Wine Rack
3.4 out of 5 stars.
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Wine Rack Employee Reviews

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This is a good company to work for if you’re interested in learning about wine and, it’s varietals and categories. If you want to become a bartender or server then this is a great place to learn and hone your wine palate. Unfortunately the compensation is poor for the physical work invited in an average day. You’ll be receiving large skids of wine and ciders twice a week, and be responsible for sticking it, placing and receiving orders. There are contests which can be fun and provide bonus money on pay checks but those are few and far between. And the abuse you’ll get from alcoholic, demanding, arrogeant customers is rather discouraging and annoying. You need to be firm and refuse people which can be intimidating. Biggest con : There’s little room for advancement in the company because they have no assistant manager positions but they do have a ‘CEC’, thats the Wine Rack’s creative way of assigning the duties of a typical assistant managers to a merchant and giving them a minuscule pay raise not worry the headaches. If you want to stay within retail I’d suggest taking your knowledge and apply to the Lcbo or, apply to be a bartender.
Pros
Flexible hours, fun team contests
Cons
Physical labour and poor compensation
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Overall A Great Workplace For Anyone Going To School or Seniors. I enjoy working here because of the customers it's a fun environment getting to know all kinds of people and regular customers.POF don't excel or go up in management, head office (not really friendly), managers are bearly there cuz they run 2 stores and are mostly at their main stores.
Pros
Alright pay (it does increase over time), wine issues (of their choice)
Cons
No lunch breaks, sometimes you only work for 3 hours waste of time, no benefits, no discounts.
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Upper management will check all the boxes of "inclusivity and equity in the workplace" in the most performative fake way. They will give you a sense of belonging only to make you feel obligated to take on whatever hours they throw at you. Horrible job for your mental health, huge amount of responsibility in terms of dealing with drunk customers and thefts. The company is too cheap to invest in good technology and the software you work with is archaic and hard to use. I worked here for almost 5 years and dealt with a lot of toxic work environments, back stabbing and poor communication in general. If there were any redeeming qualities, I would say a couple select managers who worked with me and gave me confidence in leadership, as i briefly managed a store at one point. But overall upper management runs the show and cares very little of the daily struggles that their front line workers face.
Pros
Wine knowledge, opportunity to grow
Cons
Bad hours, toxic environment, awful tech
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The employer is wholly uninterested in the well-being of its employees and is an enthusiastic union-buster, often "promoting" with no meaningful pay adjustment or true positional advancement with the aim to remove members from the union. They claim a "competitive wage" but pay slightly above the legal minimum amount. There is a negligible chance that you will be allowed to grow within the company; area managers explicitly tell shop employees that there is no want or need for your advancement and will do nothing to further it, or will mislead you about opportunities, preferring to hire from outside than to promote from within. Store-level management is often completely inept, failing at completing even the most basic of tasks, and forcing shop employees to pick up the slack. Scheduling is not completed on time and is subject to last-minute changes for which you are to be available. The company took away the pandemic pay in the middle of a health crisis, refusing outright to reinstate it. Complementary wine issues are often the lowest-tier wines, rarely worth partaking. This employer is to be avoided at all costs.
Pros
Lax work environment, casual dress
Cons
No schedule consistency, low pay, no care for employee well-being, no room for advancement, inept management
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I would NOT recommend working there. The management is not good. Destroys your mental health. Poorly run. Toxic work environment. Just overall horrible experience.
Pros
None
Cons
Bad management
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You learn a lot. You interact with people. The company is amazing. I have worked in 3 locations from woodstock to Toronto and all have been great. The mystery shoppers were always fun, the sampling mixing and creating drinks for tasting was even more fun.
Pros
Free wine
Cons
None
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All the poor ratings for this company are more to the truth than the mediocre or 5 star ratings. Fellow employees were either, a combination of, or all of the following descriptions: outright rude, conniving, condescending, arrogant, cold, unfriendly and spoke behind each others backs. Management was the same, but add unhelpful in the mix. Wages are well below the poverty line. In my humble opinion, don't waste your time if you have any self worth.
Pros
Didn't see any.
Cons
Wages are awful. That I wasted one second of my life with this company.
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They absolutely do not care AT ALL about their employees. It is run by people who clearly have no idea what they are doing, and do not care about the happiness, wellbeing or mental health of their employees. They let coworkers fight and argue, and management is intimidated by some employees who have "seniority" and threaten them constantly with telling the union. Thye literally do not care if you are happy as a worker, and do nothing at all to help or support you. The employees are constantly fighting for hours, and if you do not do so, you will get around 3-5 hours PER WEEK! This makes for an awful and negative environment to work in where employees are throwing eachother under the bus daily in attempts to get eachother written up or fired to hopefully get more hours for themselves. There is no consequences for anyones actions at all and everyone talks badly about one another behind their backs. It literally reminded me of being in high school again. 10/10 do not recommend.
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For the amount of stress you deal with on a day to day basis, Wine Merchants are extremely underpaid. Even managers are exploited and underpaid despite how much work they have to do.This company is extremely toxic. They put far too much responsibility on merchants. They advertise that there's room to be promoted, but when it comes time to do that, they avoid moving forward. They also advertise themselves as an equal opportunity employer, but when it comes time to provide accommodations for employees with special needs, they push back and often won't give them to you.
Pros
Free wine, sometimes
Cons
Rude customers, toxic employer
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Good place to start your career and build your resume up. Don’t expect to stay, the compensation does not meet minimum cost of living requirements for Toronto
Pros
You get to try new wines
Cons
Compensation is not balanced with the stress level
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The Wine Rack is a company that is ran very poorly by the upper-management, which causes most of the store managers to become frustrated due to being overwhelmed with tedious work. Their technology is obsolete (computer and scanners are from 2000) Overall, the company is good for people who like working short hours or don't need that many shifts in a week. It is good for students, however in my opinion, the stress caused from working with a company that operates like the Wine Rack isn't worth it in the long run. Managers tend to place blame where it shouldn't be placed. In my experience, most of the staff seem to be stuck in a very bad mood throughout their shifts and it creates a toxic work environment.
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It's a lovely place to work, very slow paced and relaxed environment. The upsides are you get to take home bottles of wine to sample and learn about, the clientele are typically friendly and open to suggestions/information; management is a hit and miss, upper management tends to be fantastic and always willing to listen to issues and help resolve workplace problems. Downsides are, it's near impossible to get a full time job and you're always on your feet.
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If you have previous management skills you will be so frustrated here As with many retail companies no interpersonal and no management skills I left because there was no consideration of family emergency
Pros
Free wine once a month
Cons
Unprofessional manager
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The management team is focused on creating a great team atmosphere. The pay is only $0.25 more than minimum wage but the work is fun and dealing with customers who drink wine is stressfree.
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Most challenging part was working alone for long shifts. It depends on the location, mine was slow but in a sketchy neighbourhood that was making me feel uncomfortable while at work and on my way there. Lack of security was a major reason for quitting. It’s mentally tolling to have regulars who come in every day for alcohol, if it’s bothering to you - don’t apply. The job pays bare minimum and gives raises once a year depending on your performance. You also get a decent amount of wine markouts. They want you to have full availability but don’t schedule for enough hours to make living, making it hard to find work/life/school/second job balance. If you want to grow within the company as a manager, be prepared for a long journey. However, becoming a customer experience champion will give you a lot of valuable skills in regards to staffing, ordering, labour management and such. Your coworkers really make an atmosphere, especially in locations where you are not alone all the time.
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Key Holder Balancing cash opening & closing. Ongoing learning re new wines on line & in store. Worked together as a team Load - when the truck came in with our order a lot of heavy lifting especially when there was a holiday. Loved having feedback from customers when they either loved the wine recommended and or didn't . Important to know!
Cons
Too many hours at the time for me .
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If you don’t really need work but want something to do this is the job for you you barely get hours and management is terrible as the don’t come together as a family but more and as a dictatorship
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I love working at Wine Rack. The location is great. My colleagues are lovely. I love how festive the store is, as we are always decorating the store to match the most relevant holiday.
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Its a great place to work, but they need to update the system. learned about canadian wines Workplace culture very good Training every month with wine issues
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Provided samples Loaded and unloaded bottles/boxes of wine depending on demand in store Set up orders for individuals who wanted to buy in bulk Handled complaints and returns/refunds Answered phone calls and any customer concerns In charge of close and open in the store In charge of cleaning and wiping always to make sure everything looks presentable Counted out till before, halfway and after shift to ensure no money was missing or miscounted Handled the safe Hardest part was being the only person in store and if you needed to use the bathroom you would have to close the entire store to run half way through the mall to get to a bathroom
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Good for part time Not great management Can be slow Not good working alone as coukd be security issues Hard to get by on low hour wage Some customers nice but do have to deal with issues such as rude customers that feel entitled
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