Airgas, overall, could be a terrific company to work for. Pay and benefits (at least for Union drivers) are top notch.
But there are some serious management issues, not just at the branch level, but at the upper levels.
Dealing with HR can be a nightmare. Having dealt with two different HR reps from two completely separate divisions, it appears as though the HR issues are probably company-wide. Problems include...ill-informed HR and HR that takes forever to respond, or just doesn't respond at all.
Branch management...well this will probably depend on the specific branch but...ours was terrible. The branch manager was a nice enough guy but negligent. The supervisors he installed were generally terrible. The last one was cocky and arrogant.
Be prepared for the most ridiculous safety meetings. In one case, our safety meeting was all about boating safety. Boating safety? What's next? How to safely maneuver a shopping cart? In another meeting, he told the guys they had to work together like ants and snowflakes. Kid you not.
The overall culture...well...a departing sales manager said it best. Airgas is a company that punishes the employees that work hard, and rewards the employees that slack, complain and whine. You've got some guys that are loaded down with work...and some guys that hardly take out any stops. Then there are the guys that take all day long to accomplish the same work that another guy does in half the time.
There's a meme that perfectly sums up Airgas' culture. If you search American Management Explained, you'll find it. It fits Airgas to a T.
Our time with Airgas wasn't all negative. We made a lot of money (mostly due to mismanagement, which led to a boatload of overtime), and our benefits truly were excellent. I especially enjoyed the Holiday Honeybaked Ham and the Perks Program. But we won't miss the overall culture of the place.