Build-A-Bear operates over 400 stores worldwide, typically in shopping malls, and consistently hires on new staff to join a company continuously listed on the Forbes 100 Best Companies to Work For. Offering both entry-level employment and managerial positions, the retail chain extends potential employees a straightforward application process online or in store.
Facts About Working at Build A Bear
Hiring Age: 16 years old (How old do you have to be to work at Build A Bear?)
Available Positions: Cashier, Store Associate, Bearstuff Associate, Assistant Store Manager, Store Manager
Build A Bear Job Opportunities
Founded in 1997, Build-A-Bear functions as a specialty retail store focusing on consumers building teddy bears and other stuffed animals. Introductory positions consist of sales associates, or Bear Builders, that assist guests to choose, stuff, and accessorize each purchase. Crew members also retain responsibility for ringing up purchases, leading in-store parties, and ensuring patrons have an enjoyable experiences each time in the store. Friendly dispositions, stellar interpersonal skills, and positive, team-oriented attitudes typically serve entry-level workers well with the retail chain.
Career-oriented individuals with at least two years leadership experience should consider applying for Build-A-Bear management jobs. Managers usually face a more rigorous application process and typically must possess more than the standard hiring requirements, such as extended education backgrounds, retail experience, and recruitment knowledge. Employees acting in a supervisory role may apply for both part-time and full-time jobs, as well. Managers with the specialty retail chain also receive generous salary options and employment benefits.
Build-A-Bear Positions and Salary Information
Applicants must stand at least 18 years old to qualify for positions with the specialty retail chain. Entry-level associates qualify for positions with a high school diploma or equivalent and should display positive attitudes and enjoy working with children on a regular basis. The niche company experiences many periods of continued growth and consistently hires for the following positions:
- Sometimes called Bear Builders, sales associates retain responsibility for interacting with guests, providing exceptional customer service, and delivering fun, memorable experiences.
- Other duties include helping customers make purchases, ringing out final selections, and taking various forms of payment.
- Sales team members must possess patience, cheerful personalities, and must enjoy working with children.
- Bear Builders earn around $8.00 an hour to start, with the potential of making up to $9.00 hourly wage.
- The management breakdown at the specialty retail chain consists of both part-time and full-time assistant managers as well as store managers.
- Both assistant manager positions operate in leadership roles in the absence of store managers.
- Duties comprise of hiring and training new workers, opening and closing stores daily, ensuring proper guest communications and transactions, managing payroll and timekeeping issues, maintaining merchandise, and successfully marketing current promotions and campaigns.
- Employees in supervisory positions must possess at least one to two years of leadership experience, preferably in a retail setting.
- Managers possess an earning capacity of up to $50,000 annually.
Tips for Applying
The retail chain offers potential employees a straightforward application process. The online application allows candidates to attach resumes and cover letters and consists of a single page of applicant information for submission. Job seekers may also apply in store. Fill out all hiring materials with complete and current information to avoid disqualification from hiring consideration based on incorrect or misprinted information. Attach a resume and cover letter to detail extracurricular activities, schooling, and work experience directly relating to qualities the specialty retail chain values, if possible.
Hiring managers typically respond to applicants within a couple of days with requests for interviews. In cases where applicants do not hear from stores about hiring decisions, candidates may choose to follow up with phone calls or emails. In certain situations, visiting stores in person may prove beneficial as hiring managers may see initiative and genuine interest in the job with such action. Applicants should remain aware store managers must perform other duties other than hiring, so if visiting or calling, try to do so during slower business hours to show respect for manager time and responsibility.
Benefits of Working at Build-A-Bear
Build-A-Bear offers all employees a comprehensive work benefit package. Both full-time and part-time associates enjoy access to health and wellness benefits, such as enrollment in health, prescription drug, dental, and vision coverage. Workers also receive opportunities like paid training, holiday and birthday pay, as well as flexible scheduling. The company also offers boasts September as Bear Builder Appreciation Month (BBAM!), which serves as an employee recognition month in which all crew members receive an extra day of pay. Associates also enjoy:
- Company-matched 401(k) retirement plans
- Store discounts
- Scholarship programs, and
- A corporate perks program offering discounts on various products and services.
Build-A-Bear Additional Information
Build-A-Bear offers customers the Find-A-Bear? ID program in an attempt to help return missing bears to children that may end up lost. The specialty retail chain stuffs each bear with a barcode corresponding to the birth certificate made in stores at the point of purchase. If someone returns a misplaced bear to any store location, the sales system should match the barcode with the customer, which allows the company to return bears to guests at no charge. In an effort to further the program, the retail chain partners with Embassy Suites for bears forgotten or lost during vacations.