I'm asking this question on my partner's behalf/request.
My partner works in retail. It is important to note that she is a part-time employee (~20 hours a week, paid hourly) and is not in a management role (she is neither a manager, assistant manager, or a shift manager).
She just got next week's schedule and the store manager has assigned her to a closing shift without any managers present. There are several issues with this.
First, the store's point-of-sale system only allows managers to process returns. Since this shift is from noon to 8:00 PM on a Saturday, she'll have trouble addressing customer service concerns during these peak hours.
Second, only managers have the combination to the safe or can open the cash drawer in the POS. Since she is not a manager, she cannot do required tasks such as balancing the register or putting together the next day's bank deposit.
Third, the only other employee working with her during that shift would be a new hire (also not a manager) that has received no training, does not have login credentials for the POS system, and would not be able to check out customers.
My partner is afraid that her manager is setting her up to fail and will use this as a pretext for firing her. This anxiety isn't entirely unreasonable. A couple of weeks ago, the store manager assigned another non-manager to a closing shift, did not give him the code to the alarm system, and fired him for failing to activate the alarm.
How do you suggest that she handle this situation? Should she contact HR? I've already suggested that she document as much as she can (just in case).
Thank you fo your time.
She has asked if a manager could be present, but was told they were all unavailable.
She is not aware of a company policy that requires a manager to be present at all times, but with the amount that only managers can do, such a policy would make sense.
She has never received any suggestion of poor performance. The store manager has also never spoken to her about or offered her a promotion or management role.
Since this other employee cannot use the register, my partner feels pressured to not take her breaks.
We are in the United States.