VWR International Reviews

Updated September 4, 2014
Updated September 4, 2014
175 Reviews
3.0
175 Reviews
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VWR International Interim CEO & SVP Manuel Brocke-Benz
Manuel Brocke-Benz
47 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • work-life balance was satisfactory compared to other companies (in 11 reviews)

  • Lots of opportunity if you work hard (in 6 reviews)


Cons
  • The sales reps are now getting dumped on and it's really screwed up morale (in 8 reviews)

  • There is little interaction between senior management and the average worker in the US (in 7 reviews)

More Highlights

38 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Perhaps corporate VWR is good to work for, but the field offices are to be desired!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at VWR International full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Co-workers are nice and very supportive.

    Cons

    No real leadership at all. Supervisors and Management puts blame on others, no support. They claim to have an open door policy, but don't want to hear the truth. The are micro-managers.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    All management and supervisors should be held accountable at all times and should be made to go through management and supervisory training courses each year. Also, out in the field, there are major "employee" issues that need to be resolved - employees feel unappreciated, harassed, bullied, betrayed.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Clueless management - highly opportunistic behaviour

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Manager in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at VWR International full-time

    Pros

    Stable industry, diverse customer base, good to learn how different industries tick

    Cons

    Poor leadership, many managers only care about themselves, no clue about how to grow the business. lots of politics

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus on what needs to be done instead of who is going to benefit from certain activities

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    Dont expect fair treatment

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales Representative in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Sales Representative in Chicago, IL

    I worked at VWR International full-time

    Pros

    OK compensation, but pay plan is often manipulated by management.

    Cons

    Management is subversive at best.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get better business development managers. The ones in place are a joke and usually make the reps look bad more than anything. Could also do a better job of enforcing contract compliance with the customers VWR manages to keep.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 4 people found this helpful  

    A Ship With No Rudder and a Hole in the Bottom

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Major Accounts Manager in Knoxville, TN
    Former Employee - Major Accounts Manager in Knoxville, TN

    I worked at VWR International full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    They hired me when I was 50 and paid me well until I retired at 65. Their (formerly) good health insurance covered 100% of major surgery. There are (or were) some fantastic people there.

    Cons

    If it ain't broken, then break it seems to be the philosophy. Customer Centric Selling was a multi-million dollar waste which brought out the worst in everyone. It was not a fit and many good people were fired for refusing to drink the Kool-Aid. Marketing has been woefully lacking for years. The sales force and managers are on a never ending merry-go-round of tasks other than selling. Only ideas originating in Radnor will be listened to. The sales force is ALWAYS to blame if sales aren't where they should be. And the solution is always the same - fire the rep/manager OR rely on the pay plan to starve them out. Get a giant order this year - they will get it all back next year because you will get no quota relief for a big, one-time order. The corporate accounts team is like a little league ball club compared to Thermo Fisher's men-in-black-suits pros. They lose nearly every time they play but the roster and the game plan never improves. And last but far from least, when I retired, the HR department designated me as "terminated." And my boss was the only one who recognized the event - he gave me a pen and then they fired him. And his boss too.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Sell off the U.S. operation while you still can. Focus on Europe and the R.O.W. countries. You have no plan, and Thermo has won. Raise the white flag here while there is still time. Make Sigma Aldrich an offer they can't refuse. Get out of the U.S. while there is still time. There is a big hole in your boat and you can't stop the leak. The U.S. is like the 500lb man on a blimp that's leaking helium. What do you do with him?

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Senior Management lacks vision

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Staff Accountant in Radnor, PA
    Current Employee - Staff Accountant in Radnor, PA

    I have been working at VWR International full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Ability to work from home

    Cons

    Total lack of employee value

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. 3 people found this helpful  

    On the Cheap

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Director
    Current Employee - Director

    I have been working at VWR International full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Have an opportunity to impact the business

    Cons

    Major cost cutting mode - looking to sell the business

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    VWR use to be a great place to work, but the business suffered due to bad leadership and mismanagement. The former CEO should have been removed a long time ago. The private equity owner was slow to recognize the incompetency of the former CEO. The current CEO is a good leader. It is unfortunate that the regime change did not take place earlier as it could have curtailed the damage.

    The prior regime tolerated work place bullying from senior executives, which caused a lot of damage. Too many senior leaders were unwilling to listen to the people and made terrible business decisons based on their egos. As a result of the recent regime change and cost cutting measures, many of the abusive leaders have been removed from the company, which is an improvement but too late to prevent serious damage to the business and its associates.

    Now,VWR is looking to sell and in cost cutting mode. Restructuring efforts have made life at VWR extremely challenging.

    Recommend that applicants defer interest in VWR until the business sells and the dust from the change settles.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    It is a job not a career

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at VWR International full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    A person has a job

    Cons

    The company forgets about the employee only cares about profits

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Decent work, but uncompetitive pay & few advancement opportunities.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at VWR International full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Large variety of work. Minimal oversight. Flexible schedule.

    Cons

    Poor on boarding process with little relevant training. Poor support from management. Poor distribution of work load. Very low annual pay increases.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Managers need to be held more accountable for the success of their employees. They should be more of a presence in the workplace and function in a more supportive role, rather than an authority figure that only appears when there are problems.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    Very unorganized. Not customer oriented.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at VWR International full-time

    Pros

    Good benefits and colleagues in the territory.

    Cons

    Continually changing business strategies and territory reponsibilities!!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stick with a 5 year and 10 year plan.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great company at first, but since new owner's took over, morale is horrible and supervisor's are clueless.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Inbound Department in Bridgeport, NJ
    Former Employee - Inbound Department in Bridgeport, NJ

    I worked at VWR International full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    1st tier paycheck $23/hr, only employee's hired before 2009, not many left.

    Cons

    2nd tier paycheck $12.50/hr.....when hired after 2009 top out @ $16

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get rid of standard operating procedure (SOP) Puts alot of stress on employee's who value their job's and do it right. For an international company of more than 4.5 million in revenue, you need to focus on "a happy employee is a productive employee." Should promote within company, not hire some clueless kid out of college, with an associate degree, working in a union shop.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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