Coffee mega-giant Starbucks has announced that it is revising the way it schedules its employees. The move is in response to a New York Times article published earlier this week about an employee who is a single mother and faces many struggles thanks to irregular and chaotic work hours set by Starbucks' automated scheduling software. According to the Seattle Times, Cliff Burrows, a senior Starbucks executive, emailed employees writing that the company has a "responsibility to support" workers and help them balance their work lives with their personal lives. Burrows added that he was "troubled" after reading the single mother's struggles.
Now the company will "upgrade its scheduling software to enable managers to make work shifts more consistent." The New York Times writes that employees will never be required to work "clopening" shifts where they close the store late at night and then must be there again in a few hours to reopen in the early morning. Work schedules are to be posted a week in advance and the company will help employees who must commute an hour or longer transfer to a store closer to where they live.
Starbucks appears to be quite invested in the well being of its employees. In June the chain announced that it would offer free and subsidized college tuition to its employees through a partnership with Arizona State University. The program would be fully online and employees would be able to choose between 40 different areas of study for a bachelor's degree.