CPI Corp Employee Reviews

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love taking pictures
Photographer/Sales Associate (Current Employee) –  Sydney, NS12 October 2017
love my job but not enough hours to live on, management is overly pushy and is not very flexible in scheduling or receptive to accommodating part time workers and are unable to keep employees.
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Co-op placement
Partner (Former Employee) –  Toronto, ON31 August 2017
Although I was not a employee at this corporation and I was a co-op student I was welcomed and treated as one of the team. They gave me the opportunity to learn and grow within the company in which I was able to gain the knowledge and experience when it comes to Human Resources. My supervisor gave me the opportunity to work with all the different departments that this company has to offer whether it be the warehouse, office or reception.

During my time here I was able to learn many different computer programs, filing, marketing and many more.

They were very understanding when it came to my school work life.
Pros
amazing management
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Fun working enviroment
Studio Manager (Former Employee) –  Ottawa, ON1 August 2017
I loved working for CPI CORP. The hours were great, I was able to manage the studio while in school full time.

The hours were typically 10-7 with a 1 hour lunch break. The hardest part of the job was working at one of the slower studios and working all day alone with very few customers. It made the day very long.

The best part was doing photo sessions and getting the kids to laugh, also seeing happy parents walk away with beautiful pictures.
Pros
Great Staff
Cons
Underpaid
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Self-employed, looking to transition from consulting to full time work.
Channel Partner Innovators (Current Employee) –  Toronto, ON14 February 2017
I started CPi i 2008 and found my experience consulting to the IBM channel highly rewarding. In recent years, IBM has transitioned much of it's funding away from channel partners which has negatively impacted my business. While I have transitioned my work to other vendors, revenues have been unstable as channels are in a state of transition (much of the focus is on "recruitment" of partners rather than transforming them).
Pros
N/a
Cons
N/a
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Love what I get to do,
District Manager (Former Employee) –  southern alberta8 December 2016
A typical day at work would be ensuring all my locations are up and running, that all locations are properly staffed. I would ensure all locations are meeting daily sales goals.I learned that there are jobs that you get to do and jobs that you have to do and management is something you get to do. er
Pros
Watching you develop people into their careers
Cons
loosing people to other jobs
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OK job
Photographer/Customer Service Rep (Key Holder) (Former Employee) –  Kingston, ON8 December 2016
it was an OK job
the District manager and assistant DM was something less then desireable
but the customers where great and the actual photo taking was OK
there was no room for your own creativity only SET poses

OK job
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Productive and fun workplace
PRODUCTION ELECTRONIC TECHNICIAN (Former Employee) –  Concord, ON4 April 2016
Productive and fun workplace, good benefits, good management, good place for job and carrier, nice co- workers, ways for carrier, good placement, big parking
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Fast pace, Creative, Fun Environment
District Manager, (Former Employee) –  Manitoba - Western Ontario12 August 2015
Managing multiple stores in two separate divisions was both challenging and rewarding. Everyday was different and although planning was essential, change was inevitable and being able to think on your toes and adapt was crucial. Creative ways of running the business was rewarded and often recognized between peers. There were challenges and targets and lots of great competition to keep you engaged and motivated. There were multiple support tools and resources on how to be successful.

Getting involved and showing teams how to be successful was encouraged, which allowed more hands on training and great manager employee relationships that in the end built team support. Managers were leaders and worked with the team.

The hardest part of the job would be work life balance. There were times that working around the clock was mandatory for a successful business. However there were times that you cold take that time in the off season.

Great career!
Pros
Make your own schedule, creative environment, many growth opportunities
Cons
Some unexpected travel
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Photographer
Studio Associate / Photographer (Former Employee) –  North Vancouver, BC4 May 2015
90% of the time you will be working alone, managing the studio and handling retail.

They hire you as a photographer even if you do not have any photography experience at all. And don't expect to have proper training. The training given is just a surf the CPI website and read. For a "profesional" photography service that they claim to offer, employing people with no experience in photography is very untruthful with their clients.

Management-wise, you are left alone without proper training managing a great number of clients complaining because the stores only require one person to do the job for a 2-3 person job.

You will be taking passport photos, portrait photos, handling cash, receiving shipment, and you need to finish on-time. If you go over store hours because you can't manage to close the store / studio alone with the amount of clients, you also don't get paid overtime.

The experience was so bad I didn't even care to last more than a month. It was a total waste of time and energy.
Pros
None
Cons
Management, No-Overtime Pay, Always low on staff, low pay.
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Fun place to work
Associate (Former Employee) –  Toronto,ON7 October 2014
My day working there ,were responsible and having fun taking pictures ,after that,the responsibility selling packages ,cash operator. Always greet customer with a smile on ,making then feel comfortable, some times working alone all day made me learn and practice more and more about customer service.
My co-workers was a real team ,honesty ,friendly and professional.
The hardest part was when I wanted to do something more or different but I had to keep on The company rules.
Everything was enjoyable ,I was learning and showing growth ,the most enjoyable was feel professional,solve problems alone in a fast paced Environment,made me feel happy ,it was a kind of a job I was doing like hobby a thing you know how to do ,what to say ,how to solve ,makes you go happier to work ,because you wont have any complains and this is the better thing for me never having complains.
Pros
Clients compliments
Cons
work sundays
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Never working for this company again
Photographer (Former Employee) –  Winnipeg29 September 2014
Terrible experience, you get treated like garbage, no bonuses, no raises. Overworked and underpaid.
Pros
Hour lunches
Cons
Everything
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Picture Me Portrait Studio
Studio Manager (Former Employee) –  Fort Frances,On9 June 2014
I managed one of their studios and found it very rewarding. To be able to photograph family memories and firsts. The only downside to where I was working was I could only have part time staff because we were located in a small town and it was hard to find someone who would take a part time position and keep it.
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Cpi
Manager (Former Employee) –  newmarket14 April 2014
Working for CPI was a great job it was fun and challenging. I loved the mix of creativity and professionalism.
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Was good but no support
Walmart portrait studio (Former Employee) –  Prince Albert sk21 January 2014
When I started my manager was really nice she decided to quit I was the only one work district wouldn't help me they didn't even really hire anyone to help me out working 7 days a week
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Horrible management, treats employees with overall disrespect
Photographic Services Sales Representative (Former Employee) –  Belleville Ontario28 August 2013
You come into work and deal with rowdy children and get paid "a competitive salary" (.25 over minimum wage) constantly harassed by management for not brining in sales and when you do bring in sales you didn't do good enough. Management is so scattered brained and doesn't care about you unless you bring in $1000 in sales on one person. The District Manager expects you to do things she should be doing. They are so understaffed, I was practically working every single day and when I wasn't a manager was there doing nothing and complaining you aren't bringing sales up. I will NEVER return to this job. My district manager didn't even care enough about me to say bye, and I know she was working that day. Do not bring yourself to work here, fast food is better then this.
Pros
You get a discount at Sears
Cons
Everything else
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Love photgraphy.....company policy and practices suck!
sales associate (Former Employee) –  Toronto, Ont25 June 2013
Loved photography and the rewards of pleased customers, disliked the smile searching, contact calls and the late lunch. You have to be a pushy person to sell the high priced bundles, my training was not done correctly and my DM is rude. They write you up for zero shoot days and can fire you after three strikes....zero tolerance for a low economy......take a different job!
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Worst job I ever had
photographer (Former Employee) –  oshawa16 April 2013
Worst job I have ever had! Now I understand why they are constantly looking for staff. Unprofessional management. What was expected from you was unreasonable. poor pay.coworkers immature. Noone was a professional photographer
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Productive and positive place to work, you have to be good with kids to work here.
Part Time Photographer (Current Employee) –  Aurora, Ontario21 February 2013
Lots of fun learning new photography skills, patience is required when working with children and busy times in the store.
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absentee management + unqualified staff + low quality products = unhappy customers
Photographer/Sales Associate (Former Employee) –  Calgary, AB5 February 2013
CONS
Every day presented new challenges:
-There were a lot of unhappy customers due to poor quality printing from the lab or poor quality photography from the untrained/unqualified staff.

-The most difficult part of the job was trying to help the unhappy customers. Many of them had been ignored/left unresolved by either the manager or previous staff members, and their cases often became long term issues.

-There was no system in place to track and monitor the quality, nor shipping/receiving of the products.

-The management seemed to only care about the sales numbers, rather than the individual clients or the quality of the products.

-The number of tasks assigned for the day was often unrealistic; many of the tasks, such as cold calling customers, are for strictly increasing sales numbers/bookings.

-Tasks that would benefit the productivity and general maintenance of the studio is discouraged in favour of tasks that increase sales, resulting in messy/disorganized studios.

-Co-workers are not necessarily photographers, as the rate of pay is too low for any serious photography professional. Despite the Sears Quality Guarantee, the photography unfortunately reflects this.

-There is a discord when the high expectations of customers are met with the low level of product quality.

PROS
-The most enjoyable part of the job is interacting with the nice customers and children that come into the studio, and creating their memories through photography.

-Genuine appreciation from the customers that were happy with quality photography.

-I learned a lot of techniques for photographing
  more... groups and maintaining control in the studio.  less
Pros
1 hour lunch and (low season)
Cons
long hours, often without a break (peak season)
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Awful company with shockingly terrible treatment of employees!
Associate/Photographer (Former Employee) –  Central Alberta, Canada14 October 2012
I spent three years in total at this job. All I can think of to begin with is that they need a complete make over.

I took the job thinking that I would be trained properly on how to work the camera and the equipment in the studio, only to learn that there was no real training available from head office. I was thrown in during busy season (December) and expected to run the studio by myself within the first week of working there.
When the manager left the company to pursue another career, I was offered the managerial position WITHOUT a pay raise.

For the two following years, I was never offered a raise, but the work load piled on higher and higher. I am to understand that the raises are given out once per year in April, and even though I was working sometimes 6-7 days in a row, I was still not eligible for a raise, because my 'PRS' or 'sales' weren't high enough.

In December of 2011, I finally got the opportunity to spend some time abroad, so I quit my job with an offer from the current manager to come back if I wanted to.
I came back home after my opportunity came to an end, and resumed my position, after a complicated re-hire.
I spent three weeks without a paycheque because they changed the system in the computer for clocking in and out, and because the DM had forgotten to contact head office about me being a rehire.

The first phone call in which I spoke to her about it, she had the audacity to ask me if I was going to "stick around this time" (after being an employee, working two consecutive Christmas seasons with only myself and the current manager holding the studio afloat,
  more... both of us being the only reliable employees they could find to work).
Meanwhile, I was 'promoted' to full time hours, seeing as we were in need of extra coverage at the studio.

Not two months later, the studio hours were cut, meaning I could no longer be afforded the hours to obtain full time, seeing as the manager was required to have full time. I asked the DM why, and as she explained it to me, she did not see our studio to be "high volume" (even though our goals were chillingly similar to the busiest studio in our district with four employees, as opposed to our two) and that there needn't be more than one employee working per day.

After this happened, the goals were raised and instead of having to shoot 6 poses per session, we now had to incorporate 12 'sellable' poses, meanwhile taking passport photos and delivering printed portraits to previous customers... all with one person a day. I can safely say I've never wished I could clone myself more.
When the equipment broke down or got dirty, it also became the employee's prerogative to fix and/or clean the item. Technical help was based in the United States and would usually be unreachable by telephone (eg. ~30 calls ahead of you etc.) and once reached would be largely unhelpful. In my three years of employment, I had only seen a field tech twice. The camera was loose on its tripod and the lights malfunctioned frequently. The curtains used for floor posing would often get dirty and needed to be taken home to be washed.
The software was dated and unable of fixing blemishes, and the print lab was printing things wrong, more often than not. Customers complained constantly about not having Photoshop and misprints, and only having one employee working per day.
When the studio ran out of things like envelopes and paper and till tape, the DM told us to purchase supplies out of pocket and wait until she would be around to refund us.
On Wednesdays, the manager or a tenured employee would be required to take half of their lunch and spend it on a conference call ("but clock in for it!"), and on Mondays, you were required to take the monetary deposit of cash to the bank... on your lunch hour.

And that was only the tip of the iceberg.
NEVER WORK FOR THIS COMPANY IF YOU VALUE YOUR SELF-WORTH AND BEING RESPECTED!!!!!
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Pros
getting to see cute kids on a daily basis, customer relations.
Cons
everything!!!!
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Overall rating

3.4
Based on 355 reviews
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Work/Life Balance
3.3
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3.1
Job Security/Advancement
2.8
Management
3.1
Culture
3.3