Williams-Sonoma Reviews | Glassdoor

Williams-Sonoma Reviews

Updated May 25, 2017
1,346 reviews

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1,346 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Tuff work life balance for entry-level employees (in 58 reviews)

  • Poor upper management provide no direction or continually turn the ship around into another direction (in 75 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (6)

    "Skip unless you are desperate"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The products (while increeeeeeedibly overpriced - even for employees with 40% discount) are usually not bad quality.
    The WSI name on your resume typically gets you interviews elsewhere.

    Cons

    Marketing processes and technology are pretty outdated.
    Creative is archaic; still running like a catalog business.
    Most of all....the office is incredibly political. You only get ahead if you suck up to the right people; nothing is actually based on results or performance.
    While the SF offices employ a number of gay men, the overall office is not at all diverse (where are the POC, the gay women, etc., etc. etc.).
    Sexism abounds. Especially from aforementioned gay men :(
    No where to move up unless someone leaves.
    They pay under market value.
    Specific to my team, but we had to do extra work at the whim of executives....on the weekend, late at night, etc. in order to accommodate last minute changes.
    No cost of living increase .... which is insane in the Bay Area.
    Business has been steadily declining for most of retail, and the upper management is not coping well. Knee jerk reactions that create spin and more work, but not results.

    Advice to Management

    Stop promoting bad managers.
    Allowing feedback on managers' reviews would be a good first step. 360 reviews in general should be standard.
    Step up your recruitment game to make the company more diverse. I literally had to explain what an HBC(U) was to a current recruiter; that is ridiculous.
    Pay for performance, not for politics.
    Stop working on a day by day reactive basis. Start working proactively.
    Use more data to drive decisions; don't base decisions on the gut of a few executives.
    Get some focus. More work does not equal more productivity.


  2. Helpful (4)

    "The Plantation"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate in Memphis, TN
    Current Employee - Associate in Memphis, TN
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    I get a paycheck and that is it.

    Cons

    Williams Sonoma is the worse company to ever work for. There is so many negatives I dont know where to begin. The AGM is not the best person to work under. They treat you like you are a slave. As an employee I dont need to be micromanaged. The attendance policy is unfair. And with this being a billion dollar company what haooen to tuition assistance for those who want to go back to school and better thenselves

    Advice to Management

    Restructure the attendance points policy and bring back tuition assistance


  3. Helpful (1)

    "Great Part-Time / Flexiable Hours"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Santa Monica, CA
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Santa Monica, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Flexible schedule, Meeting new Customers daily, Great support team, Great products and moreover - great employee discounts!

    Cons

    During the holidays you are restricted from taking any time off, Rude customers, Employee do not benefit any sales goals quota bonus like management

    Advice to Management

    Employee should be able to benefit from Sales Goals quotas bonus. This will produce more productivity and sales.


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  5. Helpful (4)

    "Not the worst, but definitely room for improvement"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director Finance in Memphis, TN
    Current Employee - Director Finance in Memphis, TN
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Pay is competitive.
    There is opportunity to advance, although there is inter-office politics involved to some degree, probably not any more than other companies of their size.
    Due to the lack of reporting accuracy/consistency, there is opportunity to be a "rock star" if you can convince senior leaders the latest and greatest report you produce is more accurate than what was produced in the past. There is a good chance the report will even be named after you - "the John Doe report".
    There has been more investment in headcount lately than over the last 5-6 years.

    Cons

    Highly matrixed organization - difficult to find the decision maker in many instances. It can sometimes feel like a circular reference.
    There is a shortage of investment in technology aside from customer-facing systems. What should be simplistic, routine data requests are overly complicated and contradictory information is rampant due to lack of system integration or complete lack of system existence. There is way too much reliance on manually updated Excel spreadsheets and a few subject matter experts that may or may not be correct in their reporting, but because there is no systematic reporting in place can't be validated.
    No ERP system.
    Running versions of warehouse management and accounting systems that are 15 years old or older.
    Constantly trying to "shoot for the moon" with reporting when they can't even consistently produce the simplest reporting tasks with accuracy.
    Like many retailers in this market, trying to save their way to earnings.

    Advice to Management

    Invest in and integrate technology to produce accurate reporting that can drive smart decision making.
    Stop looking over your shoulder at your competitors and innovate.
    Focus at least as much attention on driving sales growth as you do on reducing expense.


  6. Helpful (11)

    "Sales Associate"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Retail Sales Associate in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Retail Sales Associate in Los Angeles, CA
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma part-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great coworkers, Store Management that means well, (mostly) good customers, (mostly) good products that you can take pride in selling. Great discount if you have another income stream in order to pay for the products.

    Cons

    Corporate leadership completely oblivious to sales floor realities. Poor compensation, poor advancement, poor motivation. Success trickles only upward while failure gushes downstream.

    Advice to Management

    The "people first" motto is hogwash. As is the new brand promise to "welcome, empower and inspire everyone". The only people who appear to be valued work in the SF HQ executive suite.


  7. Helpful (2)

    "They pay is pretty good and the people are nice."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Customer Service Associate in Oklahoma City, OK
    Current Employee - Customer Service Associate in Oklahoma City, OK
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good pay, lots of overtime during the holidays and a good employee discount. Once you are a permanent associate, the paid time off and vacation are good.

    Cons

    They have very spoiled customers and they give into their demands a lot but I guess a lot of retailers do that.


  8. Helpful (1)

    "Inventory Management - Distribution"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Distribution Planner in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Distribution Planner in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Enjoyable work environment with a friendly and collaborative eteam.
    Great employee benefits including a generous discount.
    Semi-casual dress is acceptable in the corporate offices.
    Supportive and passionate senior staff.
    Multitude of training resources available to all associates.

    Cons

    Moving up can be difficult, as turnover at more mid-to-senior levels is generally low, and interior candidates are not always considered first. Annual percentage of pay increases is somewhat low.


  9. Helpful (7)

    "Enjoyable but not worth the stress"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - General Manager in Salem, NH
    Current Employee - General Manager in Salem, NH
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Discount is awesome, team members are phenomenal, great products, and you learn a lot about food and beverage. My house is a much better place now thank to the great things I've learned.... and purchased!

    Cons

    Pay is mediocre for all levels of employees from cashier to GM. Overall work load is impossible to accomplish if you work less than 60 hours a week. Minimum labor which is based off of sale percent versus matrix which is in my opinion financially effective but operationally backwards. Not much direction or training for team or management. Corporate frequently changes direction given, making it hard to keep track of what to and what not to do.

    Advice to Management

    Keep a clear and concise message. Evenly distribute work load.


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Great Place to Work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in San Francisco, CA
    Recommends

    I have been working at Williams-Sonoma part-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Helpful co-workers, great products, fantastic discount

    Cons

    Cash registers are dated, pay is low


  11. Helpful (17)

    "Believe the cautionary reviews"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Corporate HQ for Pottery Barn Brand in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Corporate HQ for Pottery Barn Brand in San Francisco, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Williams-Sonoma (More than a year)

    Pros

    Super generous employee discount at all brands.

    Cons

    This company that struggles to be relevant has systemic issues that trickle down from the CEO and land as disempowerment for most employees on the corporate side.

    Advice to Management

    Be nicer. A lot nicer. Care about how the sausage is made -- and the people who make it. Be human.


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