Big Lots is one of those stores that I can’t quite put my finger on. It seems like they sell a little bit of everything, which isn’t new in the department store industry, but they always sell closeout items, which mean the prices are ridiculously low. Yeah, I’ll bet that got you interested in a Big Lots application, didn’t it? This store is everywhere, and it’s still growing. They’re going to need people like to keep up the tradition. Even so, it won’t be a cakewalk to get hired. Well, it will be once you’re finished reading this, but that’s beside the point.
We’re here to tell you all about this company, what they’re about, and then show you all the benefits and positions open to you. Of course, we’ll also point you in the direction of their online employment form. Yeah, I know, we’re awesome like that.
The Company’s History & An Overview of Their Values
Not to be confused with the fictional company Tiny Lots, Big Lots is a real company that is classified as a Fortune 500 retail corporation. In case you’re not sure how big that last sentence was, I’ll explain real quick. The Fortune 500 is an annual list that is published by Forbes magazine. It lists the top 500 companies based on their gross revenue. So, if you’re on this list, your company makes a whole lot of dough. Working for a company like this is what all people dream of.
The company has over 1,400 department stores in 48 U.S. states. The stores sell toys, clothing, furniture, housewares, and electronics, anything that is considered closeout merchandise. These are items that didn’t sell for their normal price in other stores, so Big Lots gets them cheap, knocks down the price, and passes the savings on to the consumer. What’s there one day will be gone the next, which makes it a varied working environment.
The company saves even more money for themselves by purchasing buildings where other stores used to be located. For example, when Rite Aid Inc. moved a lot of its Payless Drugstores into new buildings, Big Lots moved right in. Let’s turn back the clock though, to the beginning of this currently monumental company. It all started back in 1967.
The original named was the Consolidated Stores Corporation. It was formed in Columbus, Ohio, which is where the company is still headquartered. The first closeout store under the corporation’s banner was something called Odd Lots. Uh huh, well I’ll give it to them, it’s a weird name. I would probably walk in just to see what they could possibly sell there. After a lot of acquisitions over the years, the company changed its name to Big Lots in 2001. You could memorize, but at that point it would be weird for your interviewer to listen as you rattle off each and every time the company acquired or purchased another.
The company’s culture is all about the thrill of finding a bargain. On the About Us page of their website, there is a message that speaks to the addictiveness of closeout shopping. Their merchandise is constantly changing, and the prices are far lower than traditional department stores. Everything from seasonal items, to foods, to housewares, this story has it all. Big Lots is the nation’s largest closeout retailer.
Every time you come in to work, you’ll find new products and new things to sell your customers. If you’re excited, they will be too.
There are not many stores that can compete with Big Lots in pricing. That being said, they come pretty close. The prices at Macy’s are surprisingly low on designer clothing, making your job easier. JCPenney is always running sales that bring excited customers to your location. TJ Maxx also has a similar model of switching out their products constantly, just like this company. You’ve got plenty of options at your disposal, apply to them all today!
Big Lots Application Online
Like most of these journeys that we take together, this one begins with the careers page of the Big Lots website. Here, the journey begins as you browse job openings in a location near you. You will need to make an account to apply online, but it’s about as easy as tying your shoes, so don’t sweat it. If you’re Amish, or perhaps you don’t like the impersonal nature of an online employment form, I’ve got you covered. Here’s a link to a PDF application that you can print and fill out.
Job opportunities here include standard positions like cashiers, stockers, and delivery receivers. Because the store moves at such a fast pace, everyone has multiple responsibilities and duties attached to their position. Entry level positions are widely available since the company doesn’t require any past experience to get in on the ground level as it were. All you really need is a good personality and a willingness to provide great customer service. Let’s face it; you’ve got all of that in spades.
There’s plenty of room for upward movement as well. The company promotes from within, so choose your method of applying and get started while positions are available. They may have a lot of openings on a consistent basis, but that doesn’t mean they don’t fill quickly.
Salary & Benefits Overview
Alright, so check your birth certificate and make sure you’re at least sixteen. Once you’ve got that down, we can talk about the kind of money you’ll be making and the benefits you can earn while work at Big Lots. Before we get into the benefits though, let’s examine the common positions and their relative salaries
This entry-level job requires basic skills and customer service and will earn you minimum wage to start. That being said, this is great experience and an opportunity to hone your customer service skills.
2. Store Associate
This is an on-the-floor position that has you stocking shelves and receiving shipments. You’ll keep the store clean and organized and occasionally you do some cashiering when the store gets busy. This position starts at $8.00 per hour and can make up to $9.00 per hour with tenure and raises.
You’ll need to be at least eighteen for most of these positions. That being said, there are several levels of management including assistant, furniture manager, and store manager. This position puts a lot of weight on your shoulders, but it also weighs down your wallet if you get my drift. Lower managers make up to $12.00 per hour, but the store managers make yearly salaries of up to $55,000. Oh yeah, that’ll do just fine.
Now we’re on to those sweet, sweet benefits. As with any company, the biggest benefits come with experience and promotions. Still, it provides a goal to shoot for, so let’s see what Big Lots can offer you:
- Medical, Dental, and Vision Insurance
- Life Insurance options offered by Big Lots
- Bonus Incentives
- Education Assistance
- Paid Holidays
- Vacation Time
- 401(k) Retirement Plan
- Short and Long-Term Disability
This is a great company to work for; they are also a sponsor of Toys for Tots since 1994, which I consider a benefit. Working for a company with charitable offerings is a nice touch in my opinion. Big Lots supports this organization that collects toys and gives them to children whose parents can’t afford them. Every Christmas, the company stores run collections to promote the charity.
Your heart’s all warm and fuzzy now, and I don’t blame you. Go ahead and fill out the Big Lots application so you can start working for this awesome company.