Apple’s Retail Army, Long on Loyalty but Short on Pay – US Business News – CNBC
Last year, during his best three-month stretch, Jordan Golson sold about $750,000 worth of computers and gadgets at the Apple Store in Salem, N.H. It was a performance that might have called for a bottle of Champagne — if that were a luxury Mr. Golson could have afforded.
“I was earning $11.25 an hour,” he said. “Part of me was thinking, ‘This is great. I’m an Apple fan, the store is doing really well.’ But when you look at the amount of money the company is making and then you look at your paycheck, it’s kind of tough.”America’s love affair with the smartphone has helped create tens of thousands of jobs at places like Best Buy [BBY 19.19 -0.29 -1.49% ] and Verizon Wireless [VZ 43.95 0.62 +1.43% ] and will this year pump billions into the economy.
Within this world, the Apple Store is the undisputed king, a retail phenomenon renowned for impeccable design, deft service and spectacular revenues. Last year, the company’s 327 global stores took in more money per square foot than any other United States retailer — wireless or otherwise — and almost double that of Tiffany [TIF 52.26 -0.34 -0.65% ], which was No. 2 on the list, according to the research firm RetailSails.
Worldwide, its stores sold $16 billion in merchandise.
But most of Apple’s [AAPL 582.10 4.43 +0.77% ] employees enjoyed little of that wealth. While consumers tend to think of Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., as the company’s heart and soul, a majority of its workers in the United States are not engineers or executives with hefty salaries and bonuses but rather hourly wage earners selling iPhones and MacBooks.
About 30,000 of the 43,000 Apple employees in this country work in Apple Stores, as members of the service economy, and many of them earn about $25,000 a year. They work inside the world’s fastest growing industry, for the most valuable company, run by one of the country’s most richly compensated chief executives, Tim Cook. Last year, he received stock grants, which vest over a 10-year period, that at today’s share price would be worth more than $570 million.
And though Apple is unparalleled as a retailer, when it comes to its lowliest workers, the company is a reflection of the technology industry as a whole.
Strange Random Retail Quote:
“(Employees say…) My job is to make the store rich with experience for people. It’s not the boring, laborious, I’ve-got-to-move-merchandise and take care of customer problems. I’m suddenly enriching people’s lives. And that’s how we select, that’s how we motivate, that’s how we train our people.” — Sr. Apple V-P Ron Johnson, 2004
- The iEconomy: Apple Stores’ Army, Long on Loyalty but Short on Pay (nytimes.com)
- “I was earning $11.25 an hour. Part of me was thinking, ‘This is great. I’m an Apple fan, the store…” (shortformblog.com)
- Workin’ For The Man: Apple Retail Employees Scrutinized In New York Times Profile [Report] (cultofmac.com)
- Apple’s Retail Army, by the Numbers (thenextweb.com)
- Apple store workers get big pay bumps (mercurynews.com)
- Apple Store Employees to Get $4 Per Hour Raise (dailyfinance.com)
- Apple Store Employees Soak Up the Atmosphere, But Not Much Cash (apple.slashdot.org)
- Apple begins employee discount program on Macs, iPads (electronista.com)