The invention relates to a method and an apparatus for operating a plurality of spinning positions (1.1-1.7) of a melt spinning plant, in which in each case one of a plurality of thread groups (8) is spun, drafted and wound to form packages. To this end, each of the spinning positions (1.1-1.7) has a spinning device (2), a godet unit (6) and a winding apparatus (7). In order to piece one of the thread group (8) in a plurality of winding stations of one of the spinning positions (1.1-1.7), at least one suction gun (10) is provided. In order for it to be possible to piece threads as efficiently as possible after a fault, according to the invention, after the threads of the thread group (8) have been pieced in the winding stations, the suction gun (10) is positioned in an operating position of a thread-gathering device (9) and cooperates with a thread guide (9.1) and a cutting device (9.2) in the thread-gathering device (9) in order to gather the threads. To this end, the suction gun (10) is held in a holder of the thread-gathering device (9) after the threads have been pieced. In this respect, the suction gun (10) can be used in a dual function for collecting threads and for piecing threads.