Working for Costco Wholesale: Employment, Careers, and Jobs

By | August 16, 2023
Working for Costco Wholesale
Costco Wholesale: The world’s largest club operator. Image source: mysanantonio.

Working for Costco Wholesale: Employment, Careers, and Jobs

If you are interested in working for Costco Wholesale, this post will help you gain much knowledge on issues about employment, careers, and jobs at the company.

Please, read on:

Costco Wholesale: Company Overview

Costco Wholesale is an American multinational corporation that was founded in 1976 and is headquartered in Issaquah, Washington.

Formally known as Costco Companies, Inc., Costco Wholesale operates membership warehouses, and offers branded and private-label products in a collection of merchandise categories.

The firm provides:

• Dry and packaged foods
• Groceries, snack foods & candies
• Alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages
• Cleaning supplies
• Electronics & appliances
• Health and beauty aids
• Hardware
• Garden and patio products
• Meat, bakery, deli and produces
• Apparel and small appliances

Costco Wholesale also operates:

• Gas stations
• Pharmacies
• Optical dispensing centers
• Food courts
• Hearing-aid centers
• Travel business
• Individual and business membership services

Why Work for Costco Wholesale

Costco Wholesale remains the most effective retailer to work for. The huge warehouse company is ranked as one of the top employers in the seventh annual Glassdoor survey of the 50 Best Places to Work. But more than that, Costco remains the top retailer to work for.

Working for Costco Wholesale.
Working for Costco Wholesale: The Company pays some of the highest wages in retail.

Costco was only one of two retailers employees thought about highly enough to actually have it rank after coming in at 29th on the Best Places to Work list with a 3.9 rating out of 5. Family owned regional supermarket chain Wegmans, which placed 32nd on the survey, became the only other retailer to make the list.

Companies such as Starbucks, Chick-fil-A, IKEA, and Nordstrom that gained reputation for treating their employees well – all of which have appeared on Glassdoor’s list in previous years – didn’t make the cut this time around.

So, what makes Costco Wholesale so special?

Costco Wholesale is the world’s largest club operator with employment rate of 195,000 workers in its 671 warehouse clubs. The second biggest operator, Wal-Mart, has 643 warehouse clubs in the U.S. and Puerto Rico.

The liberal sensibilities of Costco’s co-founder, Jim Sinegal, is reflected by the company’s philosophy toward its employees, and is reflected by what I believe are six reasons employees have ranked Costco as a top employer in the United States.

These six reasons are listed below:

  1. The average Costco employee earns around $20 per hour compared to the $12.20 per hour national average for retail employees
  2. 88% of Costco’s employees have company-sponsored healthcare and pay just 12% for out-of pocket premiums for benefits
  3. It hires from within, as 70% of its managers started working behind the register
  4. During the recession, when other retailers were laying off employees, Costco initiated a $1.50 per hour raise spread out over three years
  5. In 2013, Craig Jelinek, President and CEO of the Company earned close to $5.4 million in total compensation, which is about 123 times the average employee’s $43,000 annual salary. However, this amount is far below what the national average of 350-to-1 is.
  6. And perhaps most timely considering the season, Costco doesn’t require its employees to work on Thanksgiving Day

Those sorts of policies are what make Costco employees to work devotedly. That’s translated into constant growth in the company’s business. Revenues at Costco Wholesale have grown 9% annually on average for the past decade with profits rising by a like amount.

Costco Wholesale Careers and Jobs

Costco Wholesale is a company that respects and supports workplace quality. It offers exciting opportunities, career growth, friendly and supportive work environment, stability, a workplace focused on ethics and obeying the law, and great benefits.

Costco Wholesale Careers.
Costco Wholesale Careers: The Company offers exciting opportunities and career growth to employees.

Costco is a fast-paced team environment that is filled with challenges and opportunities for ambitious and energetic people. Costco’s successful employees are service-oriented people with integrity and commitment toward a common goal of excellence. As you read on, you will come to discover how to pursue employment opportunities with Costco – a company that offers great jobs, great pay, great benefits, and a great place to work.

Costco’s business is centered on their warehouse operations, and merchandising is their lifeblood. Most Costco’s employees begin their careers in the warehouse setting and become experts in merchandising and operations.

Costco also offers diverse career opportunities at their Home and Regional Offices in many other areas, such as Marketing, Accounting, Buying, Information Systems, Journalism, and Human Resources. In addition, the company is dedicated to recognizing and rewarding employees for their hard work and loyalty. Indeed, the firm promotes the majority of their management teams from within.

Workers who started in clerical positions for Costco or as Stockers and Cashier Assistants are today Warehouse Managers and Vice Presidents. Costco’s future Executive Officers are believed to be currently working in the company’s locations, as well as in their Home and Regional Office.

Warehouses, Depots and Other Businesses

If you are interested in an hourly position at any of Costco’s existing locations, except Puerto Rico, apply online. You can apply at the location directly if your desired location is open for business but is not listed. Other businesses currently include Costco Wholesale Trading, Call Center, Packaging Plants, Business Delivery, and Meat Processing.

You should be able to apply online approximately 12 weeks prior to opening – if you are interested in employment at one of Costco’s new locations that is still under construction. If the location fails to be listed, then the site is not yet accepting applications.

Regional and Home Office Jobs

Costco is committed to promoting from within the company, and so the majority of their current home and regional office team members are home grown. This implies that they began from Costco’s warehouses, depots and business centers, learned the business and then moved up within the company. This philosophy also provides promotional opportunities for motivated individuals.

At present, the company has lawyers, accountants, human resources personnel, and buyers who started their careers as cashiers or stockers in their locations. Therefore, it is believed now that Costco’s future officers are those currently working in their warehouses, depots and business centers, as well as in their Home and Regional Offices.

If this career path has challenged you, the company welcomes you to apply. For a list of typical jobs at Costco’s Wholesale and Costco’s Home and Regional Offices, check here:

Information Technology Opportunities

Costco’s home office, which is located in Issaquah, Washington, is also the site of their Information Systems Division. Click on Costco I.S. Jobs for employment opportunities in I.S.

Licensed Professions

Excellent employment options are provided for Licensed/Certified Opticians, and also leasing opportunities are offered to Licensed Optometrists. Costco’s optical departments are staffed by trained professionals and constantly deliver an industry-leading level of service and value.

You should apply online for optician positions if a career opportunity with Costco Optical interests you. You can email Denise Mogil for leasing opportunities.

For Licensed Hearing Aid Dispensers and Dispensing Audiologists who want to build their careers with one of the largest independent hearing aid retailers in the United States, they are welcome at Costco Wholesale.

Costco needs full-time (40 hours per week) and part-time (24 hours per week) licensed professionals. Please send your resume to Tammy Miller for employment opportunities in Costco’s hearing aid centers.

Costco is currently looking for Licensed Pharmacists to fill positions for pharmacy managers and full-time, part-time and relief/floating pharmacist positions.

Ranked as one of the top 10 drug chains nationally, Costco currently operates more than 480 pharmacies and employs 1,800 pharmacists. You should apply online for career opportunities.

Costco Nationwide E-Verify System

Costco participates in the e-verify system nationwide. So for more information regarding e-verify, click for English or click for Spanish. For Utah applicants, click here; and for San Francisco Applicants, click Here for access.

Additional Information about Diversity in Employment at Costco

As a diverse workforce, Costco’s mission is to create an environment of inclusion. Click here for equal employment opportunity report.

Costco Wholesale’s Typical Jobs


Cashier Assistant: The Cashier Assistant packs member orders into boxes and transfers items to a separate cart for Cashiers. He performs clean up, cart retrieval, merchandise restocking, and runs for items as directed.

Cashier: A Cashier at Costco processes member orders and collects payment, while providing a high level of member service. He also performs clean up, department set-up and closing tasks as required.

Stocker: The Stocker stocks and straightens merchandise for sale in the warehouse, clears and cleans aisles, and helps members.

Food Service Assistant: The Service Assistant prepares and sells food and drinks to customers, pulls and stocks supplies and ingredients, cleans kitchen area and eating area, as well as provides prompt and courteous member service.

Bakery Wrapper: The Bakery Wrapper garnishes, weighs, wraps, labels and merchandises bakery products.

Service Deli Assistant: The Service Deli Assistant prepares, packages, and labels meals, entrees, salads, party trays, rotisserie chicken, ribs, sushi, and sliced meats and cheeses, as well as assembles take-and-bake pizzas.

Membership Assistant: The Membership Assistant processes member sign ups, renewals and added cards. He also instructs members and potential members about membership, warehouse and credit programs; helps members regarding availability of items, issues replacement and temporary cards, keys credit applications, as well as provides a high level of member service.

Other Typical Costco Warehouse Jobs
• Inventory Auditor
• Licensed Hearing Aid Dispenser
• Baker
• Cake Decorator
• Forklift Driver
• Licensed Optician
• Maintenance Assistant
• Membership Refund Cashier
• Non-Licensed Optician
• Optical Sales Assistant
• Outside Marketer
• Payroll Clerk
• Pharmacy Sales Assistant
• Meat Cutter
• Meat Wrapper
• Pharmacy Technician
• Receiving Clerk
• Print Shop Assistant
• RTV Clerk
• Sanitation Assistant – Meat
• Pharmacist – Registered
• Sanitation Assistant – Bakery
• Pharmacy Manager
• Skilled Maintenance
• Stocker
• Tire Sales Assistant


• Power Equipment Operator
• Truck Driver

Business Center/ Business Delivery (WA, CA, GA & AZ)

• Order Picker
• Class B (or CDL) License Driver

Call Center

• Customer Service Representative

Costco’s Home and Regional Offices

• Communications
• Community Relations
• Auditing
• Aviation
• Benefits
• Construction
• Consumer Services
• General Liability
• Graphic Design
• Accounting
• Administration
• Human Resources
• Information Systems
• Journalism
• Legal
• Logistics
• Facilities
• Food Service
• Marketing
• Merchandising
• Payroll
• Safety
• Security
• Property Management
• Publishing
• Technical Writing
• Training
• Purchasing
• Quality Assurance
• Real Estate
• Risk Management
• Sign Center
• Taxes
• Traffic

Costco Wholesale Training and Development Programs

Costco Wholesale Training Programs.
Costco Wholesale Training Programs: The Company makes huge investment in developing valuable skills in their employees.

Costco has chosen Sales Training America to provide management training to their managerial staff. Through the Managerial Coaching Skills course, Supervisors will get help developing vital skills such as effective communication, evaluation, and delegation.

Both novice and experienced managers will have the chance to receive hands-on practice with each of their new skills during the training.

Due to STA’s dedication to understanding Costco’s condition as well as for STA’s flexibility to be able to customize and adjust the Managerial Coaching Skills class to meet their exact needs, Costco Wholesale chose Sales Training America.

Through offering corporate training programs since 1979, Sales Training America has helped hundreds of thousands employees achieve their best performance at workplace.

Over the years, Sales Training America has acted as a valued training provider for globally-recognized companies, associations, non-profit organizations, and government agencies such as Bank of America, ExxonMobil, and Dell to equip their employees with the skills that produce results in the field and office.

The globally utilized and delivered Sales Training America’s materials are working throughout North America, South America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Middle East. Classes are delivered privately on-site at client-designated locations or organized publicly all through United States and Canada in over 20 cities.

Costco’s Student Internship Program and Recruitment Process

You can discover about Costco’s current internship recruitment and apply at once. And you can also review the application process for the internship program and get detailed information about the department you want to apply for.

You have an opportunity to make a difference in your career by doing an internship at the world’s largest department stores.

The IT Division of the internship program is inviting students currently enrolled in an IT graduate or undergraduate program at a community college, college or university to take part in a 12-week internship program during the summer.

Costco Wholesale Student Internship.
Costco Wholesale Student Internship: The Company’s internship program gives you the opportunity to make a difference in your career.

Interns will work within specific regions in Costco’s Information Systems Division. They will also attend presentations different members of Executive Management from IS and other areas of the company have offered.

As housing is not provided, interns will be responsible for their own travel and accommodation expenses.


Responsibilities demand that all Costco Summer I.T. Interns will intern full-time for the whole term of the program of 12 weeks.

Interns are also required to work from approximately 8am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, as schedule varies by team.

Required Skills and Abilities

All interns must be maintaining a GPA of 3.0 or higher, and must be students currently enrolled in an IT graduate or undergraduate program at a college, community college or university. Their Costco warehouse or retail experience is an added advantage.

All Interns must provide the following:

• Current Resume
• Cover Letter that is between 300 and 500 words in length. Explain your reasons for applying and what you expect to gain from taking part in the program and how it may impact your future objectives. Examples should be included of how you have applied your skills other than a classroom assignment.
• All questions must be answered in the Internship Questionnaire included in the application.
• Two Letters of Recommendation from supervisors, managers or professors, not colleagues, family or friends, with email addresses and phone numbers.
• All five documents must be ready for uploading before the application process commences.

How to Apply

All Costco internship applications are acceptable through this link: Apply here.

Costco Corporate Culture and Values

The issue of Costco Wholesale being the second largest retailer around the globe is partially attributed to the effects of the company’s organizational culture.

Through Costco’s organizational culture, consumers are satisfied through employees’ excellence in service. Costco uses its corporate culture to optimize employee morale and customer satisfaction as the largest membership warehouse club chain in the United States.

Costco will expectably continue to grow with the same organizational culture that has helped the company withstand strong competitors like Walmart.

The main characteristics of Costco’s organizational culture include:

Common Goal of Excellence

Costco Wholesale Corporate Culture.
Costco Wholesale Corporate Culture: The Company’s organizational culture plays a major role in its success.

Costco’s organizational culture centers on excellence in performance, allowing the company to push its employees further to accomplish high quality service to satisfy customers. This also creates a sense of direction among workers in terms of their personal and career growth.

Positive Attitude

Costco plants courteousness and friendliness in their employees as they believe that these behaviors are essential in attracting more customers to its warehouses/stores. This characteristic of Costco’s organizational culture contributes to employee self-confidence.

High Energy and Fast Pace

This part of Costco’s organizational culture features efficiency, and motivates employees to maintain optimal productivity. Employees use their energy, speed and efficiency of service to satisfy customers.

Service Orientation

This feature of organizational culture encourages emphasis on service to align workers to the business objective of providing effective retail service. Employees are also supported to interact with customers in a productive and profitable manner, like promoting certain products to customers on the warehouse floor.


The teamwork characteristic of Costco’s organizational culture capitalizes on performance by making use of the synergy of teams. Teamwork enables employees to accomplish flexibility that offers Costco the ability to address variations in customer preferences, and also facilitate friendship among its employees.

Costco Job Application – How to Start a Career (the Hiring Process)

Through StartWire, you can search and apply directly for jobs at Costco. They will help you keep your job search organized and also provide you with updates on your application.

To apply for jobs at Costco through StartWire, click here.

Through Costco’s hiring website, you can also search and apply for jobs. If you have chosen this method, you must come back and use StartWire to organize your job search.

Guidelines have been provided to walk you through the application process, so you will know exactly what to anticipate.

The Costco Application Process

Costco Wholesale Job Application.
Costco Wholesale Job Application: You can search and apply for jobs through the Company’s website.

The Costco online job application really takes a long process, but the risk is worth taking. A lot of questions are involved and, depending on the job you are applying for, you can expect to spend anywhere between 10 minutes and an hour working on the application.

The Application

If you happen to live in a location where there are multiple stores that you’d be interested in working at, you can apply to up to 5 Costco locations with a single application. This saves time and is very much valued.

The first page of the application is designed to collect your personal information, as with most applications you already know. You are required to provide your name, address, phone number, social security number, and other common personal information. An account will automatically be created for you at the conclusion of this section.

On-the-Job Questions

After your personal information have been provided, you will be required to answer a series of questions that are intended to determine your work ethic and priorities on the job.

As you begin to answer these questions you will come to understand how easy they are, and the appropriate answer is typically very clear. Nonetheless, ensure you read each question very cautiously.

Wrapping Up

The questionnaire session is almost the concluding part of the application process. You will be required to provide your work history, work availability, education, and references. References are highly recommended, but optional. You should list professional references if you have any. But don’t bother if you have none.

Background Check

You will be asked to provide Costco with permission to perform a background check during the application process. That means that Costco will ask for information relating to your criminal history, vehicle/driving records, social security number, and other public record information for employment purposes.

Your employment offer is dependent upon passing the background check. Therefore, you will not be able to complete the application if you decline the check.

The background check is necessary, so don’t decline it to avoid restriction from completing the application.

Drug Test

All new hires must be tested by Costco before their employment becomes official. So you are required to submit to a drug test.

How Long Does Costco Keep Your Application on File?

It takes 60 days for all applications to be kept on file. You will need to fill out another application to remain in consideration for a position if you haven’t heard back in 60 days.

Getting Updates on Your Costco Application

You will get automatic updates on your application status if you use StartWire to search and apply for Costco jobs. You’ll know when your application has been read and when you’ve been selected for the position you’ve applied for.

Who is Eligible for Costco Hiring?

As an equal opportunity employer, Costco doesn’t consider age, gender, ethnicity, or disability when choosing who to hire.

Categories of People Costco Wants to Hire

Costco wants to hire people who are able to work hard, multitask, and be a positive influence on a team. Above all, Costco wants to hire people who can treat their customers nicely. During the application and interview process, you should try as much as possible to highlight any customer service experience you have.

Age Requirements

Working at Costco requires that you reach the age of 18.

Benefits and Compensation for Working with Costco Wholesale

Costco Wholesale has one of the most competitive benefits packages in the industry, in which employees may also elect coverage for their children, spouses and domestic partners.

The firm pays a bigger percentage of the premiums than most retailers, and employees’ pre-tax payment is withheld, offering them an opportunity to keep more of their hard-earned money.

According to the U.S. benefit-eligibility requirements, hourly employees who work full-time are benefit-eligible on the first of the month after working 450 hours or 90 days. Then hourly employees who work part-time are benefit-eligible on the first of the month after date of hire. Salaried employees are benefit-eligible on the first of the month after date of hire.

Health Care

Costco offers generous health care coverage with low bi-weekly payroll contributions to their full-time and part-time benefit-eligible employees. Medical, prescription drug, vision, behavioral health benefits, and hearing aid are among health care coverage the company offers to their full-time and part-time benefit-eligible employees.

Dental Care

Full-time benefit-eligible Costco employees can select from two various dental plans: a core dental plan and a premium dental plan.

Pharmacy Program

It is easy to pick up prescriptions at work in most Costco warehouses, because of the availability of in-house pharmacies. Co-payments of benefit-eligible employees can be as small as $3 for generic medications and 15% co-pay is applicable to other varieties of medications.

Vision Program

Because of the availability of in-house optical centers in most Costco warehouses, it becomes easy to access the vision benefit program. The program pays up to $60 toward a refraction eye exam and $175 for the purchase of prescription glasses and contact lenses to benefit-eligible employees and covered dependents.

401(k) Plan

This benefits plan is designed to help employees save for a cozy retirement. The employee contributions of 50 cents for the first $1,000 every year are matched by the company to a maximum match of $500 a year ($250 a year for West Coast Union employees).

The company makes an annual contribution to employees’ account once they meet eligibility requirements, which is based on a percentage of eligible earnings. As employee’s years of service increase, the percentage increases also.

Dependent Care Assistance Plan

By enrolling in the Dependent Care Assistance Plan, all Costco employees whose families qualify can take advantage of tax savings. With pre-tax dollars, this allows for payment of day care for children under 13 years, as well as adult.

Care Network

This secret, free resource program is fully separate from Costco and is available to all employees and their families from the very first day of employment. The professional councilors of the Care Network are devoted to Costco employees and trained to help you resolve personal, work or family challenges.

They can further provide guidance, information and/or referrals to local service providers, such as debit solution services, lawyers and behavioral health professionals, to help you address a number of various needs.

Voluntary Short-term Disability

All hourly employees who exceed their 90-day probationary period and are working at least 10 hours a week will be automatically enrolled in short-term disability insurance where disability coverage isn’t mandated by their state.

This vital coverage offers a tax-free income replacement benefit in case they are not capable to perform their duty due to a non-work related accident, illness or pregnancy.

Long-term Disability

At no cost, Costco offers long-term disability coverage for benefit-eligible employees who are enrolled in a medical plan. If they have exceeded 180 days, this policy pays up to 60% of their earnings.

Life Insurance

At no cost, Benefit-eligible employees enrolled in a medical plan are also offered basic life insurance, accidental death, and dismemberment policies. The benefit amount is dependent on years of service and whether the employee is full-time or part-time. Employees also may choose to acquire supplemental coverage for themselves, their spouses or children.

Employee Stock Purchase Plan

Employees who are new in the company are right away eligible to sign up for this plan, which allows them to acquire Costco stock by payroll deduction.

The Employee Stock Purchase Plan is another easy way to save for the future, not only to avoid commissions and fees normally associated with the purchase.

Health Care Reimbursement Account

Benefit-eligible employees can arrange to have pre-tax contributions automatically deducted from their paychecks and placed into a Health Care Reimbursement Account. With pre-tax money, being able to pay medical and dental bills, including co-pays and deductibles, can reduce your taxable income every year.

Long-term Care Insurance

Costco provides a basic policy designed to pay for nursing home care for employees with 10 or more years of service. In addition to the basic policy provided by Costco, all benefit-eligible employees may purchase a basic policy or buy additional coverage. Their spouses, or their parents (in-law) or grandparents (in-law), and their siblings and children over the age of 18 are as well eligible to purchase Long Term Care Insurance.

Costco Wholesale Work/Life Balance

Costco Wholesale Work/Life Balance.
Costco Wholesale Work/Life Balance: Unfortunately, the Company provides poor work/life balance for employees.

Costco has no good work/life balance in any of the departments. The work/life is not great as compared to other companies.

The good wages and good benefits that Costco boasts of offering to its employees are for full-time employees. It is incredibly stressful to work at Costco, and you are required as a full-time employee to work for 40 hours a week, generally during the most inconvenient times and often on weekends and evenings giving you little time away from work.

Typical hours of work at Costco start from 9:45 am to 8:30 pm, Monday to Friday, 9:15 am to 6 pm on Saturday, and 9:45 am to 5 pm on Sundays. So you have Friday, Saturday, Sunday or Monday (mostly Sunday or Monday) for off days as a full-time employee.

Shifts in most of the departments range from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm and goes 8.5 hours in length with a 30-minute unpaid break making your working time full 8 hours.

Meeting with a doctor or dentist or other things needed to be done during a weekday is nearly impossible. Most employees are there well past or well before opening, even though they have late opening and early closing times. With incredibly high stress and extremely low morale, management tends to treat people poorly and because most of the staff has little or no secondary education they look down on those who do.

Your work/life balance gets worse as you get higher in management. Because Costco pays some of the highest wages in retail, they fully expect that they own you and treat you as such. It is true they promote from within, but you must be ready for anything that comes your way as an employee.


This post provides exhaustive information on jobs, employment, and careers at Costco Wholesale to help individuals who are interested in working for the company to learn about them.

If you find this post helpful in finding out about jobs, careers, and employment at Costco Wholesale, kindly leave a comment in the box below. You can also share any experience you’ve had with Costco Wholesale if you are or had been an employee of the company.

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