interest. whats a bitterwallet contracts working hours?
  • duck
    decent!? You can't get a mortgage on a zero hour contract, so its good if your chav council house scum.
  • Chewbacca
    @Must defecate BSc? Hahaaahaahaahaahaahahahahahahaha! lulz. The fucking monroes.
  • Sideysid
    Sports Direct obviously don't want to hand out wads of cash to its staff from the shares. The staff who are actually on 'real' contracts, were probably there from when it first began. That was until Sports Direct realised that they could royally fuck their staff over.
  • tin
    @Spanks: that would work if the employers weren't a bunch of twats, and treated their good employees accordingly. Sports Direct are a bunch of twats, so you can guess what happens. The government should ban it, but they want the big people to be able to tread all over the little people so there's no chance of that.
  • shiftynifty
    Sports Direct...Shit wages...Need Bills to pay ....Wonga....rinse and repeat....whilst flogging TAT to shoppers drawn in by £2.99 slazenger tops
  • winterstorm
    Sadly this practise isn't rare... Currys/PC World have been employing all new staff on 8 hour minimum wage 'flex' contracts for more than 2 years now
  • jim
    flex? erb? profit
  • evolve
    not in the currys i know they havent been and as has been pointed out most uni students are out like a shot and in my experience are far more unreliable than full time members of staff
  • Kevin
    I'm guessing this is just a way of getting the most from your staff. If you are a good worker, follow rules etc you will have work next week, if you don't behave (in whatever way they want) then you won't. You get rewarded for being a good worker. Sucks massively to not know what is happening next week let alone further but it's an incentivised working system isn't it. But I wonder out of all the people that have these contracts what % will still be working a full-time job's hours? Or are they all evil and just give some people a few hours here and there because they can? We need figures!
  • shiftynifty
    Kevin....yes you Kevin...what dream world are you living in....Or are they all evil and just give some people a few hours here and there because they can?...Yes..get with the gameplan fuckwit
  • spanks
    "Posted by tin • July 30, 2013 at 10:37 am @Spanks: that would work if the employers weren’t a bunch of twats, and treated their good employees accordingly. Sports Direct are a bunch of twats, so you can guess what happens. The government should ban it, but they want the big people to be able to tread all over the little people so there’s no chance of that." Fair point but having been a manager in cinema that does the same I used to give the good staff all the hours they wanted and then the shit ones well as little hours as i could. this actually worked out OK for both sides as it gave the staff flexability if they could not work. a lot were students who were away during holidays and us the ability to ramp up if there was some blockbuster coming out. its all about managing your team, we knew how many FT people we wanted and recruited them as such, even if the contract was 0 hours you still got at least 30. remember this is not forced on you, you leave if you dont like it. since this recession ive had 3 different jobs because A pragmatic about work, B im willing to travel and C im good at what i do. I dont understand why anyone couldnt work if they really wanted it. its just what you are willing to give up to do it.
  • Chewbacca
    ^You claim to have been a manager, yet can't spell "flexibility". I suppose, it was only a cinema. You fucking moron.
  • Chewbacca
    Actually, Wanks, your entire post is a fucking train wreck. You're a fucking minimum wage moron, nobody cares about your "work ethic", particularly when you openly admit to loving getting fucked over for as little money as possible. You're good at what you do? It's not hard to wash dishes in a Chinese restaurant. You fucking moron.
  • spanks
    Correct, although I never claimed to spell well. I do know how to spell troll though.
  • Chewbacca
    Don't put yourself down spanky, you can spell a good few more words than just "troll". You fucking moron. (that's not a personal insult, it's just a "thing" that I do) toodle pip!
  • Has
    WOW You guys need to get a job at John Lewis Waitrose, sick pay, discounts, holiday entitlement, national subsidies, 6 MONTH paid holiday leave after 25 years service and yearly bonus for everyone! Sounds to good to be true when reading how other companies run their business.
  • Big M.
    @Has - yeah John Lewis Waitrose is the way to go. Or just get a better job, not in retail, that pays more to start with and has most of those benefits mentioned anyway.
  • Sports E.
    Every till staff is told to sell the "Bags For Life", management get upset that less than 9% of sales come from them. Not every customer wants one or says they already have one. Management favours some or more staff over others. Aisles are still too narrow for disabled customers and people with prams. The Shoe department staff get commission on insoles/socks/footwear and the Till and Shop Floor staff don't. Till staff don't get commission on the Bags For Life, but count for more hours. I also work for Sports Direct in Manchester Arndale

What do you think?

Connect with Facebook, Twitter, or just enter your email to sign in and comment.

Your comment