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Save On Foods

Size of company: Large (More than 500 employees)

Industry: Retail Trade

  • Part one of my review:

    I have been working in the front end of one of the stores for more than one year so I feel that I can provide an accurate review my job.
    Business model, vision and strategy: The philosophy that Save-On-Foods uses and preaches is putting customers first. I think that in these times, providing great customer service is the way to go when differentiating yourself from the competition and getting customers to come back. Unfortunately, their prices can sometimes be a bit pricier than most other grocery stores.
    Management's skills: Most managers are very good at their jobs and treat employees fairly. I have had a few bad experiences with one of the managers but otherwise I feel good about the management team. I feel that there is a lack of communication at certain times but it is sometime I can deal with. I am very surprised with how well employees are treated by management compared to some other companies.
    Values and corporate culture: The company's commitment to environmental responsibility is very impressive but I feel that it can be improved in several ways. Their respect of employees is unparalleled in this retail industry compared to bigger multinational corporations.
    Internal communication: Internal communication is decent, but I feel "out of the loop" when it comes to certain important decisions head office or store management has made. I feel that internal communication can be improved in that area.
    Feedback: I have no complaints about the amount of feedback I receive from supervisors and management. We have a system called SPIFI that recognizes hard work and actions that go above and beyond your job; employees nominate each other for this. Whenever we receive positive comment cards from customers, we are often told about this and shown the comment card.
    Recognition: Depending on your position in the store, some employees may feel more important to the organization than others. I feel that the company lacks this recognition of importance because we do not usually receive enough feedback about the ideas that we bring forth to head office. I would like to know the progress of my idea and what the people at head office think about it.
    Pride: I am proud to work for a company that puts such a great emphasis on good customer service. Unfortunately, there is not too great of a reputation for working in a retail/grocery store environment.
    Engagement: There is not too much that this company does to tell you what you have done to contribute to their success.
    Work space (layout): This company places an important emphasis on safety and there are a countless amount of safety precautions that they use to promote safe working habits. There is a health and safety team that responds to anonymous complaints regarding work safety, incident reports, etc. Any unsafe working condition is dealt with promptly and I feel no need to feel unsafe when I am working. Being a cashier, I was given a safety book but I feel that parts of the book are a bit ridiculous and unnecessary.
    Atmosphere: The atmosphere is clean, organized, professional and friendly. There are some grocery stores that are too dark or too "hospital-like", but I feel that the stores have a balanced atmosphere.
    Recruitment, development, retention: I really don't like the new recruitment process, which does everything online. You fill in an online form and submit your resume. The recruiters at head office look over everything and eventually contacts you. I feel that this takes away the personal touch of bringing in your resume to the store. Throughout my year with this store, I have seen a lot of people come and go, and out of all the people that got hired along with me, I am one of the two that remain. (The list of service clerks/baggers changes around completely after a few months.) This company does lack in its ability to keep employees. In some cases, however, some employees have worked for more than 25 years.

    Posted on 14 December 2012 by Rater #2 | Flag as inappropriate

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Part three of my review:

Stress: You shouldn't be stressed with your job unless you work a management position. Working on the customer service desk can be hectic at times with unhappy customers.
Work/family life balance: I commend the management at my store for being so flexible with this. I never have a problem booking a day off in advanced.
Advancement: It is harder to move up and find a position of greater responsibility but I find that it keeps the bad ones out. Don't be afraid of asking for that position because many people feel that it is only possible to move up if you have worked there for 20 years. That is false in many cases. There are not many positions that you can move up to, unless you want to take a management course and eventually, become a manager. As a cashier, you can move up to work on the service desk, price change, and payroll.
Recommendable: Overall, I think it would be great for any ones first job as they will train you very well. The lack of engagement, certain routine jobs, and lack of ability to advanced might prevent me from recommending this employer to someone.

Posted on 14 December 2012

Part two of my review:

Tasks and responsibilities: I feel that my job has reached a point where I am striving to find something more challenging. Certain positions in the store can become pretty repetitive and routine, while other jobs are more challenging.
Teamwork and cooperation: Believe it or not, the amount of teamwork and cooperation is based somewhat on the location. I have seen some cases where the management of some stores puts more emphasis on teamwork while others do not care. Fortunately, my location is usually very good with helping one another and employees that transferred from other locations have noticed this. The company's philosophy places a high degree of emphasis on good teamwork though.
Organization of work: In most cases, organization is not a problem but it can be a little hectic if co-workers don't cooperate.
Compensation and benefits: The benefits and compensation are pretty average with other stores, and the wages are not very competitive when you are paid the starting wages. The pay gets very good when you work over 7500 hours as a cashier and you receive $20.80/hour. (This varies from store to store. One of the stores only go up to $14.00/hour at this time. For the people that have worked a lot they get to keep their wages.) The salary of cashiers is also higher than other positions in the store. You get double and a half of what you normally get paid when you work on a holiday and you also get paid for every holiday you aren't working (depending on how many hours you have worked that week) (Note that this goes on top of the double and a half you get paid). I have also received some dental benefits and a pension.
Schedule, work load and holidays: Receiving days off is never a problem if you tell them before they post your schedule. If you are planning to take a day off when they have already posted the schedule, it is your responsibility to find someone to take your place, which makes sense. If you are sick or have something very important to do, they will do without you, try to find a replacement or compensate. I am always told that I can change my availability ahead of time to fit my school schedule and I am able to request more or less hours. They are always willing to deal with complicated schedules and are very flexible with this. Schedules are given 3 weeks in advanced and are up online by Sunday.

Posted on 14 December 2012

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