6 Employee Perks At Costco That Will Probably Make You Want To Switch Jobs

Some staff get two "bonuses" a year. 👀

Ottawa Staff Writer
6 Employee Perks At Costco That Will Probably Make You Want To Switch Jobs

Have you ever thought about a career at Costco? Well, today is your lucky day, because two Costco Canada employees gave us the inside scoop on what it's really like working there, and some of the perks may surprise you.

Narcity spoke to two employees Anna* and Taylor*, who gave us a behind-the-scenes look at Costco's salaries and benefits, and it sounds like there is a serious upside to working for the massive retail chain.

So, if you're looking for a change, you might want to keep your eyes peeled for available Costco jobs because these perks sound mighty appealing.

Employees get free memberships

Employees get the benefit of shopping at the store without the annual fees. They receive three free memberships in total — one for themselves and two for family members.

A Costco spokesperson confirmed this with Narcity and said that employees receive a Gold Star membership when they first start, and after their 90-day probationary period, they get an Executive membership and two additional Gold Star ones for family members.

The Executive membership includes a 2% reward on qualifying purchases, which can mean up to $1,000 a year in savings. Taylor confirmed, "You get the Executive with 2%, and then the other two are just regular."

As a Costco shopper, you may already know that a Gold Star Costco membership has an annual fee of $60, and the Executive membership fee is $120 a year. So, it sounds like some great savings already.

Some staff get two bonuses per year

Costco gives some employees a lump-sum bonus twice a year.

Anna told us, "You get bonuses two times a year, June and December. You know, when you need it most. After you pay your taxes and before Christmas. And depending on the hours you work you can get anywhere from $1,500 to $3,000."

Costco refers to these as "lump sums." This is due to the fact that there is no performance requirement attached to it.

There are minimum working hours required to be eligible for a lump sum, and the amount depends on the employee's bracket. Even part-time employees can get a lump sum, and theirs is based on the number of hours worked. So, it sounds like Christmas comes early when you're working there!

You can earn up to $28 per hour

Anna said the top rate is considered to be roughly $28 per hour.

According to Costco's spokesperson, the minimum salary you will make is $17 per hour. The minimum starting salaries were just increased last fall. Of course, some salaries are higher depending on the position.

The average hourly rate for a Costco employee is $24.88, which the company says is partly due to the fact that the average employee has worked for the company for eight to nine years.

Costco mentioned that over 90% of promotions are internal.

Costco will pay into your RSP

Costco helps you save for your future by paying into your Retirement Savings Program.

When asked how the program works, Anna said, "It's off your cheque. So I don't exactly know, because we've figured that out all when in orientation."

According to Costco, they have a system where they pay into your pension plan directly, as well as a matching program if an employee chooses to add to it, up to a maximum amount.

The amount paid by Costco is dependent on the employee's years of service. The matching program is unrelated — they will match 50% of the employee contributions, up to the determined maximum.

Taylor also added, "And your bonuses, too. You have the option of putting all your bonus into your RSP as well instead of taking it, or you can do partial."

"If you take it all though, you're taxed on it," said Anna. "But if you put it in your RSP you're not taxed, you get the full amount."

Staff get to try out products first

Employees get the first chance to see what's new and sample products. This means as a customer, when you ask them about a new snack, they often actually know what it tastes like.

"Any new item that comes in, whether it be candy, fruit, whatever food item, we're able to actually sample it so we know exactly what it tastes like. So when members come in, we can already let them know," Anna told Narcity.

Taylor added, "Like new recipes and stuff. We always cook them in the deli so everybody knows what that tastes like."

One of the perks of being a customer is going to Costco for the tasty samples, and employees get to experience that on the regular.

The benefits program is solid

Costco offers a comprehensive health and dental benefits package, including prescription drug coverage, orthodontics and paramedical services such as psychology and physiotherapy.

"Benefits are good. So if you're full-time, you get pretty much 80% covered, health-wise," Anna shared. "If you're a part-time it's 50% you're guaranteed."

According to Costco, the premiums are fully covered for health and life insurance so employees do not need to pay into their benefits. Many of the other benefits are paid at 50% coverage. The amount varies throughout the Manulife plan, and there are associated maximums. Employees do have the option of increasing the percentage coverage by adding and contributing to the premium amount.

*Names have been changed to maintain confidentiality. Narcity has verified their identities.

This article’s cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.

This interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.

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