Waterstones Watch

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~Bex~
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#1
Report Thread starter 13 years ago
#1
Has anyone here had a part time job at waterstones? I'm thinking about applying and was wondering what it's like. What sort of hours are you expected to work? What sort of stuff do you have to do? How much did you get paid? Did you enjoy it or was it awful? Anything you can tell me really.
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Immy
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#2
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I dunno but waterstones is a great place.... Smells nice and it's full of books!
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bluenoxid
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#3
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I have no experience of waterstones but i remember chatting to someone at Ottakers who said they did alot of dressing up for childrens book launches.
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libby227
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#4
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Hiya well i can officially say i have worked for Waterstones part time for the last 2 1/2 years!! IMO the pays pretty good, Grade 1 has just gone up to £5.05 ph, (but im grade 2 tho mmwwhahahah!!lol). The discount is 33% and you get 20% off at HMV coz there owned by the same company!

Well what does my superb job involve....... eeerrrm i serve customers/ put out books/dust/tidy/organise/change displays/do returns. Thats about it really!!

Any other questions?
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bluenoxid
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#5
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Im tempted to work there. the pay is similar to morrisons and the job is easier
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Ardea
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#6
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Waterstones only contacted me after I had started work as a bookseller for WHSmiths. I should imagine Waterstone's runs in a similar way, but with cleaner skips.

My hourly rate was £5.60, which was pretty good considering I was only 17 when I started. I did 39 hours a week: 9-6 four days a week, with 9-5 on Wednesdays.

Stuff you have to do:

Stock replenishment: Copies of books bought the day before arrive in a big ol' skip, and have to be replaced on the shelves.
Line Delivery: Each section gets a bulk delivery of books once a week. You have to cram as much of this stock as possible onto your shelves without damaging the stock, shelves or overstocking one title.
Pick Delivery: If a section looks particuarly ropey, your super will usually get the stockroom to send extra skips of books from those lines to try and plug the gaps.
Cycle Delivery: Skips and skips full of books to go on promo, that will need stickering (and subsequent de-stickering afterwards).
New Title Delivery: The fun one. A package of brand new books arrives for you to lovingly find homes for.

Cleaning: Cleaners at Smith's are not contracted to touch the books, so we had to dust the bookshelves and books ourselves. It took two months of campaigning before they would buy us proper dusters.
Tidying: The average customer is a lazy idiot, seemingly unable to replace a book in the place they removed it from. You will spend a lot of time re-alphabetising and re-ordering.

Selling books: Something I tried to avoid as much as possible, but ultimately inescapable.
Ordering books: You'll spend a lot of time using the company's ordering system, or ordering through Gardner's Books. Any lead time above 48 hours means they don't have it in stock; anything over a fortnight means it's unlikely to arrive.
Searching for books: 'It had a red cover - and I think it's about this woman'. Actual query. The ordering database and the Publishers Red Book will be your friends.

Stocktaking: From time to time Management will hand out a list of books that must be on display, and someone will have to go and hunt them down - and possibly order more.
Learning to love your sections: I worked in the biggest Smith's bookshop in the country, and there were very few staff, so I had to look after General Fiction, Romance, Sci-Fi and Fantasy, Crime, History and Computing. The more time you put into learning which books you've got, the better you'll be at helping customers. You need to keep your sections clean and tidy, as well as making sure you've got enough of the big titles at all times.
Undoing damage: Saturday staff don't do enough maintainence. Your sections will be trashed come Monday morning. Prepare to start all over again...

I really enjoyed my time at Smith's, and I've got a job waiting for me during the holidays, too. I loved working with the books. I came to loathe the more gormless customers. The worst part was the dermatitis I contracted from handling dry books all day long, but a tube of handcream in your locker can solve that easily. It's a great job.
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Lauren_E
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Ha! My favourite is "its purple and about this big (indicates size with hands) and it was on your front table about two months ago, what do you mean I have to be more specific?"

Anyone who wants to know about working in a bookshop should read George Orwell's "Essays", it proves annoying book customers have been around forever
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buttons7
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#8
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i work in ottakar's and i dress up for children's stuff! but i don't think that happens so much in waterstones. all i can say is, if it's a bookshop, then it'll be a cool place to work (though obviously not as cool as ottakar's).
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buttons7
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#9
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(Original post by Lauren_E)
Ha! My favourite is "its purple and about this big (indicates size with hands) and it was on your front table about two months ago, what do you mean I have to be more specific?"

[/I]
i hate that. i hate it so much. i hate it even more when they look at you like you are a fool of the first water for not immediately knowing what they are talking about.
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fr browne
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#10
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Ive just applied at a Waterstones near me for Saturday and twice weekly afternoon work. Many thanks to Ardea for thwe info, it'l make me sound like I know what Im on about!
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*starry_eyed_*
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#11
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i really really want to work there...but the nearest one to me is over an hour away!
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fr browne
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#12
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(Original post by *starry_eyed_*)
i really really want to work there...but the nearest one to me is over an hour away!
Unlucky, maybe you could move to the town/city :p: Its great to hear all htis talk of good pay. Though i only needs £15 a qeek to "survive" I can finally start saving up for Uni.
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Babik
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#13
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Just wondered if anyone had any interview tips for Waterstones, and if they could release any information on what the interview is like! I got a phone today asking to come for an interview on the 12th september. I really want this job big time!!!
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Reynard
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#14
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#14
are waterstones or other big shops flexible about how many hours you do a week. i only want to do a few afternoons a week.
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libby227
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#15
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#15
eerm really depends on the size of the shop!! i work at Nottingham Bridlesmith Gate waterstones and its one of the largest in the company and theyre not that flexible, mainly coz theyre overstaffed though.
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trev
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#16
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#16
I want to work there too. I called my local waterstones store today. They said they only have vaccancies during christmas time.
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