Barnes & Noble

  www.barnesandnoble.com
  www.barnesandnoble.com

Barnes & Noble Reviews

Updated December 16, 2014
Updated December 16, 2014
1,186 Reviews
3.4
1,186 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Michael Huseby
174 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • It's nice to get a decent discount on books and have access to the titles (in 42 reviews)

  • The one thing that I can say about this company is that you get a pretty great employee discount (in 108 reviews)


Cons
  • While the pay is a little above minimum wage, the hours make for some very small paychecks (in 79 reviews)

  • The company had some serious problems that turned a great part-time job into a so-so (in 61 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    I have worked here for five years.

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

    I have been working at Barnes & Noble full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    The company scores very high for diversity. Keeping the customer happy is a top priority. the company discount is also very nice. Depending on your management team, there is potential to learn about corporate values. Health care and vacation are offered to full-time employees. sick pay and personal time are also offered.

    Cons

    To become a full-time employee you must be promoted to lead, a position the company seems to be phasing out. Part-time employees need to generally have free availability although some managers will work with school or other job schedules. Training seems to be lacking although there is a program that management is to follow through. Not enough time for managers or employees to follow certain protocol between customers. Pay raises are generally 25 cents per year.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There is a lot of "idealism" in the company that because of time restraints just can;t be accomplished. Mentoring, while it looks good on paper is non-existent because so much work is required of management. Even the on-going training programs that are offered to employees that want to advance never seem to happen. That training is supposed to be done in your "spare" time of which there is none. If you "make" time then other work falls behind.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Great place for a high school/college student to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Cafe Worker in Deerfield, IL
    Current Employee - Cafe Worker in Deerfield, IL

    I have been working at Barnes & Noble part-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Flexible hours, great employees, willing to work around school schedule, and customers are often regulars that are pleasant to assist.

    Cons

    Cafe sometimes only has 1 worker. During busy times this can be difficult to manage.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Good people, complicated communications systems

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Assistant Store Manager in Kansas City, MO
    Current Employee - Assistant Store Manager in Kansas City, MO

    I have been working at Barnes & Noble full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good people, most managers willing to work around scheduling issues

    Cons

    Disorganization on a corporate level makes it much harder for stores to do what they need to do.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Figure out what you are doing and communicate it simply. Stop over complicating everything

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Faux-upscale retail bookselling

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

    I worked at Barnes & Noble part-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Fairly relaxed for retail, it requires more problem solving skills than other retail jobs and so does not get boring as quickly. Minor but regular pay increases.

    Cons

    The rigidity of working in a large chain. The often bureaucratic limits on who can do what. A lack of personal responsibility.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Let individual stores have more autonomy

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Nice place to work

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Barnes & Noble part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Awesome employee discounts! My supervisor was amazing and very understanding!

    Cons

    The pay could be much better

  7.  

    Shelving is the worst.

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

    I have been working at Barnes & Noble part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    It's a great company. I felt happy to get hired.

    Cons

    If you get the shelving position, QUIT OR TRY TO CHANGE IT RIGHT AWAY!!! The hours are awfully early. The expectations are ridiculous. The carts are 300 lbs & I weigh 90 lbs. It's hard to memorize areas of the store. I only worked here a month & hated it. Tried to change position, wasn't allowed. Oh well.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change shelving rules.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    B&N cool

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

    I have been working at Barnes & Noble full-time

    Pros

    Everyone cool. no worries, hakuna matata and what not.

    Cons

    Pay. Need more cheese. And more employee friendly activities

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    No advice. Doing the best you can.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 5 people found this helpful  

    Not what it used to be

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

    I worked at Barnes & Noble full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Relatively educated (and polite) customers. The customers are a lot nicer to work with than many other retail locations. It's a nice atmosphere. The culture of the company is also fairly healthy. They don't put up with inappropriate behavior from staff or from management. Most other booksellers are friendly and good to work with.

    Cons

    When I started with Barnes & Noble in 1998, there was a strong focus on customer service and being the best bookstore in the industry. There was also an underlying respect for booksellers and a great deal of energy put into staff development. We took pride in being booksellers. When Len Riggio retired, however, control of the company moved to Steve Riggio, and then, basically, to committee. CEOs have come and gone, but the focus is now, very clearly, on the bottom line - not on being the best bookstore in the industry. It's now all about making money. Our nice bookseller nametags were replaced by plastic lanyards so that we could become walking advertisements. The schedule was changed so that instead of all being booksellers, with everyone taking pride in the job and everyone expected to help customers in the same way - now we have "shelvers" who do nothing but shelve books, "receivers" who do nothing but cut open boxes, etc. It's a lot harder to take pride in your job and get to care about the company and the quality of service, if all you do is shelve books, every day, and nothing else. There's also been a major shift in how the staff is managed. In my day, we, as managers, were trusted to coach and develop the staff so that everyone succeeded and everyone felt part of a team. Now, upper management insists that "if you can't measure it, you can't manage it" - the cry of the hopelessly disconnected senior vice-president who doesn't know how to work with people. Booksellers who are required to record the exact number of linear feet that they shelved in an hour, etc. - booksellers who are not trusted to do their jobs well - booksellers who are given no opportunity for growth - booksellers who don't feel that they are a part of a team - booksellers who are not coached personally, and who don't feel a personal connection or accountability to their managers - these booksellers are naturally going to feel ill-used and have no reason to get motivated or to do more than is absolutely necessary to meet their quotas. Workers who have no freedom and get no respect, are not likely to go above and beyond. And, Barnes & Noble no longer respects their staff or cares about quality. They only care about making money.

    Oh, yea, and the benefits are terrible, with a high co-pay and a high deductible. The pay is not very good. And, the hours are unpredictable and inconvenient.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10.  

    Fun Enviroment

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Barnes & Noble

    Pros

    Co-workers and management are fantastic.

    Cons

    crap pay and some rude customers

  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    A Nice Place to Work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Part Time Book Seller in Leawood, KS
    Current Employee - Part Time Book Seller in Leawood, KS

    I have been working at Barnes & Noble part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    The employee discount (30% off books and 20% off DVDs and music) is really nice, and the 50% discount in the cafe makes lunches easy and affordable. The employees at my location are great people, all very nice, and friendly.

    Cons

    There is definite pressure to sell memberships. It hasn't been difficult for me, but I know other employees who struggle with it, and they post who reached their membership goals and who didn't every day on a public board. You never get the same shifts if you have open availability, so your schedule changes every week. The pay isn't great.

    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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