Zep
2.8 of 5 45 reviews
www.zepinc.com Atlanta, GA 1000 to 5000 Employees

Zep Reviews

Updated Jul 3, 2014

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2.8 45 reviews

                             

42% Approve of the CEO

Zep Chairman, President, and CEO John K. Morgan

John K. Morgan

(19 ratings)

31% of employees recommend this company to a friend
45 Employee Reviews
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    Working under the Sword of Damocles

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsThe products sold are of good quality and have consumer appeal.

    ConsHuman beings and their lives are mere commodities to be bought and sold by a soulless upper management. I lost count years ago of the constant layoffs. This company will layoff staff from the top to the bottom, often in waves. It then begins the rehiring process sometimes within a week of the layoffs. The turn around at this company is beyond staggering. When working for Zep, your every waking hour involves wondering when your pink slip is coming. How much more successful could this company be if upper management had even a tiny molecule of respect and empathy for its work force. This company sells cleaners, and in kind, it performs a "cleansing" of its workforce every six months or so.

    And everyone is expendable. The ownership and upper management at Zep has changed hands as many times as the position of Plant Manager. Every change brings about a complete disruption of this company's business plan, products, ideas and even the corporate culture. And of course, every change in this regard brings about ... you guessed it ... the next round of layoffs/rehirings. Ah, a new round of "cleansing." The mighty sword gleaming above your head.

    And each time the ownership/management changes, both management and company are degraded still further. There was a time when the owners/managers of Zep and the various companies it has swallowed up were top quality people with vision, brilliance, insight and most importantly, character. It was a fine place to work with loyal, long-term employees that built this business into the powerhouse that new ownership/management is fumbling so hard to destroy.

    Advice to Senior ManagementAre you commodities? You're not? You sure? Well, guess what, neither is that line worker out there. When your staff is treated as a commodity, you wont be selling the commodities that you manufacture for long.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    3 people found this helpful  

    They are moving towards eliminating sales reps altogether.

    Sales Representative (Former Employee)
    DeSoto, TX

    ProsYou are your own boss. I technically had 5. The last one, hadn't made contact in a year and a half.

    ConsTotally unorganized. Getting anything done except placing orders is impossible. Plus, I think they are moving towards eliminating their sales force to local distributors.

    Advice to Senior ManagementTrain your sales force. Don't just send them out with a three day course of sales 101.

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

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    2 people found this helpful  

    Good starting place to gain experience in the difficult world of sales

    Inside Sales (Current Employee)
    Breinigsville, PA

    ProsCo-workers are fun, everyone works as a team. Generous commission % at the highest level. Given a book of accounts to call on, that are protected as long as they purchase every 6 months.

    ConsNo immediate supervisor, impossible to achieve growth goals that increase every month - expected to double or triple a customer's monthly purchase every month - avg sale is $150. Lack of any real health benefits, told it was a salaried job but have to punch a timeclock and get paid by the hour.

    Advice to Senior ManagementHire immediate supervisors, formulate a better strategy to compensate sales reps, understand that your average mom and pop auto shop does not need to buy 4 gallons of hand soap every month.

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

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    4 people found this helpful  

    Horrible

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsIf you are looking for a temp job this can fill this void. Although, you may not work forty hours a week. Then some no work at all.

    ConsManagement of this organization will run the company in the ground. Salaried people are not treated fairly or respected. Zep is cutting back on the quality of their products. How they have remained in business is a mystery.

    Advice to Senior ManagementGet rid of the incompentent management in your plants. The only reason the people working in salaried positions are nice to their supervisors is so they do not get fired. Respected is earned not given.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Ok Chemical Sales job

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsGood formulations
    excellent technical support staff
    average brand name recognition
    Average benefits
    some sales professionals have been with the company for 30+ years

    ConsNot the same company it was five years ago
    compensation is poor when compared to competitors
    company competes with sales reps for business
    Current executive management has commoditized the products

    Advice to Senior ManagementStop trying to cheat your own employees out of their living
    develop new products
    Stop setting up new hires for failure

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Management Consulting firms ex-employees give you this?

    Outsides Sales Representative (Former Employee)
    Birmingham, AL

    ProsOnce an historic firm. Wonderful pdts. Nice lab personnel.

    ConsBiggest issue this firm, like so many have had happened to them, is hiring debunked former Management Consulting industry people. They are clueless in actually running a business. Oh they're ok at their old employer?, but transferring their talents to the real world is near impossible. Lie to employees. Horrendous inflated shipping charges to clients and Zep's own sales force. From distributors, warehouse member types, inside sales and dumping your own different sales brands reps into an actual Zep Rep's territory are morally deflating - as in the "throw it against the wall" syndrome. All the top tier management cares about is what's in my pocket, after the reps have an actual blood-letting among themselves -> mgm't cares zilch about who is left standing in a territory, I want mine. All this stems from the top jocks knowing next to nothing about literal sales.

    Advice to Senior ManagementExtremely poor at the very top then the poor filters down and eventually ALL employees know cut throat force reductions occur, simply because bosses could only sell themselves to Directors, et al to get their positions - they cannot sell ice in the summertime. It does no good to advise mgm't of anything. Directors and stakeholders look at bottom lines and they run the roost. Such a shame the careers mgm't causes employees to shed.

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

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    The story changes once you are inside.

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsYou get a good start at Zep. But start looking for a job after a year if you want to further your career.

    ConsAfter the first couple of years, if you last that long, things go down hill. You find out there is no such thing as a career path. Yes there are people here with longevity, but they have been in the same position for 5, even 10 years. You have to work under constant pressure of being laid off. Zep operates in a continual cycle of layoffs. Its not that the managers are totally incompetent, they are afraid to do their jobs because they are also expendable. The executives WILL get their bonuses and they don't care what they have to do to get them.

    Advice to Senior ManagementFind some other ways to manage your expenses and fund your bonuses other than at the costs of your employees. And how about sharing those bonuses with the rest of us.

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

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    Outside Sales Representative

    Outside Sales Representative (Former Employee)

    ProsVery flexible work schedule. Decent, but expensive benefits.

    ConsNo formal training on products and services.
    Very little communication from management.
    100% commission after training period ends.
    Very difficult to earn a decent paycheck without having existing business contacts.
    If a new rep inherits accounts, they do not receive 100% commissions on future sales for those accounts.
    Since it is industry standard to provide customers with dispensing equipment, the cost of the equipment is deducted from a reps commissions if customers will not buy equipment.
    No reimbursement for any business expense.
    Zep has flooded the market with its products through internet suppliers, wholesale distributors, and big box retailers.
    Excessive shipping charges for customers.
    High order minimum for customers ($150). If this minimum is not met, commissions on that order are reduced.

    Advice to Senior ManagementStop looking for additional channels to get products to market, you are taking customers away from reps that rely on that income.
    Work to reduce excessive shipping charges for customers. Customers cannot afford to pay in excess of $80 in shipping charges for products.
    Start investing in training for your reps. If a rep asks for training; give it to him/her.
    Start reimbursing reps for expenses, which is standard practice in your industry.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    2 people found this helpful  

    They have been confused

    Sales Representative (Current Employee)

    ProsProducts are rock solid, people are great calibre (nice) If you are looking to start your own business and have that mentality then this may be good for you or if you are starting your career and can give 3 years as a stepping stone, otherwise run the other way. More frustrating than anything else.

    ConsMotto of the company really is Zep pays Zep first. Good for the shareholders but as you go along they don't make the best decisions and don't really value people as partners. They are used to having tenured people who have been with the company and so if you are new...it's like learning in braille. It is slowly changing but they have wasted good talent and lost people who could have really contributed to company. It's been a gong show. They may be getting it now. Not sure for sales unless you concentrate in vehicle or food sales if there is a worthwhile career. If you are looking for a company with a strong culture - this isn't it. Very hands off - other than selling product they don't do much.

    Advice to Senior ManagementPay what you need to - to put in place management in each region with experience. Sales reps without leadership are not very engaged and customers don't win in a commission for the money only environment.

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

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    It was a good company once upon a time.

    Sales Representative (Former Employee)
    Montreal, QC (Canada)

    ProsGreat products. Support people are good and want to help. Diverse customer base. You can learn alot.

    ConsPoor leadership or support for high selling reps. Commission structure has not improved for the better. Non-responsive senior management. Looks like Zep will be going retail.

    Advice to Senior ManagementEmpower you district manager's to make decisions that allow them to empower their people. Stop managing the company with fear. Stop treating Canada market like the US market.

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

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Zep reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Zep CEO John K. Morgan. All 45 reviews posted anonymously by Zep employees.