Quotes within an hour: Flight Centre job no holiday

 

Former Flight Centre workers suing the travel giant for unpaid wages allege they were under pressure to greet customers within seconds of them walking in the door, provide quotes within an hour and to work back to complete sales.

The Together Union, which is representing five former sales agents allegedly owed $250,000 over several years, say the company's promise to beat the price of its competitors meant staff were required to provide a written quote to the customer within an hour and to close the sale before they could shop around for a better price.

The union alleges Flight Centre breached the Fair Work Act by not paying overtime to workers and not providing adequate break time.

The union alleges Flight Centre staff were required to greet customers within seven seconds of them waking in the door and answer the phone within three ring. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Gaye Gerard
The union alleges Flight Centre staff were required to greet customers within seven seconds of them waking in the door and answer the phone within three ring. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Gaye Gerard

Lawyers for the Together Union told the Federal Circuit Court in Brisbane on Tuesday that the company formally introduced a policy requiring sales staff to provide a quote to customers within 60 minutes.

Staff also were required to greet customers within seven seconds of them waking in the door and answer the phone within three rings.

Lawyers for the union allege that the company had no formal roster of hours of staff who often worked overtime to completed sales and administrative tasks.

Witnesses called by Flight Centre included Skye Broad, who served as a Flight Centre team leader on the Gold Coast, who agreed the preference was to complete sales while clients were in the store to ensure they did not go to a competitor.

"I requested staff have a work-life balance but if they were working on a commission sale it would be in their interest to stay back," Ms Broad said.

Ms Broad said that while staff were entitled to an hour lunch break many workers took less time because of the company's commission system.

"The longer their break, the less commission they could earn," she said. "They rarely took the full break because they would choose to make more sales."

The former manager of Flight Centre's Maryborough store Adam Head said his understanding was that staff were provided with a 30 minute lunch break and smaller break during the day but that was a flexible arrangement.

Mr Head said staff were encouraged to attend monthly 'buzz nights' to discuss team sales and he would inquire why staff could not attend.

The case continues.

Originally published as Quotes within an hour: Flight Centre job no holiday



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