Spar Business Services Employee Reviews

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Thrown into store with no training
Merchandiser (part-time) (Former Employee) –  Houston, TXNovember 5, 2017
I was hired on a Wednesday, on Thursday I got 15 minutes of telephone training on how to navigate the Web site and thrown into a store on Friday with no clear direction on what to actually do.
I did things wrong and had to go back Saturday to work for 5 hours for free to try to figure out what I did wrong.
There was no field suppors, zone manager was gone and I was referred to another rep in a different state to try to help me.
Planogram was nothing more than pictures with some products so small you could not tell what the item was, no product code, no UPC, no SKU, just small pictures.
I was unfamiliar with the product line and had no idea what I was doing.
I have 12 years of merchandising experience and have never had a Planogram with no description or numbers and have never been thrown into work with no training.
Pros
Flexibility
Cons
No mileage, no drive time, long drive time, benefits, no vacation, no field support, no training, total confusion and chaos
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Terrible company
Retail Merchandiser (Former Employee) –  Summerville, SCOctober 15, 2017
The company sucks. The management is incompetent. Does not pay travel. No benefits. They harass you about your proposed visit dates at all times of the day 7 days a week. Nothing good to say.
Pros
Direct deposit
Cons
poor management, poor communication skills, poor pay
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I enjoyed my time working for SPAR
Quality Assurance Supervisor Pharmaceutical (Former Employee) –  VariousJune 27, 2017
SPAR was interesting work. I worked for the McKesson Division and enjoyed representing McKesson and the Vendors Products. I also enjoyed setting up new pharmacies
Pros
My cat missed me- a lot of travel
Cons
Interesting work
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Under paid and over worked
Independent Contractor/Merchandiser (Current Employee) –  Frisco, TXJune 12, 2017
I think I actually lost money working at SPAR. I was told I would start at one hourly amount and they started me a whole $1.25 lower than promised with out telling me. I was also never paid for gas mileage. My manager was very nice and supportive but she is all I can say that is positive. I would be out 10 to 14 hours a day and at the MOST bring in $250 a week and I only brought that much in once.
Pros
You can pick the days and times a week you want to work
Cons
To much driving (60 to 100+ miles per day), some jobs are simply not worth the trip because of how little they pay
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Independent Merchandising Contractor
Merchandising Contractor (Former Employee) –  White Plains, NYJune 6, 2017
• Audits and data collection as requested by clients
• Inventory services as requested by clients
• Perform inventories and ensure timely correction of discrepancies
• Communicate finished orders to supervisor
• Inform supervisors and sales representatives of customer complaints and parts, products, and supply shortages
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Flexible and rewarding work experiences
Merchandiser (Current Employee) –  White Plains, NYApril 5, 2017
A typical day starts early and requires significant travel to and from job sites, but the work is relatively easy to complete and rewarding. My manager is supportive and easy to talk too.
Pros
Flexible work schedule and good pay
Cons
Significant travel between assigned locations
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Was a good fit when children were young.
Merchandiser (Part-time) (Current Employee) –  Atlanta, GADecember 19, 2016
Liked the flexibility when children were younger. 1099 given instead of W-2. Peak work season is from January to August. Slows down dramatically during the holiday season.
Pros
flexibility
Cons
Compensation- No benefits
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Good and bad
Independent Contractor (Current Employee) –  MODecember 9, 2016
If you are familiar with reading POG's and like working alone it is a plus. You will not have co- workers. There are two sides to the company National, and McKesson. National is low pay, sporadic, and demanding. Unless you happen to find a good District Manager in your area who is willing to give you continuous work. McKesson side is much better and more organized. You can actually make a really decent salary working only part time. Make sure you keep track of your work and pay.
Pros
Create own schedule, Travel, Direct deposit
Cons
YOU have to find good DM's to work with, No benefits, No way to find additional work in areas you would like
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Low Pay for Total Amount of Work
RETAIL MERCHANDISER (Former Employee) –  Mid-AtlanticOctober 9, 2016
How desperate are you? You drive on your own nickel. Pay is ONLY for in-store time! Half of the mandatory daily reports can be done via smartphone apps, the others must be done at home on a desktop with a printer--the cost of ink and paper is in you! Jobs vary widely in scope and level of difficuty and instructions are often sketchy. Jobs usually take longer than estimated so you must justify the extra time to get paid. NO compensation for time spent on reports and required photographs. Very little support and NO training from management, who supervise too many people over large territories. If you are an experienced merchandiser who can work independently with very little management support go for it!
Pros
Direct Deposit for paychecks.
Cons
Can often take two to four weeks for jobs to be paid.
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Don't do it!
Merchandiser (Former Employee) –  Amarillo, TXAugust 16, 2016
I was payed $9.00 per hour to service drug stores. The amount of paperwork you have to print is ridiculous. There are very few hours available in my part of the country. You are expected to reset certain sections each month, and check dates, and try to persuade accounts to try new products and hang an enormous amount of new tags in a very limited time frame. If you can't get it done in this 1-2 hour time frame, then you have to call a boss to see if you can stay longer. Horrible job and horrible pay. It would be a good job for retired people who are bored or in need of a little extra income. I had no co-workers or help ever. Some of the people at your assigned accounts are very nice and some are a-holes.
Pros
Can't think of any
Cons
Where do I begin?
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Overall good
Independent Contractor (Current Employee) –  OklahomaJuly 24, 2016
Ability to make my own schedule (within the job window), meeting and working with store associates, direct deposit now available (April 2016), travel reimbursement may take 1 to 2 paychecks, but my DM/Zone lead always ensures disputes are resolved. Very little paperwork to print now with the mobile app yet we're paid for printing, pay is moderate for some laborious tasks. Depending on location, travel may be extensive, my area is large and rural. Last year I drove 15,000 miles. Good thing is everything is tax deductible (fed deduction is more than what I made, so no tax liability). Was given more responsibility given my ability to travel (including overnight trips), just wish all SPAR reps had higher quality of work ethic. Most weeks work 15-30 hrs, but some only 5. Aug 1 2016 should have more steady work due to exit of competing merchandising company for some retailers.
Pros
Set own schedule, most tasks are easy, tax deductions, direct deposit
Cons
No benefits, moderate pay
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Stay away
Merchandiser (Former Employee) –  South DakotaJune 13, 2016
This company is very disorganized. The pay is half of other merchandising companies. I'm still fighting with them to get pay for hours I worked, but somehow they say weren't recorded. You also work a lot of off time hours printing papers and organizing it all. Some weeks I would print 100+ papers. For the cost of ink and rate of pay, you're losing money and wasting time. The management is also very disrespectful. They refuse to answer calls when you have questions and will completely ignore you when you start questioning where your pay is.
Pros
You can choose your own hours with reason
Cons
Lousy pay, if you get paid at all, no benefits, unprofessional management
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SPAR Merchandiser
Retail Merchandiser (Former Employee) –  MassachusettsMay 29, 2016
SPAR has several other divisions. I worked for the SPAR Reset Go Team! Worked PT as an Independent Contractor. Even though they misclassify workers(Per IRS and State Work Laws). You are responsible for all the taxes associated with the work,(ie wages)! Also they deduct workmen's comp.. from your pay check! Most travel reimbursements were not adequate. Raises well, I never got one! Work was easy, most co-workers pleasant. They would make sure there were guys on all jobs, to do any of the heavy lifting.If you know anything about Merchandising and reading Plan-O-Grams the job was decent. As PT I/C work can be very inconsistent. IF they hire U FT, or convert to FT on the GO Team, expect to travel a lot. Your territory is all of the USA.
Pros
easy work, usually comfortable environments
Cons
low pay, PT no bennies, T&E reimbursement frightful
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Spar Merchndiser
Independent Contractor (Part-time) (Current Employee) –  San Antonio, TXMay 7, 2016
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW
If you have a background in merchandising, this job is a cake walk.
If you have no clue, this job could be challenging. Super easy once you watch all the training videos. New store app software needs work. Too point & clicky
You are an independent contractor
You get to pick and choose the jobs you are interested in (you may not always get them) good job for a secondary income.
Pros
Part time, easy work, communication, support
Cons
Some assignments can be too far, training by video or pdf only. Never met anyone from my district all live elsewhere.
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To much overnight travel required.
District Manager (Former Employee) –  Auburn Hills, MIJanuary 29, 2016
I enjoyed working with my merchandisers. I loved selling in the McKesson Front Edge program. I was able to work from home 1 or 2 days a week...Unfortunately the other 3 to 4 days were spent overnight away from home.
Pros
Ran my own territory.
Cons
To much overnight travel.
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no pay, wheres the checks?
merchandiser (Former Employee) –  ohioJanuary 23, 2016
Jobs come and go..cant feed your family on area jobs unless you pick up some from another state. lots of driving and fixing other peoples work they did not do correctly. independent contractors are what you are when you work for this company,for 10.00 or less a hour..i would find a company that respects the people that work for them..and with more job and hours.
Pros
fill in time when you have nothing too do
Cons
never know if you will get paid or have work
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I just want to be paid
Travel Merchandiser/Trainer (Current Employee) –  Wichita Falls, TXDecember 8, 2015
I have worked for this company for a little over a year dedicated my life, car, and loyalty to them. When I started after awhile I began having problems with getting my mileage reimbursement on time which never stopped. I have had to basically fight for my checks to be accurate every pay period. This resulted in my manager giving me advances to make up for my lack of pay being correct. The lack of pay has progressed to the point that I will no longer dedicate myself to them. I am currently sitting here on the verge of loosing my car, my phone, my stuff I put in storage so I could travel for them. In addition to this the attorney general asked them to deduct my child support this did not happen in a timely manner so now I'm being drug into court by the state of Texas for enforcement of child support payments . So right now due to the negligence of this company I am homeless, no car because it broke down working for them , phone about to get turned off, and the last year I have given to them has left me in this position. I can only hope and pray I will receive a real check, not one that says we don't care about good employees. I can't really figure out if its the company as a whole or a problem with the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing. In addition to this I know they pry into private lives of their employees. And if you speak out you will be retaliated against. Last I thought my check was lost, it showed up today and the normal process is to wait 14 days before a stop payment can be put on a check, however my supervisor that was on vacation comes back and is  more... more than happy to put a stop payment on my check, can't tell me when the new one is coming or how it will be issued. This is how I have been repaid for dedication and loyalty to this company. I loved my job, loved all the managers of the stores I worked in, took a lot of flac when I first started because Spar was not a welcome word in many of the stores. I worked hard to earn their trust and respect. I tried to tell my supervisor several times how I felt about the payment thing she would appease me for the moment until she got all the work she wanted out of me then it was to bad so sad. To sum it up Pay is good if you ever get it and its correct, work is good..everything else sucks. Hopefully they will prove to have some morals and make this right.  less
Pros
Maybe the new CEO can fix this problem.
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Independent Contractor
Merchandiser (Current Employee) –  International Falls, MNDecember 8, 2015
worked alone, great company, good values. had enough time to complete work and meet deadlines. Wonderful company to work for just wish more jobs in my area from them.
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very sporadic schedules
Independent Contractor (Current Employee) –  Dixon, ILNovember 15, 2015
this business is an okay company to work for, if you like very sporadic work and not knowing when you are going to get paid. and the only way you have guaranteed work is if you travel with the "team". overall that the best place to work for.
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Beware of this company
Field merchandiser (Current Employee) –  Midwest areaSeptember 13, 2015
As another reviewer mentioned, SPAR Group did not send out pay checks on time in August. This is true. I am also in the Midwest region. They claimed the delay was due to Post Offices closings which forced mail to a new distribution center. I called the U.S. post office and was told there were NO Post Office closings. I then called the SPAR offices and spoke to a high level employee. As I questioned the situation, she told me to "be quiet". She was rude and nasty. It was an unbelievable experience. If you complete your work, there should be no excuse and you should receive a timely payment. SPAR Group DOES NOT offer direct deposit. I suspect this is due to cash flow problems.

SPAR Group does not value its merchandisers. We are considered contractors and in their eyes we are a dime-a-dozen. They take accounts away from you for no reason even if you've been serving the account for a long period of time. They simply don't care about you. In their view, merchandisers are a commodity that are easily replaced.

Management takes on new accounts without having the manpower to complete the work. This results in disorganization and panic in the districts. DMs are forced to reorganize their work force resulting in re assignments. As a merchandiser, your voice does not matter. You are expected to do what you are told.

SPAR Group is a publicly held company. Their share price has remained static for a long time. This last quarter (8/15) they lost revenue which is never a good sign. They recently hired a new VP of Business Development (8/15) so hopefully they will add new business and
  more... there will be less volatility for the field merchandisers. This remains to be seen.

The current situation would not make me inclined to recommend this company for employment as they are disorganized and work constantly in panic mode. This translates to instability for merchandisers. If you are looking for stability and a certain number of hours per week/month that you can count on, please look elsewhere as you will be disappointed with what the SPAR Group can offer you.
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Pros
Flexible hours
Cons
Late payments, lost accounts, disorganized, management works in panic mode
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Overall rating

3.3
Based on 49 reviews
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Work/Life Balance
3.4
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2.8
Job Security/Advancement
2.7
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3.1
Culture
2.9