There are newer employer reviews for CarMax
There are newer employer reviews for CarMax

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Helpful (25)

Micromanagement, low pay, no longer does honest business

  • Work/Life Balance
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
Former Employee - Senior Sales Consultant in Live Oak, TX
Former Employee - Senior Sales Consultant in Live Oak, TX

I worked at CarMax full-time (More than 5 years)

Doesn't Recommend
Negative Outlook
Disapproves of CEO
Doesn't Recommend
Negative Outlook
Disapproves of CEO

Pros

Good (not great) entry-level sales experience for part-time, short-term.

Cons

How this company stays on the Forbes list of 'Top 100 companies to work for' is a complete mystery to most who work there. Sales consultants are commission only, paid the lowest commissions in the industry. Are also required to attend meetings and trainings for which they are not paid. Even on scheduled days off. Means that at least 15% of sales consultants time is like slave labor. Would be acceptable if training actually resulted in increased sales- which it doesn't. I fully expect there to be legal action taken against Carmax at some point as a result of investigations from State labor boards or at least private litigation. I also expect to see at some point a unionization of the sales force. Store-level management is some of the most incompetent I have seen in 20+ years in retail and car sales, their sole purpose being to execute and enforce 'employee development' programs that come from corporate level where the originators have no realistic concept of the sales process. Real-time hands-on assistance from sales managers that would result in actually closing a sale is non-existent, because sales managers are totally involved in this pointless and counter-productive development process. Most are incapable of selling, even if they were allowed the time, because of gross inexperience and lack of sales background. Sales consultants are graded and disciplined based on customer surveys that include metrics beyond their control. These metrics include vehicle pricing, product quality, business office wait time, etc. Very unfair that the responsible departments and individuals are never held accountable, but sales consultants are penalized and commissions are charged back when the system fails, which is all the time. At the corporate level priorities have shifted to opening new stores, the goal being to please the stock holders. This has resulted in a drastic decline in product quality. The so-called '125 point reconditioning process' that has been a cornerstone of their quality story, is now an absolute joke. Cars are sold with known defects, including defects affecting safety, then repaired after the sale during the 30 day warranty period. After this time repairs are at customer expense. The strategy is to get as many cars through the process as quickly and cheaply as possible, to fill the lots of the newly opened stores, then fix them on the back end, provided the customer notices the defects during the first 30 days. This includes wear items like brake pads, tires, batteries etc. that were not replaced during reconditioning because they had at least 31 more days of life expectancy. Many cars arrive at locations without even being cleaned, many still have previous customers paperwork (insurance cards, bills of sale, etc.) in the glove box. Most Carmax employees would not buy a car from their own dealership. My own personal employee purchase required $2800 of repairs during the first 6 months of ownership. Most of the repaired items were broken or worn out when I purchased, and would have been repaired during reconditioning if the process was at all like it is advertised, or like it was when I first started. Meanwhile, as product quality has declined during my 5 year tenure, prices have gone up. 5 years ago Carmax used cars cost more than the average used car, because they really were worth more. Today, however, Carmax cars are dirty, unreliable, overpriced junk, being sold under false pretense. Veteran sales consultants have seen the resulting decline in sales volume and customer retention. Unfortunately, upper management, directors and stock holders are focused on growth, because the stock price is tied to expansion, not real-world bottom-line numbers that effect sales volume and customer perception. My overall outlook for the long-term health of the company is dismal, in spite of the consistently climbing share price. As a stock holder I watch the value very closely. I expect there to be a tipping point very soon where their current strategy of growth at the expense of doing honest, sustainable business, the inevitable unionization and litigation against them with regard to employment practices and the liabilities associated with selling unsafe vehicles, will become obviously disastrous to shareholders.

Advice to Management

My advice to senior management is to address the issues of quality, ditch the counter-productive 'employee development' programs and stop lying to customers and employees. My advice to job seekers is to look elsewhere. My advice to shareholders is to watch very closely for the upcoming $hitstorm of litigation.

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  1. Helpful (1)

    I have been an associate with CarMax over 6 years. Overall, it has been a great experience.

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

    I have been working at CarMax part-time (More than 5 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    I make my own schedule. Very friendly peers. Competitive pay.

    Cons

    Can be very political at times, just like most companies. Excessive training at times.

    Advice to Management

    Rules and regulations are changed on a weekly basis and communicated poorly to staff.


  2. Helpful (1)

    Stable Job but Not Your Dream Position

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Consultant in Irvine, CA
    Former Employee - Sales Consultant in Irvine, CA

    I worked at CarMax full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    They hire very nice people. Fairly pleasant working conditions. Stable job.

    Cons

    You will have many frustrations with customers taking your time to assist them to find the type of car they want and they go elsewhere to buy it or their current car is not paid off enough for them to be able to afford a new one. Managers will be on your case if you are not selling enough cars. Some do it in a constructive way to help you, others just annoying. Most of your customers will be selling a car and not buying. That takes your time and most don't want to sell after they see your offer.

    Advice to Management

    Have separate people do appraisals so sales consultants can just sell cars. Also, pay your mentors. They are totally taken advantage of. This role takes time away from sales and they get next to nothing. Management test is designed to weed out older people.


There are newer employer reviews for CarMax
There are newer employer reviews for CarMax

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