Apple employees at the first unionized Apple Store want to receive tips for helping customers solve their iPhone and Mac issues.
Apple workers at the Towson, Maryland store are the first to unionize in the US. The employees are trying to negotiate a new contract, one that would open the door to tipping, according to Business Insider. Employees want customers to have the option of tipping 3%, 5%, or a custom amount.
“A big ask from our team when preparing for negotiations was to include some sort of profit-sharing or bonus structure,” the union said in the thread. “We thought a lot about the easiest way to accomplish this and we thought adopting a model already used by other workers who provide services to their community might be the simplest to implement.”
Of course, a big difference between services that rely on tips and Apple Store workers is that Apple Store employees are paid a competitive wage. In contrast, restaurants and other services that rely on tips often make less than minimum wage and rely on tips to make up the difference.
Another issue is the premium experience Apple creates with its in-store experience. Apple offers free classes, high-end support, and assistance, and it’s hard to believe the company will be ok with employees expecting customers to tip them. That dynamic is hardly in line with Apple’s image.
It will be interesting to watch how the negotiations proceed, but our bet is that tipping is a non-starter for Apple.