Safeway Reviews in Seattle, WA

Updated September 10, 2014
Updated September 10, 2014
1,117 Reviews
2.7
1,117 Reviews
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Safeway CEO Robert Edwards
Robert Edwards
159 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Safeway is one of the very few companies that gives you work / life balance which is rare these days (in 42 reviews)

  • Nice people, they promote from within, offer good benefits for mgmt (in 40 reviews)


Cons
  • Pay is below most retail mgmt, requires ALL of your time no work life balance (in 28 reviews)

  • Upper management was unrealistic at times in their expectations given labor models (in 46 reviews)

More Highlights

65 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    A good place to get your first job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Courtesy Clerk and Checker  in  Woodinville, WA
    Current Employee - Courtesy Clerk and Checker in Woodinville, WA

    I have been working at Safeway part-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Meeting new people and gaining experience needed for future jobs.

    Cons

    You have to join the union and sometimes you won't qualify for the benefits because you're either a students and already covered by your parents.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    More ways to show appreciation towards employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    You will never be good enough or reach the carrot

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

    I have been working at Safeway full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    I love the people that I work with and have made lifelong friends due to working here for nearly 3 decades. The benefits for a union employee are unmatched in any other job you will find. $48 a month is a fraction of what it seems you pay everywhere else. This has to be weighed heavily against a wage that is below average as if definitely help even up the scale somewhat.

    Cons

    There is no loyalty from the corporate level. They will promote someone from the safety of the union into a backstage management position when they already know that position will be eliminated in a month or two. They do endless time studies to determine it takes a minimum of 10 hours to due a task and then only give you 8 hours to complete it and hold you accountable for not completing something that they have determined is impossible to actually do. They give you targets that are unattainable, bonus matrixes that are unachievable and take all decision making out of your hands but hold you accountable for the results of someone's from corporate's decisions that have probably never worked in a store. They have also whittled training down to almost nothing, but expect employees to miraculously be able to perform at a high level right away. Corporate makes poor decisions on a regular basis and refuses to listen to the cries of experienced employees that try to proactively prevent bad things from happening. Corporate makes decisions that often make no sense to store employees and cause the company to lose money, but then hold the store accountable for the inventory losses that their bad decisions have caused. The moral throughout the company is at an all time low and approaching a pending merger, no one feels safe. I would not recommend ANYONE attempt to work for Safeway until the dust settles form the merger as your job will not be secure at all.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to your employees, the ones that actually work or regularly visit the stores. By allowing the gap between the minimum wage and a journeyman to get closer and not increase on an equal level, you have lost all incentive for anyone to strive to be a retail dept head. When there is so much responsibility and stress with no pay incentive as they make the same as someone who sands in the checkstand all day, why would they manage a dept.? We are losing all of our good employees because we ever allow them to feel like they are doing a good job or reward them for doing so. Case in point; planning retreat for all management and backstage 2 years in a row as a reward and team building, dropping $250k as a non refundable deposit on this retreat, and then canceling it 2 years in a row and telling your employees that they are not truly valued, only the stockholders are.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    Very stable, modest salary. Bad morale.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Food Clerk  in  Tacoma, WA
    Current Employee - Food Clerk in Tacoma, WA

    I have been working at Safeway full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Flexible scheduling, incredible job security.

    Cons

    Bad morale, few incentives for advancement.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Create real incentives for advancement. Having a large number of assistant store managers making less money on an hourly basis than food clerks is a bad idea. One should also be able to reach journeyman level in less time.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Typical retail environment

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Deli Clerk  in  Everett, WA
    Former Employee - Deli Clerk in Everett, WA

    I worked at Safeway part-time for more than a year

    Pros

    They give you 10% discount on Safeway brands and discounts for other companies if you join SCEA which is nice. If you want to move up you can but don't expect to have a life outside of work environment. Hours are pretty much all over the board so hard to plan a social life.

    Cons

    Management is more into making their bonuses than caring about employees. If you get hurt management gets mad and isn't nice to you because it messes up their safety record. Also if you are sick they expect you to work even when you are a food handler. Not a good health wise for the general public

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Depends on the store, some management is great, others don't treat there employees with little respect.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    A great job for while in college

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Produce Department Assistant Manager  in  Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Produce Department Assistant Manager in Seattle, WA

    I have been working at Safeway part-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    The great things about Safeway is if you have good management they will work around your school, kids, etc. schedule. You get paid vacations (1 week after 1 year, 2 after 2, 3 after 5), and benefits for yourself with 16 hours per week or your family with 20 hours per week (pay and benefits can vary depending on which union you belong to). It is difficult to lose your job because you have the union to back you up. Grocery business is strong regardless of economy conditions, so job security is good. Advice to future employees: if you plan on working with the company for a few years become a checker or back-up checker, checker scale gets you a better rate of pay than helper clerk or most department positions.

    Cons

    You often have to work weekends, evenings, and holidays. It can be very difficult to get 40 hours per week regularly (unless you are a department manager). Can be wearing on your body (repetitive movements, lifting). The uniform is not attractive or comfortable. You have sick-pay but cannot use it unless you are ill for 3 consecutive scheduled work days or in the hospital.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be flexible with scheduling and supportive to workers, it will pay off. Appreciate employees vs. micromanaging or being negative. Act more as a team, often managers will not help cashier if the lines are long etc. because they feel they are above that. Do not try to take away pay or benefits, if anything these should be improving so employees can make a living wage and you can attract more quality/long-term employees.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Worst place to work. University place wa

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Deli Clerk  in  University Place, WA
    Former Employee - Deli Clerk in University Place, WA

    I worked at Safeway part-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    The people I work with are very nice. And not talking about my manager.

    Cons

    I work in the deli and we are around hot food. They will not let us drink water. We can't get breaks. Because there is not enough people there to work. The manager don't teach nothing it's the employees that only get payed minimum pay. And the manager is very rude. Not allowed to even eat the food they are throwing away. They waste so much food but can give the people that work very hard something.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The big boss that never see really what's going on should Go undercover for 1 month and see what really goes on in the deli. You would really be shocked at how you are treated. and what all the people that work there say about this place. Bad management.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Will suck the liffe out of you.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Department Manager  in  Everett, WA
    Former Employee - Department Manager in Everett, WA

    I worked at Safeway full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    Promotions come easy here. A little too easy.

    Cons

    No social life. Heavy work loads. Poor wages for the work you do.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat people how you would like to be treated.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Stressful!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Safeway - Starbucks Barista  in  Puyallup, WA
    Current Employee - Safeway - Starbucks Barista in Puyallup, WA

    I have been working at Safeway part-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    I guess the pros of working at Safeway are that if you like working with the public it can be fun. Especially if you have regulars that you get to know!

    Cons

    The cons are that there is never any manager feedback unless it's negative and you often get that about something you have no control over. There's garbage on the floor in your area! Ok, I'm busy with nonstop customers. How about a courtesy clerk take care of that!? Why is my line so long you ask? Well, how about because I'm the only one here doing the work of 2 or 3 people! Give me a break already!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Start to give some positive feedback once in a while. A happy employee that feels appreciated will be a more motivated and happier worker!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    My second family.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Safeway Starbucks Assistant Manager  in  Bothell, WA
    Current Employee - Safeway Starbucks Assistant Manager in Bothell, WA

    I have been working at Safeway part-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Great management (Varies by store), nearly as much training as you want, promotions are earned if you work hard, SCEA discount on movie tickets and concerts, flexible schedules.

    Cons

    Starbucks Baristas at Safeway do not receive tips, discounts, or markout. You are paid as if you were a courtesy clerk. Starbucks promotions are cancelled at the last minute. If you put up with it, you will be dragged to other departments as management sees a temporary or small need.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I understand that Starbucks licensed stores don't generate as much revenue as a corporate Starbucks location, so the fact that we don't have markout makes sense because it is a high-cost benefit, however I do not think allowing tips would be outrageous. If Baristas are getting paid less than corporate stores, they should at least get tips to help compensate. Employees might be retained longer if tips were allowed. We work hard too.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    Cashier

    Former Employee - Cashier  in  Woodinville, WA
    Former Employee - Cashier in Woodinville, WA

    I worked at Safeway part-time for less than a year

    Pros

    It had a reasonable pay for the education I had and it didn't require much work. Benefits were pretty good for what I was doing.

    Cons

    There was pretty slim chance of moving up in the company. It required me to stand around a lot and it was a rough to get in rhythm of working.

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