Editing is a thankless job - ask me anything

@MFJohnston wrote:


5. It's not "greedy" to expect to be paid for your time - at what you think is an appropriate value. Sure, some folks might over-value their time. However, market forces will "teach" that person the truth.

^^This^^

Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.

(Yes, I stole Hoju's tagline.)

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@Shop-et-al wrote:

I have been "me" and "greedy shopper" in life. All is well now.
Sorry to hear that. I would never characterize myself as greedy. Or foolish,.

Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.

(Yes, I stole Hoju's tagline.)
I was a greedy shopper recently. I kept getting multiple (mass; not personalized) emails a day about some urgent fast food shops in the town a half hour drive from me.

Normal pay is $17. I think the bonus was $5.

I offered to do it for $30 and was sort of humiliated and my "offer" went out to other shoppers, with the scheduler saying in the mass emails, "I can't pay $30.00"

I apologized to the scheduler, and told Scheduler that I was not really going to that town any time soon as normal business. So to get to the shop would cost me (at federal mileage reimbursement rates for a RT drive) about $16.82

So I offered to do it for $30, "rounding down," on my expenses for the benefit of the Scheduler.

I learned a lesson. I guess I asked for way too much. But I see that shop every month and it is always the last one left on the board; along with one in the other direction from me that is a little further. I never offer to pick them up anymore; no special trips to just do them.

I WILL, however, pick them up if/ when I am ALREADY GOING TO BE in that area, will need to eat, and don't have "better ones" lined up. It's not a complete "no go," but I just don't want to do a job for less than my actual time/driving are worth.

I don't care that I was declined; I do care that it seemed like I was unreasonable in asking for that much. I did explain why; and at the same time, I do think that asking never hurt. And then it is up to me to decide whether or not I want to do the shop for less than I asked...and me *NOT* doing it is fine, too
@Shop-et-al
You vilify folks who are looking to make decent money that initial MSC offers.. You call us "unethical" and "greedy." You say Some people place the amounts they can get from another entity high on their priority lists." At the same time you commend yourself for "doing the opposite" and "questioning [sic] whether the amounts are reasonable." If you want to work for peanuts, that is certainly your prerogative. However, you have no moral high ground when you disparage those of us who want to provide well for our loved ones.

You can dislike working the market forces all you want. You can claim not to want to take part in a capitalistic system. The fact of the matter you do take part in it. I appreciate that you choose to work for small fees. Why? That leaves more bonus money for those of us who choose to ask for it.

If I begin to demand more than what the market can bear in the long run, I'll simply not be offered shops any longer - or have to adjust. However, as long a I provide better data than comment cards or lazy/dishonest/incompetent shoppers, my services will continue to be valued. (As will those of any shopper who is reliable and does fantastic work.) Therefore, I will continue to request and get reasonable bonuses - especially when I am willing to get to those "hard to fill" locations.

When MSC's are not able to offer enough compensation to fill hard-to-reach areas (or even easy ones), they do need to re-evaluate practices. They need to ask for more in their contracts with their clients. They need to be careful about simply undercutting their competition to steal away clients. Many of these clients have CEO's that earn well more than what they spend on their entire mystery shop programs. They can afford to pay more for mystery shopping programs and will - so long as they see the value in them.

Again, you've made it clear that your objective in mystery shopping is something other than earning money. That's fine. I have no problem with that. However, many folks shop because they need the money. This is, at least, part of their livelihood. There is nothing "greedy" or "unethical" about working to understand the system and learning to use it to maximize your earnings. None of us are suffering from an "embarrassment of riches."



@Shop-et-al wrote:


I understand that some people place the amounts they can get from another entity high on their priority lists. someone else should wonder and question whether the amounts are reasonable. Have some good negotiators skewed the bonus system via positive reinforcements and other methods of influence? Have others, like me, done the opposite? If we have, did we do it just to tweak the twee? This is difficult to evaluate because each shopper is independent and unique. It is just rhetorical.

Above all, I dislike the notion that we should charge what the traffic will bear. The traffic can't bear ever higher bonuses for very long. If the clients and the MSCs have so much difficulty filling assignments that they have to pay large sums for multiple shops month after month after month, then they might need to re-evaluate their system and find a more cost-effective method of obtaining information. (Wait. Some have done this. They have eased rotation restrictions, replaced shoppers with receipt-prompted feedback, etc.)

I have been "me" and "greedy shopper" in life. All is well now.

Hard work builds character and homework is good for your soul.
@Jill_L
You were not being "greedy." You were advocating for yourself. And $30 is not some obscene amount of money. If the MSC really needs to the shop done, the price will eventually get there. I've done enough $200 gas stations and $100 post offices to very much believe that.

Hard work builds character and homework is good for your soul.
Jill_L I see nothing at all wrong with your offer. How are you to know how high they will go on the job unless you ask? Your offer which will include an hour of driving and if you shop like I do, at least an hour to read the instructions, download any pics or receipts and label them, make my notes and review them and then fill in the report. I do not even know what shop this is but I have never entered a report in 5 or 10 minutes like others can. So that comes to a big $15 an hour. Considering that many in this country are pushing for that to be the minimum wage I see no issue with asking a company to pay you that amount to fill a hard to fill for them job at the last day or minute.
Where I see greed is when a msc offers us a job that pays $5 and even if it is walking distance from my house will take an hour...again I cannot do 5 minute reports. Some have pages of instructions to read in addition to all else and the msc insists we reread it all in case of slight changes. I am sure we all do not re read if we do the same shop often but it is requested as part of the job for little $$. I have done the occasional very quick report but those have not been the $5 jobs.
Most shops I do don't pay enough to begin with. When I get a bonus it sometimes makes up for the low end shops. I never feel greedy!
If asking for a bonus is "GREEDY", then everyone who asks for a raise is greedy. How dare they ask for a raise! Likewise, all the high ranking managers, directors, and CEO's. They must be gluttons. Imagine asking for higher salary, higher benefits, and higher stock shares of the corporation. That would blow capitalism to water. Oh, I forgot, I guess there are those in Congress preaching Socialism now. Share 90% of your income with the government to be spread among the less fortunate or plain lazy ones. As AOC says, everyone will get a salary, even the ones who can't or not willing to work.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/18/2019 05:31AM by ShopperFun99.
@ShopperFun99 wrote:

Op. What is the pay for editing per report?

OP works for a company, so he/she might be getting an hourly rate.

Independent editors usually get $5 or less per report.
Good pay for well written reports. Terrible for others when you have to send questions and wait for a response.
@SoCalMama wrote:

@ShopperFun99 wrote:

Op. What is the pay for editing per report?

OP works for a company, so he/she might be getting an hourly rate.

Independent editors usually get $5 or less per report.
Good pay for well written reports. Terrible for others when you have to send questions and wait for a response.

...And I imagine newbies often get the worst reports? Or is it more random?
"I would wager that probably 50% or more just gather employee descriptions and write up a good report. I know if I got paid $5 to do a shop I would do just that."

So it's okay to accept a low paying job and "phone it in?" Integrity much?

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/02/2019 03:40PM by shoppinalongtheriver.
I don't know about everyone else but writing up a good report takes time and effort for me. I did one yesterday that I felt totally underpaid for although money wasn't my primary purpose in doing it. I can't phone in a good report. I just can't.
@shoppinalongtheriver wrote:

"I would wager that probably 50% or more just gather employee descriptions and write up a good report. I know if I got paid $5 to do a shop I would do just that."

So it's okay to accept a low paying job and "phone it in?" Integrity much?

I enjoy awkward questions and uncomfortable silences. This gas station pavement is $%^@*#& hot.
If they want $5 for a shop, they get a $5 report. You want a better report, it will cost you more.
Sometimes you don't know what the report is like until you are already assigned the shop, and then you either have to cancel or suffer through it. "Fun and easy" my arse, LOL.
@JASFLALMT wrote:

Sometimes you don't know what the report is like until you are already assigned the shop, and then you either have to cancel or suffer through it. "Fun and easy" my arse, LOL.

You still give them a $5 report. I've done a few reports where the guidelines were ridiculous. I still got questions about the report. I've told them I was finished with the report. I also told them the guidelines were ridiculous and I would never do that shop again.
No, I personally wouldn't, because there have been times when a shop didn't pay well but I did a great job on it, which opened doors for better shops in the future. I would either give it my best or decline the shop.
I believe this to be the wrong approach. Every report gets my best work. If, after completing the shop, I believe it not worth my time, I simply do not do the shop again. If the MSC asks me to do the shop again, I'll ask for what I believe the shop to be worth. By doing my best work the first time, I give myself standing to demand more for my time - both on that shop and future shops for the same MSC.

Consider: If I do a "meh" job on the shop because I don't think the shop is worth my time, all the MSC sees is "meh" work. The editor then has work to do. The MSC might need to contact me for clarifications. Why, then, would the MSC want to pay me more for future shops (of that variety or other)?


@johnb974 wrote:

If they want $5 for a shop, they get a $5 report. You want a better report, it will cost you more.

Hard work builds character and homework is good for your soul.
Sometimes they may not know it's worth more. I was working on a start up project yesterday that is clearly worth more than it paid. The shop took 30 minutes with 2 detailed interactions and the report took an hour. If you count drive time I made less than minimum wage.
But I submitted the best report I'm capable of doing and look forward to extra income in the future. Because the next time I'll know to ask for more. And if they want quality work they'll give it to me. If not I'll do something else.

I enjoy awkward questions and uncomfortable silences. This gas station pavement is $%^@*#& hot.
I have told MSC about shops I would not do again for the pay they offered. They have NEVER increased the pay for those shops. I now wait until bonuses are offered. If they want the shop done at the best level, they need to pay more from the beginning. I will not offer my work cheap, just to hope they will offer more later.
What you have done when you do your best work for a cheap price, you've told the MSC you'll willing to work cheap. Why should they offer you more, when you've done a good report for a cheap price. You must be desperate for work.
@johnb974 wrote:

What you have done when you do your best work for a cheap price, you've told the MSC you'll willing to work cheap. Why should they offer you more, when you've done a good report for a cheap price. You must be desperate for work.

Because then you get chosen for better jobs that the MSC has and they will come to you if they need something done and they will bonus the job. And, how can you represent yourself with shoddy work on a personal level? Don't you want to take pride in what you do?
@Niner wrote:

@johnb974 wrote:

What you have done when you do your best work for a cheap price, you've told the MSC you'll willing to work cheap. Why should they offer you more, when you've done a good report for a cheap price. You must be desperate for work.

Because then you get chosen for better jobs that the MSC has and they will come to you if they need something done and they will bonus the job. And, how can you represent yourself with shoddy work on a personal level? Don't you want to take pride in what you do?

Only take the better paying jobs and prove yourself there.
@Niner wrote:

@johnb974 wrote:

What you have done when you do your best work for a cheap price, you've told the MSC you'll willing to work cheap. Why should they offer you more, when you've done a good report for a cheap price. You must be desperate for work.

Because then you get chosen for better jobs that the MSC has and they will come to you if they need something done and they will bonus the job. And, how can you represent yourself with shoddy work on a personal level? Don't you want to take pride in what you do?

Only take the better paying jobs and prove yourself there. I never said to do shoddy work. It about how much effort you put into a report. Lower paying jobs, get a lower effort.
Only take the better paying jobs and prove yourself there. I never said to do shoddy work. It about how much effort you put into a report. Lower paying jobs, get a lower effort.
What you don't get, johnb974, is that sometimes you never get to see the better paying jobs unless you do the lower paying jobs first. I thought we had this conversation last year in regards to ACL shops? You don't get to see their good jobs without doing lower paying jobs first. They are not the inventors of this concept.
We are talking about a situation where you already have taken a low-paying job. If you do poor job, you’ll get labeled that way and won’t be contacted for offers you really want.

@johnb974 wrote:

Only take the better paying jobs and prove yourself there. I never said to do shoddy work. It about how much effort you put into a report. Lower paying jobs, get a lower effort.

Hard work builds character and homework is good for your soul.
@Shop-et-al wrote:

Because someone on the internet said that I would be silly and unethical if I did not ask for more money.

No, you said it was unethical to ask for more. I don't know about where you live but here professionals are not in the habit of discounting their fees because the client lives in the same zip code. If you want to value yourself at $5 for 2 hours and I want to value myself at $50 an hour it doesn't make you ethical and me greedy.

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.
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