West Marine

  www.westmarine.com
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West Marine Reviews

Updated Jul 15, 2014
West Marine – US – “Memorial Garden at West Marine”

All Employees Current Employees Only

3.2 75 reviews

71% Approve of the CEO

West Marine President & CEO Matthew Hyde

Matthew Hyde

(28 ratings)

56% of employees recommend this company to a friend

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Employee discount ranges from 15% to 70% off - great if you're outfitting a boat, esp for wiring(in 13 reviews)

  • Really none associate discount about the same as shopping around online(in 7 reviews)


Cons
  • mismanagement, theft, overexpecting, low pay, no benefits(in 5 reviews)

  • It is as though they do everything to keep many from achieving a full time status(in 4 reviews)

75 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
in
    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
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    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Profoundly dysfunctional company

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsIf you enjoy watersports and boating, the perks are outstanding. Rank and file employees are a great bunch of passionate, fun-loving people.

    ConsThe management of the company is filled with 'bosses' - but very few leaders. Cross-functional communication is dismal - half the time the right hand doesn't know what the left hand is doing, and associates are left confused and without direction.

    Advice to Senior ManagementDevelop LEADERS - not tyrants. Implement review processes that include associates giving performance reviews for their managers. Perhaps that would open senior management's eyes to the reality that many managers and directors are hindering rather than furthering the company's growth strategies.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
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    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    The best and worst years of my life

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee) Watsonville, CA

    ProsI spent many years at West Marine and did so because of the company values and especially because of the people. What started as a lark, part time to pay for my boating habit (great associate discount) became a career. I gave as good as I got - the company treated me well, valued my work and made me feel part of a bigger plan.

    ConsThen the leadership changed, and changed again and then leaders left other leaders in play that shouldn't be leaders and so on. It appears that the they have lost their way, leadership is out of touch with what's really going on and the goals and strategic direction are not aligned or worse yet, not effectively communicated.

    Advice to Senior ManagementFigure out who you want to be. The associates at this company bleed blue, and I think that leadership over the years has tended to forget it. Remember what it is that makes the company great - it is the people at all levels of the enterprise.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
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    • Approves of CEO

     

    Cashier

    Cashier (Former Employee) Fort Lauderdale, FL

    ProsMet new people, liked the field

    Consmismanagement, theft, overexpecting, low pay, no benefits

    Advice to Senior ManagementOffer incentives to the minimum wage emplyees

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

  1. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Ok

    Cashier (Former Employee) West Babylon, NY

    ProsIf you like boating its fun

    Conscant think of any cons

    Advice to Senior Management.......

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    West Marine gathers a fun group of employees, a great work community.

    Sales Associate (Former Employee) Seattle, WA

    ProsGreat employee discounts! Awesome crew!

    ConsPay is not the best unless you're some type of manager.

    Advice to Senior ManagementMake sure at each location there is good qualified people who will take time not because they have to but because they want to train new employees thoroughly and properly. I got trained the basics but had to learn the hard parts when i happened to stumble upon them with a customer and looked like i didnt know what i was doing...thats because no one trained me on it!

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    AM Review

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsGreat place to work if you love boats, being around boaters, and talking boats. Good benefits for full timers, and higher than average pay for a retailer.

    ConsHeavy product knowledge required, reatil hours (no weekends off), locations are generally near the beach and saleries are not in line to live near work.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    Great summer job while in college

    Sales Associate (Former Employee) Port Washington, NY

    Prosrelaxed atmosphere, great employee discount,

    ConsInconsistent work schedule, weekend shifts

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Financial rewards limited by seasonal business pattern and aging-out of customer base.

    Store Manager (Current Employee) Watsonville, CA

    ProsHigh degree of autonomy. Hiring/training/working with young people. Employee discount. Relatively low stress and off-hours demands. Passion for the category among managers and Associates. About 10% of store managers turn over each year, so there is always opportunity to move up if you're willing to work hard and (usually) relocate. Great job for high school and college students, retirees with boats, people who don't need full income/benefits (second job, working spouse, semi-retired, etc). Strong customer-centric culture.

    ConsIn all but a dozen of the 250+ stores, only one person per store is salaried (Store/General Manager). Everyone else is <40hrs/wk. Even Assistant Manager cannot get year round 40hr/wk income in majority of stores (AM about 30hrs/wk). Most Associates average <20hrs/week.

    Advice to Senior ManagementNeed more focus. Current plan is to "grow core and expansion categories". That is corporate-speak for "everything is important", which everyone knows means there really is no focus. IMHO, West Marine has two options to survive. First, to become the "Orvis" of specialty boating products. That is, lots of high-end lifestyle products (clothing, home décor, luggage) but very little "core" product (boat soap, paint, engine oil, electronics). Sadly, so far lifestyle products are more Old Navy than Orvis. Second, to become the "Cabelas" or "BassPro" of boating. That is, about 100, mega size stores (+100M sqft) that sell a range of year round "Your Life Outdoors" products (as opposed to seasonal "Your Life on the Water" products), Either strategy will require a large investment in advertising as both mean attracting an entirely new customer base (PS... current team looks at advertising... like presence at national boat shows... as an expense to be controlled rather than an investment for the future). Otherwise, company will slowly go out of business since current boat owners are aging-out and minorities and younger families are not entering at a fast enough pace.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
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    • Disapproves of CEO

     

    OK to work here

    Manager (Current Employee) Santa Cruz, CA

    ProsLots of good people to work with and a stable place to be. Seems like people who work here stay for a long time. Great associate discount.

    ConsNot a lot of opportunites to grow and propser. Pay is low. While the discount is great it's not really good enough to offset the low pay.

    Advice to Senior ManagementWork on getting the company to make money so all can be rewarded

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
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    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Very pleasant to work for.

    Key Holder (Former Employee) Seabrook, NH

    ProsOpportunity, discount, atmosphere was fun. Enjoyable place to be. Lots of trust in the employees.

    ConsRetail, long hours during summer weekends, not the best pay, encouraged to bother customers even after they've waved you off.

    Advice to Senior ManagementGood Job

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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