Mistreated by EPMS Apartment shop editors, anyone else?

writer -- I'm with you. I've been going through the list of MSCs and looking at the comments to make sure I don't sign up with any deadbeats and came across a negative comment about them not paying. All I can say is that I've been paid for every single shop I've done for them in a timely manner so can only wonder what the whole story is when people complain about not being paid.

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What does "Hold/Typed" mean under the status of a shop?

I have one that has been hanging around as "Hold/Typed" for two weeks now. So I guess I won't be paid for it this month - wish I could not pay for the gas I bought to drive to the shop...
Contact them and ask why. I've had that only once when the target refused to deal with me at all over the phone. The shop was put on hold while they decided how to handle the shop.
I just received this email from EPMS editor:
"We received your report. However, you did not complete a phone shop on anyone. Fortunately, you shopped someone on-site, so we can use that part of the report. However, we will have to phone shop an agent from here in order to complete the report. Therefore, we will be deducting $10 from your payment to cover the extra time and expense.

In the future, please make sure to complete your shop on the correct person and call our office if you have any questions or problems."

I am really annoyed with EPMS. I took this shop literally at the last minute as it was just before shutting down my computer and going out the door to drive to the city where this shop was located. Throughout the afternoon I made 3 attempts to call the location only to reach a recording. It was getting on in the afternoon so I made a judgment call to just go by and do a drop in w/o the prior phone call. I put all of this in my report. I personally think the client needs to know that no one answered the 3 phone calls made over the space of 2 1/2 hours.

I get it that I should have called and gotten permission but it was late in the afternoon and I doubt if I would have gotten anyone to answer my question.

At any rate, I do not believe I will accept any more shops from EPMS.
Their due dates are flexibile and the guidelines specifically say that you need to call first and make the visit on the same day. So, there probably was no need to rush to do the shop. They also expect us to make three to five calls a day. There is one client that requires four hours between the call and visit. So, there have been times when I have not made the required number of calls because it was too late in the date to accommodate the four hour wait and have not been penalized in any way. Quite honestly, you're lucky you are being paid for the onsite visit since some MSCs probably wouldn't pay you at all since you missed a part of the shop.
I thought they provided a breakdown of the fee showing how much it was for the phone call and how much for the on-site. I could have sworn the phone call portion only paid $5. If you don't make a call and then they deduct only that portion it is not so bad. If they deduct more than they were willing to pay you that is a bit ridiculous and basically says the time of the person in the office is more valuable than yours.

Equal rights for others does not mean fewer rights for you. It's not pie.
"I prefer someone who burns the flag and then wraps themselves up in the Constitution over someone who burns the Constitution and then wraps themselves up in the flag." -Molly Ivins
Never try to teach a pig to sing. It's a waste of your time and it really annoys the pig.
I have done shops for them in both Chicago and Florida and the call portion has been $10. The onsite portion is more in Chicago than in Florida. I do believe that the guidelines for the shops I've done say you will be deducted $10 for missing the phone call.
This was a rush, last minute shop that I took at noon on Tues., June 26 and was due to be done that day. The shop was for anyone at the site. Location closed at 5. Drive to the city was 1 hour. I had 4 other shops I was doing there. I felt sorry for the Scheduler and took it despite my misgivings. There was little room for rescheduling and I was not going to make another 65 mile drive the next day to the site.
I understand the fact that the telephone portion needed to be done but I also think the client should be told that no one answered the phone. If I owned that location, I would want to know. Perhaps the staffing needs to be beefed up, or maybe the staff on hand was goofing off, who knows, but unless that is reported nothing will change.
I just know I felt that I was doing the Scheduler a favor and got the shaft. I will not be so accommodating with EPMS again.
I'm surprised that there was no flexibility only because that has not been my experience. I did have an issue with not being paid the entire $10 for a phone call I made to a target who refused to talk to me let alone meet with me. I felt I should have gotten the full $10 because I had made several attempts to talk to the woman. It would have been nice if they had thrown a few bucks your way for at least making the attempt since each attempt would have been recorded and accessible to EPMS.
Toots - The company has a record of all of my attempts. In effect they paid me for the shop which was $30 but they are only paying me $10 bonus instead of $20. Or you could say they are paying me $20 for the shop and $20 for the bonus.

I just don't need the hassle so from here on out, it is highly unlikely that I will shop for them again.

My on site report must have been pretty good since they had no complaints about that!

Oh, well! I'll settle down after I sleep on it overnight. I won't fight the issue because it would cost me more in time and aggravation to do so. I do wish we could pull our entire report when they do that though!
I wonder what happens to targets who don't answer the phone or are rude after the client gets the report. I suppose they don't last very long! Luckily I've not had that experience.
I don't think anything happens to targets who don't answer the phone. No one knows about it but the shopper because it isn't in the report.
Interesting. one of the EPMS shops that I have done have priced the phone call seperately in the fee schedule. Maybe this is a regional thing with a specific client that wants them to do that? I have done a ton of their shops from NJ to Florida (and back) and never seen that. What I have seen is the admoniton to never, ever, go without first making a phone contact with a real person.

Based in MD, near DC
Shopping from the Carolinas to New York
Have video cam; will travel

Poor customer service? Don't get mad; get video.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/01/2012 12:16PM by walesmaven.
plmccut -- The calls are recorded so the MSC would at least know that phone was never answered and when the call was placed. If it was my business, I would not be happy that the phone was never answered by a live person during a good portion of the day and probably would take action. Also, I definitely put in my report exactly what happened during the call so the rudeness and unprofessionalism was contained in the report. I also believe there is a provision in the guidelines that the phone call portion of the report must be consistent with the phone call. So, I would think that someone is listening to the phone call recording and would be surprised if the call wasn't forwarded to the client since they're probably paying an additional fee for recording the phone call.

walesmaven -- I believe the shop is quoted at a flat fee but there is a provision that, if you don't make the phone call, there is a $10 deduction. That's why I consider the phone call is worth $10. That is also why I expected to be paid the entire $10 when I couldn't get the target to speak with me. As soon as that happened, I contacted the scheduler and followed what she told me to do. The shop was put on hold while they decided what to do with the situation (the target was the property manager). If this women wasn't at least given a good talking to, then their money was not spent well.
Glad to hear that you were paid. I have not done an EPMS shop in about 6 months, as they don't pay travel, and I have been on the road 90% of my shopping time. Looks like when I get back to doing their local shops I will see some changes. Thanks for the heads up.

Based in MD, near DC
Shopping from the Carolinas to New York
Have video cam; will travel

Poor customer service? Don't get mad; get video.
I've always been paid something from EPMS and, except for that one time, what I expected. They've also been very flexible with me regarding deadlines. There have been times when I'll accept a shop knowing that at least one day in the week I have a couple of other shops and wouldn't be able to pursue a target on that day if I hadn't already reached the target and they have had no problem with that. I don't worry about travel expenses because, unless I'm traveling between Chicago and Florida, I don't accept anything over 25 miles or so because driving eats up too much of my day and I have two other businesses I'm trying to build and run. If a shop is highly bonused, I might consider driving farther.
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