I wasn't expecting 84 to be a place that I'd stay with for the long-term, but the management, associates & company culture completely changed my mind.
On a typical day, I'll start by reviewing emails (particularly notifications from my apps that ran overnight) and checking to see if there might be any issues that need attention.
Otherwise, I'll typically review my notes and project boards to help me plan the rest of my day.
Once I have a plan, I get started on the task at hand - typically research, development, testing, or documentation for one of the applications I developed and maintain/extend.
I have a (very brief) daily scrum meeting for a large project that I have a hand in, but otherwise meetings are (thankfully) an anomaly.
When something comes up and I need guidance or support, I provide details to my manager and he helps in whatever way is needed.
I started at 84 Lumber after making a career change - without any major expectations of the company (good or bad) and little practical experience with the specific languages or frameworks that I would be using for my job. Honestly, I just felt extremely fortunate that they gave me a chance.
Starting off, I was brought into projects, introduced to those involved, and given whatever background info was available - then basically turned loose to research, develop a plan, and work things out.
Since I've been here, I've learned pretty much everything that I needed to know (in order to get things done) while on the job - that appears to be the norm from what I've seen, and "grit" (i.e. taking the initiative to research and "figure things out") is recognized, sup
ProsCompany that firmly stands by what it says, nice benefits package, very responsive & supportive associates (across departments)
Cons9-hour work days, facial hair policies (they do have accommodations, but it's a process), uniform policies.
Great advancement opportunities - NOT for family men
The workday consisted of opening up the store, all of the sheds, putting the cash in all of the cash drawers, and whatever comes after that could be different depending on how the day goes. It's definitely not a routine career; your day will consist of meeting different customers every day, dealing with projects you may or may not want to work on, dealing with vendor reps, counting stock, ordering stock, making sure your area is well stocked and counted correctly, and much more. It's actually a very enjoyable job.
The best part about the "Manager Trainee" position is the fact that you move up to the "Co-Manager" position rather quickly. Usually within 8 - 18 months. They'll send you to Pennsylvania twice, once for "Lumber Camp", which is an initial training that familiarizes you with doing project takeoffs, and another time for "Sales Camp", which is another training for, well, sales. Unfortunately, I didn't make it to Sales Camp before I got let go, although I was scheduled to go, but COVID kind of screwed that up for me.
The pay was decent, I grossed about 35k/year; they'll start you at 11/hr with sales bonuses, for an M.T., your bonus is $250 for a Level 1, $375 for a Level 2, and $500 for a Level 3. Your levels depend on how much you sold that month. You get a personal bonus if you hit quota and a store bonus if your store hits quota. Checks are biweekly, I brought home an average of $980~ biweekly.
HOURS / BREAKS
ProsAdvancement opportunities, potential compensation, industry knowledge
Straight forward priorities, autonomy, and direct compensation.
84 Lumber is clear about what it cares about as a company and what they look for in a successful team member.
Their promotional system is built into their training, without the need for a college degree or some other form of experience. In fact, they expect advancement sometime within the first 6-12 months. They train from the ground up while acknowledging and rewarding performance. I think this is a main selling point for the company. 84 doesn't just advertise that they are a career like some other big box stores, they actually are a career.
There are multiple directions you can take within the company including management, corporate office work, operations, and sales.
While experience with upper management can vary at any company, depending on who you work for, my experience has been very positive. They help you if you need anything and actively want you to perform well.
I'm not aware of any upper management that didn't have to work their way up from Manager Trainee. This makes it easier on the people below because you aren't having to deal with someone who was cross-hired from another company/is fresh out of college with a business degree, yet knows very little about how to successfully operate a business.
The hardest parts of the job are the hours and working outdoors. Forty-eight hours are the weekly expectations for new hires and most everybody at the store level besides the salesman. If you move to a position outside the store level those requirements may not a
As an Mt you will will start your day by opening the front doors at 6:45 am. You'll count the money in the cash box that you have to take home with you at night due to the fact that it has been stolen from the building before and they refuse to get rid of the folks that did it. After that you will probably end up building a load for a salesman that didn't let you know about it the day before. You will then go back inside and clean the restrooms, sweep the show rooms and mop the floor all while dealing with customers coming in and out the door and you will be responsible for pulling their orders from the yard, not the yard guys who are on forklifts all day. A little while into the rush you will have a truck come in full of stock or special orders that you will also have to put up while continuously assisting customers. You're supposed to do 5 quotes a day so you'll have to find time while answering phone and running back and forth from the yard to inside the store building loads for your customers, your other mts customers, your comanagers customers and the outside sales customers. You will then take a "30 minute lunch break" while steadily answering phones and assisting customers. Then it's time to sweep the warehouse again and finish putting up stock that you didn't get to. While you're ready to do a quote you will need to contact several vendors and get the price right which isn't a big deal until you get customers needing you during that time or you have to go build anothe
ProsYou meet great customers that will follow you after you leave the company
ConsYou do not sit down, you spen no time with family, pay is terrible. They tell you that they only promote from within which is bull
A typical day at work starts at 630am and doesn't end until 6pm. Most times I had to work through my 30 minute lunch break even though you're not compensated for lunch as an hourly employee. You'll have face to face interaction with customers and vendors daily which helps you learn the industry and the product offerings quickly; a huge positive. You're required to keep the store stocked with merchandise. This can be difficult because stock orders placed through the corporate office are many times delayed as corporate purchasers try to get the least expensive material before selling it to the store at an upcharge. Higher management gives the aura of being a group that doesn't look at an individual's overall contribution to running the store; merely a group focused solely on what their sales numbers are. Their comparisons amongst individuals is also problematic as some stores are geared toward a home owner market (lot of walk in customers) where others are strictly successful on the professional contractor front (outside sales dominates because there is no walk ins). If you're store is successful financially one year budgets and quota targets increase drastically making bonuses much harder to acquire the following year. I had the privilege of working with great colleagues that made the mental and physically grueling days tolerable. There is no pay increase at all and in order to be promoted you are required to uproot and move to a different city where in my case was financially
84 Lumber is a very productive and rewarding company to work for.
-One great thing about working at an 84 Lumber store is that everyday is different. Any day can consist of strictly customer sales, unloading freight trucks, or just handling daily operations.
-I have learned a lot in my five years at 84 Lumber such as building product knowledge, managing my own store, selling techniques, managing and training new employees, and more importantly becoming an outgoing person when it comes to dealing with customer service.
-Management with 84 Lumber has been a great route to take. It as given me the opportunity to learn more about my self in terms of becoming a leader. I have gained skills in managing employees, training them to set the same goals as me, understanding our stores monthly income statement, scheduling, and dealing with customers questions and concerns. I has probably been the most rewarding route with 84 Lumber thus far.
-Just about every co-worker I have had with 84 Lumber has been exceptional. I have been at four stores now and every one we have all put in a team effort to achieve success. A lot of stores don't have too many employees working there so everyone seems to always get along and become part of a small family.
-Despite every aspect of the job, 84 Lumber is a sales first job and I would the hardest part is closing a sale. Figuring and estimating material for someone can be easy but building the trust of customer can be difficult. People invest a lot of time and money in building project in which they put a lot of tru
Outside Sales Representative | Houston, TX | Jun 2, 2019
Great overall company - Specific Locations vary
As an entry level associate, I learned a lot about the building industry from Vendors, materials, and how items are implemented. The company as a whole offers a lot to there employees, however your growth highly depends on your location's management.
When i was relocated for a promotion, the company compensated well for moving costs, covered the Uhaul, and provided an incentive to boot up a new living situation.
My first location ran very well, the management to worker relationship was good and very constructive on shaping employees. mistakes were used as learning tools and ideas were always considered then if poor, the explanation for why was shown. supportive management. strong focus on employee development.
My second location was the opposite. management treated everyone like worker bees, requested time off was often questioned and sometimes denied despite how in advanced it was requested. The store did not follow corporate standard for promotion and hiring. (Employees were promoted from MT all the way as far as becoming the new store manager within the same location). Employees were not equally compensated for same position and same level of work responsibility, did not follow corporate compensation. The replacing manager hired a family member from outside the company to take over as second in charge without interviewing current qualified employees. Mistakes were recorded but not addressed with the one who made it resulting in recurring mistakes that are cause f
ProsGood benefits, Great Co-workers, Lots of potential promotion
Conshit or miss management, long work days, undefined compensation in some locations.
Working from 630 am to 6 PM Monday thru Friday and a pointless 4 hour Saturday shift,hopefully you have no lie or really want one at that point, management doesn't teach you as much as they make to do so, co managers will pass all the hard tasks on the manager trainees and make twice as much as you do, salesman will expect you to jump as soon as they say to do so, dont try to look for a girlfriend if you are single you will have no time for it, the money with bonuses are nice but never guaranteed, plan on knowing about everything big or small in the store, a bunch of "good ol boys" if you dont for sure fit in with them or think somewhat differently you will be pushed to the side. Having to know where all the special orders are for the salesman is annoying as well, loading up a customer just to find out you did all that work for the salesman to already have the client, drinking beers on the clock at 3 PM when your manager trainee is actually working... amazing, definitely explore other options before this career path, if you already are familiar with building you will be fine, if not, dont apply. Be an incredibly fast learner. Honesty doesn't pay off here, they prefer you stretch the truth. Dont work too hard they will use and abuse that..dont expect a lunch break unless you go and eat at the place you went to for lunch dont try to sit down and digest for 30 minutes, terrible lack of communication. As much as 84 lumber makes all year, for what you earn as a manager trainee
First off, I’ll say that if you are fresh out of college (or heck, even high school) and you are looking to establish a career and a life around your career, then I would say that this would be a good job for you. At $14/hr plus 8 hours of OT and store bonuses, your looking at around $40000/year and let’s face it, for an entry level job, that’s great.
Of course, being that it’s an entry level job, it has its downsides. You’re at the bottom of the hierarchy which means you’re doing everything in the store. This includes being the yard guy, taking phone calls, working up quotes, dealing with customers (some pleasant, some angry), having knowledge of the products your selling (lumber, shingles, siding, Windows/doors, etc.), being able to do a takeoff (a cost and material list of what you’ll need for a project), counting change, and keeping the shelves stocked.
With that being said, it’s not that having to do all of that is a bad thing, but there are times when five things will be happening at once and it gets darn near impossible to prioritize and it’s made worse by the fact that the store is minimally staffed which will extract every resource you have available to yourself.
It’s also worth mentioning that if you have a proclivity to let your anxiety overtake you….this is not a job for you. It also will be tough to
Have any sort of hobbies lest you sacrifice sleep.
Unfortunately, I felt like I was in an environment with people who were anxious and impatient. Seeing tha
ProsGood starting pay, could build character with the right attitude, valuable knowledge about construction is available.
ConsCan’t settle into a routine. Too much going on at once, working hours that makes it tough to do anything meaningful outside work.
I figured I'd give 84 a try since I had some prior managerial experience. I knew getting into a different industry would be a learning curve but managing people and things are essentially the same. When I first started I knew I was right. There are about 300 different products in every store and every store stocks different material. I was always having to learn what things were and where they were located. Product knowledge aside the management was hit or miss. My co-managers and co-workers were solid and always helped me learn, the manager.... Not so much. I don't know of it was just because he is incredibly socially awkward or that he just didn't like me but I wasn't worth his time. For him, it was all about the bonuses he would make. Me trying to learn how to properly build a Trex deck on an estimate meant nothing because he needed to get that sweet sweet bonus. Speaking of, as a trainee you'll receive half a store bonus until you pass your exam. Your manager and co-manager will make 10-15 times that. So if you have bills to pay, I hope you're already financially stable because you'll be pulling about 900 a paycheck after taxes. Have a life outside of work? Kiss it goodbye. 6 to 6 doesn't allow for much time outside of work. On top of that, you're constantly tired and sore from unloading window and door trucks with Windows three time the size of you. If you're in a pinch and need a job, fine, but have an exit strategy. Turnover rates are high and keeping quality employees
ConsPay, hours, work/life ratio, basic amenities (no heat or ac in the warehouse), sales quota goals, poor manager, no breaks, required 48 hour work week (minimum), Saturday work days
84 lumber is a stepping stone. You can learn a great bit of knowledge as an MT or Co- Manager and take it with you when you leave. As long as people are willing to teach and you can listen. You will always work a lot. 55+ hours per week is not uncommon. Most managers can be blind to the issues or just know that Corporate won't do anything and never try to fix the issues. Besides for newer computers (old/crummy programing) most of the yards, buildings, and equipment is terrible. They invest very little into the stores.
Health plans, Dental, etc... is all pretty good. I worked at a Successful store and a failing store. The only time it's worth the pay is if it's a successful store, otherwise the time spent and work is not worth it.
They are opening and reopening stores. So I expect the Advancement opportunity's to get better. Be warned If your not promoted in your first 18 months and nothing is happening for you, leave. They have posts of promotions and if you apply but never get called back you are stuck in 84 purgatory. Look for stores that do well or you won't have a chance to make a decent living.
Management varies per store I worked for 3 store managers and 10 Co-managers. 1 Manager is the worst manager alive and his store should be failing if not for a door shop pulling up his numbers. He once told me that there was going to be a to-do list and if everything wasn't completed we'd have to stay and work off the clock. The other 2 were great and taught me so much
ProsBenefits, Knowledge, and Experience.
ConsCondition of store and yard, Compensation at bad store, the Hours
Questions And Answers about 84 Lumber Company
If you were in charge, what would you do to make 84 Lumber Company a better place to work?
Asked May 5, 2017
Give everyone bonusesIt is not fair that only a few people get bonuses every month and at the end of the year what about Yard hands and Drivers
Answered Nov 12, 2021
Give raises based on performance and years worked. Don't forget the yard personnel work hard in all weather and have families to provide for also.
Answered Oct 10, 2021
What is the best part of working at 84 Lumber Company?
Asked Feb 6, 2020
It was a great time out on the road traveling through the Metropolitan area.
Answered Jul 4, 2022
Answered Jul 2, 2022
How often do you get a raise at 84 Lumber Company?
Asked Oct 1, 2020
Not once in the year I worked there even after I accepted a position that was paying me more never got the raise to match the position even after I was told I would get the pay raise
Answered Aug 17, 2022
Answered Aug 16, 2022
What is the promotion process like at 84 Lumber Company?
Asked Mar 3, 2021
Only if you willing to relocate
Answered Aug 17, 2022
Answered Aug 15, 2022
What is a typical day like for you at 84 Lumber Company?
Asked May 19, 2020
Answered Aug 11, 2022
Stressful. Between dealing with unhelpful staff and impatient customers the days are long. 10 hours a day is a long time to stay stressed.