Pet Valu

www.petvalu.com
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Pet Valu Reviews

Updated February 23, 2015
Updated February 23, 2015
44 Reviews
2.5
44 Reviews
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Tom McNeely
18 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Everyone learns how to do everything with regard to running a small storefront.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Part Time Sales Associate in Dunkirk, MD
    Current Employee - Part Time Sales Associate in Dunkirk, MD

    I have been working at Pet Valu part-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    You'll get to know many of your routine customers and build a great relationship with them. If they come in frequently enough, you could probably have what they want at the register before they fully cross the parking lot.

    Each store has a small staff, so getting acquainted is easy. Most folks are friendly and outgoing, although this is a must for successful sales in any company.

    Store managers seem pretty responsive to scheduling requests.

    Most customers are pleasant to deal with.

    Small "mom and pop" atmosphere compared to other leading pet stores.

    Regular set of hours, much more "9:00 to 5:00" than other retail positions.

    Cons

    Stores are given a certain number of hours to break up between employees, typically hovering around 140 (or thereabouts) hours per week. Manager takes 45, Assistant Manager takes 40, that doesn't leave very many hours for four or more non-managers to split.

    Unless you're management, you'll almost certainly be part time, so no benefits.

    Expect to start a little (a quarter an hour or such) above minimum wage, but expect to stay there, as well. No preset schedule from which to determine eligibility for raises.

    Every manager, whether store, district, regional, or higher, seems to have a radically different way of setting up the store. "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" does not apply. You'll likely be shifting a significant amount of merchandise around almost monthly to seemingly satisfy someone's whim.

    You'll be expected to market certain brands over others, even if they aren't the best fit for a particular customer.

    Associates will receive acceptable pay, Assistant Managers slightly better, at the expense of store managers and higher receiving quarterly bonuses based on store / area sales. These bonuses get larger if certain brands are pushed (see above point).

    Almost any item will be accepted for a return, even a two-thirds empty bag of dog kibble that expires in a week. The return policy likely keeps customers happy, at the expense of profit for the company.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Don't hire more associates than a store needs.

    With both federal and state minimum wages increasing across the spectrum, don't expect a starting salary of a few cents above the minimum wage this year to keep someone next year. (By next year the salary from which they were hired is now the new minimum wage. If they can go anywhere and make the same amount per hour, and get more hours, why stay with you?)

    Teach more about brands you carry and less about making a sale in the online training courses. Both are important.

    Ensure managers brought in from outside PetValu understand the nuances between their previous company and this one.

    Streamline, and / or computerize, the various frequent buyer programs offered in-store.

    Trim managerial bonuses modestly and spread the wealth to your assistant managers and associates. Managers can still get four decent bonuses a year while showing some gratitude to the assistant managers who often do just as much as store managers, without bonuses, in a lower pay bracket. Same goes for associates. In a store where everyone seems to have the same responsibilities, "sharing the love" may not be a terrible approach to lower-level employee retention.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
  2.  

    Not a great experience. Unorganized

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

    I have been working at Pet Valu

    Pros

    It was a pretty easy job for the most part. All I did was the cash register, customer service and stocking the shelves.

    Cons

    It was extremely unorganized. The store was in between management which caused things to be very confusing and unoragnized. They didnt seem to know what they were doing at all when it came to who was in charge.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    none

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Store Maanger-corporate & franchise experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Retail Store Manager in Ontario, CA
    Former Employee - Retail Store Manager in Ontario, CA

    I worked at Pet Valu full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great nutritional training. If you're looking for management experience to put on a resume, this is a good company as turnover is very high and there are always stores operating without managers.

    Cons

    Work/Life Balance: if you're a store manager or district manager, there is no balance at all....Pet Valu monopolizes your time. It's not uncommon for managers and DMs to receive calls, emails and texts multiple times on their days off. Additionally, new hires are expected to complete over 40 hours of online training UNPAID and on their own time!

    Salary: very low considering the expectations for store staff and managers. Manager's wages are based on store's sales, so if you have the misfortune of landing a low volume store, your wage will reflect (even though that is beyond your control and you're still do the same amount of work as someone managing a high volume store). In franchise stores the owners set the wages and this can either work in the employee’s favor or disadvantage depending on the franchisee, Head Office does not regulate franchise wages.

    Job Security/Advancement: as a company, Pet Valu rarely promotes from within, turnover is alarmingly high-even for retail- and as an employee you do not feel valued. It's a very stressful place to work because you never know from one day to the next if you will be fired. It appears great employees are terminated for no reason...often.

    Management: some store managers are worried about keeping their jobs while others do a terrible job and are kept on for some bizarre reason. The management styles of store managers vary from store to store, some are more positive (usually newer managers) while others are all doom and gloom. As for district managers, they each have their own agenda and will help store managers if it 'works into their plans' (I've heard that term used countless times). If it's not to the district manager's benefit, they will not help store managers grow with the company and in store instances, will actively prevent managers from moving up.

    Training: very outdated methods, lack of in store training. The corporate recruiter has never worked in a store and creates training 'checklists' from her desk at head office. Franchise owners are given a very involved training program but it is up to them to implement the training in their stores and pass the information onto their team and often times they don’t, which leaves staff confused and unclear on the expectations and execution of tasks.

    Job Culture: unpleasant, everyone has their own agendas, a lot of gossip. If your Manager or District Manager doesn't want you to move up in the company...you won't. As mentioned previously, it's a stressful place to work because you're always looking over your shoulder and wondering if you're going to be next to get fired. Most stores have small teams and there have been several times when staff has to receive either part, or an entire, truck alone due to being short handed. Head Office provides very little support to stores and managers are pretty much on their own. The mentality at the store level is very much “corporate vs. franchise.” Pet Valu does an excellent job of bending over backwards to accommodate the franchisees’ needs/wants, but at the expense of corporate stores.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Grow your great talent, overhaul your district & head office management teams to remove the toxic personalities.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 3 people found this helpful  

    Lots of wasted potential here

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

    I have been working at Pet Valu full-time

    Pros

    So far as day to day retail goes, Pet Valu is not a bad experience. Customers become familiar, working with animals is fun, things don't get too busy or unmanageable. The small scale is nice and a variety of duties keeps this from being a boring register-zombie job.

    Cons

    Pay does not seem good for any store-level employee from associate to manager. No payroll hours to support operations. No overtime for managers working well beyond forty hours a week. Very few advancement opportunities (because those would cost money, obviously). Corporate squeezes every last penny out of its retail operations with no appreciation for its store employees. This disconnect often comes at the cost of good sales opportunities and customer service experiences.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Provide your employees with the proper resources to achieve the goals you want to achieve. There is no investment in retail employees whatsoever, and this reflects very poorly on the company.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    Sales

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

    I worked at Pet Valu part-time

    Pros

    Flexible, loved relationships that could be built with customers

    Cons

    Corporate and Upper/Regional management is unaware of what goes on day to day.

  7.  

    Management Does not Care About Stores

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Flemington, NJ
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Flemington, NJ

    I worked at Pet Valu part-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    learn about animal health and nutrition, good register training program

    Cons

    expired products are always on shelves I was the only one who pulled, warehouse would send expired merchandise, manager was awful and management wanted to fire her but never did, poor room for growth in the company, keep almost everyone at part time

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to employee complaints

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    High standards with no appreciation

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Keyholder in Ellicott City, MD
    Current Employee - Keyholder in Ellicott City, MD

    I have been working at Pet Valu part-time

    Pros

    Getting to interact with different animals is fun. Being able to help customers find products that make them and their pets happy is always rewarding.

    Cons

    Part time means no more than 25 hours because they do not want to pay benefits. Managers want requests off at least 3 weeks ahead of time, but no more that 2 months out. This only leaves you a 5 week period to make requests. This is inconvenient for making any major plans, and for part time staff pet valu is not a career. Managers also wait to make the schedule until a fews days or even the night before the week starts, so it is impossible to make any plans until the last minute.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you expect that requests for days off be at least 3 weeks prior, then schedules should be made and available for part time staff to see at least 2 weeks out. If you want pt staff to not have a high turn over rate, then you need to increase pay rates when training is completed.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Nepotism

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

    I have been working at Pet Valu part-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Phenomenal PT and FT employees, a few store managers that are great. There is really not that much else.

    Cons

    Corporate management cuts corners at any and all places, mostly with employees. Constant additions to responsibilities are met with no increase in compensation. The "caring" nature externalized at this place is just a facade. The values that were originally expressed by this company while they were smaller are thrown to the waist side for even a small profit increase (They refused to sell any live animals, citing they rather focus on rescues, which now they are selling fish to push their "store exclusive" line of aquarium products). Employees are regarded with little respect, and veterans that have been there for 8+ years, all of whom have stellar performances, are passed up for any kind of advancement. Advancement goes to people who know people. One district has multiple people who have lived with the DM having their own stores now, where only one is worthwhile for the job. Hours are also limited to avoid hours for PT employees to avoid any chance of paying any benefits. If you do extra for this company, including bailing them out when a store desperately needs help that is an hour drive away, there is nothing more than a verbal "thanks".

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you want your employees to actually care about the company, you might want to actually care about them. You need to also realize that nepotism will kill your company.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    Unorganized, but typical retail job

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

    I worked at Pet Valu part-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Working with customers who genuinely want the best for their pets. Coworkers are usually friendly, and schedules are flexible for college students.

    Cons

    Low pay with no incentives. They require you to push monthly events (for charities or sales) and "write you up" for not meeting goals, however there's no reward for meeting or surpassing goals. Low pay with no opportunity to advance. Also, being a small company you get to know others in your district, and there's a lot of trash talking, especially among managers, of other employees. Very unprofessional. No breaks to purchase lunch or use the bathroom, and no refrigerator to bring food from home. Changes to your shift can happen with a days notice, and schedules come out 4 days in advance, so planning anything around work is difficult. Lots of young managers supervising right out of high school employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Lessen your amount of monthly events (asking customers to make a donation after every purchase). The stores are small, with the same costumers coming in weekly. They get very annoyed. Also, allow for breaks with a bigger overlap in shifts (15 minutes with two people in the store is not enough). Put out schedules in a timely manner. If an employee is required to give 3 weeks notice of a request for a day off, you should give them at least a weeks notice of their upcoming schedule.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11. 3 people found this helpful  

    Ok for short term - managers work a LOT

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

    I have been working at Pet Valu full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Great communication from the corporate office. Average/above average employee discount. Decent holiday pay and insurance for managers in retail. Nice to support local animal rescues through a job. Bonus every quarter based on store performance.

    Cons

    45 hours in the store while it is open per week required for management. This does not include time spent working from home on things like schedules, event planning, email, ordering, general sales reporting and personnel issues because there is just no time while in the store helping customers and resolving issues and training new staff and putting away deliveries and merchandising to devote to working on a computer. Pay is low for what the job requires in order to be successful. Often difficult to complete all required tasks. Pay for pt staff is low so sometimes hard to motivate them.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Reward your managers more effectively. We work hard for you and without us you have no one motivating the store team to sell your product. Most of us don't take breaks. We work 10 hour days and our only relief is a 10 minute trip to make the bank deposit. We deserve a little appreciation.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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