Williams-Sonoma - Enjoy the employee discount! | Glassdoor
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There are newer employer reviews for Williams-Sonoma

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Helpful (4)

"Enjoy the employee discount!"

Star Star Star Star Star
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Career Opportunities
  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
Former Employee - Control Buyer in San Francisco, CA
Former Employee - Control Buyer in San Francisco, CA
Recommends
No opinion of CEO

Pros

Fantastic brand and opportunity to be surrounded by beautiful things. Williams-Sonoma employees really do live the lifestyle of sophisticated, worldly, affluent people (just like their customers), and it can be very inspiring to be part of this organization. Also, in spite of the recession, Williams-Sonoma is well-managed from a fiscal standpoint; while other retailers are going bankrupt, this company is likely to survive. And the 40% employee discount doesn't hurt.

Cons

The company-wide downsides are likely related to Williams-Sonoma's very disciplined fiscal management. Benefits are not very generous, also this is in part because they offer the same benefits package to corporate employees as the thousands of retail store employees (unlike Wal-Mart, for example, which is generous at HQ but stingy at the stores). Computers are practically ancient, with few rank-and-file employees having laptops, let alone any other advanced hardware. IT systems are also creaky, again due in part to cost-control (although the company's inability to attract top IT talent because of Silicon Valley being right next door also plays a major role). Within specific teams, the company is notorious for gridlock, politics, drama and obstructiveness. Finally, there's also a preponderance of "Marina girls" -- named after a district in San Francisco known for uber-blonde, slightly ditzy, recent college grads....which can be a very good thing for some, or a terrible thing for others.

Advice to Management

Serious attention needs to be given to streamlining processes and improving IT systems -- and not fancy solutions that take 4-5 years to roll out. Employee frustration often occurs because it can take 10 minutes to do a single manual task (that needs to be repeated literally thousands of times) that should be executed automatically by an IT system (e.g., re-pricing thousands of markdown SKU's.) This impacts morale, and impairs employees' abilities to be intelligent and strategic in their jobs.

Other Employee Reviews for Williams-Sonoma

  1. "Working for WSM"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Financial Analyst in Memphis, TN
    Current Employee - Senior Financial Analyst in Memphis, TN
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The Employee Discount is great

    Cons

    The company has changed significantly over the last several years; it used to be a place you could spend your career progressing through the ranks, but until the downward spiral can be halted it is slowly losing some of it's best employees - both to layoffs as well as people jumping ship voluntarily.
    The current state of the economy is playing a role in this trend, but the actions of senior management and the direction of they are leading the company is having an impact as well.

    Advice to Management

    We have been offering the same products for the past several years; We need new products that people are willing to pay a premium for - Target is selling items that look just the same for 1/4 of the cost.


  2. "They won't show you the money..."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Assistant Store Manager in Lexington, KY
    Former Employee - Assistant Store Manager in Lexington, KY
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    You get to meet and work with a lot of really smart, interesting people. They are largely drawn in by the discount more than anything else and a love of cooking. While you won't make a lot of money as an hourly associate here, you do still have a lot of fun. At least I did, anyway.

    Cons

    Management constantly expects you to do more with less. For example, I had a very smart former employee who wished to join me at W-S, but my DM refused to budge on the pay. At the hourly rate authorized, my hire candidate could have walked into Wal-Mart and made more per hour. In this day and age when it's so hard to find the right people, paying a little more for them would definitely be worth it. Management does not share this philosophy.

    Advice to Management

    I fear that senior management has grown so staid and set in its ways the only path is to our eventual failure.

There are newer employer reviews for Williams-Sonoma
There are newer employer reviews for Williams-Sonoma

See Most Recent

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