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The Schwan Food Company / Deceptive Hiring Practices

United States, Minnesota, Marshall Review updated:
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To those of you considering a career with Schwan's, DON'T DO IT!!! This a copy of a letter I recently sent, and I can assure you it is all TRUE.

Alfred Schwan, Chairman of the Board
The Schwan Food Company
115 West College Dr.
Marshall, MN 56258

Dear Mr. Schwan,

I am writing in regard to your employment and employee practices in depots in Harmony, PA, and Titusville, PA. In June of this year, I began speaking with, LGM for the Harmony depot regarding employment. I was told of the potential to make 50-60, 000 first year even though the position was commission based. I told him I was interested, however, I would not be able to start until the school year began. He stated that this was no problem, that he would be hiring all summer long.

In late August we began speaking again, and started the necessary steps to come on board (drug test, physical, background check). On or about September 22nd, I was offered the position and told my start date would be October 2nd, and to report to the depot in Obetz, Ohio, to begin New Employee Orientation. I promptly put in notice with my employer that September 29th would be my last day. I arrived the evening of October 1st and checked into The Sleep Inn.

I began the NEO training the next day, and at one point the class was told that during your mentor training it was a requirement that you sign up 140 new customers in the six week period. This was the first time I had heard of such a thing. A classmate asked what would happen if that goal was not achieved. The instructor stated that you would be let go, but not to worry, everyone gets there. I was somewhat concerned, but I had no choice but to stick with it because I had left my previous employer.

After dismissal for the day, I went back to the motel to change clothes and head out for a bite to eat. I returned at approximately 8pm, and found that my key would not work. I went to the front desk to inquire, and the clerk told me I had to check out immediately, that Schwan's was not going to pay for me to stay there. When I asked why, he said he did not know. He reactivated my card so I could get my things, and having no place to go, I spent the night. At eight the next morning, the clerk is calling the room and once again stated that I needed to check out immediately. I did so, and reported to class.

I reported the previous evening's incident to the instructor, who told me to get with the receptionist for alternate accommodations. She told me she would try to secure a room for me at the Comfort Inn and it would be with a roommate. I told her this was unacceptable, that I did not wish to share a room with a total stranger.
That's the way Schwan's does things, I was told. I stated that this was still unacceptable, and she said she would see what she could do. I checked in, discovered I had a roommate, turned in my key and made accommodations of my own. I finished the NEO the next day and drove back to Pittsburgh.

I drove to the depot in Harmony the next day October 5th, was given a couple of uniforms and told to come back Monday October 9th to pick up directions and a schedule. I did so and drove to Titusville to begin mentor training. I reported to the LGM. He gave me a quick rundown and told me to drive into Townville, where I would meet the driver; he stated that this would not be my mentor, this was just for the day, and that my mentor would be X.

I began riding with X that week. One day we pulled into one of his stops, which he referred to as “### ville", stating that the place was full of ###s, and he had even wrote it in the route book that way. It was part of the Gertrude Barber Center for handicapped individuals, which my brother attended as a child. I informed X of this, and his response was “Aren't I mean?"

The next day I informed LGM of his comments and I requested to be changed to another mentor. He stated that he would take care of it and address the issue with X. I remained with X.The next week, LGM asked how things were progressing. I told him not well. I was getting no time behind the wheel of the truck, because X, in his own words, liked to be in control. Also, I was not receiving any training on the HHC. I once again requested a change of mentor to LGM. I remained with X.

Meanwhile, new customers are not being signed up, there isn't any route building being done, and I'm getting nowhere near my goal. LGM has not spent any time training me, yet my concerns fall on deaf ears. In the middle of the fifth week, X, district manager, is at the depot and tells me I am not on track, and if I don't get there that he is going to “cut me loose". He states that if I get to 110 new customers by the end of the sixth week, that they would bring me back for a seventh to get the additional 30. LGM, states that it is partially his fault because he has had no time to spend with me. I once again bring up that I am not being trained properly.
Keep knocking on doors I'm told.

In the last week, I'm still riding with X. During that week, I witnessed illegal drug use and possession in the form of marijuana by X. It was also offered to me in the form of a cigarette to take back to my hotel room. I declined.

By the end of the sixth week, Friday, November 10th, I had reached 107 new customers, 3 short of the 110. LGM had told me that morning to report back on Tuesday November 14th, because he would be off on Monday. I drove the 2 hours Tuesday morning and was promptly fired by LGM, and now had to drive the 2 hours back. The following morning, Wednesday, I drove to the Harmony depot to turn in my uniforms. I spoke to LGM and voiced my concerns over the drug activity. Where it went from there I don't know. I also called the compliance and ethics hotline.

Mr. Schwan, I know these are serious accusations and I sound like a disgruntled employee, and in a way I am. I left my job of three and a half years to come on board with you, and I cannot go back. Now the holidays are right around the corner and with 2 children to support, I haven't got a job. If certain things had been disclosed upfront, I may have had second thoughts and now would not be in this position. I hope that you take this letter seriously. Should you have any questions you may contact me directly.

CC: M. Lenny Pippin, Chief Executive Officer
Bernadette Kruk, VP of Human Resources
John Beadle, Chief Operating Officer

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


Sort by: UpDate | Rating
N  6th of May, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
Wow. I live in Titusville, PA. I see some of the Schwan's drivers around town. I wonder if they have it as bad...
N  6th of May, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree +1 Votes
Damn, that's about as ### as it gets right there.
A  12th of Sep, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
HOpe the tp guys read. I will never shop there till you tell they made this right.
N  1st of Oct, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree +1 Votes
I have never had any problems with Schwan’s products and the time or two that I did the driver corrected it right away, no questions asked. I stinks that you lost your job, but maybe you cannot place all the blame on them. When I joined the service my recruiter did not lie to me. He might not have told me everything but he did not lie. Maybe you did not ask enough questions. The problems with your trainer/mentor sound like there was a lot of personality conflict. That could have helped you if you would have learned from it. Being that it is a sales job, and commission, you have to sell to everybody even the people you disagree with. You should have learned to take all your mentors problems with a grain of salt. Instead, you just added all of that to your dislike of the company and used it as an excuse. Maybe if you had not [censor]ed so much and tried a little harder the supervisor would have worked with you. Your mentor probably came back from the routes and told everybody how much you [censor]ed and that shows how much of a team player you are. Another thought, they paid you to work with your mentor. They did not pay you to like him. Have you always liked everybody that you worked with?
N  2nd of Nov, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree -1 Votes
sounds like a ### lgm.
D  2nd of Nov, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree +1 Votes
hey people don't believe the schwans ### about their so great. they treat all route managers like ### we are company ###s so the brass gets their bonus off our sweat.
A  12th of Apr, 2010 by 
Agree Disagree +1 Votes
Crooked Schwan's Fraud Company. Overpriced food, over worked drivers, don't waste your money supporting this scam.
N  24th of Mar, 2011 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
I am a Schwans driver. I can tell you first hand that this is the absolute worst company I have ever worked with and, along with 70% of all Schwans employees, I am seeking other employment. I would encourage any and every customer to boycott this company immediately.
A  10th of May, 2011 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
I too used to work at Schwans, only as a refrigeration technician at their Florence, KY plant. That is where they make Freschetta, Red Baron, and Tony's pizzas as well as some for the Schwans name. I personally witnessed an ice machine (used to cool the dough as it is being processed so the yeast doesn't rise prematurely) that had eaten a hole in itself. My supervisor made a comment about "Good thing it's edible fiberglass". Unfortunately, no such thing exists! When I turned in my two-weeks notice, they promptly fired me. I called the HR manager the next day and found that I wasn't "fired". I was merely "let go" because they chose not to honor my notice. I had no idea there was a difference between the two! I will never work for this company again, nor will I eat any of their products. They obviously could care less about the customers they serve, but would instead rather "get the numbers out".
D  14th of May, 2011 by 
Agree Disagree -2 Votes
Yup, schwans is hard work...oh wait you don't know what that is? The only people who do poorly at schwans are lazy ###s.
N  28th of Sep, 2011 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
Thanks for posting this, I got an email to interview for the Sales position. After reading all of complaints from former employees this does not appear to be a good company to work for. I will continue to work at my job that I am at, will not want to quit and fall a victim working for these people.
N  17th of May, 2014 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
I am a wife of an employee driver. He's worked there for over 8 years. We have no life, as they require 70 hours+ . I have practically raised our daughter alone. Any work at home is done by me because when he gets home after midnight the majority of the time, with no energy most of the time not even energy to eat. They go up and down up and down with his pay changing the pay structure seems like weekly.

Worst of all no family life (this has affected his family unbelievably) so worse of all they pay next to nothing. We have lost our home at once our vehicle because we can never depend on his pay. They basically treat them like puppets, garbage, crap, whatever you want to call it.
As A Wife Of A driver I have suffered unbelievably. Even health problems aquired by stress and depression. Too much to even explain. All this while the executive staff in MN are probably sitting in there Mercedes Benz. I feel like we should be compensated for all the heart ache.
He is not just a ordinary worker he has put his ALL into his job
Just to again and again go through disapointment ..

N  5th of Feb, 2015 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
I work for Schwans and I work 4 days a week. I built my routes from the routes they gave me. Im doing pretty good its a job you have to give yourself too or you will not suceed.
N  16th of Oct, 2016 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
My husband recently interviewed with them and is waiting to hear back. He lost his 10+ year job with Pepsi slmo7a year ago and folks I can tell you pepsi is a HORRIBLE company to work for. Their HR people have no integrity and allow Supervisors to text the sales team 24/7 when they already work 3 or 4 am to 5, 6 or 7 pm. Then they never back them if a store such as walmart harassed the sales or merchandising staff. All the way up to CEO'S office they could care less. My husband was treated so badly and worked so hard for them. So now I'm concerned about this job. Although I have to say they seem not to care at Schwan's about keeping their word even at this point. On 2 occasions they said the recruiter would call after he spent 12 hours of his own time on a ride along, and a week or two later they finally call after he followed up. That says alot and concerns me. I don't want him to work for another employer like pepsi..

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Schwan's Home Service Logo Schwan's Home Service
Customer Service
115 West College Drive
United States - 56258
+1 888 724 9267
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