Truth in Advertising: The Staffmark and Exel screwup

Corporate Logo of Exel Logistics (now a subsid...

Corporate Logo of Exel Logistics (now a subsidiary of DHL) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A couple of weeks ago, I was looking for a new job and so I responded to an ad on Craigslist:

http://dallas.craigslist.org/ftw/lab/3855558236.html

Want to beat the heat while working? (North Fort Worth)

Looking for energetic, sharp assemblers that build special packaging for food products to work in a logistics warehouse with opportunity to advance to team leads for second shift (6:00pm – 2:30am). The work week is Sunday through Thursday. Need to have great attendance and strong safety habits to be eligible for bonus. This is a long term assignment – 40 current openings! After verification of employment will start immediately.
If interested, please contact Jacob Holsinger at jacob.holsinger@staffmark.com

The employment agency that put out the ad was Staffmark. I visited their office and after orientation I started work at a nearby warehouse that was owned by a company called Exel and distributed General Mills products. So I went out there and found:

1. The actual work at night schedule was 6:00 PM to FOUR AM, not 2:30 AM.

2. We were told by the Exel managers at the work site that we may be working SEVEN DAYS A WEEK for several weeks, maybe even a month!

3. Beating the heat was not an issue. In fact, the warehouse was very HOT inside and we were told to keep ourselves hydrated constantly with water bottles due to our sweating so much. That we worked at night was little help: even after sunset, summer nights in Texas are often very warm. I cannot imagine anyone working at such a warehouse in the daytime when the temperatures outside may soar to 100 degrees F for weeks!

I went back to the Staffmark people and complained about the schedule changes bitterly, feeling like I’d been lied to. But I proceeded to work at the warehouse anyway for a week.

This morning, I was awakened by a call from Staffmark:  I’d been terminated because I’d not been “agreeable” to the changes that were made to my work. Uh, right, because I remember what I see and I insist as a matter of integrity that companies KEEP THEIR WORD! No one should be working seven days a week at anything, period!

But this is what happens when you live in a “right-to-work” state where labor unions have almost no power.

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