Poor management; lack of career opportunities and training; lacking professionalism.
Interpersonal politicking is a significant problem that subsequently resulted in poor communication, ostracisation, bullying and more broadly, a hostile work environment; making mundane tasks very challenging. Moreover, the repeated breach of confidentiality on the part of line-managers as well as upper-management; and the complete disregard for company policy, rules and practices, only serves to exacerbate.
The metric in which merit and opportunities for career advancement should be based should be objective (i.e.performance management), however, this is seldom the case. In lieu of determination and strong work ethic is loyalism (to personal agendas esp. those at the forefront of municipal power relations, that is to say, members of management).
It is very difficult to convey sufficient information to customers (about products, company procedure, concerns, etc.) and often this results in customer dissatisfaction with the service, which, in turn, leads to less sales and clientele; and more criticism about under-performance and deficiencies in professional decorum from management. There is little to no training given; and you'll often find yourself thrown into the deep end, heavily relying on fellow colleagues who've mastered the art of improvisation and self-teaching, through years of the same excruciating experience.
Another thing. If you're somebody who remotely deviates from the status quo (i.e. mentally ill, LGBT, disabled/have a disability, ethnic minority) yo
Satisfactory for first job - nothing else. Management untrained in their professions
Firstly the positives:
1. Big W was quite good when it came to the whole initiation and training part of the job. The training was manageable and did over what was needed.
2. Some of the fellow staff members were friendly and welcoming (defiantly not all).
3. The pay was good, not amazing but enough.
However, the cons about the job:
1. The biggest and one that made the biggest impact was the management. As everyone would know, management is an integral part to ones job. How someone is manage affects staff morale, the job itself and the motivation of getting up and going to work. When management fails at their job, its sends ripple effects throughout all levels of staff. This is what happened at Big W Capalaba. To be put simply, management was severely under qualified, untrained and overall not fit for their position. Some attributes associated with one particular manager (that is no longer there - and for good reason) is hypocritical, extremely unprofessional and intimating. You want your staff to feel comfortable around you so why are there individuals in management that are unapproachable, rude and intimidating. Touching on that, "practice what you preach" - do not tell staff to not do something then flat out do it yourself (hypocritical).
Lastly, the store manager. Yelling at 14yr old employees? I don't care if you are the prime minister or a store cleaner, not on! Control your anger or get out of your job.
2. Some of the staff are extremely condensing and rude. Th
ConsManagement and rude colleagues
Replenishment Associate | Darwin NT | 28 Sept 2017
Great First Job for a High School/Uni Student
This was my first job i worked at for 6 months as a high school student.
The job is ideally for students wanting part time work to earn some cash outside of school. 90% of the Replenishment Team members i worked with were either at high school or in uni. Saying that, the pay was mediocre but that was to be expected in a minimum wage job with literally no entry requirements. I was working part time for the majority of my employment so i was entitled to some benefits but honestly as a High School student, i couldn't care less other than maybe the 5% discount Woolworths card.
The job usually consisted of 3 hour shifts where i would ensure that the presentation of the stock was acceptable for the department i was in charge of for the day (eg. Kitchen, Manchester, Sports & gardening.) The first 2 hours were during store operating hours so customer interaction was inevitable but usually they would either ask where a particular product was or if a certain item was in stock so nothing 2 hard. I also would help the nightfill associates stock/fill shelves if i finished my job early so be prepared to work in other departments. Some days are slow, some go fast, some days the mangers get angry at you for no reason, some days you may get sh!tty customers, but in the end just deal with it and get your minimum wage pay check.
Working Condition/Work life:
The job was very flexible and was tailored around my school hours. I could still have a so
ProsTeam Members, Majority of the Managers, Work/Life Balance
ConsPay, Customers are 50/50, Some of the Managers
You want the real truth of working retail at Big W. Spent 3 odd years here and even though I am a trained Manager from previous employment, never got promoted to Supervisor. young kids who had no experience and who just started with the company where promoted over me even though I had all the skills required and requested a lot of times to be a Supervisor.
Was forced to work all the time cause as a casual, up to 14 days sometimes (yes they were breaking the law) but if you said no to a shift they would never ring you up, so they had you where they wanted you. I was bullied and harassed by a Manager who would take me away from view of others and make my life unbearable, couldn't say anything cause the Manager thought she was wonderful, so the constant taunts never ceased and caused my severe anxiety. When I left I was diagnosed with work stress breakdown, severe anxiety and work place burnout. Had to see a mental health professional for many months and was prescribed medication. Before I left Big W, I had started showing signs of a major breakdown, physiologist said it was at least 8 months beforehand, and no Manager took me aside to see how mentally I was doing, even though they knew they pushed me to breaking point and it was obvious I was crying out for help by my actions, but no they just kept up the bullying and the forcing me to work more and more shifts ("C'mon mate you can do it, don't let the team down") guilt tripping me.
Also they make you work as a door greeter
ProsNone, none what so ever at all, ever
ConsLong hours, bullying by Managment, No career progression, No encouragement to be your best
The older staff are the worst for picking on other team members at the store I work at. Not a day goes by without some kind of workplace drama. I feel like I am back at school with children that don't know how to respect others. Instead childishly picking on another team member that they have taken a dislike too for whatever reason.
Over the years I have watched other team members be broken down by certain staff over time. Some have gone on stress leave to never return thereafter. And in the end are so much happier for having left. Others have willingly cut their own hours to give up certain shifts in an effort to escape from having to be working with a certain staff member that is causing them stress.
I personally have felt so down after my shifts each week. And, have sadly broken down in tears from the treatment of other staff at my store. As well as the stress of my role.
Something needs to be done to address this behavioural issues amongst certain staff. But, it won't. They have been there for years. So, it feels like they have an entitlement.
Management doesn't appear to care at the best of times. And is often 'buddy like' with some bullies. Speaking to management about such concerns feels like a waste of time. You know you will be spoken about to others for speaking up. (Confidentiality has gone out the door) And, nothing good will ever come from it.
We have so much training for customer service and safety in the workplace etc When I think we truly nee
ConsVery Stressful and often understaffed during my shift.
*I am writing this from a casual worker myself point of view*
Over my nearly two years working at Big W, I've worked in different positions including night fill, customer service, checkout, self-serv, doorman, recovery, home entertainment and party etc.
As a casual, my hours and work vary from week to week. I don't know when and what I will be doing until I get called in (usually a few hours before the shift) and turn up to work. One day I work on the floor and next day I am at the back dock listing.
I've also seen so many changes around the store from the physical parts (planogram, store refit) to the policy parts and from the management to the staff. The only thing that won't change is it is constantly changing.
The good - working with some really nice and friendly people who treat you like a family member; flexible work hours: shift date and time are easily negotiable; staff discount.
The bad - inconsistent hours; constant tight budget means not enough team members to do the jobs and fewer people to share workflows; frequent changes of management and policy leads to low employee morale.
Things that don't make sense to me - Day staff taking their sweet time while casual workers are pushed to the limits; when area manager/someone higher up is visiting the whole store is preparing to war and the next day it appears as if nothing happened; My Move; advertised items not available in the store; most on hold items are not picked up by customers.
If you want t
I work as a Party Enthusiast, therefore my main job descriptions include; party planning, inflating balloons, playing with children, dressing up, and selling our product. It's a very fun job, especially on the weekends as we are very busy and the balloon orders just keep coming. It's essential to come to work with a happy, bubbly personality as you are in a party store so you need to be enthusiastic and get people excited about whatever event they are planning!
I have learned a lot in the way of event management and how to interact with children. I have worked retail for 7 years so those skills I already had obtained earlier.
The party section is somewhat seperate the rest of Big W, so we have our own co-workers which are seperate to the rest of the store. Another manager, a series of part-timers and casuals. All of these people are amazing to work with and are passionate about their role.
The hardest part of my job is that it's quiet for most of the week. When I applied I thought that it would be a fast paced work environment and it has turned out the opposite. There's many days that you are just twiddling your thumbs because there's no customers, and I have run out of things to clean.
The most enjoyable part of my job is the customers! I love people and I love helping them get exactly what they pictured in their mind when they walked through the doors. The children are always so much fun and are always interested in the balloons and they always love our costumes
This place has destroyed my soul.
Talk about feeling like an adult that has been taken back in time to high school with a bunch of gossiping bullies.
Talk about feeling like a prisoner serving time that is constantly being watched over cameras. On the floor and with timing your tea breaks. 15 mins to leave your work station, walk to the back of the store, go upstairs, toilet, supposedly still have time to make a cup of tea, supposedly drink that same tea and then head downstairs and back to your workstation.
Talk about feeling like a victim of mental abuse from the downright rude trouble making customers that you encounter each week.
You reach out to management only to find out later that they rewarded the customer for their bad behaviour towards their team member with a gift card and chocolates or some other suck up gift.
No reward for the team member who was the victim of the verbal attack.
There is no protection or support. (oh but wait... they will pretend to care if you make a little song and dance about the issue. They will even hand out a contact card for EAP services. Mainly to shut you up I presume. That or because it is written in the guidelines and done purely out of procedure) Because they truly only care about their customers at BIG W.
Sick of giving so much effort to this workplace for so little in return.
There is no rewards other than a discount team benefits card and being able to go home to a better life after your shift.
ProsTeam Benefits card and home time. Thank god I have a life outside of BIG W.
ConsGossiping, Bullying, Abuse from customers, Camera monitoring, Fight for annual leave, High stress, Difficult team members and management
An enjoyable workplace with an excellent family-oriented atmosphere
A typical day at work involved making sure the criteria was not only met, but done at a high standard that customers and managers alike would recognise.
I learned quite a few things during my time working for Big W. I am now quite confident in initiating conversations and offering aid to customers, using technological devices such as the RF Symbol Unit, the check out screen, ISP, and much more. Not only that, I learned what customers have a general like and dislike towards in terms of displays, promotions and reoccuring products.
The co-workers were always a pleasant bunch of people. When personal problems would occur within the workplace, most associates would understand issues going on and reach out to help in any possible way.There is always drama somewhere in the workplace though, but that is expected when workin with such a diverse group of people.
The hardest part of the job was ensuring that customers were pleased with their experience within the store. Sometimes unfortunately I could not cater to their needs, and had to give them bad news such as a product becoming quit, or that the warehouse has stopped distributing popular items during busy times of the year, i.e. Christmas. It is unpleasant to do that because you don't know if the customer will react negatively or positively, but its part of the job description.
The most enjoyable part of the job was rearranging stock to coenside with new planograms being sent in. It was always a fun to take stock off the shelf
ProsMaking new work friends
Customer Service Representative | Pakenham VIC | 29 Jan 2021
Great work/life balance and pay for a retail job
A typical day for me would include being on the shop floor mostly within the hard goods side of the store and serving any customers that need a hand, especially during the busy weekend trade. Working store stock during and after store operating hours and listing any excess stock to existing pallet(s) out the back dock. Also ticketing any lines that have missing shelf tickets. Especially in the Toy section as that was my main zone/area of expertise. Also general cleaning duties which includes tidying the store and back dock ready for the next days trade.
Hardest part of the job was sometimes dealing with unhappy customers as well as being short-staffed which lead to extra pressure getting tasks done throughout the shift.
Most enjoyable part of the job were very supportive colleagues as we consider ourselves like family and being praised by management for hard work and effort into your work
Future improvements that could be made include extra staff rostered on for weekend shifts and busy periods. Especially for floor staff as it can be difficult being the only one on the floor at times as well as better organisation as to who's working in which department at any given time. Also accessibility to be able to pick up extra shifts so that shift allocation is as fair as possible. Otherwise I have no further suggestions for improvement and would happily work for Big W again :)
- Helping my supervisor starting in the morning by doing cash counts for all the registers and starting all the self serve machines.
- Making sure there are bags in the self serve registers and the registers and neat and tidy.
- Multitasking by working at self-serve, if its busy then I work on the registers, handle customer complaints at the Courtesy desk as well as manage phone calls.
- Checking bags and making sure customers are aware its part of store policy.
- Paying close attention and observing customers, their purchases and catching thieves.
- Doing recovery of stock, filling the fridges and shelves.
- Contacting managers and store associates for price checks and approvals.
- Helping my supervisor if I am doing night shifts to close the store.
I have learned to handle difficult customers and make sure they do not leave disappointed by maintaining a good rapport and making sure I understand their problem and provide the best customer service I can. It's always hard to manage customer's from different backgrounds as language can be a barrier, however this job has thought me that action speaks louder than words. I have learned to read customer's and communicate to them through actions if they did not speak English. It's important to be positive and face challenges confidently, never hesitate to ask if your uncertain and if your wrong then you learn from your mistakes and make sure you don't repeat it. This is my motto and the way I work.
Prosmy colleagues are extremely friendly and supportive, fair breaks, clean and friendly environment, and work is 15 mins away (by walk) from where i reside.
Consstore closes at 9pm.
Questions And Answers about Big W
What interview questions do they ask at BIG W?
Asked 14 Apr 2017
What is your understanding of this role
Answered 29 Sept 2019
Customer priority is number one
Like to work in retail
Answered 15 Nov 2018
What are the working hours at BIG W?
Asked 27 Mar 2017
Answered 15 Nov 2018
7.5 hrs daily
Answered 21 Feb 2018
Is there a required age for recruitment at Big W
Asked 30 Sept 2017
14 and 9 months
Answered 26 July 2019
14 years old
Answered 23 Feb 2019
Does BIG W have a staff discount? How much is BIG W’s staff discount?
Asked 17 May 2017
Yes we do , we have a staff discount everyday rewards card and its 10% off
Answered 16 May 2019
5% off all woolsworth limited brands
Answered 11 Feb 2018
What is the interview process like at BIG W?
Asked 30 Nov 2018
I was phoned for a group interview the day before. There were over 30 people who came to the group interview and only 10 were being selected. We did a group interview by splitting into 3 groups of 10 and doing a priority task activity - fairly easy. Then individual interviews followed with around 10 questions where the manager writes your answers down. 5 days later, got an email and message for an offer to the job!
Answered 7 Dec 2019
The interview process was like any other interview at a retail store, it starts off as a one on one interview if you are successful you will be contacted to do another interview with a group and then you will start training online then do training while on the shop floor.