Building customer relationships requires time, effort and sincerity. For Sysco, it began with a promise to assist foodservice operators in providing consumers with solutions for meals consumed away from home. Since the initial public offering in 1970, when sales were $115 million, Sysco has grown to $44 billion in sales for fiscal year 2013.
Many solid customer relationships have been nurtured along the way, countless dining trends and meal alternatives have evolved, and today the decision to consume meals prepared away from home is as much necessity as choice. Since then, the industry it serves has expanded from $35 billion to approximately $235 billion.
Today, Sysco has sales and service relationships with approximately 425,000 customers and remains committed to helping them succeed in the foodservice industry and satisfy consumers' appetites. Operating from 193 locations throughout the U.S., Bahamas, Canada, Ireland & Northern Ireland, Sysco's product lines are as diverse as the 48,100 employees who support its daily operations. They include not only the ingredients needed to prepare meals, but also numerous ancillary preparation and serving items. As a result, Sysco can make a difference in its customers' lives and the success of their businesses.
As the largest foodservice distributor in North America, Sysco Corporation is committed to diversity and inclusion. Sysco strives to maximize and leverage our diversity efforts to better serve our customers in the communities in which we operate.
Operating from more than 180 locations throughout the contiguous United States and portions of Alaska, Hawaii, and Canada, Sysco's product lines are as diverse as the 40,000 associates who support its daily operations. Sysco understands that building a great company is just like creating a great product - you must maintain all the right ingredients. For us, those ingredients are the cultures, backgrounds, ideas, and experiences behind our diverse workforce that embodies Sysco.
Sysco's Diversity Message
"Creating and maintaining an inclusive environment that elicits the very best from our associates is essential..."
Our people tell the story
At Sysco, we have implemented programs that enable us to recruit the best and brightest talent from a broad range of cultures. Maintaining a corporate culture that values and promotes diversity enables our associates to maximize their full potential to better meet the needs of our customers and helps our customers succeed.
At Sysco, diversity is categorized into four key areas: (1) workforce, (2) leadership, (3) supplier, and (4) community. We also participate in the leading foodservice industry organizations to help promote and support the benefits of diversity and inclusion in the industry.
Sysco Corporate (Houston, Texas)
The Sysco Corporate Office is a non-smoking facility
At Sysco and throughout our operating companies, providing a safe and productive work environment for our associates is a core value. We go beyond the basics to create a sustainable, better, safer workplace.
We place a high priority on addressing the root causes of workplace injuries, from revising the ergonomics of our truck cabs and loading ramps to encouraging safer behaviors such as proper lifting techniques and safe driving practices. Our employees receive extensive training and guidance and are expected to follow appropriate work practices.
Sysco has committed to partner with the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) through its Voluntary Protection Program, which recognizes businesses and worksites demonstrating excellence in occupational safety and health. Sysco Dallas is the first site to receive the VPP “Star” designation from OSHA.
I have been working at Sysco full-time (More than 3 years)
-Great benefits including "extras" outside of the typical insurance/401k structure
-Most senior management in IT are great leaders, empowering and motivational
-A culture of pitching in together and doing it right, big emphasis on ethics and code of conduct
-Dynamic environment (if you enjoy a challenge and shifting gears)
-Values diversity, longevity, and employee growth - lots of opportunities to grow your skills in leadership, job-related areas, and elsewhere
-Some positions compensation is above market
Overall, I think the pros outweigh the cons for my personal taste. I work well in an environment that changes - over the 3 years that I've worked in IT at Sysco, we've changed our management structure 3 times, changed IT strategy at least twice, and adopted new methodologies twice. Communication can be a challenge, but the change is generally well done so as along as you are comfortable switching gears, you'll be fine. Sysco offers a great benefits package including decent vacation/time-off and good "perks" like holiday hams and employee purchasing. The company also values employee learning and growth, and puts major effort into offering coaching/learning opportunities, especially if you are interested in management roles or learning better leadership. Compensation seems to be above market in some positions while under market in others, so it's hit or miss.
-Dynamic environment (if you don't adapt well to change)
-IT specific: Very siloed, other departments will do their own thing, not much knowledge transfer between departments so you often compete with each other for resources unknowingly
-IT specific: support is mostly managed services, and the companies providing those services are not very focused on "the customer experience", so you often have to clean up their work
-Technology is ancient
-Some mid-level managers are inflexible and demotivating, leading with more of a carrot/stick mentality.
-IT specific: There's still a big grudge when Sysco unilaterally laid off most of the IT department (and brought in managed services) about 5 years ago or so, so those who have been around since before then often have a bone to pick and get very disgruntled quickly. It can be hard to work with those managers at times because they're too busy being upset about the decision made, and not interested in collaboration/furthering the business
-IT specific: Because most roles are filled by managed services companies, career growth within IT is very limited unless you go into management
-(might be a con to you) Often expected to go the extra mile, work outside of the typical 9-5
The cons are generally limited to roles that require collaboration and communication cross-functionally within the IT department. If your role will not require working with other groups often, then they may not apply much to you. Also, if you are looking for more technical roles, and are not interested in moving in management, the career opportunities are severely limited, though I see some of that changing in emerging technologies like cyber security and cloud architecture.
In IT especially, you're often expected to put in extra work to meet deadlines or support major releases in off-hours. You also tend to get too many assignments, so your work/life balance may suffer a bit. I've noticed this in other departments, too, that the expectation is to do what needs to be done - if you're a "roll your sleeves up, get to work" kind of person, this shouldn't be a problem. However, if you're motivated by a more structured environment with clear roles/responsibilities and boundaries, then this may not be the right culture for you.
Unrelated to IT specifically, the environment is extremely dynamic which can be a con if you are not flexible/adaptable. The company also uses very old technology as a backbone for its core systems, which can fail unexpectedly during business hours. Depending on your role, some of the systems you need to do your job may break once a week or once a month. However, support is usually pretty quick to get things working again (....unless you get one of the offshore groups, for some reason the company they picked to provide offshore support has no interest in comprehending problems, so they waste 2-3 days just trying to ask you the same questions over and over again)
Advice to Management
IT specific: Build more career paths within IT for entry level IT personnel that will move them into more technical roles. Encourage departments to work together instead of in a vacuum, so there's less frustration and competition for resources. Take a long hard look at the customer satisfaction rating of the managed services companies you contract with - they might offer great dev resources, but if the support/service is terrible, the rest of IT suffers.
Non-IT specific: More communication across all functional areas, more emphasis on building leadership skills with managers, especially mid-level managers.
I applied online. I interviewed at Sysco.
I applied online and received an email to schedule for a 30 minutes phone interview, and the end of the phone interview day I received a phone call to schedule the in person interview with 3 DSMs...