Refer to your Fact Sheet and/or e-mail for the SPECIFIC instructions on each shop. They may differ slightly.
- Send us your completed, signed and dated W-4 with your first report. Please note that you cannot be paid until this is received.
- Fax: 856-543-4234
- Scan/e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Read all the information in the body of your e-mail as well as the Fact Sheet (if included). These are specific to the job to which you have been assigned.
- Read over all the materials in this “General Instructions” document, as well as:
- Explanation of Terminology
- Surveillance Report
- Sample Completed Report
- These tools will help you while you are during the surveillance and will aid you in writing a good report
- If you cannot complete your job for any reason, please CALL US so we can reschedule. Our clients are depending on us to get the job done on the dates provided. We reserve the right to remove you from our database if your reason is unacceptable or if you do not let us know a minimum of three business days ahead of time.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR WHILE SPOTTING
- Bartender giving away a drink on the house to friends or patrons so they can get an extra tip.
- Over-pouring to get larger tips
- Ringing a sale as a “no-sale” and keeping the cash collected, or just collecting and walking to the register and NOT recording anything – instead, depositing the money directly into the tip container.
- Claiming the drink was improperly made or incorrectly ordered by the patron and pocketing the money.
- If a patron complains about a drink, the proper policy is to discard the improper drink and remake another. You cannot fix a bad drink. Bartenders should not add additional liquor after a drink is served. Discarded drinks need to be recorded as waste, on a house check.
- Continue to serve any intoxicated patrons
- Patron orders a call drink or above, but the bartender uses as a well brand (lower price) and charges patron for premium liquor and keeps the difference.
- Patron orders premium beer, bartender records it as lesser price and pocketing the difference.
- The bartender serves multiple drinks then return to the register and records less then what was served.
- The bartender will leave the register drawer open (ajar) and work from the open register. Now there is no record of opening with a “no sale” and can make change without having to open the register.
- Watch for excess or opening the register with a “no sale” instead of the proper entry.
- “Void” a guest check or claims someone walked without paying and pockets the cash.
- Breaking an empty bottle, claiming it was full or near full when the contents were sold, and the money was pocketed.
- Give incorrect change or lifting money from patrons’ cash on the bar.
WRITING YOUR REPORT (Refer to the attached sample completed report)
The written report should take you approximately an hour to complete.
If you are given a bar only assignment at a restaurant, and there is a waiting line for tables you MUST complete “Section I” of the report. In addition, remember to PUT YOUR NAME ON THE WAIT LIST (even if you are only doing a bar shop). Note in your report how long you were told the wait was, and how long it was before your name was called. If you are doing a bar only shop, DO NOT accept the table. Tell the Host/Hostess you have opted to stay at the bar, or just ignore the call.
When you are on a job and you see “theft” or something “dangerous” or “damaging” to the client, call the office (we have a 24-hr. answering machine that allows you to speak as long as is necessary) and we will convey your observation to the client.
It is imperative that you GET THE NAMES of ALL the employee(s) being shopped.
IF YOU DO NOT GET NAMES, THERE IS A CHANCE WE WILL DEDUCT $20 FROM YOUR PAY. IF CLIENT REFUSES TO PAY US, YOU CANNOT BE PAID!
There are several ways of getting names: The best is to introduce yourself and ask, “What is your name?” Ask another patron, a server, the host or bouncer, or look at your check receipt. Ask what the bartender’s name, I think I know him/her? Use your imagination but get the name. In those rare occasions where it is not possible to get the name, write a very detailed description of what they look like. Look for tattoos, any distinguishing marks. Just describing a 5’5” female, short blonde hair, 22-25, slender, and attractive, does no cut it. There may be three other servers with the same description.
ALL question that has an asterisk*, MUST be addressed in your narrative as to why you gave a negative response to that question. Use the section number and the question number to pinpoint negative remarks in your narrative.
Example: At 10:53 PM, agent observed Bob serve three drafts without recording it in the terminal (H8).
Better reports will ensure our clients’ satisfaction, leading to increased business for you and Count On Us. Please inform us of any suggestions you may have concerning improving the reports. If you do not understand the question, or it has a double meaning, then the client may not understand it either. Please tell us. We appreciate your input.
Our clients rely on us to provide detailed, accurate and objective reports as soon as possible. Agents are reminded that reports are time sensitive and it is your responsibility to get the reports into the office within 24 hours after the date of the surveillance.
- Always refer to yourself and accompanying person as “agents”. Refer to yourself in third person. Avoid “I”, “we”, “shopper”, “us”, etc.
- Customers in a bar are referred to as “patrons” or “guests”.
- Avoid superlative, general words (i.e., very, great, almost, approximate, about). Be sure of what you are reporting. Stay objective, not subjective. You are the eyes and ears for the bar/restaurant owner.
- You are doing an observation NOT an opinion survey. Please do not write “Agent thinks that” and replace it only with “agent observed” No opinions please, just facts!
- Spell out all number and dollar references (i.e., twenty-dollar bill). Do not use slang words.
- If you observe any intoxicated patrons, it is very important that you explain why you believe they are intoxicated (slurring of words, poor balance, nodding off, sleeping, conduct etc.) and who was serving them.
- Take many notes! It is better to have too much information than not enough. Use your palm recorder or cell phone to record notes, call your answering machine and leave messages or write notes when visiting the restroom. (Do not write notes at the bar).
- Many registers are time stamped. Write the time down to back up your report.
- Sometimes reports are shown to employee. If you report something that might identify you as an agent, write it in the third person.
Example: You spilled a drink, and everyone is looking. The bartender is rude to you about it. You would write:
Agents observed a patron several seats away spilled her drink. The bartender made several rude comments to the patron while mopping up the mess.
- ALWAYS GET NAMES! Some of our clients will NOT pay if they do not get names. If we are not paid, you do not get paid!
Be creative in getting names:
- Ask another patron or bartender, “He/she looks familiar. What’s his/her name?”
- Listen to the regulars; they will often call the bartender by name. Alternatively, ask the regular.
- Just ask “What’s your name, so I don’t have to say, ‘Hey you’?”
- Say, “My name is Ray, What’s your name?”
Note: If you think, it may look suspicious if you ask for a name too soon. Use your best judgment. If you did not get a name, you MUST get it before leaving.
- If there is a third bartender (Bartender #3) that does not appear in the spaces provided in Section A of the Surveillance Report, get a name and description and add his/her information into your narrative.
- For new agents, it is VERY IMPORTANT that you pre–read the blank report so you will know what to look for. “DO NOT TAKE THE BLANK REPORT INTO THE BUILDING WITH YOU”.
The best agents are the ones that blend into the background…the proverbial “fly on the wall”.
TURNING IN YOUR REPORT
The Surveillance Report is a document template created in Microsoft Word. Save the report with the shop name, your initials, and the date of the shop (i.e. ABC Company MH 01-01-09.doc). Be sure to save the document to your hard drive as a .doc document, and then attach it to an e-mail.
Reports are time sensitive and must be e-mailed to us within 24 hours of the time of the shop. If you report is not received within 48 hours, we may assume the assignment was not completed and you will not be paid. It is your responsibility to notify us if there are extenuating circumstances.
$20 deduction if mailed faxed OR received after the 2nd day.
$20 deduction if received after the 3rd day and payment will be held until paid by the client.
Any agent, who does not complete an assignment and does not notify us, will be removed from our database permanently. If we try to contact you by e-mail and/or phone and you do not respond to us within 24 hrs, we will assume you did not complete the assignment and you will be removed from our database.
Clients have refused to pay because the reports were late. If a client refuses to pay because the reports were late, then we cannot pay you.
Please remember to PROOFREAD your report. Make sure that all questions are answered and that the narratives are clear and concise. Narratives should not be skimpy and shallow. It is important to write as many details about your spot as possible. Names and times of occurrences are very important, PLEASE DO NOT OMIT THEM.
You are permitted to take one companion along, and we will pick up the expenses for both you your companion.
Count On Us prides itself in taking care of its agents. To our knowledge, we reimburse more expenses than any other mystery shopping company does and there is no fee to become one of our agents!
You must complete the below expense report. You need to list every item ordered separately and know the price paid for each item. If served an item and it was not on the check or was given to you as a comp, enter the item and N/C for the price, do not leave the price field blank. You need to enter the subtotal amount and the total for reimbursement amount.
In order to maintain this high level of benefits, we must strictly adhere to the following guidelines:
- RECEIPTS [*MUST HAVE ITEMIZED RECEIPTS] – Fax or scan/e-mail ALL receipts to the office the SAME DAY YOU SUBMIT YOUR REPORT (including, but not limited to parking, toll, bridge, and restaurant/bar receipts). USE A CREDIT CARD unless cash is requested by the client.
- When a check is issued, all information needs to be recorded on the report: check number, time, total, table number, server’s name, etc. Email, fax or mail the original or a copy in with your report.
Note: Agents may spend as they please but will only be reimbursed as per the below details. Should an agent’s reimbursements exceed the guidelines, they will be adjusted accordingly.
- MILEAGE is reimbursed for travel more than 20 miles round trip at 25¢ per mile. See your specific job instructions for exceptions.
- You may expense TOLLS incurred to and from the shop. A receipt is required for reimbursement.
- You may expense PARKING for the shop. A receipt is required for reimbursement.
- You may expense COVER CHARGES for both you and your guest. No receipt required
- You are limited to three MODERATELY PRICED DRINKS EACH (yourself and one guest) – This includes alcoholic, non-alcoholic and soft drinks. NO top shelf or fancy drinks are allowed.
- Limit of ONE moderately priced APPETIZER or ONE moderately priced ENTRÉE each (yourself and one guest) – NOT BOTH
[Dining table shops ONLY: Agent may order one moderately priced entrée and either a moderately priced appetizer or dessert for both agent and guest.]
- BARTENDER/WAITPERSON TIPS – 15% maximum reimbursement
DANCER TIPS – $10 maximum (TOTAL) reimbursement…NO EXCEPTIONS! Be sure to report the dancers’ responses when you stop tipping (names, descriptions, etc.)
$50.00 for premium integrity bar/dining shops (shop scheduled to end after midnight)
$40.00 for standard integrity bar/dining shops (shop scheduled to end prior to midnight)
Retail Shops can vary from several minutes to over an hour. Retail shops have variating fees depending on the time involved and the complexity of the shop. Before you accept a retail shop the pay will be told you.
Pay above may vary based on individual shops. Please refer to the Fact Sheet for your specific shop. All restaurant and bar shops are 2 hours in duration unless otherwise noted on the Fact Sheet. All instructions must be followed for agent to receive full compensation and reimbursement of expenses (as noted above).
$20.00 will be deducted from agent’s pay if the report is faxed or US mailed OR received more than 24 hours after the shop.
$20.00 will be deducted from the agent’s pay if the report is received after day 24 hours OR if the agent fails to list NAMES and descriptions of ALL employees [being shopped] in your report. Or anything that may cause the delay of delivering the report to a client. If you are notified that additional information is required to complete the shop, it then becomes your responsibility to contact us immediately with the needed information.
Paychecks are done on the second Friday after receiving your Surveillance Report. For example, we receive your report on a Tuesday, fifteen days later your check will be cut and mailed no later than the following Monday.
IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, NO MATTER HOW SMALL, DO NOT HESITATE TO CALL US AT THE OFFICE.