New Labor rule would let employers keep workers’ tips

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by jimyra, Dec 6, 2017.

  1. jimyra

    jimyra

    Messages:
    877
    Likes Received:
    150
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    I am not sure this is the correct Forum to post this in but I found it interesting. I picked the website because it was first in my search, I do not endorse the website. http://clark.com/shopping-retail/food-restaurants/restaurant-worker-tips-new-rules-sharing/ What do you think about this change and how will it affect your work place? How many think an employer should have anything to do with how tips are spread through the staff? Why would an owner have a right to keep part of the tip fund? How will this affect how you tip in a restaurant?
     
  2. flipflopgirl

    flipflopgirl

    Messages:
    4,414
    Likes Received:
    387
    Exp:
    Retired Hospitality
    “Under the proposed rule, workplaces would have the freedom to allow sharing of tips among more employees,”

    I take that to mean this will be an option as the current law forbids the owner to meddle unless the waitstaff agrees.
    So the best waitstaff will flock to the places that carry on with business as usual leaving the places that pool and share understaffed.

    If it becomes mandatory across the board...don't forget that this will work both ways re base salary.
    In order to be fair to those who are actually hustling for the tips, owners will be forced to pay everyone in the house the same $ per hour.
    If that comes about it will mean those line cooks who make more per hour will see their paychecks decrease because there is no way to keep payroll in line if the lesser paid BOH and FOH get a pay hike.

    mimi
     
  3. chefbillyb

    chefbillyb

    Messages:
    2,069
    Likes Received:
    408
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    If thats the case it would be much easier to put a service charge on the bill to keep track of tips. If your dealing with cash the owners or managers will have a field day.
     
  4. halb

    halb

    Messages:
    258
    Likes Received:
    70
    Exp:
    Owner/Operator
    I agree. Just eliminate tipping and add a service charge to the bill as is being done in some places now. Anytime the government gets involved with something you can bet it's going to be some convoluted plan that benefits the dishonest.
     
    drirene likes this.
  5. Shadokat

    Shadokat

    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    Exp:
    Home cook
    I absolutely wouldn't ever trust owners with their employees' tips! I've never worked in a restaurant, but I did work in hotels where the owners were cheap and greedy across the board. If any expense could be cut, it was cut. Whatever was the absolute lowest wage they could get away with paying to their people, that was what they paid them. They usually didn't provide benefits like health insurance or 401k, but if they did, they paid as little as they could get away with into the plans, making their employees pay for as much as possible out of their tiny salaries. If owners were given leave to control and distribute workers' tips, you can bet that a lot of that money would disappear into owners' pockets. People will find any way to take advantage of a situation if they can. Would this new policy leave it open for owners to invent systems where they could make a list of reasons for them to keep portions of tips and only distribute a small amount back to employees? I disagree with that. As a customer, I never see the BOH people so why should my tip have to account for them? I thought that only the waitstaff made less than minimum wage to account for tips. Dishwashing and bussing are minimum wage jobs, aren't they? When those employees accepted the job, they knew what they would be paid. I'd like owners to pay those people more but the fact is that a lot of small business owners simply can't afford to. And of those who could afford to, they are too cheap and greedy. But the employees are making minimum wage instead of like $1.12 an hour made by the waitstaff. So in my eyes it's unfair for the waitstaff to have to share the tips. Unless the BOH people also start making the same $1.12 an hour or everyone starts being paid minimum wage, the waitstaff should keep all of their tips, IMHO.
     
  6. chefbuba

    chefbuba

    Messages:
    2,209
    Likes Received:
    471
    Exp:
    Retired Chef
    Well in my state, in certain areas min wage is working its way up to $15 hr, servers included. The rest of the state is $11 hr.
    So the poor schlob working in the dish pit makes $88 for an eight hr shift.
    The server makes that same $88 plus let's say another $100 in tips, which is conceivable.
    This is just an example, I'm not going to get into the debate, just an example from my 30+ years in the business.
     
  7. flipflopgirl

    flipflopgirl

    Messages:
    4,414
    Likes Received:
    387
    Exp:
    Retired Hospitality
    Just curious Chef... have any of the doom and gloom predictions (places closing every day...customers feeling the pinch of higher menu prices and staying home) come to pass?
    If not these microcosms of living wages across the board areas can be studied (NOT by the Feds they have their fingers in enough pies already) and tried in other areas.
    Just FYI I always tipped the dish guy on those nites when he had to turn my bar glasses around several times.

    mimi
     
  8. planethoff

    planethoff

    Messages:
    416
    Likes Received:
    162
    Exp:
    Other
    I have mixed emotions about the "tipping culture" in the States, but feel this new policy would be very bad for the entire restaurant. Pooled tips in most cases lower the quality of the service. By including pooled tips to the back of the house, you would then be able to lower their hourly wages creating more problems. The fact that owners can potentially take a piece of it as well is downright scary. To me, this is just another way to cut pay for food service workers.

    As far as what @chefbuba said, I will enter that debate. I love the progressive states that do not allow paying under minimum wage for tipped employees. It actually allows servers and bartenders to make an ok living. When it comes to the pay disparity between FOH and BOH, I believe the FOH makes more for good reason. Both work incredibly hard stressful positions, but the FOH has to deal with the public in a customer service capacity. That is why they need to be paid well. Having to bite my tongue, smile, and serve condescending, pretentious, demanding jerks is too much for me. I prefer the BOH where I just have to wash off the physical grime after a shift, not the emotional.
     
  9. jimyra

    jimyra

    Messages:
    877
    Likes Received:
    150
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    "Both work incredibly hard stressful positions, but the FOH has to deal with the public in a customer service capacity. That is why they need to be paid well. Having to bite my tongue, smile, and serve condescending, pretentious, demanding jerks is too much for me."
    Remember the BOH has to deal with FOH who expect to be treated as customers. I always suggested the wait staff share if the BOH helped buss and turn tables faster. Suggested then ignored and let them work it out.
     
    flipflopgirl likes this.
  10. planethoff

    planethoff

    Messages:
    416
    Likes Received:
    162
    Exp:
    Other
    I for sure agree with tipping out whoever busses tables regardless of their official title. However, I have never worked in a restaurant that treats FOH like customers in BOH. In most places any server walks on eggshells in the kitchen and is as polite and assisting to BOH as possible. Their tips depend on a good BOH relationship. If any FOH gives even the slightest attitude toward anyone on the line, there is usually hell to pay.
     
  11. halb

    halb

    Messages:
    258
    Likes Received:
    70
    Exp:
    Owner/Operator
    Only ones that are making a big deal in the press are the big corporates like Mc Donalds who is cutting workers by adding kiosks. Other fast food brands are cutting worker's hours. Sounds like spite to me.
     
  12. drirene

    drirene

    Messages:
    164
    Likes Received:
    72
    Exp:
    At home wannabe pastry chef
    We have a few food to table establishments in our town that are Living Wage Certified. The prices are good and they do not accept tips. They pay staff, front and back, what it costs to live around here, as well as bonuses, give regular raises, and other incentives.

    I don't understand how they do this. Nevertheless, where does this philosophy fit in in the scheme of things?
     
  13. lagom

    lagom

    Messages:
    1,073
    Likes Received:
    107
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    I’ve had the pleasure of long term work in both the USA and Sweden. Definitely two different systems of employee compensation for restaurant workers.

    Here all the tips are pooled and split, usually monthly because we do monthly paydays here. It gets split accordingly to how many hours you worked. Everybody that works in a restaurant gets a living wage. Tips don’t amount to a large amount and it’s not uncommon to get no tip at all.

    It’s even becoming less common here as many restaurants are going to cash free payment only.

    Paying employees fairly and charging your customers accordingly works. Also here the restaurant industry isn’t looked up as a low skilled industry that only losers work in but is treated as a profession like anything else.

    I know changing the industry and its public perception in the USA is going to take effort and time ( god knows we taked about it in the 70’s) but finally it may happen.
     
  14. chefross

    chefross

    Messages:
    2,676
    Likes Received:
    348
    Exp:
    Former Chef

    lagom...you raised a good point and also a question. In Sweden can anybody be a Chef or are there certifications needed to be a cook in order to open a restaurant?
     
  15. sgsvirgil

    sgsvirgil

    Messages:
    246
    Likes Received:
    136
    Exp:
    Retired Owner/Operator
    I wondered that myself. So, I did some digging and found this article published last Summer in the Washington Post.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news...ether-a-15-minimum-wage-really-helps-workers/

    Here's another published in The New York Times.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/26/business/economy/seattle-minimum-wage.html

    It seems the hoopla was created by a study performed by the University of Washington commissioned by the City of Seattle itself did not come back with the bright and cheery findings the city may have been hoping for.

    My wife says I need to get out more, maybe take up golf. But, I don't think golf carts have holders big enough for my wine bottle. :)
     
  16. foodpump

    foodpump

    Messages:
    4,861
    Likes Received:
    436
    Exp:
    Professional Pastry Chef
    Let's approach this from an entirely different angle:

    1) The server is tipped a percentage of the entire experience.

    2) The server works very hard, and is very competent, but is not, can not, be responsible for the entire dining experience.

    3) Why then is the server tipped a percentage of the entire dining experience?
    This would include reservations, seating, non and alcoholic beverages, food obviously, clean and pleasant atmosphere, music, clean glassware and chinaware, accurate billing and payment, and dinner mints.

    In many areas, the owner can do nothing about the dispersal of tips, what the customer leaves the server is property of the server In many places I have worked it was custom for the server to tip the bartender, hostess, and busser.
    And yet, the kitchen accounts for a good chunk of the dining experience....
     
    flipflopgirl likes this.
  17. cheflayne

    cheflayne

    Messages:
    4,104
    Likes Received:
    474
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    Back in the dark ages, I worked as a waiter for a few years and establishments. I was paid half of minimum wage. My pay check was virtually non-existent after taxes but I didn't care because I was making more money (due to tips) than my college graduate mother. I was making probably twice as much as the guys in the BOH and working a lot less hours. I felt it was a racket back then, and my opinion hasn't changed much over the years.
     
    flipflopgirl likes this.
  18. chefross

    chefross

    Messages:
    2,676
    Likes Received:
    348
    Exp:
    Former Chef

    I will agree with Foodpump up to a point.

    The kitchen, the server, the atmosphere ALL contribute to the dining experience.
    We discuss the unequal wages that exist between FOH and BOH but in the end it all boils down to several entities that come together to make the restaurant work.
    The server is the ambassador for the restaurant. They represent to the customer who and what the place is all about.
    The kitchen cooks and serves the food the ambassador offers the guests. The menu is the vehicle behind the food and other offerings.
    Should the server be the one to accept the gratuity for the entire dining experience?
    Would the server offering up a percentage of the evenings tips to the BOH satisfy them?
     
  19. panini

    panini

    Messages:
    5,167
    Likes Received:
    282
    Exp:
    Owner/Operator
    I'm for eliminating tipping in food service establishments altogether. What's the point. It's a part of a retail service, just as many other businesses. A large portion of hospitality establishments are basically a combo business. Both manufacturing and retailing of a product. Heck, we've done the same exact thing in the bakery for centuries and don't expect to be tipped.
    Tipping give ownership to the individual employee. (that's not a good business practice). An employer should be responsible for all of the employees actions. If you get horrible service or encounter a horrible server, stiffing that server, doesn't give feedback to the owner. Stiffing the owner is something else. Your voice is heard. If a restaurant can't be profitable without having the servers work for what amounts to the tax they owe, somethings wrong.
    Inject the government and I am confident it will screw things up worse, based on the history of any and all of their input. They base all their decisions on money. Sure the country is tax poor, but that fault completely lays with the government itself.
    It's common knowledge that throwing money at a problem (raising our taxes) will not even begin to solve the original problem. Just look at agencies that are designed to help people that may be in need of some sort of assistance. They'll throw billions of dollars at it, to keep it going, but not spend one dollar to hire someone to monitor the agency to identify people who are benefiting from the agency that don't deserve it.
    Look at our immigrant situation (which applies to most everyone reading this, unless you are native american), A wall? 20 bill.? I can no longer do math in my head, but isn't that like 400,000 50 grand a year jobs?
    Just me personally, but the NRA is the biggest joke. The constitution gives us the right to bear arms. Well that was written 1797, when you couldn't live without them. It was a situation of the times, it not rocket surgery. Automobiles were not around, so you don't have the right to drive, it's a privilege. If they were around in 1797, you would have a right to drive.
    It's just been an incredible amount of time, suffering, promoting, fighting, etc. just to somewhat rewrite that stupid constitution.
    I drove North two towns yesterday and turned in 2 guns that I had out in the garage. don't know if they even work. I can tell you, that by the I time my paperwork was filled out, I stood in a moving line with people from all walks of life and had wonderful and productive discussions. I got in after 2 1/2 hours. That sent a message to me and gave me hope and a good feeling.
    I know I'm in Texas, and every yahoo owns 20 guns. But were half way down the list of States with the most arms. The US is the most heavily armed country in the world. what, 89 guns for every 100 people? followed by Yemen.
    If I'm hunting an animal that's large enough to require a gun that spits out a hundred rounds of high power ammo a second to take down, it's time for me to move. I won't mention protection because that been scientifically proven to be a myth.
    Back to OP. got a little side tracked. I am not personally against tipping, I do it all the time. If I feel someone has preformed his or her job above and beyond their normal work description, I will personally compensate them for a job well done.
     
  20. jimyra

    jimyra

    Messages:
    877
    Likes Received:
    150
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    It does not matter what I think I can not change a thing. One thing I enjoy about this site is a lack of political rants and discussions..
     
    drirene and sgsvirgil like this.