rdjr Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 9:26pm
post #1 of

Hello everyone. I have an interview as a Walmart decorator tomorrow and I was wondering if there is anyone that might have any tips and whether its a good job or not. I am a college student and my cake business is not doing well and I am strongly considering this job, thanks!

74 replies
DeliciousDesserts Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 9:30pm
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AIt has been over 20 years since I worked for Kroger. Stop trying to figure out how ancient I am!

At the time, it was a great job. It was steady work, decent wage, and a nice group of fellow employees.

I don't know about Walmart. These days I can barely even shop there without wanting to yell at someone. I refuse to go other than 7-9 AM.

Really, you are the only one who can decide of it is a good fit for you.

newbe86 Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 9:35pm
post #3 of

The way I look at it is you can only gain experience.  Good or bad habits you learn what to do and what NOT to do, you're already in the cake business.  Yes, it stinks to have to go to Wal-Mart to decorate cakes since you want to have your own business, but it can't hurt. It may help you to learn things to do differently in your own business AND your name doesn't go on any cakes, Wal-Mart does. I say do what you need to do for the time being. Good luck!

KarenK55 Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 9:41pm
post #4 of

In agreement with all of the above.  Get all the experience you can and place it in your back pocket and when your time comes to have your own storefront someday and can pull all that experience and knowledge and have one heck of a cake business, if this is what you want as an end result.  Wishing you well in whatever decisions you make.

dawnybird Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 9:50pm
post #5 of

I can only say that the Walmart shoppers will undoubtedly get MUCH prettier cakes while you're there than they ever would otherwise! (If they let you have any say in how you do it!) Good luck!
 

ellavanilla Posted 10 Jul 2013 , 10:50pm
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like many things cake decorating gets better with practice, and hopefully you will learn a little about making large quantities, commercial equipment and a few business practices. 

newbe86 Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 1:12am
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I have an acquaintance who works for Shop N Save and she has some special orders she has to fill, but otherwise, she can decorate the cakes anyway she wants to as long as they have all of the cakes they need for the day. So if you're lucky, you'll be able to get creative like she does. I love seeing her work. I hope you post yours as well!

rdjr Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 3:00am
post #8 of

Thank you everyone for your feed back! I am 19 years old and this is my first job interview. Do ya'll have any tips for my interview or know what they will have me do or what questions they will ask? I'm pretty sure they will have me decorate a cake but other than that I have no idea! Thanks!

denetteb Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 3:24am
post #9 of

Some general interview things, a couple tailored to cake making...Dress nicely-not  tight clothes, no holes or super faded, no t shirt with writing, no revealing cleavage or belly, no tank top.  Be clean, hair out of your face, fingernails tended to, smile, be friendly, shake their hand, say It is nice to meet you, be prepared to answer a question about what your strength and weakness are, be on time, leave your phone in the car, be interested and attentive, at the end thank them for the opportunity to interview and shake their hand again.  Just a few of my thoughts.

liz at sugar Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 3:36am
Quote:
Originally Posted by denetteb 
...Dress nicely-not  tight clothes, no holes or super faded, no t shirt with writing, no revealing cleavage or belly, no tank top.  Be clean, hair out of your face, fingernails tended to, smile, be friendly, shake their hand, say It is nice to meet you, be prepared to answer a question about what your strength and weakness are, be on time, leave your phone in the car, be interested and attentive, at the end thank them for the opportunity to interview and shake their hand again.  Just a few of my thoughts.


This should just be advice for living in the world, not just for interviews . . .

 

Liz

denetteb Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 3:52am

Yah Liz, I just reread it and you are right.  When I first typed it I said dress nicely and moved on.  Then upon rereading it I felt maybe I should clarify what that meant.  Sad, huh?  I should add, don't wear sweat pants or  fleece pants.  Really, really, really don't wear fleece pants with cartoon characters on them.

rdjr Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 4:03am

I'm a guy so there will be no cleavage showing, or tight clothes...lol. Thanks for all the tips everyone. I'm thinking of wearing slacks, blue button down shirt, black tie, and black dress shoes. It really get s on me when I see people in slacks and tennis shoes...

liz at sugar Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 4:14am
Quote:
Originally Posted by rdjr 

I'm a guy so there will be no cleavage showing, or tight clothes...lol.

 

Had to giggle a little at your response. :)

 

Good luck!

 

Liz

newbe86 Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 4:29am

Just like everyone else has said, dress professional - slacks and a button down shirt (ironed) with flats or a slight heel will be just fine. Nothing you would go out with your friend's wearing. If they do have you decorate a cake, they will most likely offer you an apron. just make sure you are comfortable and confident like someone else mentioned, know your strengths and weaknesses.  They will ask and make sure you can list at least two weaknesses and then follow up with what you do to counter-act them so to say, for example I am a terrible speller and I hate to file (I work for a court - lots of typing and lots of filing) I said something to the extent of I know I am not a great speller but I keep a dictionary in my desk (I really do) and since I do not enjoy filing, I schedule a block of time each day to get all of my filing done so that my desk is cleared off by the end of the day.  Finally, I always call later that day (if the interview is in the morning) or the next day with a phone call thanking them for their time and that I look forward to hearing from them.

 

GOOD LUCK!

scrumdiddlycakes Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 4:58am

hehe, if you show up with cleavage and slight heel, please take a pic for us :)

I agree with all the others, nothing to gain but experience, and you sound like you have the interview well planned out, good luck!

rdjr Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 5:44am

scrumdiddlycakes- LOL, unfortunately I will not be dressing like that, I'm still laughing. I'm not that kind of guy, lol

newbe86 Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 6:19am

A

Original message sent by newbe86

Just like everyone else has said, dress professional - slacks and a button down shirt (ironed) with flats or a slight heel will be just fine. Nothing you would go out with your friend's wearing. If they do have you decorate a cake, they will most likely offer you an apron. just make sure you are comfortable and confident like someone else mentioned, know your strengths and weaknesses.  They will ask and make sure you can list at least two weaknesses and then follow up with what you do to counter-act them so to say, for example I am a terrible speller and I hate to file (I work for a court - lots of typing and lots of filing) I said something to the extent of I know I am not a great speller but I keep a dictionary in my desk (I really do) and since I do not enjoy filing, I schedule a block of time each day to get all of my filing done so that my desk is cleared off by the end of the day.  Finally, I always call later that day (if the interview is in the morning) or the next day with a phone call thanking them for their time and that I look forward to hearing from them.

GOOD LUCK!

Im sorry, I did not read the post where you said you're a guy. I'm so sorry, but I will say I'm particially blaming the heavy pain medicine I've taken as a result of a compound fracture to my ankle but, if heels are your thing, I'm not one to judge.

kikiandkyle Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 6:28am

AIt works for Tom Cruise!

denetteb Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 1:34pm

I humbly admit when I initially gave what to wear advice I was picturing a female.  Pardon my gender bias.  However I submit the following link regarding men with cleavage.  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1304206/The-lowdown-man-cleavage-Why-Jude-Marvin-love-trend-plunging-necklines.html   And they are not porn, totally clean and in fact are celebrities, male celebrities.  Just for giggles.  When I googled men with cleavage I was picturing overweight men that could use some support and was surprised to find that it a style trend.

lunawhisper0013 Posted 11 Jul 2013 , 6:14pm

AI got my start in a Walmart bakery. I can tell you there is a shortage of talented decorators. It is definately a stable paycheck and you can still go a bit outside the box and put your own spin on things. Plus, Walmart has a cake decorator competition every year and you can submit any cakes you have ever done in your career to be judged. I only entered once but when I did, I won best decorator in my region. The certificate is spiffy...it's something to think about even if the idea of Walmart itself isnt particularly appealing.

rdjr Posted 12 Jul 2013 , 4:52am

Hello everyone, so I guess my interview went well. I got the job, I didn't even have to decorate a cake for them (I just showed them a couple of pictures). Now I'm just waiting for them to call me for orientation. Thanks for all your tips!

Annabakescakes Posted 12 Jul 2013 , 5:06am
Quote:
Originally Posted by rdjr 

Hello everyone, so I guess my interview went well. I got the job, I didn't even have to decorate a cake for them (I just showed them a couple of pictures). Now I'm just waiting for them to call me for orientation. Thanks for all your tips!

Awesome! Congratulations! I assume you kept your cleavage covered and didn't wear a heal? LOL!

rdjr Posted 12 Jul 2013 , 5:10am

Correct...LOL

rdjr Posted 12 Jul 2013 , 5:12am

And Thanks! I'm going to be in charge of stocking up the display shelf for ready made cakes, I'm afraid im going to run out of ideas though...my style is simple, clean, and elegant but sometimes it might get a little boring if thats all you see.

Annabakescakes Posted 12 Jul 2013 , 5:41am
Quote:
Originally Posted by rdjr 

And Thanks! I'm going to be in charge of stocking up the display shelf for ready made cakes, I'm afraid im going to run out of ideas though...my style is simple, clean, and elegant but sometimes it might get a little boring if thats all you see.

To tell you the truth, that part was SO HARD for me when I worked in grocery store bakeries. I wanted to do something new a different for every cake, and would worry about boring designs, and would get about 20 cakes made a day, along with packaging bread and baking cookies and such.

 

Now a co-worker of mine had no such thought, nor did she care if the cakes matched themselves of the airbrushing on them. She had about 4 designs, balloons and sprinkles, balloons and airbrush, airbrush with roses, and just roses. She would get 3 cases of cake and 2 buckets of icing and 3 racks out, and fill about 8 21" pastry bags in all different colors, with couplers. Then she would fill about 8 more with white icing and star tips, or large round tips.

 

Then she would ice 5 cakes on 5 turn tables,(yours may be pre-iced) and air brush along the edges and sides, 2 different colors for each cake, then she would add a huge rose bouquet in a couple different colors, add a border and box them up.

 

Next would be the same but she would airbrush a quick pattern, then place a bouquet in another spot, and box them up.

 

Then 5 with sprinkles and different colored balloons.

 

And then she would do 5 girly themed ones, from the Decopac book, then 5 boy ones from the book.

 

In about 5 hours, she would have 50 1/4 sheet cakes done, and boxed, and half would be deep frozen for stocking the case at a later time. (Mostly the back-ups would supplement the case when I needed it filled, since I was SO SLOOOWWW!)

 

I focused on the wedding cakes, and specialty orders. My cakes looked about 100 times better than hers, but she was 100 times faster, and kept the case filled. And people bought them! We would marvel at how ugly one in particular was, and the next day it would sold!

 

One real important thing to keep in mind is that there are a ton of people with very low expectations, no taste, or no time to be picky, since they waited until the last minute and you can make all these people very happy with boring designs. And then you make some creative designs as well and those make the more discerning client happy! And then you will have cupcakes with rings on them, and the clients that order from the book and you take care to get their order just right and they are happy. And your paycheck makes you happy! If you need a creative outlet still, you can still do the occasional cake from home, for another sort of client.

 

Also, most people only need a cake a few times a year, so you don't always have to keep fresh designs and ideas flowing. It is not like they are there every week, buying cake, trying to find something different.

 

Speed is most important, then execution, then design. And most stores will have cheat sheets you can look at, as well.

 

Good luck!

embersmom Posted 12 Jul 2013 , 1:48pm

I have no idea what Walmart's parameters are when it comes to execution, but I'm wondering just how creativity you'll be allowed to exercise.

 

annabakescakes hit the nail on the head -- I've never used five turntables, but I've iced a bunch of cakes with different bottom borders, laid them all  out on a bench, and assembly-lined style, added flowers/ballons/top borders with confetti/another design before packing them.  Some automatically go out to the case, but a lot of them are for backup.

 

My employer limits what we're allowed to do.  We have a design book.  Occasionally you can do your own thing, but for the most part you're not supposed to because 1) it'll take too much time, and 2) you might be able to execute it, but nobody else can, and that can be very frustrating if you're a customer who wants that one-of-a-kind design and you happen to be out that particular day.  We're allowed a bit more freedom when it comes to special orders, though, but nothing overly fancy. Again, it's a time issue, and you can't spend X amount a time on an order when you've got a skillion other things to do.

 

That said, they're going to teach you production speed.  That's a very handy skill to have, no matter where your cake journey takes you ;)

lunawhisper0013 Posted 12 Jul 2013 , 2:12pm

AThe standard quota for Walmart is ining a cake in 2 minutes, completely decorating a cake in 15 minutes (including icing), 4 cakes an hour and 32 cakes in a full 8 hour shift, including clean up. You don, t have to worry about being too original. While writing on the cakes, you will see what types of cake designs/colors sell the best and you can just focus on them with a few different ones thrown in for variety.

cakefat Posted 12 Jul 2013 , 2:32pm

Congratulations on the job. I'm sure it will be great experience. I respect how you put in the effort, dressed appropriately, etc for your interview. That says a lot of (good things) about you.  have fun!

newbe86 Posted 12 Jul 2013 , 2:36pm

Well, at least you'll be fast. j/k You'll still gain experience if you have to make the same cake over and over again. This is your starting point, not your dream job. But looking at the bright side, you will be able to ice fill and have a cake ready in like 15 minutes, leaving you LOTS of time to decorate!

embersmom Posted 12 Jul 2013 , 3:17pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by lunawhisper0013 

The standard quota for Walmart is ining a cake in 2 minutes, completely decorating a cake in 15 minutes (including icing), 4 cakes an hour and 32 cakes in a full 8 hour shift, including clean up. You don, t have to worry about being too original. While writing on the cakes, you will see what types of cake designs/colors sell the best and you can just focus on them with a few different ones thrown in for variety.


OMG, that's a generous amount of time...icon_eek.gif 

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