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McMaster-Carr Management Trainee Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated May 1, 2014
All Interviews Received Offers

Getting an Interview  

46%
39%
6%

Interview Experience  

47%
30%
21%

Interview Difficulty  

Average Difficulty
82 candidate interviews Back to all interview questions
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3 people found this helpful

No Offer

Negative Experience

Average Interview

Management Trainee Interview

Management Trainee
Elmhurst, IL

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at McMaster-Carr.

Interview Details – First, I was contacted via phone from a recruiter who found my resume online. We had a 30 minute talk about my experiences and the opportunities at McMaster Carr. The next day, I was told that I was invited to an on-site interview the following week. The in-person interview was fairly simple: I met with 2 newer managers (both around 2 years) and 3 experienced managers (6-25 years). I received a 2 hour tour (approximately) of the factory, had 3 formal interviews, and had a lunch interview. The questions were extremely frustrating and, in my opinion, a poor way to judge potential managers. They asked multiple questions that are difficult to answer without knowledge of the company or product (Which they even claim they hide as much as possible. This company likes being "a secret' of sorts.) Certain questions relied on previous knowledge of the industry, of their clients, and of their products, leading to quite a negative experience. They didn't ask me a question I could potentially answer intellectually with the knowledge I was given. During my conversations with the two younger managers, I received more honest information about what my experience would be like if I accepted an offer there - and there were some pieces of information which would influence me to NOT accept a position. First, one manager mentioned that a lot of people will leave McMaster Carr because they want to "change the world." According to him, managers here will not have the opportunity to be creative or innovative. "This is a 100-year old company that has been extremely successful with the methods they already use. We are not looking to change our practices." Personally, I have no desire to be a working bee with no opportunities to influence the work that I am doing, but this manager was extremely satisfied with his position. It's definitely a matter of preference. The second is that the workers here (excluding managers - i.e. factory workers, salespersons, etc) seem to be unsatisfied working here. Oftentimes this is because McMaster Carr will hire inexperienced managers that are poorly trained and therefore provide very negative work experiences to their colleagues. The third is that a large percentage of the managers see this position as a stepping stone to getting into business school, but do not see it as a good-enough position to stay once they have this degree. He mentioned that there is high turnover and low morale for the company. In the end, I want to work for a company that provides opportunities for growth and where people are happy to work there.

Interview Question – There were a lot of questions about their current practices, and the pros/cons of them. There were also questions about their products and how their warehouse is arranged (both with people and products).   Answer Question


1 person found this helpful

Declined Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Management Trainee Interview

Management Trainee
Chicago, IL

I applied through college or university and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at McMaster-Carr.

Interview Details – I applied online through my career services website. They gave me a call a few weeks later.

1st round phone interview: very basic behavioral questions -- Tell me about yourself. Tell me about your summer internship -- what did you do there? Why are you interested in this position? Got a call back a few days later to visit the Chicago office.

2nd round in Chicago office: Very positive experience. They first gave me a tour and asked me random questions to test my thinking throughout the tour at different stops of the department. Some questions I remember:
Systems Department: "We make our own in-house software. What do you think are the pros and cons?"
Customer Service Department: "Why do you think we have 5 call centers?"
Warehouse: "How do you think we keep track of everything in the warehouse given that there are so many items?"

I then had 3 interviews, 2 with current managers and one with HR. Questions ranged from behavioral ones such as "Why did you choose your college?" to ones about the company such as "Why do you think it is important that we answer the phone in less than 3 rings?" and "Who do you think are our biggest clients?"

Interview Question – Why do you think we have so many call centers?   View Answer


No Offer

Negative Experience

Easy Interview

Management Trainee Interview

Management Trainee

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at McMaster-Carr in February 2014.

Interview Details – Was contacted by a recruiter after they saw my resume on LinkedIn. Had a 15 minute phone interview and was told they'd get back to me in a few weeks. Sent a follow up email after about 3 weeks and was told they were having some holdups on their end. Never heard from them again. Wasn't very interested in the position, just was looking for interview practice, but it was a bit rude they never followed up especially since they reached out to me first. Not even a form rejection letter.

Interview Question – None, typical questions (Tell me about yourself, etc.)   Answer Question


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Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Management Trainee Interview

Management Trainee
Robbinsville, NJ

I applied through college or university and the process took 2 weeks - interviewed at McMaster-Carr.

Interview Details – On Campus interview with resume review and personality questions. Then 3, 1 hour interviews at McMaster.

Interview Question – The only questions were about my resume.   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – No negotiating. Strict salary bracket (per recruiter)


3 people found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Management Trainee Interview

Management Trainee

Interviewed at McMaster-Carr

Interview Details – 3 hour long interviews

Interview Question – Since you are doing well at your current company and are contemplating leaving, if you come to work for us and find a better offer then would you move on for another opportunity?   Answer Question


Declined Offer

Neutral Experience

Easy Interview

Management Trainee Interview

Management Trainee

I applied through college or university and the process took 3 weeks - interviewed at McMaster-Carr.

Interview Details – So far I have had an on-campus interview for McMaster-Carr's management trainee program. The first round interview was basic and straightforward. For first 15 minutes, the interviewer explained more about McMaster Carr and the program itself. He then asked me to tell him about something on my resume. During the second half of my interview, we ran through different parts of my resume.

Interview Question – Was there ever a time working at _____ when you were told to do something in a way that you did not agree with? How did you respond?   Answer Question

Reason for Declining – I did not decline, but I do not have a better answer to put here. I have been offered an on-site interview that I have not yet had.


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Management Trainee Interview

Management Trainee
Atlanta, GA

I applied through college or university and the process took 3 weeks - interviewed at McMaster-Carr in January 2014.

Interview Details – I was contacted by McMaster-Carr through my university. They found my resume in the database and emailed me to set up a phone interview. The phone interview was basic, and went over pretty much everything on my resume. I had the opportunity to ask questions and she was very helpful in explaining the job. I was not extremely thrilled to interview with them, after reading many reviews online and on Glassdoor. I was not very disappointed when I was not moved to the next round.

Interview Question – Nothing unexpected, all questions were related to my resume and experience. Some behavioral questions.   Answer Question


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Easy Interview

Management Trainee Interview

Management Trainee
Elmhurst, IL

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 2+ weeks - interviewed at McMaster-Carr in January 2014.

Interview Details – Contacted via email from a recruiter who found my resume online, set up a 15 minute phone screen, had a 30 minute phone interview the next day, and then flew out to the Chicago HQ two weeks later. The on-site interview was not difficult, but it was LONG. First, an hour long tour of the facility, then 4 back to back interviews. Technically the lunch was "not an interview," but it definitely was. Unclear what they wanted, I basically was just asked to go over my resume four different times. No real tough questions. The office was creepy and pindrop quiet, no personal effects. Felt vaguely like i was in the matrix.

Interview Question – Basic comparison of two catalogues, pros and cons of the design for consumer choice.   Answer Question


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Management Trainee Interview

Management Trainee

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 4 weeks - interviewed at McMaster-Carr.

Interview Details – Contacted by recruiter through my University career website, and then I had a quick phone screening where a recruiter asked me why I was interested in McMaster-Carr and gave me a chance to ask questions. I had an on-campus interview where the interviewer basically walked through my resume, asked me why I went to my college, and where I saw myself in the future. I was called back about a week later and asked to come in for an on-site interview, and am waiting for that interview to occur.

Interview Question – Asked me why I didn't return to one of my internships for the following summer.   Answer Question


No Offer

Negative Experience

Average Interview

Management Trainee Interview

Management Trainee

I interviewed at McMaster-Carr in February 2014.

Interview Details – I submitted an application through university relations and received an email the next day from Human Resources. They set up a phone call to talk through the process that week which led directly into a phone interview. The questions were very much like the ones posted on Glassdoor. They were very inquisitive about my education and work experience (why I didn't choose consulting, my GPA, etc.). They let me know after the phone interview (which took about 30 minutes) they would be in touch within two weeks. I received an email that I did not receive a second round interview.

Interview Question – They continued to ask why I decided to go into small business and not pursue a consulting background;   Answer Question

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