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Charity shop is driving me mad.

(11 Posts)
MissBlake Tue 27-May-14 12:45:31

Apologies if this is not the right place for this post, I wasn't sure where to put it and this seemed the best option.

I volunteer at a local charity shop two days a week. I have been there a year and it used to be a really nice shop. Good quality stock was put out, nothing tatty or unusable and the prices were very reasonable. Customers would often tell me it was the nicest charity shop in the town.

A few months back the shop hired a deputy manager, who has a totally different idea of how to run the shop than the manger. I am very fussy about what clothing goes out, and the price but the deputy manager has a very different idea of what is reasonable. For example, a joules in hoody in terrible condition priced at £15.00 when it should have been ragged. Fat face vest tops in awful condition being priced at £5.99. Items with stains, missing buttons and holes are all put on the shop floor. Primark dresses are priced at around £8.99 and go up in price according to the brand. Shoes in disgusting condition are priced at £6.99 and above. In loads of cases we are asking more than it would cost new, but I am told that we might get that because we are charity. Which is taking the piss out of customers in my opinion.

Since the deputy manager arrived the other volunteers have gone crazy on pricing too, and will regularly change the price tags on items I have priced ( in accordance to the pricing guidelines no on else listens to) The most annoying thing about all this is that the items never sell (obviously) and they sit there for weeks on end until they are culled. I can't work out why they think anyone would want to buy this stuff. There is a charity shop across the road who sell everything at £1.99 so nobody is going to come to our shop when they can go there. This shop is always packed and they make treble the money we do (I know the manager there) I pointed this out to deputy manager but she didn't believe me.

The shop is going down the pan, nothing is being sold and they keep having loads of "special offers". The manager works at another shop and is not about much. I am thinking about leaving because I really hate this new ethos they have. I don't think it is my place to complain about a member of staff, but things are really bad. Asking crazy prices for poor quality items is not making the shop money, its driving customers away. When will they realize this? I would really appreciate some advice, as I don't want to stand by and do nothing, but what can I do?

jellyandsoup Tue 27-May-14 12:50:07

I don't work in this environment but I would say you need to put your concerns to the manager, she may work else where but she is still the manager. good luck s

Nocomet Tue 27-May-14 13:00:43

You need to put your concerns to the manager and further up the charity too if you can find a number.

Then you need to find a new volunteer post and leave them to their stupidity.

NorbertDentressangle Tue 27-May-14 13:04:28

You need to speak to the manager and if they don't seem bothered or interested I would speak to the retail/commercial manager at the charity's HQ.

IME shop managers have targets and are often under pressure to meet them so I'm surprised someone hasn't intervened already.

Is it a national charity or small local one?

MissBlake Tue 27-May-14 17:52:18

Thanks for the replies. I guess I need to speak to the manager, dp has been telling me that or to write to head office. There are targets, and I think the deputy manager is very misguided as in she thinks the way to make more money is by increasing prices. To be honest the manager is busy with his other shop, and has been happy to let this lady get on with it. I am suprised it has not been picked up on, as like I said the shop was previously very successful.

Also, brands that are not designer are put on the designer rail with a price tag to match. They are brands that are not well known, the dm looks them up online so she knows they are not expensive. I might list all the stuff that happens and send it to head office.

Its a local charity. They have around 10 shops in and around the SE.

Its a charity local to my area, they have a chain of around 10 shops.

MissBlake Tue 27-May-14 17:53:17

Oops sorry. I thought I had deleted the end bit so re wrote!

QuinionsRainbow Wed 28-May-14 12:04:05

Haven't your managers heard about "Small Profits, Quick Returns". As they, I assume, don't have to buy stock, it's steady turnover, not sporadic high-profit sales, that counts.

Whereisegg Wed 28-May-14 12:07:24

If you e-mail, include pictures of various spoiled things for sale with the prices clearly visible.

Corygal Sat 14-Jun-14 23:02:38

I also volunteer in a charity shop. Different managers and sorters put different prices on things, but, like you, I'm driven nuts by greedy managers who price dead Primark for more than it costs new.

Complain to head office. Explain the shop over the road has higher weekly takings for its 1.99 deal. Tell them how much saleable stock is being culled in your shop because overpricing has left it unsold. Ask them to look at how much the rag man is taking away. They will listen to you if - and only if - the weekly takings in your shop are going down, and they're not making the money they want. You will have shown them that the local market can't bear your greedy manager's pricing and he/she should be moved on.

Then leave, and go work for the 1.99 place.

ssd Sat 30-Aug-14 08:13:33

I recently bought a pair of shoes in a charity shop, i tried them on and they fitted, i looked at the price tag and it said £17, i thought this must be a mistake so i said to the lady at the desk is that the right price and she looked annoyed and fed up, she said sorry thats far too high, i'll give you them for £7 but please dont bring them back for a refund as i'll get into trouble.

I paid the £7 and knew the lady felt the same way you do op.

I'd raise your concerns, if you feel you can.

mydoorisalwaysopen Sat 30-Aug-14 08:33:43

Yes please raise your concerns with the charity management. This sort of thing is happening more and more in my local charity shops and totally incenses me. In my view people buy from charity shops because they want or need to spend less than paying for new items not necessarily because they want to support that charity. I tend to buy from eBay now as you get more realistic pricing. I support charity directly through donations.

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