Williams-Sonoma Interview Questions in San Francisco, CA

Updated Apr 13, 2015
32 Interview Reviews

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Interview Experience

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32 Candidate Interview Reviews Back to all Interviews

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  1.  

    Buyer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
    Accepted Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    The process took 3+ monthsinterviewed at Williams-Sonoma (San Francisco, CA) in February 2010.

    Interview

    Lengthy process, 6 total interviews with team. Did not present dysfunctional nature of corporate cultural, communication structure or lack of opportunities for growth.

    Interview Questions

    • There were actually no difficult or surprising questions.   1 Answer

    Negotiation

    Be sure you are ready and willing to work for a dysfunctional team.

  2. Helpful (2)  

    Merchandise Coordinator Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took a weekinterviewed at Williams-Sonoma (San Francisco, CA) in August 2012.

    Interview

    I was contacted by a recruiter over the phone and we went over the open position. I indicated my interest and was set up for two thirty minute interviews with two separate people. I ended up coming into the interview and sitting for an hour with three people. The questions were very personality and work style based. Though speaking with the three different personality types made it difficult to connect with each person.

    Interview Questions

    • We only have one hour to get to know you so tell us about yourself.   1 Answer
  3. Helpful (8)  

    Assistant Buyer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeksinterviewed at Williams-Sonoma (San Francisco, CA).

    Interview

    Contacted by HR after applying online to come in for a 1st interview. I met with 2 different area buyers as I was interviewing for two positions. I was asked to come in for a second round in which I met with several more people for the position of Assistant Buyer of Bakeware and Cookware.

    Interview Questions

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  5. Helpful (2)  

    Senior Marketing Planner Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took a weekinterviewed at Williams-Sonoma (San Francisco, CA) in May 2012.

    Interview

    Was an employee referral so got to talk with HR pretty quickly who reviewed my qualifications over the phone and then set up an in-person interview with the Director. The Director was smart, honest (as honest as she could be and still remain PC) and easy to talk to. Would have loved to work with her but it seemed that there was some internal politics going on which is why I think I did not get the job. I would be interested in other opportunities at this company if they arose.

    Interview Questions

    • Nothing too difficult or unexpected but they were concerned with my lack of retail experience and emphasized the fast-paced nature of the business.   Answer Question
  6. Helpful (1)  

    Data Quality Analyst Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Williams-Sonoma (San Francisco, CA) in May 2013.

    Interview

    Three Telephonic rounds followed by face to face for full day

    Interview Questions

  7.  

    Technical Project Manager Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Williams-Sonoma (San Francisco, CA) in December 2013.

    Interview

    WS being part of the eCommerce space, I was expecting a dynamic and engaging process (I have worked in eCommerce for the past 2 years and have >15 years of field experience). Just to start, the job description was confusing and laboriously written, trying to make the obvious sound more complicated or elaborate than it needed to be, a bit like serving meatloaf on a large platter with lots of decoration around it. I had 2 phone interviews. The hiring manager, was apparently the author of the job posting. The second interviewer, while smart and nice, preferred to *interview me based on their needs* rather than to elaborate on the responsibilities and key attribute of the position they needed to fill. With so many requirements, it was difficult to get a sense of what the key needs were.
    I was struck by how traditional and encumbered the interview process was.
    In most instances, the compensation level speaks more loudly about the level of the position than the job description. At $130K/year, I thought I could much better and this was a backup position and fortunately, I did.

    Interview Questions

    • Very basic project management questions about scope management, project planning, status reporting, communication and budget management. The hardest part was around budget management: WS manages projects within very narrow budget bands (+/- 5%). This requires a significant amount of administrative work just to track expenditures. Add forecasting to that.
      Without emitting an opinion as whether this is good or bad, it is certainly very water-fall (traditional), to the extent that most companies today balance administrative overhead with the imperatives of delivery, quality. and time-to-market.
       
      1 Answer
  8. Helpful (5)  

    Marketing Planner Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took a weekinterviewed at Williams-Sonoma (San Francisco, CA) in May 2010.

    Interview

    The first step in the interviewing process was me going to Williams-Sonoma website and filling out multiple applications for marketing positions. Then I got a call from a local recruiter asking if I would be interested in interviewing for a Marketing Planner position that they had open at that time. As a side note, I did not apply for this role but they have found my resume in their database and thought I was a good candidate. I have accepted an invitation and we got the interview scheduled in SF headquarters. The main offices in San Francisco are located close to the Bay, with main conference rooms facing Alcatraz and the water. Stunning view, nice office décor. Marketing planners have working areas grouped in cubes but it’s easy to walk from one side of the office to another if you want to talk to someone in person.

    First time I got called-in I met with a person in the same role I was applying for – Marketing Planner and her direct boss. Both interviews lasted for about 40 minutes and I was able to get a good understanding of what my future role would include. One interesting thing about the company culture is that there is more female employees in the marketing department than men because of the nature of their business (WS sells cookware and kitchen supplies). Their questions were pretty high level and they were asking me primarily about my background and why I would be the perfect candidate for the job. After these 2 interviews were done, I was supposed to meet with the Marketing Director who was unavailable, so my recruiter had to schedule another on-site meeting.

    When I came-in for a final interview, the Marketing Director was very detailed in her questions, she was primarily interested in my technical skills such as ability to work with spreadsheets and synthesize big amounts of data. At the end, I did not get an offer. As my recruiter shared with me, they have selected a candidate with more analytical background and a few years of experience in corporate while I was fresh out of college grad with a few internships on the resume. It was a good interviewing experience but the base compensation offered can be a bit higher.

    Interview Questions

    • One of my interviewers said that day to day job duties can get pretty mundane, so she asked how would I cope with stress and relaxation?   Answer Question
  9. Helpful (1)  

    Finance Director Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeksinterviewed at Williams-Sonoma (San Francisco, CA).

    Interview

    Interviewed by VP, and it was a very generic type of interview. I did get the feeling that the VP thought I was much too senior for the role and continued to challenge me on my willingness to get involved hands on in the role and whether I would be willing to work in an environment that could be unpredictable.

    After this interview I was taken to a second interview with a person who would be a peer to this role. This person had not looked at my resume beforehand and we spent the first 5 minutes of the interview in silence whilst they read through my resume. As they had not prepared at all for the interview, it was all down hill from here as they had no idea what to questions to ask me and we stumbled through for 30 mins.

    I left the premises thinking there is no way I'm getting this job, and guess what.

    I was spot on.

  10. Helpful (1)  

    Junior E-mail Designer Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through a staffing agency. The process took a weekinterviewed at Williams-Sonoma (San Francisco, CA) in March 2012.

    Interview

    I got the interview chance thru a staffing agency. The position was Jr. E-mail Designer for Pottery Barn Kids. I was waiting for the interviewer for about 5 mins in the lobby. Then she came down and took elevator with me to her office. I had a chance to take a peek at the office and it looked very warm and home-ish to me (maybe it's because of the dim light). My interviewer seemed in rush and asked me couple questions. I also showed her my portfolio, yet she seemed not very interested. She looked like she's in a hurry, the interview was only less than 15 mins. Few days later, I received an e-mail of the recruiter of the staffing agency, telling me that I didn't get selected. I felt alright with their decision since it would be a 6-month contract position, and this position is delicate to e-mail campaign only.

    Interview Questions

  11.  

    Inventory Planning Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Williams-Sonoma (San Francisco, CA) in April 2008.

    Interview

    Met with several people. Overall the process took too long but the interviews themselves were well managed. I was generally impressed with the quality of the interviewers, although there were few challenging questions. The interviews seemed to be more about general fit and skills than specific experiences.

    Interview Questions

    • what is it about my current employer's strategic approach that I disagree with?   Answer Question

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