Harbor Freight Tools

  www.harborfreight.com
  www.harborfreight.com

Harbor Freight Tools Reviews

Updated October 26, 2014
Updated October 26, 2014
336 Reviews
3.1
336 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Harbor Freight Tools CEO Eric Smidt
Eric Smidt
213 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Paid time off accrues quickly, spiff program pays well (ESP part atleast) (in 21 reviews)

  • I live how fast this company is growing and the opportunities that were recently presented to me (in 10 reviews)


Cons
  • Mistreatment of employees by upper management and irregular working hours (in 26 reviews)

  • Should improve inside track club and add a rewards program (in 12 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Upper Management clueless to reality and employs bully (fear) management style and mistreat their people. Horrible place to work.

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

    I worked at Harbor Freight Tools full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Decent assistant manager salary (hourly). Decent team member salaries $9/ hr to start.

    Cons

    Mistreatment of employees by upper management and irregular working hours. Employees are encouraged to use dishonest tactics and everybody lies to survive, willing to throw others under the bus!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat hourly people with respect and get some ethics training. Everybody lies including you.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    bad attitude from the top down!!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Stocker in San Rafael, CA
    Former Employee - Stocker in San Rafael, CA

    I worked at Harbor Freight Tools part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    bur cheap tools at a discount!!

    Cons

    Lack of respect for the individual, all about the company.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get back to taking care of the people that ARE your companies face and not just the bottom line. The new CEO is only concerned about bottom line & looking good. that is reflected downward into the district managers, trainers, store managers and assistants.
    A very sad, personally degrading place to work for.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Harbor Freight Tools Response

    Oct 7, 2014HR Liason

    Thank you for your input We agree, it is rewarding to be able to provide great tools at low prices to our loyal customer base. We're glad to see you put that as a pro feature. We also agree that you ... More

  3.  

    Fsat and furious

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

    I worked at Harbor Freight Tools full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good training, hours, benefits, great prices

    Cons

    Management more interested in promoting outside cronies rather than the best candidates available from within

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Give the ones that brung ya a chance!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    HR NIGHTMARE!!!!!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Assistant Head Cashier in New Braunfels, TX
    Former Employee - Assistant Head Cashier in New Braunfels, TX

    I worked at Harbor Freight Tools part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Good benefits for full time employees, great commission on protection plans and ITC, the customers for the most part were friendly and very loyal. very easy to get hired ( no drug test and also would hire people with criminal backgrounds).

    Cons

    I would normally not take the time to write this but after my experience with working at Harbor Freight I think its necessary! I was a customer service manager for 3 1/2 years for a large retail chain (hardware store) prior to working at Harbor Freight, so I was excited and ready to bring my experience and learn and grow within the company, unfortunately,. It didn't take me long to realize that this wasn't the type of work environment I would be able to tolerate. My assistant manager was completely un professional would talk rudely to me and distract the cashiers with conversations not pertaining to work. I went to my store manager about the issue he said that it would be addressed and than 3 days later he walked out in the middle of his shift. The managers would tell us that we were doing horrible at selling protection plans and ITC but would offer no tips on how to turn it around. The only times I would see the management out of the office was when the DM was there. I believe the company could be A LOT more "Customer Focused" 1, By ensuring there is enough staff to take care of the customers needs in a timely manner, 2. TRAINING staff ( customers will have a better experience if the employees know what there doing). 3. Management should be on the floor ( how will you know what's going on or what area of the store needs improvement or where employees need more training). The work environment is stressful to say the least (if your not a manager), as assistant head cashier I felt like I was constantly failing, most of the time I was the only one on the register closing, so my interaction with the cashiers was minimal and when I did get a chance to work with some of the cashiers it was on a weekend when we were super busy.

    I will say this, we were a brand new store and were all in the learning stages, and the assistant store manager that had been with the company for awhile was very hands on I rarely ever saw him in the office and when he was he was doing schedules, he spent most of his time with the warehouse crew and sales floor and helping customers, he would do as much training with people as he could, Unfortunately, this wasn't enough, They should of had management (All levels) training at stores nearby prior to opening this store. That store was a mess, obviously the support wasn't there, the turnover was insane people were quitting left and right and it didn't help when the store manager walked out in the middle of his shift... I left after 3 months of working there, I could handle growing pains and I could of handled being short staffed and would of continued to work my tail off if it wasn't for the disrespect I would receive from the assistant manager, and the lack of communication, and the lack of support I felt from the company. An HR representative should of been in that store when the store manager walked out, and than the overwhelming amount of people that quit should of been a hint!!!!!!!!!!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    My advice would be to read what Forbes had to say on how "Effective Managers Earn Trust Quickly By Doing 5 Things Well" 1) Build Rapport 2) Take a diplomatic approach 3) Establish creditability 4) Engage in Conflict resolution 5) Be a strong communicator. I would suggest reading that article you can find it on forbes.com or by going to google,com and typing in the title of it ("Effective managers earn trust quickly by doing 5 things well"). My advice to the company would be that when opening a new store you might want to use a different training technique for the leaders of the store, and have more than one experienced employee in the store for the first month to provide the necessary support and training, Also my advice would be not to put just anyone in a leadership role, I watched hardworking, reliable, smart, employees with great potential quit because of poor leadership and lack of communication, but my biggest complaint that I got from not just cashiers but people on the floor was the lack of support they felt. the amount of potential that left that store was should be saddening to Harbor Freight, and I hope in the future HFT will take into consideration how important it is to provide adequate training to employees, and put strong, motivated, effective managers in leadership roles, it might not hurt to have an HR representative in a brand new store as well at least till they get established.

    I hope that someone at HFT reads this and sincerely takes what I just wrote into consideration. I can only speak from my personal experience, and like I said my experience was a little different seeing how we were a brand new store, however, with knowing this there should of been a lot more support than there was. If there was management training than obviously it wasn't communicated effectively, or maybe it was poor hiring choice either way, it should of been handled differently before the company lost valuable employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Harbor Freight Tools Response

    Sep 22, 2014HR Liason

    Thank you for your detailed feedback We're glad to hear you enjoyed the premium benefits offered at Harbor Freight, as well as the company's loyal customers. Now with over 500 stores nationwide, it's ... More

  6.  

    Frustrating

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

    I have been working at Harbor Freight Tools full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Compensation is ot bad for a retail company

    Cons

    Promoting from within is virtually non existant. I was told when I was hired that you cannot start out as a Store Manager you had to begin as an Assistant. I was a Store Manager for 3 Years at Petco but still started as an Assistant. Four years later I am stuck in a dead end job. There are many other Assistants at other stores that have been with the company for more years and still are not even interviewed for any Store Manager openings

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you want to develope a stable company you need to stop hiring from outside the company. Give current employees at least a chance to advance. An employee can advance up to an assistant manager and then you are stuck there. The metrics are way too micro-managed and are un-reasonable. I will leave this company as soon as I can find another job.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Harbor Freight Tools Response

    Sep 22, 2014HR Liason

    Thank you for your input. We agree, Harbor Freight offers extremely competitive pay to its staff, as well as some of the best company benefits you can find. We also appreciate your feedback regarding ... More

  7.  

    Complete waste of time and energy

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

    I worked at Harbor Freight Tools

    Pros

    Flexible hours, employee discount is good

    Cons

    Cashiers have to sell company's products
    Policies ridiculous

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get on thes ame page with each othe
    Stop depending on employees to do your job

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Harbor Freight Tools Response

    Sep 22, 2014HR Liason

    Thank you for taking the time to offer your input. We're glad to hear you enjoyed taking advantage of Harbor Freight's flexible hours and employee discount. We also appreciate your feedback regarding ... More

  8.  

    An exciting challenge

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

    I have been working at Harbor Freight Tools part-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Spiff payout
    PTO time
    Sick time
    Loyal customers
    Relaxed atmosphere (most of the time)
    Relaxed dress code

    For the most part, this company is a great place to work. It's always nice to make a bit more then minimum wage, and the opportunity to make extra money with spiffs. I've been with this company close to three years, and can say that 80% of the time I do enjoy my job. I enjoy meeting customers who really take the time out of the day to get to know me on a personal level. I enjoy almost all of my upper management, and respect their choices.

    Cons

    Not enough hours
    The relentless micromanaging of data capture
    Micromanaging
    Cashiers who cheat to boost their spiff sales, and who also steal esps/itcs
    Itc program needs to be thought out more.
    The fact that we don't have a rewards program for our loyal customers or for the itc members
    Free item coupons with NO purchase

    I understand the data capture process, I understand what it's trying to do. But DMs need to look at the bigger picture, not everyone wants to give out their personal info, especially the older folks. Some days I literally feel like I'm harassing customers into a flyer, with coupons that aren't the best out there. I find the itc program to be a complete waste. The customers can and DO get better coupons in car magazines and Sunday news papers. Why don't we have a rewards program for the itc members? For spending 29.99$, I really believe we need to do a little more for these customers who spend more of their money and time at harbor freight. The free item coupons with no purchase are not helping the customer base or middle class. You're bringing in the same people every day, who will NEVER buy anything and only come on there for free items. They refuse to give you their info for data capture, they are rude, and when we are out of the item they throw stuff at us, scream at us and make us feel like it's our problem that we are out of the item.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Rethink the ITC program, make it actually worth the 29.99$, give them a rewards program. Consider stopping the no purchase required coupons for a little while..

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Budget products with deals to keep you going back.

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

    I have been working at Harbor Freight Tools

    Pros

    Employee discount on products within store.

    Cons

    Budget quality on select items.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Inside track club members should.not have to present their coupon for the member discounted price. $30 for a membership per year and you should only verify with card sku number matched with customer name on I.d.

  10.  

    Great company to work for.

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

    I have been working at Harbor Freight Tools full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Great salary and benefits. Great team work environment if you have the right employees.

    Cons

    Not much time at home. Mostly slow and annoying employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop trying to micromanage everything before you give yourself a heart attack.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Sales Associate

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales Associate/Cashier in Fort Smith, AR
    Former Employee - Sales Associate/Cashier in Fort Smith, AR

    I worked at Harbor Freight Tools part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Flexible hours, great co-workers, typical retail environment, no complaints.

    Cons

    Only thing I didn't like was the old school cash registers. They were confusing and slow.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

Harbor Freight Tools Photos

Work at Harbor Freight Tools? Share Your Experiences

Harbor Freight Tools

 
Click to Rate
or

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.