Waiters and cooks around the country rely on a software called HotSchedules to check their shifts for the day and trade them with other employees. But when they logged on Monday, the site was down.
The culprit? A distributed denal of service, or DDoS, attack, according to HotSchedules. But as HotSchedules works only in the cloud, many hourly employees couldn't even check if they were scheduled to work.
Hey Everyone - Thank you for your continued patience and support. Plz read the attached image for the latest update. pic.twitter.com/gsg5eazBys
— HotSchedules (@HotSchedules) May 18, 2015
If you're wondering whether you're supposed to work today, HotSchedules will promptly send a schedule if you ask. But that hasn't stopped people from joking on social media that if the scheduling software is down, it's as good as a snow day:
How many people didn't show up for work or showed up late today and will use the excuse that @HotSchedules was down?
— Julian (@dangersmith) May 18, 2015
— thISISlife. (@_Isisalston) May 18, 2015
— Alex hall (@alexhall1) May 18, 2015
HotSchedules favorited most of these tweets on social media and was surprisingly receptive to complaints. Still, it's not a good look when your software service is down for hours on end.
HotSchedules is software that automatically schedules retail and restaurant shifts. Recently, the practice of computerized scheduling has come under fire because it often leaves hourly workers with highly irregular schedules. Computerized scheduling also helps companies cap their employees' hours at under 30 working hours per week, denying them the benefits that come with working full time. According to HotSchedules' website, McDonald's, Chili's and Buffalo Wild Wings locations use its software.
As of 5 p.m. EDT on Monday, HotSchedules tweeted that its service appeared to have started to work again. Turns out, the only thing worse than being told when to work by a computer is when the computer itself doesn't work.