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TOPIC: staff pay

staff pay 24 Aug 2009 08:16 #32173

  • barb67
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I have searched to forum,but haven't found a post that has a direct answer.Forgive me if its been asked before.
In the Northeast what would be a starting pay for a projectionist/assitant manager?No experience.
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Re:staff pay 24 Aug 2009 14:40 #32177

  • revrobor
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Hi Barb:

I would be hesitant to employ an assistant/projectionist who has no experience. The projection room is the heart of your theatre and while the projectionist does not have to be a tech he/she does needs to know how to maintain the equipment and keep your screen presentation at top level. There are plenty of experienced people out there. (I'd apply for the position myself but I'm not sure I want to move from the Northwest to the Northeast). As far as salary is concerned I believe it should be above all other staff but below the manager's. So I guess your state's minimum wage will play a part in deciding. Here in Oregon our minimum wage is $8.45 per hour.
Bob Allen
The Old Showman
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Re:staff pay 24 Aug 2009 21:22 #32181

  • slapintheface
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$ 8.00--
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Re:staff pay 25 Aug 2009 07:01 #32183

  • barb67
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We are actually working backward,not an easy thing to do.We were paying too much to start and were overstaffed.I am now the manager,and have been performing manager duties since our opening in May.We have two assistant manager/projectionists.They have been training while in our employement and are great,but had no prior experience.
Of course there is a sense of dissappointment when you decrease someones pay,and I am wanting to be fair.They are responsible for the daily operational management as well as projection.We are at $9/hr.
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Re:staff pay 25 Aug 2009 09:19 #32187

  • Mike
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9 is not too much for a projectionist/asst manager. You don't want them stealing. :)
Michael Hurley
Impresario
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Re:staff pay 25 Aug 2009 15:17 #32192

  • revrobor
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Barb:

Perhaps if you explain the situation to them and let them know they are part of the team responsible for making the place more financially viable and that one day when it is there will be a salary increase they may be willing to go along with a salary cut now. If they are primarily interested in the salary and have no passion for the business then you don't want them anyway.
Bob Allen
The Old Showman
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Re:staff pay 26 Aug 2009 02:44 #32197

  • jacker5
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Northeast... as in Ny the projectionist are union and get paid top dollar anywere between 25.00-30.00 an hour and all they do is projection!
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Re:staff pay 26 Aug 2009 06:58 #32198

  • barb67
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Northeast in general.....actually way Downeast Maine.
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Re:staff pay 26 Aug 2009 08:04 #32199

  • rufusjack
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Currently we only employee people to help with the busy shows for concession and cleaning. We pay $8-$9 per hour. When we add a person to help with projection so I can actually have a day off we will pay $10 per hour. COL is much less in Mid-Mo than the NE though. IMHO, $8-9 seems pretty cheap for such an important task.
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Re:staff pay 20 Dec 2009 04:48 #33012

  • hnelson330
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I agree that I would be reluctant to hire someone in for that position with no experience. Even though theaters are turning digital, there's still a lot that can go wrong upstairs and you have to be expirenced enough to fix it quickly.

Depending on the area and the theater company, I wouldn't expect to pay more than $9.00 for an assistant (experienced).
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Re:staff pay 20 Dec 2009 16:19 #33020

  • revrobor
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As I re-read this thread and as one who has been a union projectionist and in the business off and on since 1946 I am disturbed that you would offer to pay a projectionist/assistant manager $8-9 an hour. You should pay what you think he/she is worth to you and your business considering the importance of the positions. While floor staff may come and go you should employ a projectionist/assistant manage who wants to be a permanent part of the industry. Never mind what others are paying. Search your conscience and do what you think is best.

FWIW, unless you install digital projectors right off the bat don't worry about it as film will be with us for a long time.
Bob Allen
The Old Showman
Last Edit: 20 Dec 2009 16:21 by revrobor.
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Re:staff pay 20 Dec 2009 19:50 #33022

  • hnelson330
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Revrobor - It is disturbing that companies pay projectionists and assistant managers so little, yet it is the nature of the business these days. Today's projectionists, at least from my experience, are not trained as extensively as union projectionists of the past. They are merely trained on the most basic skills, such as building, tearing down, and threading. General Managers and higher assistant managers are usually the ones charged with fixing other problems that arise.

Having said all that, I had no problem offering $8-9/hour for a new assistant. This is a person that I have to train. Those that are interested in staying with the company and possibly obtaining a GM position need to prove their worth. If I paid every assistant that walked in the door $12-$14/hour I would have a bunch of individuals that are there for the money and may not have the companies best interest at heart. I mean, really, there are no educational requirements for being a theater manager other than a high school diploma or a GED. Being an assistant manager or a projectionist in today's theater is not difficult. Those that shine like stars will receive promotions and pay raises.
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Re:staff pay 20 Dec 2009 20:10 #33023

  • rodeojack
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Sheesh.

Count yourselves fortunate you aren't in Washington State. Minimum wage here is $8.55/hr. It doesn't take much shine before someone is worth over minimum. $9 to $10+ for non-management positions (with experience) is common here.

I sort of understand the thought around not paying a lot for makeup/breakdown & threading. However, were I again to hire a projectionist, I would want that person to know his position was more important than the people who start with the brooms. A little more money can do that, along with an expectation that the person you put in the booth will extend those basic skills to a working sense of what's going with the presentation throughout his shift.

However, being a family-run operation, we never have openings in the booth... it's just too important to us. With the assistance of one of my daughters, I've installed, programmed and serviced all our equipment. My daughter can do everything in the booth, short of wiring, computer programming and mechanical disassembly of the projectors. She also manages our concessions and staff. Next to my wife (who runs the boxoffice/financial operations) and me, she's the highest paid employee here, and I'm very happy to write her checks.

As has been said here, this is probably less a matter of what we're doing in our various parts of the country, and more a matter of what a respectable wage would be for whatever import you put on the position.
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Re:staff pay 21 Dec 2009 01:23 #33024

  • slapintheface
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We pay $16.00 for managers --$10.00 for asst
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Re:staff pay 18 Jan 2010 09:08 #33147

  • SamD
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Gosh, the pay in the states is shocking compared to australia! :lol:
Projectionist get around $20-$28 per hour similar to that of the manager, and minimum wage for any level of staff is around $10 per hour. Note out exchange rate is almost identical to the American dollar at 93 US cents.
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