The cheapskates at KSS (mini-rant)

I got a phone call from someone with KSS this morning. He asked if I would like to do the fun novelty shop I had previously done for them in Indiana, PA (100 miles each way) and explained that the shop pays $7 plus up to $5 reimbursement. I informed him that when I do the local area novelty shops, I get $37 plus the reimbursement and he said when did you get that. I explained to him that is the rate I get every time and told him for me to travel the 100 miles ech way and do the shop, it would need to be at least $70 plus reimbursement and he said good luck with that.

I rarely do a local shop for under $20 plus reimbursement. Are these schedulers really that out of touch with reality to expect someone to put 200 miles on their vehicle for $7?

Nevermind, I should already know the answer to that question!

Mini-rant over.

Arguing with fools is like playing chess with a pigeon...
...No matter how good you are, the pigeon will s@^t on the board and strut around like it won anyway.

Not scheduling for ANY company.

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I was working for a merchandizing company that must be using the same math as the clown you dealt with. There just has be an old book of mileage reimbursements , written by a lunatic. " Let's see, gas is .16 a gallon, and they get 25 miles to the gallon, it will cost them $1.28 to drive 200 miles." Using the Crazy Persons Guide To Mileage Reimbursements, 1948 addition, $7.00 is extremely generous.
May they all go _____, and I will pay for the ride.
DanteInOH Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I got a phone call from someone with KSS this
> morning. He asked if I would like to do the fun
> novelty shop I had previously done for them in
> Indiana, PA (100 miles each way) and explained
> that the shop pays $7 plus up to $5 reimbursement.

What time did KSS call you in the morning? Your post was time stamped as... July 01, 2014 02:43AM winking smiley

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
“I'm the one that's got to die when it's time for me to die, so let me live my life the way I want to.”
~ Jimi Hendrix

“The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.” ~ Mark Twain

“To the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure.” ~ J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
But, but, he said it was a fun fun shop. You should not have cared about the mileage. It is all about the fun.
I do not do mileage shops since I live in a big city but I get similar lack of understanding or caring about time and gas travel around here. If they would at least show they understood the dilemma and our reasoning it would seem they cared a bit and did not just consider us a number. I can understand they might want to find someone closer who will cost them less but they act like it is no big deal to drive 100 miles for $5, or in my case for an hour thru traffic with possibly a parking fee higher than the fee they are paying. Not to mention the gas at 15 mpg in rush hour.(which is all day here). It's the "well how about if I tack on another 50 cents" attitude when they are told it will cost you $30 out of pocket to just get there and back that bothers me.
I can't believe that they are still paying $17 for a car shop. Probably an hour with the sales person, test drive required, and report all of the details and a cost quote.
Yesterday around noon. Just didn't have time to post about it until much later.

Shop2LiveinFL Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> DanteInOH Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > I got a phone call from someone with KSS this
> > morning. He asked if I would like to do the fun
> > novelty shop I had previously done for them in
> > Indiana, PA (100 miles each way) and explained
> > that the shop pays $7 plus up to $5
> reimbursement.
>
> What time did KSS call you in the morning? Your
> post was time stamped as... July 01, 2014 02:43AM
> winking smiley

Arguing with fools is like playing chess with a pigeon...
...No matter how good you are, the pigeon will s@^t on the board and strut around like it won anyway.

Not scheduling for ANY company.
I think I am still stumbling over $37! Lucky duck. Ours go at $7 easily sad smiley
Regardless, his "Good luck with that" comment wasn't very nice.
Well, it's possible he was hoping to catch someone who was going there anyway. I often shop 100 miles away without requiring bonuses because I have to go there anyway so any shops I pick up helps pay the gas to get to what I need to do. There are also a gazillion shoppers in Phoenix so they don't need to pay bonuses to get most of those shops done.

But once he's been told how far it is and what you require, he should have said something like, "I was hoping to find someone who would be in the area because I don't have any bonus money for it."

"Good luck with that" was just rude and should have been countered with "Good luck to you too, trying to get someone to do this for $7."

I wouldn't do it for $7 if it was three blocks away. I don't get out of my car for $7, anywhere, unless I need to eat.

Time to build a bigger bridge.
I agree dspeakes; had I been going that direction and had the shop been from a company I actually like that doesn't take 60-90 days to pay, I may have considered it.

Lately my two favorite MSCs I have been doing work with are Maritz and Trendsource. Three easy local shops total with these two companies was worth over $200 and they treated me good. I also had some good experiences with ICCDS.

dspeakes Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Well, it's possible he was hoping to catch someone
> who was going there anyway. I often shop 100
> miles away without requiring bonuses because I
> have to go there anyway so any shops I pick up
> helps pay the gas to get to what I need to do.
> There are also a gazillion shoppers in Phoenix so
> they don't need to pay bonuses to get most of
> those shops done.
>
> But once he's been told how far it is and what you
> require, he should have said something like, "I
> was hoping to find someone who would be in the
> area because I don't have any bonus money for it."
>
>
> "Good luck with that" was just rude and should
> have been countered with "Good luck to you too,
> trying to get someone to do this for $7."
>
> I wouldn't do it for $7 if it was three blocks
> away. I don't get out of my car for $7, anywhere,
> unless I need to eat.

Arguing with fools is like playing chess with a pigeon...
...No matter how good you are, the pigeon will s@^t on the board and strut around like it won anyway.

Not scheduling for ANY company.
I really hate the "but you did it before" justification. One company has been driving me nuts to do a shop I did about 4 years ago because they need it done. The have also let me know that it is in my state. We were on vacation at the time and I did it as a fun activity with the family. It is 211 miles one way and I need to have someone with me. That $5.00 just won't reel me in. What is wrong with me?
Shelly, you don't want to work for a mere $0.50 an hour, minus your costs?! Are you crazy?

-------------------
Kyle Bonnyman
Independent Scheduler-Editor-Recruiter-Project Manager
kyle@shopperscheduling.com | (647) 932-7468 |
Facebook: Scheduler Kyle Bonnyman
I do not answer the phone when MSCs call me. I let it go to voice mail and call them back if I am interested, which is only once in a blue moon or so. I don't want to be called by them.
I frequently pick up "filler" shops when I am on business trips, often several states away. Seems like a good idea at the time, since it can significantly offset my expenses and boost my bottom line. I just have to ask myself, "Is this extra $40 going to be worth the dozens of phone calls and emails in a few months asking if I can do it again?"
I think most MSCs give you the option to choose if you want phone calls or not.

I save their names in my contact list so I know who's calling. I have "Market Force -- Foreign" and "Market Force--American." Guess which one I don't answer? But that's the only one I don't answer. That's the only one who calls me with insulting offers. Any other call I get from an MSC usually has an acceptable bonus attached to it.

Time to build a bigger bridge.
The scheduler was working on the principal of, "The only downside of asking is that they'll say no."

Do not read so much, look about you and think of what you see there.
Richard Feynman-- letter to Ashok Arora, 4 January 1967, published in Perfectly Reasonable Deviations from the Beaten Track (2005) p. 230
Yes, (I'm in Gilbert), but it's funny how they need the shops done ASAP! And they expect me to go from Gilbert up to Scottsdale in a flash HAHAHA! It takes me 45 minutes JUST DRIVING through traffic to get up there during a GOOD time of the day!
Hi Dante,

The scheduler that called you (Taylor) is very new to KSS (in fact, that was his very first project and his first month working in our office). I apologize if he said "Good Luck with that" as of course that is a completely unprofessional response. I will address that with him personally.

However, you also need to realize that we do not set the payment for shops. That project is for Service Sleuth, and they set the pay amount. We had 623 shops to fill for that Novelty chain and were only given a $250 bonus pool to get them all done.

Taylor was just calling shoppers that had previously completed that shop. You were one that had done it before, so that's why he called you. I just checked and you actually did that shop in April of 2013 for us for no bonus. That is the only reason he asked you if you'd do it again. Believe me, if he knew it was 100 miles EACH WAY he would have never called you and asked you to do it for $7.

Again, I apologize for the unprofessional response, but please know that KSS is not a "cheapskate". We actually have nothing to do with shopper pay at all. I would happily offer $20 plus reimbursement for each shop if it were up to me!

Lorri Kern
CEO
KSS International, Inc.





DanteInOH Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I got a phone call from someone with KSS this
> morning. He asked if I would like to do the fun
> novelty shop I had previously done for them in
> Indiana, PA (100 miles each way) and explained
> that the shop pays $7 plus up to $5 reimbursement.
> I informed him that when I do the local area
> novelty shops, I get $37 plus the reimbursement
> and he said when did you get that. I explained to
> him that is the rate I get every time and told him
> for me to travel the 100 miles ech way and do the
> shop, it would need to be at least $70 plus
> reimbursement and he said good luck with that.
>
> I rarely do a local shop for under $20 plus
> reimbursement. Are these schedulers really that
> out of touch with reality to expect someone to put
> 200 miles on their vehicle for $7?
>
> Nevermind, I should already know the answer to
> that question!
>
> Mini-rant over.
I get calls all the time for places that I shopped when I was traveling. I am currently headed to Las Vegas (yes, I am already with numerous PI companies, since 2004 actually). I am looking for jobs along the way. I'll get gas and a Red Bull in Baker for no bonus. It's mindless, and I expect I'll need to pee anyway. I will also be doing a select few highend jobs once I get there. No gas stations, etc. So, I will do that silly gas station for $6 + $6 in BFE.

Scheduling is a hard job. I've done it. Editing is worse. People are stupid. Good shoppers are worth their weight in gold.

If Lorri Kern called me and asked me to do a job for $7 with 100 Miles RT for no bonus. I would do it. That's because she needs it done. I know for a fact she'd make it up to me ten-fold. Been there, done that. Been shopping since 1999. She hasn't messed with me once, EVER, EVER, EVER.
I became curious about low fees for shops so I looked up job postings for schedulers. Long story short: the root of the problem is the clients low-balling the MSCs. The clients are playing one against the other to drive the price down.

=============================
Expert investigator and evaluator with PV-700, PV-500EVO, AstroScope 9350NIKS-3PRO, B&H DNV16HDZ-M Full Infrared Night Vision Camcorder
Lorri,

If we really want to get into why I did this location, which at the time was still 35 miles each way from where I used to live, it was because I was assured I would be given preference for a movie theater shop I really wanted at the time. I was not given that assignment, which is why I am very hesitant to take any shops that Kern schedules, unless the bonus is worth it for me. Service Sleuth left a very bitter taste in my mouth when they pulled that little bait and switch!

My question is, if you look back on my shop records, how many of those same shops did I do for $37 plus reimbursement? Furthermore, in addition to the $37 plus reimbursement, I was given accelerated pay because Service Sleuth takes forever to pay!

I could see if I was a flake shopper who was on here complaining about every single MSC. That is not the case though. I'm a highly rated shopper who gives my all for every assignment I complete. If you don't believe me, ask around. I'm sure schedulers from Maritz, GfK, Trendsource, Sinclair, Beyond Hello, Summit and quite a few other MSC's and scheduling companies would affirm my track record.

I just am the type of person to tell it like it is.

It's not my problem that these MSC's want to maximize profit by paying a pittance to the IC's who are out there doing the real work. $7 isn't worth doing a shop a block away, let alone 100 miles each way! Schedulers are not the ones out there burning their fuel and putting extra wear and tear on their vehicles. That amount of money, for a shop you have to remain in the location for at least 15 minutes is an insult and a slap in the face to shoppers who work hard for their money! I do shops for that rate for Sinclair but the report and the shop take at most 15 minutes combined!

Maybe you can find some new suckers (because we all know that shoppers are just numbers to most schedulers and companies, not real people) who are content with waiting 3 months to receive their pittance that probably won't even cover their fuel that day, but I'm not one of them.

That may sound harsh, but reality is harsh.

=======================================================

Lorri Kern KSS Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Hi Dante,
>
> The scheduler that called you (Taylor) is very new
> to KSS (in fact, that was his very first project
> and his first month working in our office). I
> apologize if he said "Good Luck with that" as of
> course that is a completely unprofessional
> response. I will address that with him
> personally.
>
> However, you also need to realize that we do not
> set the payment for shops. That project is for
> Service Sleuth, and they set the pay amount. We
> had 623 shops to fill for that Novelty chain and
> were only given a $250 bonus pool to get them all
> done.
>
> Taylor was just calling shoppers that had
> previously completed that shop. You were one that
> had done it before, so that's why he called you. I
> just checked and you actually did that shop in
> April of 2013 for us for no bonus. That is the
> only reason he asked you if you'd do it again.
> Believe me, if he knew it was 100 miles EACH WAY
> he would have never called you and asked you to do
> it for $7.
>
> Again, I apologize for the unprofessional
> response, but please know that KSS is not a
> "cheapskate". We actually have nothing to do with
> shopper pay at all. I would happily offer $20 plus
> reimbursement for each shop if it were up to me!
>
> Lorri Kern
> CEO
> KSS International, Inc.
>
>
>
>
>
> DanteInOH Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > I got a phone call from someone with KSS this
> > morning. He asked if I would like to do the fun
> > novelty shop I had previously done for them in
> > Indiana, PA (100 miles each way) and explained
> > that the shop pays $7 plus up to $5
> reimbursement.
> > I informed him that when I do the local area
> > novelty shops, I get $37 plus the reimbursement
> > and he said when did you get that. I explained
> to
> > him that is the rate I get every time and told
> him
> > for me to travel the 100 miles ech way and do
> the
> > shop, it would need to be at least $70 plus
> > reimbursement and he said good luck with that.
> >
> > I rarely do a local shop for under $20 plus
> > reimbursement. Are these schedulers really that
> > out of touch with reality to expect someone to
> put
> > 200 miles on their vehicle for $7?
> >
> > Nevermind, I should already know the answer to
> > that question!
> >
> > Mini-rant over.

Arguing with fools is like playing chess with a pigeon...
...No matter how good you are, the pigeon will s@^t on the board and strut around like it won anyway.

Not scheduling for ANY company.
Wow! I expected a few comments over this, but nothing? I figured I said what more than a few IC's have wanted to say, but didn't actually say. I'm not worried about reprisals for my comments, considering the work I do through KSS probably accounts for less than .01% of my mystery shopping income.

Oh, and Lorri, I'm still waiting for an answer as to how many of those "fun novelty gift shops" I have done for $37 plus reimbursement. I am sure there were more of those than the $7 ones.

Arguing with fools is like playing chess with a pigeon...
...No matter how good you are, the pigeon will s@^t on the board and strut around like it won anyway.

Not scheduling for ANY company.
DanteInOH Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I was given
> accelerated pay because Service Sleuth takes
> forever to pay!


How interesting. Guess I know what to ask for when I ever do SS shops again.

There are reasons that a body stays in motion
At the moment only demons come to mind
This is too funny; no mention of how many of those FUN novelty shops I was paid $37 + reimbursement for. I'll answer it for you though, no worries.

I did two of these shops for the normal $7 plus reimbursement on 3/27/13 and 4/3/13, which were paid on 6/4/13 and 7/3/13 respectively. (I was a new shopper and didn't know any better)

I did two of these shops for $37 plus reimbursement on 8/7/13 and 10/30/13, which were paid on 10/9/13 and 11/7/13 respectively.

It was an easy question to answer... if you like I could paste the email correspondence from these shops.

Arguing with fools is like playing chess with a pigeon...
...No matter how good you are, the pigeon will s@^t on the board and strut around like it won anyway.

Not scheduling for ANY company.
I suspect Lorri didn't want to get in a public pissing match. I doubt she'll be commenting any more in this thread. She probably felt attacked after the mini-rant and wanted to apologize for the FNG and defend her company. She's wise to back away now. And face it, you first stated "that is the rate I get every time", but in your last post you show you only get it half the time. I like how you "tell it like it is" here. I sometimes agree and sometimes disagree. In this case though, I agree with you about the scheduler who called you and just didn't seem to grasp the distance/bonus concept, but disagree with your taking it out on Lorri after she apologized, defended her company, then called your bluff. smiling smiley

There are two types of people in this world: Those who can extrapolate from incomplete data.
After I learned about how much shops are worth, the work involved, especially with these shops, the time involved (minimum 15 minutes in store, plus report time), I started asking for more to complete these shops. I don't count "rookie shops" in this equation, so I stand by my assessment.

If you choose to work for a slow-paying, cheap MSC, enjoy! I work enough in my normal line of work where this is just something on the side for me to make more money. My time is valuable, worth a lot more than $7 for over an hour of work, counting drive time, report time, and shop time.

KSS has moved to my "10 foot pole" list. I prefer to work for companies that pay me what my time is worth, pay me a lot quicker than 60-90 days after shop completion and don't make me beg for any additional money. Plus they have many rude schedulers! I even prefer doing work through Summit Scheduling over KSS, which isn't saying much.

As for calling my bluff; sorry, but you're wrong! I proved my point, that was all. If you choose to be a cheerleader for them, that's your business.


LJ Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I suspect Lorri didn't want to get in a public
> pissing match. I doubt she'll be commenting any
> more in this thread. She probably felt attacked
> after the mini-rant and wanted to apologize for
> the FNG and defend her company. She's wise to back
> away now. And face it, you first stated "that is
> the rate I get every time", but in your last post
> you show you only get it half the time. I like how
> you "tell it like it is" here. I sometimes agree
> and sometimes disagree. In this case though, I
> agree with you about the scheduler who called you
> and just didn't seem to grasp the distance/bonus
> concept, but disagree with your taking it out on
> Lorri after she apologized, defended her company,
> then called your bluff. smiling smiley

Arguing with fools is like playing chess with a pigeon...
...No matter how good you are, the pigeon will s@^t on the board and strut around like it won anyway.

Not scheduling for ANY company.
Being a diva isn't the right way to go about it. So you got $37 50% of the time. It doesn't mean that you should then expect it 100% of the time. They aren't going to have it 100% of the time. Being hard to work with will mean that no one will want to work with you. And that will mean less work, and less money.

MSing is a business and you must look at it like a business. You aren't an employee, you are a business owner, and a business owner invests in their business by building strong business ties and a friendly rapport. For MSers, that will typically mean that we do favors for our schedulers and take jobs they need to fill, with little to no bonus, when they just don't have it that month...building a connection with them so that, on another shop, maybe another client, maybe a shop rotation with a larger bonus pool, they'll return the favor. You got burned once by one scheduler, but that is no reason to lump all of KSS in with him/her.

I'm a little confused on how you were a rookie in 3/13 and a seasoned veteran by 8/13.

I can't understand the mentality of expecting fat bonuses for every shop, just because you've gotten them twice in the past. I'm with Taylor, good luck with that.

------------------------------------------------
Plan the work. Work the plan.
As for being a diva, you've got it wrong. Yes, mystery shopping is a business and I will run MY business as I see fit. I have strong business ties and rapport with plenty of schedulers and MSCs, especially ones who pay within a reasonable time frame and pay a reasonable amount.

There must be a method to my madness, as my worst month since my first one (which was $428 in fees) was $653 in fees. Remember, that is doing assignments part time and not doing video shops.

You may choose to consume a @#$%& sandwich from some of these MSCs and again, I'm not upset at you; that is your personal choice. However, you are in no position to tell me how to run mine.

Take all the jobs you want from KSS and SS and many others that I choose NOT to work for. It won't hurt my workload one bit.

BBird0701 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Being a diva isn't the right way to go about it.
> So you got $37 50% of the time. It doesn't mean
> that you should then expect it 100% of the time.
> They aren't going to have it 100% of the time.
> Being hard to work with will mean that no one will
> want to work with you. And that will mean less
> work, and less money.
>
> MSing is a business and you must look at it like a
> business. You aren't an employee, you are a
> business owner, and a business owner invests in
> their business by building strong business ties
> and a friendly rapport. For MSers, that will
> typically mean that we do favors for our
> schedulers and take jobs they need to fill, with
> little to no bonus, when they just don't have it
> that month...building a connection with them so
> that, on another shop, maybe another client, maybe
> a shop rotation with a larger bonus pool, they'll
> return the favor. You got burned once by one
> scheduler, but that is no reason to lump all of
> KSS in with him/her.
>
> I'm a little confused on how you were a rookie in
> 3/13 and a seasoned veteran by 8/13.
>
> I can't understand the mentality of expecting fat
> bonuses for every shop, just because you've gotten
> them twice in the past. I'm with Taylor, good luck
> with that.

Arguing with fools is like playing chess with a pigeon...
...No matter how good you are, the pigeon will s@^t on the board and strut around like it won anyway.

Not scheduling for ANY company.
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