Half Price Books Reviews in San Antonio, TX | Glassdoor

Half Price Books San Antonio Reviews

Updated May 7, 2017
7 reviews

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San Antonio, TX

4.1
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Half Price Books President and CEO Sharon Anderson Wright
Sharon Anderson Wright
5 Ratings

7 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • I knew other people who were working a couple of jobs to make ends meet, but working 50 to 60 hours a week for low pay is really no way to live (in 12 reviews)

  • Paid sick time reduced to 9 days per year from 12 (in 9 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "AWESOME JOB"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Bookseller in San Antonio, TX
    Current Employee - Bookseller in San Antonio, TX
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Half Price Books full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    EVERYTHING is amazing management , staff love my job

    Cons

    NONE i have found no cons at my job

    Advice to Management

    Hour rotations are to short need more task time ,


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Great job if you don't question how things are done."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Bookseller in San Antonio, TX
    Former Employee - Bookseller in San Antonio, TX
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Half Price Books full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Great benefits, flexible hours and good starting pay.

    Cons

    The rules only apply when management needs them to.

    Advice to Management

    Take pride in your store and employees. Train employees to be leaders and stop using them as scapegoats when you know you are at fault.

  3. "A theoretically good company that's being severely mismanaged."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Book Seller I in San Antonio, TX
    Former Employee - Book Seller I in San Antonio, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Half Price Books full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Books are donated to various local organizations.
    Some books *may* be recycled (more on this in a minute).
    The company helps promote literacy by existing.

    Cons

    The company spends a lot of time paying lip-service to customers about their values but very little effort on actually following through on the things it purports to care about.
     I learned after a short time there that we may not actually recycle (sometimes a garbage truck would pick up the recycling bins, which may be a problem with the company that picks up the trash, rather than HPB). The company also sells a number of toys, memorabilia, and knick-knacks that are made in China (which are clearly not fair trade or environmentally conscious in construction) to the point that the toys are beginning to overshadow the books).

    It's much more corporate in structure than one would initially assume for the type of business it is, which practically translates to: under-payed, over-worked, under-insured, employees who are often treated unfairly and not promoted on merit.
    My assistant manager admitted to me that she was initially hire because she was told explicitly that she was the only Latina who applied after another Latina had left at the Chicago store she started at.
    She was the only manager who was a minority at the company that I met.

     I visited each of the stores in my city and at each of them, the store manager was either a white woman or a white man, minority "shift leaders " were promoted but (at the location I worked at) this was a 25 cent increase in pay with the addition of trash duty. In addition, an employee who got hired because he was friends with another employee (which, in and of itself is not entirely inappropriate) was quickly promoted to shift leader after a month after another employee was demoted, seemingly without reason.

    It was clear to everyone that he was demoted to pay the new hire more money, and no one felt comfortable applying for his position. He was the least qualified and experienced of a store staffed with people who had been their upwards of 5+ years in many cases. It was nepotism, plain and simple, which I think must be systemic to the company.
    Benefits were slashed while I was there, and it was clear upward mobility did not exist.

    Advice to Management

    Be fair to your employees and stop being hypocrites about your environmental values.


  4. "Book lover job"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Shift Leader in San Antonio, TX
    Current Employee - Shift Leader in San Antonio, TX
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Company has pretty good values and tries to do right by the environment. In general, daily processes manageable and the job van be fun.

    Cons

    Happen to work for a particular manager that is difficult to respect and who changes processes much too often. Confuses staff and wonders why people are unhappy.

    Advice to Management

    Show more respect to employees and provide clear direction on a consistent basis. Keep the emotional outbursts to a minimum.


  5. "Great for many years until business got extremely coorporate."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in San Antonio, TX
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in San Antonio, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Half Price Books full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great health benefits and 401k, profit sharing. Salaries not very high, but there was much opportunity for upward mobility. Great vacation, sick leave, and maternity/ paternity leave.

    Cons

    The company mentality changed. They stopped hiring books sellers that new about books. They stopped being family oriented, and wanted to hire employees who would focus on the store first before anything else. I was told that people pursuing degrees or with outside interest would not be hired.

    Advice to Management

    If headquarters wants to run a happy, healthy and smart work place they need to focus on having happy and smart employees. They need to do more secret shopping and investigate how all districts are maintained.


  6. Helpful (3)

    "Miserable people, awful hours, terrible wages."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Bookseller in San Antonio, TX
    Former Employee - Bookseller in San Antonio, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Half Price Books full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The discount and the health insurance are great-- so are the quarterly bonuses and the sick/vacation days.

    Cons

    The people are some of the most miserable people that I have ever had the misfortune of working with. Hazing is something seems to be encouraged by the management, even though they do everything in their power to appear to be following corporate rules down to the brass tacks. No one can make $558.35 per pay period and survive. They make you work your fingers to the bone for every cent of that money, too. Hours are never set, and some nights you will close and 11:00 p.m., only to open at 8:00 a.m. the next morning. It is a joke to work there.

    Advice to Management

    Loosen up and stop writing up employees for every little infraction. Give out steady hours. Be kind rather than threatening. And, for the love of all that is good, stop treating employees in training as though they should have memorized every detail of company policy.


  7. Helpful (4)

    "Never fall in love with your job"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in San Antonio, TX
    Current Employee - Manager in San Antonio, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Half Price Books full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Discount, Co-workers,Benefits, Profit Sharing Bonuses

    Cons

    I've heard that it is WAY different in other districts, so keep in mind this has been my experience in San Antonio. I LOVED HPB for the first several years of my time there. The last year, and the higher up on the ladder I went, the less I loved it. Co workers and I half jokingly said it was kinda like a marriage where you gave and gave, and did your best, but you never seemed to get anything in return. LOTS of micromanagement, and mainly not being given the resources we needed to get the work done that they expected of us. You would get tons of vacation time, but never be able to take it. The quality of life sucked. I would only recommend working HPB in San Antonio if you a) have very thick skin b) are not afraid to work very, very hard c) don't have a significant other or children and d) can live off minimum wage

    Advice to Management

    You are very out of touch. The market is changing, your customers are changing, and you have not worked in the stores on a daily basis in years. Before you implement procedures, YOU need to do them, or let the ones in the stores make those calls.


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