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REI Reviews

Updated January 18, 2018
1,241 reviews

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3.9
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1,241 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • I love the companies values and how they keep a work life balance for their employees (in 129 reviews)

  • Great work/life balance, employee focused company, great discounts on gear, overall positive culture (in 52 reviews)

Cons
  • Most employees are kept part-time (in 91 reviews)

  • Management roles in the company experience the worst levels of work/life balance in the company (in 36 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Great culture and company values!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Footware Specialist in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Footware Specialist in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at REI part-time

    Pros

    Great work environment! Employees treated very well! Positive environment!

    Cons

    No full time employment opportunities.

    Advice to Management

    Salaries can be more competitive.


  2. "Sales Specilist"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at REI part-time

    Pros

    Amazing work environment and co-workers.
    Great place to learn about gear and the outdoors

    Cons

    Low compensation rates
    Unpredictable hours
    It can be hard to advance

  3. "Great company to work for, but it has its ups and downs."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales & Customer Service in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Sales & Customer Service in Redmond, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at REI part-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Flexible hours, good environment to work especially if you are outdoorsy and love to get out. Request time offs are normally granted without a problem. Pro-deals are the best part of the job.

    Cons

    I worked at the REI in Seattle, WA (Redmond store, now located in Bellevue) to be exact for over 8 years. Lucky for us, Redmond, REI was considered to be the HQ lab rat, nothing negative about it, it is just that our store was always overseen by HQ personnel for development, testing new marketing strategies, retail operations such as new POS systems etc.
    The first 6-7 years were awesome, never had complaints until the last year when our store changed store-management and things went downhill. Many veterans left the company, other were fired unfairly, and I myself left due to poor management. I can't speak for the rest of the stores, but I do know colleagues who transferred stores and they are still loving it.

    Advice to Management

    Truly work on employee turnover, REI used to be top 10 best companies to work for, in recent years its been in the top 30-40... ratings don't lie. I love the company and what it stands for, but management really needs to sharpen up. I hope one day I come back and work for REI again as I did love working and putting in the effort to providing 100% customer satisfaction, BUT with poor management, people just aren't happy there. Best of luck!


  4. Helpful (2)

    "Better than you would think"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Visual Merchandiser in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Visual Merchandiser in Seattle, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at REI part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great work culture, good company ethics, flexible schedule, fun customer interactions (most of the time), really great discount (almost too good).

    Cons

    Pay increases are minimal, but for retail this is not unusual. Hours are sometimes unpredictable. There is little to no room for transitioning into HQ even when working at the Seattle Flagship. There's very little motivation for upward growth in the company.

    Advice to Management

    Help motivate your employees to stay longer with the company with more opportunity for raises- more than the standard once a year check in and minimal increases.


  5. Helpful (3)

    ""Authentic hubris and poor infrastructure""

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Designer in Kent, WA
    Former Employee - Designer in Kent, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at REI full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    I had a great time working in a company with a "good" reputation. The reverse commute was convenient (if you don't live north of Queen Anne). There are definitely people I've met who are great connections as well as friends.

    Cons

    I’m bummed to have recently left REI HQ - but there are so many disappointments once you get into this company. I just had beers with several other exiting employees; we were surprised to learn we felt the same: beaten down, confused, and gaslighted. We'd all come to headquarters as superstars. REI seems to sabotage itself AND its employees, a lot.

    There's this desperation to “beat” Amazon. Middle management has quintupled. There can be more than a dozen "approvers" to ship a project. BUT: technical infrastructure is from the late '90s, and none of the systems connect. Projects are de-prioritized and revived several times. Team don't talk to each other - it’s crazy how confused most people are, but no one will admit it. Projects take 6x longer than they should. Lots of Blame Game happening.

    There’s no promotional ladder (so don't go there if that’s what you need). Low promotional opportunities mean people get territorial. HR will try to fool you: they recruited half my team with false promises of big opportunities. (HR also told me that anyone who’s there over 4 years is a RED FLAG if they haven’t been promoted.)

    Perks? Ummm, sure. Folks take those free ”yay" days. And obnoxiously post it on every social media channel. After I left, my friends told me how gross the whole Opt Outside campaign seems; REI pimping nature and smug staff showing off their expensive gear. We look like white, hypocritical Seattlelites. Which is kind of true: it IS a white boys' club - the women there have to work way harder than the men to get anywhere.

    REI’s actual vacation policy is ARCHAIC. More of us worked overtime on a constant basis and were tethered to Slack in the evenings. My department frowned on working from home - we were supposed to be seen in our seats, working like a 1950's office corral.

    I had 5 managers in 3 years. And no managers sometimes for over a quarter of a year. This was not uncommon. Stritske came in as CEO clearly to whip REI into shape. But the annual employee survey now shows the low morale and lack of trust, everywhere. Good luck, REI. I wish I could stayed longer.

    Advice to Management

    I won't waste my time here.


  6. Helpful (22)

    "Well intentioned company run by dramatic highschoolers"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Kent, WA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Kent, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at REI full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    REI genuinely loves the outdoors and makes decisions that try to reflect their values. They offer training opportunities, great benefits, and value environmental and social issues.

    Cons

    Crippling middle management, institutionalized heroics, complete lack of ambition or creative direction. Performance and knowledge of your craft/industry are completely overlooked and advancement is dependent on how likable you are (and I dont mean just having a positive attitude and working well with others... I mean an almost cultish fixation of "appearances and perceptions". If you dont enter or participate in the company chili cookoff, or weekend camping excursion, or some other corporate kumbaya activity, expect to lose the respect of the people who decide your future at the company). Rumors are spread in hallways faster than on a political reddit post. There is more drama at this company then a party of highschool thespians. Which is a shame, because REI at its core, is wonderful and has the potential to change the world. Instead, they roast twinkies and pray for snow every year.

    Advice to Management

    Value work more than singing voices. Identify different personality types and learn to support all members of a team, not just the ones who like your instagram posts. Learn how the rest of the creative world develops and executes projects. Stop making plans for plans for plans, and make valuable, meaningful work.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Sales Specialist"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at REI part-time

    Pros

    cool company, good values, good co-workes

    Cons

    still retail, management doesn't always align with preached company values

  8. "Customer Service Specialist"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at REI full-time

    Pros

    Great company overall. Great culture.

    Cons

    Hourly wages are not competitive but the profit sharing and employee discounts are very nice.


  9. "Great company"

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

    I worked at REI (More than a year)

    Pros

    Awesome people and awesome management

    Cons

    No commision on membership sales

    Advice to Management

    Keep on keepin on.


  10. Helpful (5)

    "Sexist"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Associate/Stocker in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Sales Associate/Stocker in Seattle, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at REI full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Discounts, like minded people regarding outdoor activities, customers and employees alike. Great manager.

    Cons

    )ook at their Facebook page, Instagram, ads, grants,..98 percent plus only women and dogs. Very sexist. And a person is shot down by most if this is questioned. Contrary to my sense of justice and equality. Told twice I was too old for advancement (60).

    Advice to Management

    Question the ethics.


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