Hot Topic Reviews | Glassdoor

Hot Topic Reviews

Updated July 19, 2017
712 reviews

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712 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • The fact that there is not really a dress code is awesome (in 101 reviews)

  • Easy going environment, great employee discount, good music, opportunity to move up with hard work (in 54 reviews)

Cons
  • Making sales associates work 3 shifts just so they don't have to take a break on company time (in 41 reviews)

  • Upper management doesn't always understand in-store problems-- too far removed (in 39 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "I love working for Hot Topic!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Hot Topic Sales Associate in Canton, OH
    Current Employee - Hot Topic Sales Associate in Canton, OH
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Hot Topic part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    They are a company that cares. My management team, especially is always willing to work with employees on scheduling. When I had some major health problems in the Fall of 2015, that left me unable to drive, walk or let-alone work, my boss gave me the time I needed to recover after only being with the company four or five months and losing my other job because of my health problems. I went back to work Thanksgiving night because I just couldn't miss out on the biggest sales day of the year.

    Cons

    I wish that the company could offer full time hours for non-management employees, but I understand that it isn't possible.


  2. Helpful (6)

    "Former assistant manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Full Time Assistant Manager in Sacramento, CA
    Former Employee - Full Time Assistant Manager in Sacramento, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Hot Topic full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Discount and the health insurance. That's about it, I'm just trying to make the 20 word minimum. Seriously that's about it.

    Cons

    Where to begin....the expectations are unrealistic. They expect you to complete a never ending list of tasks/promo changes/visual updates/shipment and make money with no payroll to do any of it. On top of everything they expect completed in a day they also expect you to make sales, keep conversion low, and get credit card apps with only 1-2 part coverage during most of the day. With the customers that come in the store (mostly teenagers) you're expected to make $60 sales (kids don't have that kind of money) and hope they don't come constantly in and out to keep conversion low. The online shipping to store is not maintained well either, they constantly mess up orders or don't ship them so on top of dealing with customers in the store you are also dealing with phone customers which take up to 20 mins at times because of the ancient internet and sometime difficult to navigate ordering look up. At times it can just be you in the store but because you have to take time on the phone dealing with online orders you can't always help customers in store or give them the attention they deserve they get upset for waiting. Payroll is unrealistic, you can't complete projects with no hours to do so and you some associates get zero hours which hurts the team morale. It also seems you're expected to work off the clock so you don't "break" the payroll bank. The associates constantly fall behind because they can go up to a week without a shift and with the constant promo changes and LP topics they can't keep up. Upper management (DM's and regional managers) don't care if stores are struggling, it's hard to make money without support from the higher ups and the only response you seem to ever get when asking for help is "figure it out".

    Advice to Management

    Take care of your employees. I gave almost 10 years of my life to the company for them to pretty much push me out. Granted I wanted to leave anyways but the way the company goes about using loyal employees as disposable is sad. It's high stress for low pay and nothing to show for.

  3. "Fast paced, young atmosphere and fabulous social events!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Accounting Manager in City of Industry, CA
    Current Employee - Accounting Manager in City of Industry, CA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Hot Topic full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Open environment and communication. CEO listens to all feedback and meets with new employees over lunch. Quarterly communications meeting is great way of letting the associates know about the new fashion trends, top sellers and initiatives.

    Cons

    Not promoting from within the group. Human Resources does not help managers when they are struggling with associates that are not performing.

    Advice to Management

    Make sure the resources are there before making significant changes to the company structure.


  4. "Great Culture, Great Job"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Hot Topic Sales Associate in Irvine, CA
    Current Employee - Hot Topic Sales Associate in Irvine, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Hot Topic (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Employee Discounts, Culture, Enthusiastic Management

    Cons

    None really, Membership and Credit Card enrollment can be difficult during the holidays where customers just want their stuff and to go, but that's any company you work for.


  5. "Just use you for one day so managers could have the day off"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Sales in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Hot Topic (Less than a year)

    Pros

    You can wear what you want, listen to cool music, and interact with cool customers.

    Cons

    They only hired for black friday, then didn't schedule any new hires after that.

    Advice to Management

    Find a better way to schedule employees.


  6. Helpful (2)

    "Almost perfect"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Supervisor in Pembroke Pines, FL
    Former Employee - Supervisor in Pembroke Pines, FL
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Hot Topic full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Best co workers, fun customers, great discount, Fun environment, great hours.

    Cons

    Pay sucks, Store manager & GM.. Not so great. No room for growth.

    Advice to Management

    Stop babying your managers just because they've been there for over 5 years. People get too comfortable & need to be let go. Your losing GOOD employees who have potential to grow and Your business, because of them


  7. "Cool place for a first job"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Seasonal Sales Associate in Chula Vista, CA
    Former Employee - Seasonal Sales Associate in Chula Vista, CA
    Recommends

    I worked at Hot Topic part-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Management and Co-workers are awesome. Its cool that you work and interact with customers with the same interest as you.

    Cons

    If you go in during the black friday season, training may be rushed so stay alert. Cashier may be tricky at first.

    Advice to Management

    Provide more time to training new employees as well as a more organized schedule where we actually know when break time is.

  8. "A Little Misguided"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Part-Time Assistant Manager in Denver, CO
    Former Employee - Part-Time Assistant Manager in Denver, CO
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Hot Topic part-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    40% discount on almost everything, on top of most sales. Great staff on store level.

    Cons

    Too much merchandise and not enough time, space, or resources to deal with it all. Company cuts hours constantly.

    Advice to Management

    Don't overwhelm employees with tasks and merchandise while taking away hours and resources. Invest in your workforce.


  9. "Assistant Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Assistant Manager in Saint Louis, MO
    Former Employee - Assistant Manager in Saint Louis, MO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Hot Topic part-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Diverse and fun staff with lots of room for growth in the company. Good benefits, great discount, pays well.

    Cons

    There is never really down time between seasons as with any retail job. It's either back to school, Halloween, floor sets, remodels, etc. As a manager here, expect to work!

    Advice to Management

    Upper management works well with the stores and they care for their employees. They do a great job running a smooth operation.


  10. "Scent starting job"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Full Time Assistant Manager in Great Neck, NY
    Current Employee - Full Time Assistant Manager in Great Neck, NY
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Hot Topic full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Very motivated to young professionals, hires a lot of young people. Great energy in the work place with contests and bonuses

    Cons

    Revolving door of people and sometimes catty environment. Slow to promote which leads to a lot of external hiring and has slot of potential leaving for opportunities


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