Jamie Oliver's Italian restaurant chain faces staff complaints over tipping policy

Jamie’s Italian raised the Tronc payment, which is used to redistribute tips from 1.5 per cent to 2 per cent 

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Waiting staff at Jamie’s Italian have disputed changes to the company’s tipping policy after many found they were worse off under the terms brought in in the new year.

The Italian restaurant chain set up by Jamie Oliver has introduced a policy of charging waiting staff a 2 per cent levy from table sales generated on each shift. The company has said this money is redistributed among kitchen and door staff.

Waiting staff have said that because the levy is paid on revenue earned by the server, regardless of how much they have earned in tips, they can end up paying £20 from an evening in which they have sold £1000 worth of food or drink and not bring in the same amount in tips for themselves, the Guardian has reported.

Staff have told managers they are happy to contribute some of their tips to other staff but that this should be taken from tips earned, not sales.

Jamie’s Italian, which now boasts 42 branches and has been valued at 150 million, reportedly raised the Tronc payment, which is used to redistribute tips, from 1.5 per cent to 2 per cent at the beginning of 2015. Staff claim that on occasion this means they are have to ‘pay to work’.

Reports by the Independent and other newspapers about employers skimming from staff tips have prompted an investigation by Sajid Javid, the Business Secretary, that runs until November 10.

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