A recent “Did You Know” communique included this nugget:
Please make sure you are scanning the dipping sauces and dressings. If they come free with something it will take it off at the end. None of the dipping sauces are free though. The customer does have to pay for them.
One of the sauces doesn’t have a bar code. Are we supposed to pretend to scan it?
That question is only slightly more ridiculous than the makework they’re asking for. If you know something’s free, what’s the point in scanning it, besides deliberately annoying the customers (which usually isn’t a customer-service goal, but maybe management gets off on degrading society by proxy)?
I’ve asked a couple of low-level managers this (what the point is, not whether upper management gets off on proxy assholery, for prudence’s sake).
Their answer: “for inventory.” When X number of ranch dressings have been rung up, they say, they know to order another case of ranch dressing.
This is a lie.
I know it’s a lie because I talk to the kitchen crew, and they do it the simple and much less fallible way. When they’re restocking the dressings and sauces, do they notice that the case of ranch is getting close to empty? If so, is there another case behind it? If not, maybe there should be, and they add it to a list.
I also know this because we don’t constantly run out of dressings and sauces. Management tried it with cigarettes once, algo-generating a build-to list for cigarettes based on past sales, which is why we kept running out of some popular brands and had a year’s supply of some others. If you can count on one thing with this corporation, it’s technical incompetence.
In summary, there’s no benefit of ringing up free things, just wasted time and annoyance. And there’s no downside to not doing it, at least not one that management will admit to.
So guess what I haven’t been doing.