Server Exposes Tip Out Policy That Left Her With Only 91 Cents In Tips

From what I understand about various pockets of the service industry, one of the most frustrating aspects about it is that no matter how hard you work and how much of a model employee you are, your survival depends a lot on the generosity of others.

We've known for decades that the reason that tips are even a thing is that many servers' hourly wages aren't even close to enough to sustain their lives.

But while there may be some benefit to pooling tips together among servers or even cutting another member of staff into that pool, one video makes it clear that similar "tip out" policies can be severely abused when they're set in place by restaurant management.

Be advised that the video featured in this article contains explicit language

On June 2, TikTok user @alexservestea received a message from a Chili's server who outlined her restaurant's tip out policy.

As this user is known for blowing the whistle on unfair and exploitative practices in the service industry, this person clearly felt that she'd provide a good platform to air her grievances.

As as we can see from the screenshot this server provided, the tips that customers leave for her don't actually go to her for the most part.

For instance, while the $61 in tips that came from one order might seem like a staggering windfall, she has to surrender more than half of it to the cooking staff.

And that's before we start ocunting the $10 to the bar staff, $12 to the food runner, and $4 to "expo" staff.

Despite the fact that the tip may have started at $61, this policy left her with just 91 cents once everyone else was tipped out.

Although that thankfully isn't all she went home with that day, it goes a long way to explain why she ended up with a total of $65.91 despite being tipped 20% on $1,000 in sales.

Due to policies similar to this one, @alexservestea reported that other servers who have messaged her found themselves having to go to an ATM to take out money purely to pay the staff they're responsible for tipping out to.

So on days where they didn't make enough in tips to cover their coworkers, they actually lost money by working.

This practice led @alexservestea to say, "Chili's, I'm sorry but this is abuse to your staff."

As she went onto say, "You're making your servers pay your entire staff."

And as for how the restaurant can keep this practice up, you can see one possibility if you look through the text conversation shared in her video.

The person she's speaking to suggests that it's because it tends to attract staff who are fresh out of high school with little work experience.

In any case, this arrangement hardly seems fair for the servers and makes it hard not to wonder who the management is actually paying.