- Work/Life Balance
- Culture & Values
- Career Opportunities
- Comp & Benefits
- Senior Management
I have been working at Evans Cycles full-time
Great people, great atmosphere and a team of people that do actually care. The business does try to take care of it's own and really does appreciate effort and hard work.
The business is busy but a fun environment to work in at pretty much all levels.
Unfortunately the business is vastly inefficient, reliant upon working practices and methods that are largely out of date and does not communicate anywhere near as effectively as it should/could and does not recognise, past face value, the importance of planning, adoption of company wide practices or the financial, business and customer value of improving the bottom front end as opposed to the top back-end.
Advice to Management
concentrate on removing waste, eliminating variation, improving efficiencies, increasing the opportunity for customers to exchange money for goods (bottom front-end) and decrease the reliance on attempting to 'think' our way to improve revenue as this has proven repeatedly to hamper our growth. First and foremost concentrate on customer value proposition and customer benefit.
Great Staff to work with overall.
Trade Price on bikes and accessories
Does well to provide great work life balance
Salary was poor for the amount of work being given.
HR were terrible to deal with
Advice to Management
Keep listening and acting on what people need
I have been working at Evans Cycles full-time (More than 5 years)
Staff discount is the only real perk
You are never good enough or working hard enough in the eyes of upper management. Targets hit you are still not productive enough and will never be praised for anything above and beyond your position, errors with pay are constant
Advice to Management
Pay a decent wage for experienced staff, stop treating experienced staff like idiots and customers like babies
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some good discount on products up to 25%-40% , becoming familiar with some new products
If you are ambitious and you dont have the connections there is no chance of progress, even if i was making for them amazing sales, i always felt underestimated from managers. There is no team-working, very low ethics, very abusive enviroment from customers and managers. As a foreigner and very well educated I felt that I was extremely discriminated, and isolated although I was doing an excellent job. Its a place for friends and wanna be cyclists, very manipulative and horrible place to work...
Advice to Management
Its a shame that you dont appreciate hard working employees, its a shame that managers are uneducated people who only operate like robots and they dont know how to behave as the dont have people's skills...u need to change ur attitude and learn how to manage properly..and for once take responsibility for your own actions. Be honest, ethical, dont discriminate people and be fair!!
I worked at Evans Cycles full-time
Semi cheap bikes and accessories, that's about it. Most of the time, the staff price is the same as the sale price everywhere else!
Management who can barely manage themselves into work, let alone run a store, or manage any staff. No rotas, no support, no one cares!
You have an area manager that turns up once a week to tell you how rubbish you are, but wont even say hello first. Zero people skills from the "upper middle management"
Store managers are just "graduates" who have no real life skills, but have been born with a silver spoon up their backside and have had all the college and university funding handed to them on plate, but can still barely wipe their own backside without having to consult some kind of manual on how to do it best!
You get treated like an idiot by all the "wannabe" cyclists who turn up to spend as little money as they can on the a bike they don't need, or use.
Advice to Management
Employ some managers with actual people skills, and try and move away from this Pound Land style shopping experience that the bike world is sliding towards!
I have been working at Evans Cycles full-time (More than a year)
Evans Cycles is WAY better than a number of its competitors and has a very good infrastructure making daily work easy and streamlined. There is a process for everything and once you have learned and mastered these processes all tasks become relatively easy and straight forward. Their turnaround times on orders are remarkably good on the whole with 1 day accessory delivery and 2hr to 4 day bike collection in stores. The busier stores facilitate a large transaction count and see such a variety of customers that no day is identical and if you enjoy busy work environments then Evans will most definitely deliver. There is always something to do and if you are a motivated individual there is some room to move up the ladder from sales assistants through to store manager. The company responds well to up beat, lively staff who genuinely get motivated by sales, sales targets, store merchandising and campaign changes. If are lucky enough to work in a store that has a reasonable sales target then bonuses are decent and obtainable, however not necessarily all that easy to influence as Evans mostly operates on the basis that their sales comes from stock availability, competitive prices and delivery times. Although in the last 6 months a small but significant change has begun to improve shop floor sales staff's ability to turn browsers into buyers. The good news is this not only motivated staff that are driven by targets and goals but allows individuals who are looking to blend into the background and get an easy ride to coast as there is no punishment or reward scheme for individual sales performance in place. (A negative for some and positive for others i suppose).
It is often joked in store that if you work for Evans Cycles as supervisor, assistant or manager then you are more of a detective than anything else as a good portion of staff time is take up by navigating Evans Cycles' till system and back office to identify what happened to stock, how much a customer paid for a product or when it was purchased, as well as whether an item was stolen or sold under the wrong item code or transferred out of the store stock into the warehouse stock. Although this may sound like a negative and a poor use of a managers time, the opposite is true as it offers up a different dynamic for staff if you treat each problem as a mini challenge. It can be very fulfilling identifying and fixing these sort of problems. Many customers can be challenging to work with and often require a degree in psychology to understand how best to deal with each customer. Consumer habits are often very complex and coupling that with the types of customers Evans Cycles attracts, it can be very difficult for many individuals, including myself at times. Some customers are cycling veterans that fancy themselves professionals and can be very picky, requesting levels of service and customisation that you'd feel embarrassed to ask for at a Rolls Royce dealership at no extra fee. These customers often end up dissatisfied with the kind of service Evans Cycles is set up to provide (a retail/in and out style service) and large discounts given to appease the customers and avoid negative feedback. Meanwhile other customers are complete novices and struggle to understand the complex industry so are essentially looking for staff that will walk them through buying their first bike step by step, omitting as much choice/technical jargon and details as possible whilst also giving them a bargain. Although this is a negative it is not the companies fault and more an issue with the industry however it does provide massive variation customer to customer and I have seen some staff become very motivated dealing with these sorts of customers as they treat it as a challenge and an exercise in understanding different human behaviours. If you are inclined to treat everything in this way and can deal with high volumes of customers asking the same exact question in a million different ways then this is a decent position, especially if you are also looking to work in other sales roles such as clothes retail or food.
Working for Evans is demanding, and the repetition (not unique to this job), low pay and odd hours (some 7am starts, some 11am starts, 4pm or 8pm finishes) can be difficult to sustain full time HOWEVER, if you are looking for part time work, 24hrs sub, then it is a decent postition. The trade discount can offer up to £1000 worth of product and also 1 bike per year which you can go over if you ask for permission. The staff I have worked with in my time here have been a mixed bag ranging from funny, pleasant and enthusastic hard working folk who I have become good friends with out side of work as a consequence, all the way to a mixture of pleasant but useless, unreliable people. What i'm trying to say though is the staff are on the whole the best factor and asset of Evans Cycles and it has been a pleasure working along side some of them, although like any job there are individuals that make it difficult. If you are of the type of person that can remain impartial whilst still making friends and know how to pick your battles and when to let things slide then it can be pretty motivating to work here. This is the first job in my career that I have pushed through illness or fatigue, or offered to stay overtime to help/cover when periods were understaffed as i felt a sense of duty to my team to not let anyone down and force them to work unduly hard and pick up my slack.
Come work for Evans cycles and you will learn loads about the industry, loads about consumer habits, loads about your own ability to work under pressure and you could make some good friends along the way. This company is sticking around and has a good footing in the industry so you aren't like to be made redundant as well.
Where to start? As with any business there are many flaws, faults and glaring issues that cause the individual business to be viewed as poor. However over the two years I have worked here my opinions on Evans have changed many times. I began by viewing the company (after the initial 3-4 month honey moon period where you are still working out how everything works) like it was yet another business that prioritises customer satisfaction and profit above all else, not considering the bigger picture at all and ignoring glaring issues with its operation that would improve the happiness of the staff within it.
Over time this opinion changed though. As i learned more about the business, saw behind the scenes of the illusive head office, which might i add is nearly completely shrouded in mystery and comes across to new staff as a bunch of highly paid execs in an ivory tower in Gatwick with no interest in the staff themselves but only whether they are stealing from the company or hitting their sale targets. I slowly realised that the ivory tower is made of plastic and the complaints of the staff in the offices behind the store fronts are similar to that of the poor guys on the front lines. I realised that we were all in it together. So the Cons of Evans Cycles are two part. One side of the issues with the business comes from its rapid expansion and inherent problems with the cycle industry on the whole. The other issue comes from the opposite side, the staff, the public that use Evans' services and the position it markets itself into within the industry.
Evans Cycles has always, from the start been about market share and expansion. They have done incredibly well to expand into a relatively competitive and ever changing market and have identified that the competitive companies such as Wiggle and CRC have made a large profit by taking advantage of the online space. Evans has copied this well by setting up an efficient warehouse and large stock availability as well as quick delivery. They have also decided to stick within the Highstreet in order to take good portions of sales from small local bikes shops and grab new comers to cycling as they are situated in many places across the country. This however has somewhat acted as a negative from a consumer and staff point of view. It is certainly a positive for shareholders and those in upper management as sales growth equals bonus' and profits but it has adversely affected staff who now have to deal with incredibly large workloads. It is common for busy stores to have wait times of 10-20 minutes to be able to buy the smallest of items and the phones can often ring continuously for hours on end without being answered. In the time I have worked for Evans this issue has definitely worsened and even the most hardy of staff have reached braking point from time to time with walk outs and arguments happening due to stress. The low staff numbers are partially to blame for this but also the level of service that most customers require for the smallest of items as explained above. After working my way up in this company to a position where I have the ability to influence staff levels I have found however that staff numbers do not decrease this weirdly. I theorise this is due to the number of customers wishing to shop or browse in Evans Cycles is huge and when the staff number is increase to allow the staff to effectively serve these customers all that happens is we talk to more customers yet do not increase order numbers proportionally and make end up making same amount of money. Due to the rapid expansion many of the stores don't make anywhere near as much money as they should and stock levels are poorly managed being spread far too thin across the company. The delivery and storage of bikes across the company is poor as well with many stores lacking the space to adequately store bikes and a ridiculous amount of damage occurring to bikes during transit. All of these are reasons that ultimately staff and customers suffer.
Large amounts of sales assistants time is taken up with non sales advice like "how do i work this pump". The problem can't be solved by more staff it turns out but could be solved by a streamlining of the companies awful website, introducing a better FAQ system online before the customer can get our number to phone us, and maybe increase the wages that is clearly communicated to staff that the increase is to deal with the higher work flow as the company is growing. Finally a better bonus scheme that simultaneously benefits individual effort and is actually achievable and can be manipulated by the staff and not the whether, would make staff effort feel more valued as it can often feel like walking in quicksand trying to do anything in my store.
The other issues with Evans Cycles comes from the infrastructure in which the Cycle industry as a whole operates. For some, unknown to me,reason bike retailers focus primarily on bikes and not when actually makes money. having seen margins, sales figure and other stats it is clear. Bikes take time to sell but make little money, accessories take less time to sell and are profitable. I understand that selling a bike to a customer bags that customer for life but too much focus on bike sales makes us miss sales heavily.
Working for Evans can be infuriating at times as often processes can be illogical such as quickly moving stock between stores, difficult/lazy or unhelpful staff blocking work form getting done, especially the few in certain head office departments (not everyone, it seems an equal mix between poor and good staff there) and unreasonable over demanding, self entitled customers who have forgotten that real people work for this company and have been conditioned to consume and push employees for discounts by being rude for their personal gain.
There is SO much more i want to write here but I have given Evans Cycles and this review too much of my time already and cant be bothered to proof read this. If you plan on working here full time then make sure you are going into one of the 25k plus management rolls in head office as every job role less than that within the company that i have had contact with is not worth the stress.
Advice to Management
Mostly pointed out what could be done above but to summarise: FAQ and questions on website that you have to answer to get access to store phone numbers to eliminate the lazy people who don't want to google the answer they need, higher wages for lower end/ middle management staff (especially busy stores) who constantly go above and beyond only to miss ridiculous targets and miss out on bonuses, a better bonus structure that allows the individual to work hard and receive reward as well as the entire team.
I have been working at Evans Cycles full-time (Less than a year)
Evans is a good company to work for, customers that come in are generally positive about their experience in the shop. Management are very relaxed compared to other companies i have worked for, while still managing a team they trust employees a lot with independence in tasks. Training is very comprehensive and you can easily feel confident doing things around the shop
Minimum wage job for most. Can be very tiring to be on your feet all day, but it's the same in all retail jobs.
Meeting and speaking with interesting customers
Extremely unprofessional environment to work in, no structure, continually under staffed, most of the day is taken up dealing with unhappy customers, justly complaining about poor overall service. In store management and supervisors are continually snooping and interjecting into customer conversations, creates an environment of low moral and consequently turnover is high. Staffing rotas change on a day to day basis, extra shifts or better shift options given to managers pets (childish approach). Unfortunately the most unprofessional work place I`ve worked.
Advice to Management
Take a serious look at individuals running and working in the stores and work methods employed. Consider more than just your bottom line profits.
-The majority of staff found in store do share a passion in cycling.
-Staff trade account (£1000) + 1 bike per anum which becomes available to staff after a probationary 3 month period, resets after financial year end.
-Reasonably relaxed uniform excl T-Shirt or jacket
- New staff platform called 'Cascade' makes it easier to book holidays and view pay checks online.
Bare in mind this is an un-exhausted list.
- Long hours (generally 10am - 7pm)
- Distrust between departments and Head Office does exists across the company.
- Low Salary rates across all store positions. Expect minimum wage. £6.12 etc.
- No Sick pay for in store positions so required to apply for National Statute Sick Pay.
- Cyclescheme or 'Evans' Ride2Work is rarely available to 85% of Evans own staff due to minimal wage.
- Store incentives have been altered and changed so that it is harder for stores to achieve weekly targets and thus earn a bonus. A store must achieve at least 104% of target to qualify for bonus.
- Store Bonus is split amongst staff at a minimal Manager 40%, Assistant Manager 20%, the final 40% is split amongst on average 7-9 staff depending on size of store. However the manager can change these percentages at there own discretion.
- NPS review system is pretty broken and is often used for scaremongering.
- Uniform is distributed very sparsely leaving full time staff and mechanics with aging old uniforms.
- Many stores have lunch time peak hours meaning that staff become over whelmed very quickly.
-Understaffing often leads to staff missing lunches and thus having to work through without a break.
- Staff are far too often the ones in the firing line between Head Office, Management and customers.
- Broken Click & Collect System leaves the doors for so many unfortunate situations that happen daily.
- New staff often struggle for months on end trying to learn the outdated store system 'NAV'
- Relatively slow logistical supply chain compared to the size of the company.
- No weekend rota, if your rota'd for a weekend day it will not be moved.
- No Double pay or pay and a half for working Bank Holidays or national holidays incl. Christmas Eve and Boxing Day, expect standard pay.
- Stocked range is fairly tame compared to other outlets.
Bare in mind this is an un-exhausted list.
Advice to Management
Evans needs to value it's staff in store, basic things like competitive pay, a structured lunch rota so staff don't get left behind or neglected whilst on shift. Ability to earn more trade during the year. A basic Sick Pay system for permanent or full time staff. Better pay incentive for staff working national holidays such as Christmas eve or boxing day.
I would only ever recommend this to someone who is going to make full use of the trade account plus 1 bike allowance then leave. The perceived benefits don't out-weigh the long hours or poor pay for a longer term of employment.
I worked at Evans Cycles (Less than a year)
the only real benefit is staff discount on bikes and accessories, very casual dress code
people talk about bikes all the time and that's the only reason why most of them work there regardless their poor logistics and supply chain skills and no qualifications, warehouse workers not motivated to work hard due to lack of career opportunities and low salaries, discrimination based on origin especially if you work in management and have university degree as you will be only one educated there
Advice to Management
get qualified HR team who know what to do and arrange proper management training for managers, don't rely on rumors and treat people fairly
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