Careers & Employment at Dollar General

Before anyone gets confused here, Dollar General is not, in fact, a dollar store. No, most of the products available cost more than a dollar, but even with this little technicality, the products are sold at set price points to keep things simple.

It did start out as a dollar store, hence the name, but times have changed. The company has evolved to meet the needs of the communities it serves.

One of the stores is down the street from where I live, and while I could have walked up there and asked them for a Dollar General application, I didn’t. I’m not here to feed you, I’m here to teach you how to fish. Of course, all of that is a metaphor for me telling you how to get this job and start your career.

I’m allergic to fish, so we won’t be getting anywhere near those over the course of this article.

A Company History & Overview

Dollar General is a United States chain of variety stores, with their headquarters being in Goodlettsville, Tennessee. As of the year 2012, the company has over ten thousand stores in forty U.S States.

Well it’s no wonder I have one within walking distance then. It’s a miracle I don’t have one in my backyard. Man, that’s a lot of locations, but hey, at least finding one won’t be hard.

Dollar General stores are typically found in areas and communities where there isn’t already a supermarket present.

The company sells brand name and generic label products; including off-brands and closeouts of name-brand merchandise. As I said in the opening, the store is not in fact a dollar store in the strictest sense of the word. With set price points, and a similar structure, it still manages to feel like one, but the prices are more varied.

The first Dollar General store opened in Scottsville, Kentucky on June 1st, 1955. Back then, the original concept was to sell everything in the store for a dollar, or less.

This was a success in the beginning. In just two years the company reached annual sales of five million. After many hardships and an economic downturn, the company switched to a retail setting and grew from there.

There is also a chain of Dollar General Markets. These are hypermarkets that are larger than the typical location. They provide an expanded grocery selection in addition to fresh produce. These locations are not as widespread as the main chain, but they are just as successful in their pursuit of an expanded selection.

The company’s culture is outlined in a quote from Bob Ravener, the Dollar General EVP and Chief People Officer. The quote reads: “At Dollar General, we believe everything we do should reflect our mission and values with a commitment to serving our communities and our employees. After nearly 75 years of operation, Dollar General remains true to these core values and principles. We respect the dignity and diversity of others to promote an inclusive environment for all.”

The company focuses on small, profitable stores that offer both convenience and value. For the customers, the company seeks to provide them a “better life”, and for employees the goal is to provide them with “respect and opportunity.” The company actively seeks people with enthusiasm, integrity, and a passion for helping others.

Direct Competitors

Dolla’ dolla’ billz! Okay, never doing that again. The approach that other companies take provides an interesting spin on the concept of a dollar store, and happens to also include that word in the name. Check out our page for Family Dollar and see if they want to adopt you.

Not feeling the family dinners? No problem, we’ve also got a page on Dollar Tree, which is digital, so no trees were harmed in the making of it. And finally, we all know that Walmart is a huge competitor here, so head on over to that page as well.

Dollar General Application Online

Working in retail requires a special kind of personality. You need to have patience, strong ethics, and a passion for helping others.

The rest of it, including skills and training, come with time. Ultimately, the ideal workers in this industry are the ones who put the customer first and always seek to make their visit the best it can be. The company website illustrates three major characteristics that they look for in potential employees:

  • A dedication to integrity
  • An enthusiastic pursuit of our mission
  • Someone who extends themselves for the Dollar General family

If you are interested in a position in management or a leadership role, this is what the company is looking for in you:

  • Team creativity
  • Effective decision-making
  • Tough expense management
  • Celebrating strengths and learning from our mistakes
  • Rewarding hard work

Now that you know what to exemplify, let’s talk about how you can apply to Dollar General online. Start by heading to the careers page of the company website.

The process is done entirely online and begins with two options: you can submit your resume or apply to a specific job opening. Job categories include options in the stores, the distribution centers, and the corporate office. You can search for open positions by utilizing a keyword, or by choosing a specific store location.

Upon choosing a job to apply for, you will need to make a username and password for security purposes. Set aside at least an hour to complete the application. Yes I know you have a raid at seven in World of Warcraft, but it’s only five by my calculations.

If you apply after you finish reading this, you’re good. You will begin by accepting terms and agreements in regards to drug testing and background checks. Yes, they do background checks. No, they won’t spy on you.

From here, you’ll provide all the usual information and a Social Security number for the background check.

Don’t start with the paranoia again. The last step is more of a free fall. This is the part where you complete an assessment that totals roughly one hundred questions. Of course, this part will be different depending on whether you’re applying for a management or entry-level position.

For example, the latter version focuses more on personality and ethics, while the former includes logical questions and situational assessments.

To learn more, go to the Dollar General interview tips page.

Job Benefits and Salary Information

All eligible part-time associates are able to take advantage of medical, dental, vision, and prescription coverage plans, in addition to life insurance, employee assistance programs, and enrollment in 401(k) retirement plans.

Full-time employees have access to comprehensive benefits packages as well. These include flexible spending accounts, disability and life insurance, and paid time off.

When you make it up to store manager status, you can also look forward to annual bonuses. There is also opportunity for more health and finance benefits at this level. The company has competitive pay, flexible scheduling, and plenty of career advancement opportunities for all levels of the company.

Salary for hourly positions ranges from minimum wage, to $12.00 an hour. Entry-level positions will hover around the lower end, but promotions can make it jump to $10.00 per hour fairly quickly.

There are a number of levels through which associates can climb the ladder to obtain better pay and higher standing in the company.

Store managers will earn an average of $38,000 a year in annual salary. The annual bonuses can also be as high as $3,000 depending on the store and company performance over the course of the year.

You have everything you need. Set aside an hour of your time, head to the careers page of the website, and get started on your Dollar General application.