Gas stations on SASSIE = End of an era?

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I worked with Virginia for many years when she scheduled for Informa. Although it was a few years ago, she was always pleasant, co-operative and helpful. I think you may have caught her at a bad time. She may be experiencing the Texas problems. Your email did not sound condescending to me. Just try to be patient with her. I think she may be having a very hard time right now.

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i definitely wouldn't have used the somewhat comical line. that's something you say to us, not them. also i wouldn't have told her to "keep in mind". you could have phrased it better. also i wouldn't have taken a little shot by mentioning you were doing more work for other schedulers who have been more generous with bonuses. the email of yours wasn't terrible, but i don't think it was the best way to go about it to reach your end goal, which is receiving the bonuses you want. trust me, i don't blame you for wanting them. pay is peanuts right now, and i haven't touched anything this quarter.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/19/2021 10:56PM by jay225.
I can now see that maybe it was perhaps a bit condescending. But I think it is still valuable information for a scheduler. I may not be available when the bonuses finally start rolling in if we wait until the last minute.
Maritz sold the mystery shopping part of their business. The company is still in business. Her comment was rude, she should not have lashed out like that ! My opinion, it was immature. The scheduler for my area is very friendly and he had told me very early in Jan. that bonuses of the past are gone. The higher ones will be in the final days.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/20/2021 03:38AM by claabe.
When they say, "That is why Maritz is no longer in business", that sounds condescending. Perhaps Maritz saw what was coming and made a smart business decision. These Heroes taking the $2.50 bonus are going to see the light at some point.
My original post might have been able to be perceived as more malevolent than I intended, but it did not even approach the level of condescension and vitriol that I received in the reply. The reality is that the client is expecting to get their locations evaluated, and it is going to take a certain amount of pay to convince someone to go to an out-of-the-way location. We shall see what happens at the end of March.
I know that personally I have only done a couple stations in the last several months when the bonus was "sufficient". But there may be more shoppers out there now due to economic conditions. What quality of work is being done for no bonus or $2 bonus. I don't know.
You should have stopped at the first paragraph, lol. Yeah, the "comical" part was rude, and the last paragraph came across as telling here how to do her job. Her reply did seem a little rude on first reading, but she did show the courtesy of responding to your points, which is probably more than I would have done. Especially now after enduring 4 days of no water, no showers, very little hot food, busted pipes, plumber bills, lost work, slow internet, and two days without power during freezing weather.
cindy cribbs, this is not KSS dictating how these shops get filled. KSS only schedules for Ipsos and MUST comply with the way Ipsos tells us to schedule all the gas station shops they give us. They tell us when we can lift rotation all of it. If they tell us to take it off the board we do, if they still want it shopped after a certain time frame they dictate that it goes back on the job board and yes as a scheduler we have to start all over at ground zero with that shop. KSS follows what is being told to us. It has nothing to do with the scheduler. We all are following the rules. If you did a Blue gas station in quarter one you can't do it again until quarter 3. If you shopped it in January, you cannot shop it again until March. The only way a shop can be assigned to you is when Ipsos who is the mystery shopping company not KSS is given approval that rotation is lifted. Same goes for the Red and Yellow ones. They can only be shopped by a shopper once every other quarter unless Ipsos removes the rotation restrictions. It has nothing to do with a scheduler not wanting to schedule a shopper. Trust me there are a lot us that would love to give the shopper the shops but it is out of our hands. Keep in mind we do not get paid when shops are not completed either. Lots of schedulers are paid by the shop so anything not filled is not paid.
I'm just curious, what does everything think is a reasonable shop fee for the Red and Yellow gas stations. I see the expenses are 2 gallons of gas and $2 store item.
There is also the possibility that the schedulers' fees have also been reduced. Either way, they've got to put in much more time and effort to "Sell" reduced-rate work to dependable shoppers. They're stuck in the middle , between shoppers who want to make money and MSCs that want to keep the money. Not a job for me. No, nay, never. I could never handle the stress schedulers must have. Wouldn't want to.

sestrahelena
2/3 of the way through your first quarter with new clients mid-pandemic doesn’t seem to be a prime time to be stingy with bonus money for the ICs still out and working. Just saying.

IPSOS’ competition is currently running test shops; I’m seeing and hearing about them. If KSS can’t hit Q1 targets (its late February and there are a LOT of stale shops) look for IPSOS to possibly move more of their clients over to app-based scheduling.

This whole “scheduling industry” gets a big eyeroll from me, personally. I’d rather deal straight with the MSC or use an app. Schedulers don’t seem to add the value that they believe they do in the industry; witness the poor communication and the rude replies that ICs constantly report here. Schedulers are classic middlemen skimming profits from both the MSPs and the ICs. Their services made sense pre-wifi and pre-smartphone, in the days of dial-up modems and Yellow Pages... not anymore. And working out of office space is additional overhead that we shoppers are paying for out of our fees.

Edited x5 to fix spelling, add link, etc., etc., etc.

Edited 5 time(s). Last edit at 02/22/2021 02:08AM by ColoKate63.
I do not like all the outsourcing. Not just in this industry, in the whole business world. No company is responsible for anything because they contract other companies to run their business. In this case it's scheduling, editing, probably payroll and who knows what else. Ipsos seems to only secure contracts and collect the money.

sestrahelena
@ColoKate63 wrote:

2/3 of the way through your first quarter with new clients mid-pandemic doesn’t seem to be a prime time to be stingy with bonus money for the ICs still out and working. Just saying.

IPSOS’ competition is currently running test shops; I’m seeing and hearing about them. If KSS can’t hit Q1 targets (its late February and there are a LOT of stale shops) look for IPSOS to possibly move more of their clients over to app-based scheduling.

This whole “scheduling industry” gets a big eyeroll from me, personally. I’d rather deal straight with the MSC or use an app. Schedulers don’t seem to add the value that they believe they do in the industry; witness the poor communication and the rude replies that ICs constantly report here. Schedulers are classic middlemen skimming profits from both the MSPs and the ICs. Their services made sense pre-wifi and pre-smartphone, in the days of dial-up modems and Yellow Pages... not anymore. And working out of office space is additional overhead that we shoppers are paying for out of our fees.

Edited x5 to fix spelling, add link, etc., etc., etc.

does app based scheduling have people we can contact to negotiate fair fees? this may be the first quarter in over 5 years i don’t do a gas station lol.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/02/2021 03:49PM by jay225.
Every time it asks the last question,"Do you have feedback?", I put in there that it needs to be moved to Shopmetrics so that it can be done via the app which can be done offline and then updated when I get to a good data signal - or my home wifi. Being connected to the webpage the entire time takes too long and is not reliable.
I just finished a bonused yellow gas station...only 8 pumps (4 double sided machines)....BUT, with the new and revised format (for me)...It was 20 photos and 45 minutes to write up the report. (already nearly 20 minutes on site for a revealed shop).....THAT seems like too long for a $20 shop...does anyone agree?

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/03/2021 11:58PM by salisburync.
Agreed. They are determined not to pay the bonuses needed to get these shops done. They have been begging for months now, and people are not taking them in my area. Their "deadline" is always "today" or "tomorrow" and this has been going on since January. There is no way they can all get done "today" or "tomorrow" since they are done by route shoppers who would need a few days to get them all done.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/04/2021 09:17PM by mjt9598.
I used to do a lot of these gas stations. I have not done a single one since the migration to KSS and Sassie. It will be interesting to see what happens at the end of March. I will not be doing anyone any favors on that project. I'm going to stand firm on my fees and not be afraid to be told no. These are going to be a PITA on sassie and all the ones left are the remote ones.
I did one this round just to try it out on Sassie, and they need to be moved to Shopmetrics to make them more efficient.
@mjt9598 wrote:

I did one this round just to try it out on Sassie, and they need to be moved to Shopmetrics to make them more efficient.

Let me roll my eyes, they are all in the family. If they have KSS do the scheduling, the shops can not be moved to shopmetrics easily, for obvious reason. I was doing shops this week and was thinking what a pain they are to upload the photos on sassie and John should had by now the best phone app to input shops for sassie. That's the problem with monopolies. No incentive for innovation.
The MaritzCX website and app were the best in the industry. I wonder why they didn't migrate their shops over to that platform, considering that I am sure they paid for the rights to that system.
@thunderdeacon wrote:

I used to do a lot of these gas stations. I have not done a single one since the migration to KSS and Sassie. It will be interesting to see what happens at the end of March.

IPSOS has pretty much set themselves up badly here.
There are so many shops left, it’s a pandemic, bonus money isn’t being given by their schedulers, routes aren’t being offered, this will not end well.
They’re a $2B company. Unbelievable.
@KateH wrote:

@mjt9598 wrote:

I did one this round just to try it out on Sassie, and they need to be moved to Shopmetrics to make them more efficient.

Let me roll my eyes, they are all in the family. If they have KSS do the scheduling, the shops can not be moved to shopmetrics easily, for obvious reason. I was doing shops this week and was thinking what a pain they are to upload the photos on sassie and John should had by now the best phone app to input shops for sassie. That's the problem with monopolies. No incentive for innovation.

I am not sure what you are referring to? There is no connection between any of these companies. I am sure you know that Surfmerchants (Sassie) was sold to LiveShopper over a year ago? The companies have never been co-mingled, ever, but John has been unemployed for more than a year and has nothing to do with Sassie anymore. These conspiracy theories crack me up.
so i did my first ipsos gas station on sassie today... yea, I see what you guys are saying. the legacy platform is rolling over in it's grave. i don't think it'll ever stop rolling. why would ipsos not use that gem of a system?
@Lorri Kern KSS wrote:

I am not sure what you are referring to? There is no connection between any of these companies. I am sure you know that Surfmerchants (Sassie) was sold to LiveShopper over a year ago? The companies have never been co-mingled, ever, but John has been unemployed for more than a year and has nothing to do with Sassie anymore. These conspiracy theories crack me up.

I know it was sold but surfmerchants could had developed the best app for sassie shops years ago. They had done the presto app, I see shops had started there at least since early 2016, they could expand on the technology to work smoothly and be ahead of each time. Looking at my records, I did shops on other apps since 2014. I know there has never been comingling between the companies but I cannot imagine that even subconsciously there was not a proposal to clients towards the sassie platform. Until recently I had barely seen KSS scheduling on other platforms. Primarily it was for international companies that had their own platforms and had a specific US nationwide project that you scheduled for them.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/06/2021 04:25PM by KateH.
KSS has scheduled for Maritz on their legacy platform since 2004. We have also scheduled on ShopMetrics since it's inception (back in the Ritter and Associates days, but for multiple companies since). We have also scheduled for GFK (now IPSOS) on their legacy platform since 2005. We used to have multiple clients on Prophet, but it got so cumbersome on the scheduling side, that we stopped taking clients on the platform back when Feedback Plus sold. I'd say (before IPSOS flipped, which was 9 months after Sassie was purchased) only about 40% of our scheduling was on Sassie.

If anyone thinks any MSP would listen to me about which platform to put their projects on, you are wrong. They already have the projects and the platform when they come to me for a quote for scheduling. We've been around since 1998 (Before Sassie, Prophet or ShopMetrics was even created).
To Lorri Kern KSS. So why is Ipsos not using Maritz website for job searches, etc. The SASSIE is out dated. Load a pic, then upload the pic. Plus, you have to put your finger exactly in the little square to answer questions. Plus, Maritz app was amazing.
@claabe wrote:

To Lorri Kern KSS. So why is Ipsos not using Maritz website for job searches, etc. The SASSIE is out dated. Load a pic, then upload the pic. Plus, you have to put your finger exactly in the little square to answer questions. Plus, Maritz app was amazing.

I have no idea. I was not privy to that discussion. I do know that Maritz phased out the mobile app long before the purchase by IPSOS went through. I don't know the details, but we scheduled these projects on the Maritz legacy platform for months after the app was discontinued, and shoppers didn't complain (at least not to us).
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