Williams-Sonoma

www.williams-sonomainc.com
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There are newer employer reviews for Williams-Sonoma

4 people found this helpful  

Enjoy the employee discount!

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Career Opportunities
Former Employee - Control Buyer in San Francisco, CA
Former Employee - Control Buyer in San Francisco, CA

I worked at Williams-Sonoma

Pros

Fantastic brand and opportunity to be surrounded by beautiful things. Williams-Sonoma employees really do live the lifestyle of sophisticated, worldly, affluent people (just like their customers), and it can be very inspiring to be part of this organization. Also, in spite of the recession, Williams-Sonoma is well-managed from a fiscal standpoint; while other retailers are going bankrupt, this company is likely to survive. And the 40% employee discount doesn't hurt.

Cons

The company-wide downsides are likely related to Williams-Sonoma's very disciplined fiscal management. Benefits are not very generous, also this is in part because they offer the same benefits package to corporate employees as the thousands of retail store employees (unlike Wal-Mart, for example, which is generous at HQ but stingy at the stores). Computers are practically ancient, with few rank-and-file employees having laptops, let alone any other advanced hardware. IT systems are also creaky, again due in part to cost-control (although the company's inability to attract top IT talent because of Silicon Valley being right next door also plays a major role). Within specific teams, the company is notorious for gridlock, politics, drama and obstructiveness. Finally, there's also a preponderance of "Marina girls" -- named after a district in San Francisco known for uber-blonde, slightly ditzy, recent college grads....which can be a very good thing for some, or a terrible thing for others.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Serious attention needs to be given to streamlining processes and improving IT systems -- and not fancy solutions that take 4-5 years to roll out. Employee frustration often occurs because it can take 10 minutes to do a single manual task (that needs to be repeated literally thousands of times) that should be executed automatically by an IT system (e.g., re-pricing thousands of markdown SKU's.) This impacts morale, and impairs employees' abilities to be intelligent and strategic in their jobs.

Recommends
No opinion of CEO

702 Other Employee Reviews for Williams-Sonoma (View Most Recent)

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great working environment - especially for moms!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Planner in Brooklyn, NY
    Former Employee - Planner in Brooklyn, NY

    I worked at Williams-Sonoma

    Pros

    Great perks, smart people, and the opportunity to work with really fun products

    Cons

    Quite hierarchical structure, and sometimes decision-making from the top-down stunts employees opportunity to add value and innovate

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Allow employees to have great accountability in the work that they do. Too often the pendulum swings too abruptly in order to satisfy Wall Street and in so doing, sacrifices real business needs.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    still catching up

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

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma

    Pros

    The most obvious things that come to mind are the sample sales and employee discounts.
    A lot of people take advantage of working from home. It seems as though a lot of moms work from home at least 1 day during the week.

    There are also early fridays. People are allowed to take off at 3 (for hourly employees- they still get paid for teh full 8 hours)

    Cons

    very old fashioned company with hardly any executives that have real internet retail experience. it's catalog driven, and still have not realized the need to bring outside expertise to help their business. Probably due to how political this company is.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire someone with substantial internet retail experience that can lead a large group of people that are very unfamiliar with this way of doing business.

    No opinion of CEO
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