At Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI), 88 percent of employees say their workplace is great.



This review is based on 1216 employee surveys, with a 90% confidence level and a margin of error of ± 2.24. It was published on Sep 13, 2017. 30867 Visitors

What Employees Say

I feel good about the ways we contribute to the community.
People care about each other here.
I'm proud to tell others I work here.
Management is honest and ethical in its business practices.
I am able to take time off from work when I think it's necessary.

What They Do

We asked Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI) to explain what they do. Here is what they had to say.

REI (Recreational Equipment, Inc.) is the nation’s largest outdoor co-op, founded in 1938. Our 12,000 expert employees help our members enjoy living an outdoor life through quality gear, inspiring experiences and great customer service via 150 stores and online.

About this Company

Website: Industry: Retail
US Headquarters: Kent, Washington, 98032 US Sites: 159
Major Locations: Kent, Washington; Seattle, Washington; Denver, Colorado; New York, New York; Washington D.C., District of Columbia; Bloomington, Minnesota; Sumner, Washington; Bedford, Pennsylvania; Goodyear, Arizona US Employees: 12,973
US Revenues: $2,557.5 million Worldwide Revenues: $2,557.5 million
Employees Worldwide: 12,998 Corporate Structure: Cooperative
Founded: 1938


Perks and Programs

We asked Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI) to share a few programs they feel really capture what's unique about their workplace. Here is what they had to say.

  • REI Yay Days: Through Yay Days, every single one of our employees receive one paid day off every six months to go outside and get inspired—no strings attached. Employees have used their Yay Days to connect in the outdoors, doing everything from a local day hike to a once-in-a-lifetime backpacking trip across Europe.
  • Discounts and ProDeals: Providing quality gear to get outside is something we’ve done for more than 77 years, and we want our employees to be well-versed in the gear we sell. That’s why we provide generous discounts on product and experience. Employees enjoy: A 30% discount on all full-price vendor merchandise, as well as 10% off sale items. This discount is extended to spouses and life partners. ProDeal discounts of 50% off on REI gear and apparel and deeper discounts—up to 80% off—based on vendor offers. Employees can shop online by selecting from tens of thousands of products on the ProDeal website at any time. 30% off classes through REI’s Outdoor School and REI Adventure Trips, plus the chance to get in free to certain classes and events.
  • Sabbatical: After 15 years of service with REI, employees earn their first paid sabbatical—a benefit practically unheard of in the retail industry. Employees receive four consecutive weeks of paid time off to use as they please, in addition to any vacation hours earned. They also receive a 50% discount on our REI Adventures trips to help them make the most of their time off. Employees are eligible for a four-week sabbatical every five years after that.
  • Incentive Pay for All: We share our profits with our staff, the people who share our purpose and play an important role in our success. All employees—regardless of level, including our full-time and part-time employees—are eligible to receive incentive pay through our annual Summit Incentive Plan, based on company and divisional performance.
  • Transit Subsidy: For a faster and more pleasant commute to work—and to reduce our carbon footprint—we make commuting easy through a 50% pre-tax subsidy on public transit expenses (including bus, train, vanpool and ferry). Employees can go online, order a transit pass and have their portion of the cost taken directly out of their paycheck before taxes. For employees with limited alternative commuting options, we offer a pre-tax parking subsidy at locations that require paid parking
  • Rethink Benefits: Rethink Benefits helps families with children who have autism and/or other developmental disabilities reach their fullest potential. Families can access this support at no cost, including tele-consultation with behavioral health experts.


84% Company-paid health coverage for employees (for All employees who are eligible for REI's Flex benefits.) 73% Company-paid health coverage for dependents (for all employees' dependents who are eligible for REI's Flex benefits.)
84% Company-paid health coverage for part-timers 20 hours Weekly hours required for part-timers to receive health insurance
$1,076 Average Tuition Reimbursement $3,000 Maximum Tuition Reimbursement


19 days Paid time off after one year of full-time employment 16 days Paid time off after one year of part-time employment
6 days Paid sick days after one year of full-time employment 5 days Paid sick days after one year of part-time employment
4 weeks Paid sabbatical after 15 year(s) of employment 10 Days Paid time off as of first day of full-time employment
1 days Paid time off as of first day of part-time employment


  • Flexible schedule
  • Telecommute option
  • Compressed work weeks
  • Onsite Amenities (Subsidized lunch Mailing Services, Massage Therapy, Discount Tickets, Onsite ATM, Subsidized Public Transportation, Prodeals, Free gear rental, Challenge Grants)


65 days Average length of maternity leave new mothers take10 days Fully-paid paternity leave (does not include personal vacation or paid time off)*
16 days Average length of paternity leave new fathers take130 days Job-protected parental leave for adoptive parents (including FMLA)*
*All employees are eligible for parental leave benefits.


  • Lactation room(s)
  • Paid sick leave to care for a child or relative


  • Mental health care
  • Alternative treatments (such as acupuncture, homeopathy, or chiropractic)
  • Fertility treatments

Community and Environmental Impact

$9,300,000 Philanthropic donations in last year Divisional Vice President, Sustainability Leads environmental impact team
Self-Conducted Environmental impact audit 7 LEED certified building(s)
Yes Sustainable commuting program Yes Renewable energy program
Yes Recycling program Yes Locally-sourced food program


  • Written policy prohibits discrimination based on (at a minimum) age, disability, race/ethnicity, religious beliefs, gender and sexual orientation
  • Non-birth parents in same-sex relationships can take parental leave
  • Medical care covers gender confirmation surgery

Leadership Diversity


Workforce Diversity




How to Get Hired

We asked Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI) for some inside information on how to get hired at the organization. Here is what they had to say.

What key characteristics tell you a prospective employee will be a great fit for your company?

We’re looking for passionate and knowledgeable employees who want to work with purpose and a shared belief that a life outdoors is a life well lived. We hire people who intentionally direct their skills and experience toward a greater good. People who are already living by our values—authenticity, integrity, quality, respect, balance and service.


Our employees are the heart of the co-op. Their expertise, enthusiasm and joy in helping our members get outside differentiates them, whether they are hardcore experts or just ramping into the outdoors. If you care about helping people get outdoors and want to be a steward of the places we play, there’s no better place to be. People love working at REI. It’s a place where you can be yourself and belong

What can prospective employees do to get your attention?

We’re looking for people who love the outdoors, want to share it with others and protect it for future generations. Visit one of our stores, volunteer with an outdoor-focused organization you truly care about, engage in a movement like #ForceOfNature, then tell us about your adventures and how your skills align to the job you’re interested in. Find out where REI is involved in your local community and show up. Show us how you #OptOutside throughout the year and bring others along in this mindset.


Are there any positions or types of candidates you are particularly focused on hiring in this coming year?

At REI, we are an inclusive and welcoming community, seeking talented people to join our teams across the co-op. A significant number of our roles are in our retail stores, where we’re looking for sales associates, outdoor program instructors and specialty technical roles in areas like our bike shop. Other areas we focus on include digital, information technology, merchandising, private brands, creative, finance, sales and customer support and our distribution centers. We don’t just sell products; we connect, enable, inspire and empower people and communities to create memorable experiences.  If you’re passionate about the outdoors or an aspiring outdoor enthusiast who embodies our values, we want to know you.

What should interested candidates do to find out more and get started?

Visit our stores and our website at to learn more about the co-op. Join the conversation on our LinkedIn page and check out our YouTube videos. Connect with our retail employees in our stores and follow REI on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest.  Consider who you know at REI, connect with them and ask them about the employee referral program. Learn about our culture and the things we care about to see if the co-op is what you’re looking for. If the co-op is a place you want to be, create a candidate profile at and sign up for online job notifications. We are always looking to connect with great talent and are accepting applications for current and future openings.  

hiring Outlook

6,476 Forecasted positions to fill in coming year 9% Job Growth
16 Average applicants per opening 127,854 Total job applicants
5% New hires by employee referrals 17% Openings filled by current employees
10% Voluntary turnover for full-time employees 54% Voluntary turnover for part-time employees
* All figures refer to 12-month period prior to reporting, unless otherwise noted.

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