Barnes & Noble

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Barnes & Noble Reviews

Updated 18 August 2014
Updated 18 August 2014
1,031 Reviews

3.3
1,031 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
(no image)
Michael Huseby
127 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • It's nice to get a decent discount on books and have access to the titles (in 49 reviews)

  • The one thing that I can say about this company is that you get a pretty great employee discount (in 90 reviews)


Cons
  • Very limited in the opportunity to grow beyond minimum wage (in 68 reviews)

  • The company had some serious problems that turned a great part-time job into a so-so (in 48 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Great job while working in high school

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Bookseller  in  Salt Lake City, UT (US)
    Former Employee - Bookseller in Salt Lake City, UT (US)

    Pros

    nice managers, friendly environment, easy going, company discounts, paid holidays

    Cons

    you run into a lot of wierdos that come in

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Great place to work for a student

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Bookseller  in  McLean, VA (US)
    Former Employee - Bookseller in McLean, VA (US)

    Pros

    Great, fun, and interesting people. Flexible hours, which is great if you are a student. The longer you are there, the more personal days and vacation days you get. Raises every years. Good discounts. Allows for promotions. Because it is in a mall, its not as slow and library-like as a regular Barnes and Noble.

    Cons

    Low pay. They will start you off with minimum wage if they can. Its retail so you must work holidays. Because so many employees come and go, it can make it difficult for the workplace to run smoothly. It is a dying business so they really push membership sales and nook devices.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Makes sure to walk into an actual Barnes and Noble every once in a while and stay for the day to see how the store works. Sometimes the policies and rules you have in place hinder our ability to get more work done. Planograms can be extremely difficult to accommodate since displays are usually smaller than the measurements corporate has.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    Fun place to work for all book lovers!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Children's Book Seller  in  Clay, NY (US)
    Former Employee - Children's Book Seller in Clay, NY (US)

    Pros

    Great employee discounts. Coworkers typically are very active and dedicated to the store and store events.

    Cons

    Not many opportunities for raises, typically it is only yearly. Also not much room for advancement into corporate if you are looking to get into that.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    When working many off-hours and personal money is spent planning and creating company events.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Over all good place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    Fun and honest company, Loved working there

    Cons

    Pay is not that great, Started me off a minimum wage and had 4 years experience

  6.  

    A great place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Merchandise Manager  in  Tampa, FL (US)
    Current Employee - Merchandise Manager in Tampa, FL (US)

    Pros

    There is typically a great blend of people to work with, providing an enjoyable environment in which to work.

    Cons

    The real downside mostly comes from picky or confused customers who don't know what they want. Amazon being a major competitor is a source of stress as well.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Overall, a very good environment to work in

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    -Good company
    -Clean, safe, pleasant environment

    Cons

    -Tiring to stand for hours
    -Fairly little pay (even if it is for starters)

  8.  

    Good

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Cafe Server  in  Reading, PA (US)
    Current Employee - Cafe Server in Reading, PA (US)

    Pros

    Great first part-time job, flexible schedule and good pay(not minimum wage).

    Cons

    Having to learn all the drinks.

  9.  

    Great company to work for but constant efforts to reinvent during a technological wave.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    The job is very much easy to learn and you will definitely be presented with opportunities for growth. You will build long lasting relationships with your colleagues that could prove to be beneficial in the changes you make in your life.

    Cons

    Times are changing for paper books so the identity of the bookstore is experiencing a significant shift.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Push accountability, I feel that is one of the strongest allies in building a team here.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    Great Company to work for

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Head Cashier  in  Lahaina, HI (US)
    Current Employee - Head Cashier in Lahaina, HI (US)

    Pros

    Fun work environment, management was approachable and listened, flexible schedule at the location I worked at. Company values employees and offers good insurance benefits.

    Cons

    No specific cons that are different from any other employer...Normal cons as with any other jobs. Compensation could be a little higher due to the location of the store and the cost of living...but not a hard job by any means.

    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Fun job, low pay

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Cafe Server  in  Easton, PA (US)
    Former Employee - Cafe Server in Easton, PA (US)

    Pros

    -My managers were some of the best people I have ever met
    -I worked in the cafe, and I have a strong passion for coffee, making some drinks can be fun, but this is both a pro and a con
    -Friendly co-workers
    -50% off food and drink from the cafe

    Cons

    -Although every one of my managers and co-workers were great people who cared about their job and their customers, we were constantly getting shafted by corporate telling us what to do, even if everyone agreed it made no sense.
    Examples:
    *Corporate told us were were not allowed to have tables in the cafe near the windows, even though those were customers favorite tables so they could read in the sunlight.
    *Corporate told us that we were not allowed to have notice sings posted in the back room of the cafe, these notice signs relayed important information from management to the cafe staff about new drinks, policies, and things to remember, since you don't always get to work with a manager. We were told it was "too cluttered", and were told to remove them.
    *There was an event for DC comics day going on in the store, and the cafe staff was told to come up with a special drink for the menu that day. Many great and amazing ideas were submitted, turns out it wasn't a drink competition, all you had to do was come up with a misleading name for an already existing drink. "Dark Night Frappuchino", turns out its just your basic double chocolate chip with a fancy name and thats it. "Wonder Woman White Mocha", its literally just a white mocha latte.

    -I have a strong passion for coffee, I roast my own beans and home, and have been making my own espresso for years. I knew going in that the espresso and coffee quality would not be comparable to any local cafes, but boy was I in for a surprise. Other then memorizing policy and drink recipes, there is no training of cafe employees on how to actually properly prepare an espresso based beverage. Training on steaming milk consists of the cafe manager telling you to just suck a bunch of air in with the wand, then plunge it into the milk and let it automatically turn off with the thermometer that is built into the steam wand. Other than myself, the entire cafe staff including the managers steamed the milk for all their drinks horribly incorrectly. The milk in every latte tastes burnt because the thermometers do not steam to the correct temperature, and the foam always consists of huge bubbles, not smooth creamy micro-foam. I was told by all the employees that latte art is not possible in the to-go cups. In fact it is, and I did it there for a long time, the problem is that no one gets trained on how to do it properly.

    -Employees and managers have no knowledge of their product. When I told my cafe manager than I roast my own coffee beans at home it blew her mind. She did not know that coffee comes from a green, un-roasted bean, and is then roasted in a coffee roaster to produce coffee. No one there knew anything at all about coffee or espresso. I seemed to be the only one who knew even the most basic of things that are critical to producing a quality coffee based beverage.

    -Espresso is terrible, get someone to come in and tune the espresso machines properly. It even states in the manual for the espresso machine that a double shot should be extracted in 20-26 seconds, and our machines extracted in 6. No wonder the espresso has thin lackluster crema, and thin bitter and tasteless body only suitable in highly sugared milk based drinks. Even with the inevitable pressurized environment inside the super-automatic machines, the crema is almost non existent in a single shot, we're talking less than 1mm of crema in a 1.25oz shot glass.

    -Pay is terrible and can not be lived off of by anyone, also if you are hired part time do not expect 20 hours a week. Raises are next to impossible seeing as your store managers have no control over your pay, it is all handled by some old dude behind a desk at corporate who probably hasn't set foot in one of their stores in years.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    In order of most to least important
    1. Hire people who care about coffee, and you drinks will improve themselves.
    2. Educate your cafe staff about important coffee related knowledge such as milk steaming.
    3. Make sure the espresso machines receive regular tuning.
    4. Attempt to use and acquire coffee beans that have been roasted less than a couple months ago.
    5. Pay your employees and competitive wage. Now I work at Amazon, your direct competitor, because they are paying me 13 dollars an hour.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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