Sweetwater Reviews

Updated July 12, 2015
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3.8
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Chuck Surack
22 Ratings

30 Employee Reviews

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  1. Awesome place to work

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - IT in Fort Wayne, IN
    Current Employee - IT in Fort Wayne, IN

    I have been working at Sweetwater full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Sweetwater is an awesome place to work. The staff is motivated and empowered to do good things for people both customers and fellow employees. The large amount of perks are really the tip of the iceberg.

    Cons

    The pace at which this company operates can be hard to keep up with for some.


  2. Helpful (3)

    Sales Engineer

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Engineer in Fort Wayne, IN
    Former Employee - Sales Engineer in Fort Wayne, IN

    I worked at Sweetwater

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

    Pros

    I wrote pages of feedback and upon reflection no one is going to read all that. In short - I agree with virtually everything positive listed on this site and disagree with virtually everything negative listed on this site. The people at Sweetwater are amazing people. Is the company perfect - no. Is it the best place I (an overachiever, former pianist in the Marine Band with two masters degrees in music) have ever worked - absolutely. If you are not a team player, bright and hard working please do not apply - you will hate working there and your coworkers will not appreciate that you are acting entitled and lazy. It is a hard to place to work if you don't have the full support of your coworkers. There have been a lot of fundamental and positive changes made in the past two years. I know people from every department that have advanced in the company. Hourly employees got a sizable raise in the past year. It is the highest trained sales staff and best ran music company in the industry BY FAR and better than any company I know in any industry. You have to make a lot of phone calls, but it is never cold calling. If you are serving customers and making money, no one cares how many calls you make. While every metric on the sales floor is completely transparent (everyone can see how many calls you make, how much you are selling, etc), there is no micromanagement. Unless you specifically aren't doing your job, you will only get positive feedback and great support from the management team. Outside of that, you have A LOT of freedom. If you work hard you will make a lot of money - it takes a while to build your business but from my first month actually on the phone selling I made good money. You have to know your stuff - Sales Engineers have to be able to answer questions about the 70,000 products we carry - you have to know a ton before you will get a job offer, you go through 3 months of paid training (with testing) to fill in gaps and you have to be sharp enough to figure out the rest on the fly with the many resources Sweetwater provides. Occasionally you will hear complaints pop up from unskilled labor because they don't get treated the same as the Sales Engineers. Sweetwater is great at helping their employees advance. I have never seen or heard directly of anyone being disrespected or treated poorly by management and peer disrespect is not tolerated - but they hire wonderful people so that isn't an issue. However, there is a reality that there is a huge gap between a highly trained sales staff who are all professional musicians and/or audio technicians with lots of degrees, major professional credits and Grammys and someone who just got hired away from McDonald's. I am not sure what others on this site expected from working in a professional warehouse. Chances are if you leave Sweetwater disgruntled then you didn't succeed because you didn't work hard enough or you are an entitled putz. In sales, if you work hard you will make good money, even from your first month on the floor. Because of the transparency of sales statistics and orders you can get a bad reputation and your coworkers won't have your back if you don't pull your own weigh or you try to steal sales from others. If you are a team player and work hard then your coworkers will have your back EVERY time. I left Sweetwater for medical reasons. I often missed several days a week and had doctors appointments just about every week and they went out of their way to take care of me and be flexible with my schedule. If you work hard and are a team player they will do everything they can to hook you up. The best insight I can give is I loved my time there and I look forward to coming back some day when my health issues are resolved. - lots of free stuff and great deals on gear - lots of company activities, including free trips to the zoo and amusement parks.

    Cons

    They require excellence and hard work in all departments so if you think it is easy money then it will be a negative experience. In sales you have unpaid meetings in the mornings - a one hour sales lab on Mondays (until you are in the to 50% of the sales force, month to date) and an hour and a half product education meeting on Tuesdays and Thursdays. These usually don't end on time and cut into your sales time on the phone and aren't always as helpful as one would hope. There is also a strict dress code (that isn't strictly/evenly enforced) - the job is almost exclusively phone sales and the dress code is out of touch with reality. The best suit in the world is not going to make someone care more about doing a good job. Either you care or you don't. My understanding is it has always been this way and it probably won't change. They are worth putting up with or else so many outstanding people wouldn't stay.

    Advice to Management

    Tighten up the length and content of all three morning meetings. Revaluate dress code should be relaxed to include company polos and casual (but non-tennis) shoes. Quit being so awesome, it is too much to take.


  3. Helpful (3)

    Sales Engineer

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

    I worked at Sweetwater

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Great experience and opportunities in the Pro Audio World. I learned a lot and worked with many great people while I was there

    Cons

    Rate of growth made the company begin to feel progressively more corporate that when I started working for them. I literally began to be impossible to get to know new hires. But growth can be looked as a good thing as well.


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  5. Helpful (1)

    shipping specialist

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

    I worked at Sweetwater

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

    Pros

    Really a fun place to work. Fast paced and energetic people. Always a chance to run into a star buying a guitar or some other musical instrument.

    Cons

    The pay was pretty low at $8.75 per hour starting out. If you go full time you get $10 starting pay and then up the longer you stay.

    Advice to Management

    Treat your people better in the warehouse. They work very hard long hours and for basically minimum wage. I think there should also be profit sharing as well. At least acknowledge their efforts more.


  6. Great place to work

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

    I have been working at Sweetwater

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

    Pros

    Great work environment and company culture.

    Cons

    Can not think of any.


  7. Helpful (2)

    Sales

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

    I worked at Sweetwater

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Amazing place to work. The on-site amenities are unbelievable. The company sells top flight gear and has an amazing training program for sales engineers.

    Cons

    There really aren't a lot of downsides. Sometimes the hours were a little odd when working on special projects, but even that was pretty tolerable.

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing what you are doing. I know you have been doing a lot of expanding, and that makes it easy to lose sight of who you are as a company. Make sure that doesn't happen.


  8. Helpful (2)

    Moving on up!

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

    I have been working at Sweetwater (More than 3 years)

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

    Pros

    I don't say it nearly as often as I should, but I love my job. I. Love. My. Job. I couldn't ask for a better place to work. This has been one super awesome week in Sweetwater history. (During the 6 1/2 years of my own personal experience anyway, Sweetwater has been breaking ground for a long time!) Not only did they make a huge leap in automating a tedious, time consuming process that I deal with directly, but they announced raising their internal minimum wage to fiercely rival any other employers. Reason #8511 why I love my job. I am honored to be part of the Sweetwater family!

    Cons

    How many cons can there really be in a workplace that includes a slide?

    Advice to Management

    My only advice would be more or less to encourage promoting from within. I am proof that we already do this, but I see more opportunity to do so as we grow as a company.

    Sweetwater Response

    Mar 12, 2015 – Senior VP of Human Resources

    Thanks so much for the great review. As this indicates, we significantly raised our rates of pay this month, which is the normal time for us to do so each year. On average the vast majority of our ... More


  9. Helpful (1)

    Great place to work

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

    I have been working at Sweetwater

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Wonderful facility with great perks - amazing on-site cafeteria, racquetball court, hair salon, lending library, gym, and music facilities - make this a fun place to work every day.

    Cons

    Low salaries compared to other parts of the country or even the midwest.

    Sweetwater Response

    Mar 12, 2015 – Senior VP of Human Resources

    Thanks for your review and the kind words, and also the concern over pay rates. Please see the comments we've made to the March 3, 2015 and October 2, 2014 reviews regarding action we have taken to ... More


  10. Helpful (3)

    Sales department

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Engineer in Fort Wayne, IN
    Current Employee - Sales Engineer in Fort Wayne, IN

    I have been working at Sweetwater

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

    Pros

    The best things about the job are the income potential and access to great deals on equipment. Of course, you likely won't have time to use it!

    Cons

    It's a really demanding schedule, a very long work-week. Although we are called "sales engineers", we're treated more like factory workers. And the fighting between sales people over commissions is never-ending. Finally, although the top guys do make a lot of money -- most with little or no formal education --- it can take a very long time to get there. Most of the sales guys drive beater cars and struggle to make ends meet

    Advice to Management

    Hold everyone accountable to the same standards. Senior guys don't play by the same rules as newer employees; much looser expectations, higher commission rate.

    Sweetwater Response

    Mar 12, 2015 – Senior VP of Human Resources

    Thanks for your candid insights, and we're sorry you feel the way you do about your job. In our view, Sweetwater is extremely transparent during the interviewing process for the Sales Engineer ... More


  11. Good place to work - potential dream for musicians

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

    I have been working at Sweetwater full-time (More than 3 years)

    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    • Working for a moral world-class company that has - and continues to grow exponentially • Family oriented • Employee Gym and Personal Trainer • Discounts on Products • A DVD lending library • Arcade* • Billiards and Ping Pong* • Diner* • Coffee Shop* • Slide* • Led by very experienced management • Financial perks for healthy living • Good 401K

    Cons

    • *Many benefits are open to the public. If you look forward to playing in the arcade or eating in the diner, be prepared to wait in line • Excellence is expected, not rewarded • Strict dress code • Few paid holidays (this is retail) • (Salary only) No overtime compensation • Little to no room for advancement - you're probably being hired because you're the best at what you do. • Minimal raises and flat across departments. Ask for a salary that you’re happy with for the entirety of your career. In the sales department, you’re solely responsible for your own success • Minimal profit sharing • Management that is very slow to adopt trending ideas and design

    Advice to Management

    Try to keep an open mind to trying new ideas and keeping current employees satisfied (raises, profit sharing) to reduce turnaround. Keep up the good work though. This place is built on a strong foundation.

    Sweetwater Response

    Mar 12, 2015 – Senior VP of Human Resources

    Thanks for your many positive comments. The pictures on this site and many, many more on our virtual tour at our sweetwater.com website show the many amenities you mention for our employees. Yes ... More



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