Scottish Government ministers urged people to stay off the roads unless their journey was absolutely essential and Lothian Buses services were cancelled as much of the city ground to a standstill.
But shop staff say M&S is punishing those who listened to police advice on Thursday to not travel in red weather warning areas – the highest possible rating with a “likely” risk to life – including Edinburgh and the Lothians.
A staff member from the Simply Food store in Straiton said: “On Thursday the manager and a couple of staff members made it in to the store.
Their reaction was that if they can get in then anyone can. They told a member of staff to walk in the snow to get to work.
“Many colleagues use public transport to get to work and they were unable to because the trains and buses had been cancelled.
“It’s disgusting they are telling staff to ignore clear advice from the authorities and come in to work. They couldn’t even open for long as they had no delivery, not enough staff.
“There would usually be around 20 staff in at a time so there’s plenty of others in the same position.
“I have been told others at the Princes Street and Gyle Shopping Centre aren’t happy too. We have been told to either make the time up, take it as a holiday or just not be paid.
“It is a one-off situation where people have genuinely not been able to get in to work and we’re being told it’s our fault. It’s a complete and utter outrage.”
An M&S spokesperson said: “The safety and welfare of our people is our absolute priority.
“We only open our stores if it is safe to do so and took local decisions based on guidance from government, police and the Met Office.”