Friday, 24 August 2012

Benefit...The Audition

Some of you might know that I had an interview the other day 
for what I described as my 'Dream Job'
Turns out I was VERY wrong!
Don't get me wrong, some people would love a job like this
and my intention with this post is not to put people off working for Benefit it is merely to share my experience of the interview process.

Here Goes...

About three weeks ago I applied online for the position of Account Manager for Benefit in House Of Frasers in Glasgow.
Last week I received a phone call from someone from Benefit telling me they had received my application. 
They then gave me a brief phone interview, asking pretty basic questions such as 
What do you know about the brand?
If your best friend had to describe you in 3 words what would they be?

After passing the telephone interview I was invited to an 'Audition' in store the following week
I was told to wear all black and comfortable shoes 

When I arrived at my audition it was only me and one other girl
We were taken by the area manager to a quiet corner at the back of the Benefit counter and given a summary of what our audition process would involve. 

Basically we would learn about five products and how to demonstrate them on a customer's face
we would then spend the next few hours 'Traffic Stopping'
This involves going out onto the shop floor and approaching shoppers and trying to escort them back to the Benefit counter to show them your products. 

The five products we were demonstrating throughout the day were:

It's Potent Eye Cream
A brightening eye cream to reduce dark circles 

The Porefessional 
PRO balm to minimise the appearance of pores

You Rebel 
SPF 15 Tinted Moisturiser 

High Beam
Luminescent complexion enhancer 

Rose tinted cheek and lip stain 

I was quite relieved as I had used most of these products before and was fairly familiar with them.
We were given a demonstration of how to apply them to a customer, how to set up our station and how to use the products hygienically using cotton swabs.
We were told what information to give the customers about the products and also given some guidance about how to converse with them whilst applying their makeup.

Now I really enjoyed this whole part of the process, I liked learning about the products and the different ingredients they contain and how they work. 
I also like the customer interaction. 
However the next part of the process was the part that was not for me!

We were told to go out into the department store to 'Traffic Stop'
I have learnt from this process that traffic stopping is a MASSIVE part of working for Benefit
they seem to be the only cosmetic brand that work like this 
and it obviously works for them as they are a very successful brand 
however, it is not the easiest thing to do.

You know when you are walking through the town centre on a Saturday afternoon and there are those people with clipboards that chase you down the street trying to sell you stuff?!
Well that's how it felt traffic stopping, I was the guy with the dreadlocks and the clipboard and everybody was pretending they couldn't see me! lol
 I lost count of the times I heard 'Sorry I'm late for a meeting'  or 'I don't have time I'm on my lunch break'

It gets pretty soul destroying after a while! 
It was a Wednesday morning so the shop wasn't exactly busy, there were only so many people you could harass, but what Benefit want to see is bums on seats. 
I managed to get three people back to the counter in an hour and I did make a few sales 
but I found the whole process really uncomfortable, and I would say I am an outgoing and confident person 
So hats off to anyone who does it for a living!! 

After an hour of traffic stopping the area manager approached me and asked how I thought I was doing 
I explained that I had made sales and got some people back to the counter but that the whole concept of traffic stopping wasn't really 'me'
He told me that a lot of people that go for auditions don't feel comfortable with that particular part of the process and that if it wasn't something I could see myself doing then I was welcome to leave. 

I decided that leaving would be the best option for me, as it is definitely not something I could see myself doing on a daily basis. 
The job description sounded more like a management role rather than a field based selling role which is what I seemed to be auditioning for, so I am slightly confused about that, but from what I gather, all Benefit employees go through the same audition process. 

Like I said at the beginning of this post I am not trying to bad mouth Benefit or their employees in any way
I really just wanted to give you an account of my experience of the audition process 
and hopefully some people will find it helpful if they are considering a job with Benefit. 

At the end of the day I'm glad I went as it was an experience 
and it certainly hasn't put me off working in the cosmetics industry 
but Traffic Stopping is not for me!!

Has anyone else had a similar experience?
or totally disagree with me? lol 

Jen <3 


  1. I hate the idea of traffic stopping I'm always avoiding the people in the streets so i'd hate to do it myself. at least you had the experience though :) xx

    1. yeh I'm glad I tried it. I felt so awkward though! xx

  2. I haven't experienced anything like that, but I definitely wouldn't be comfortable with it at all. It sounds like what you were doing was nothing related to what you even applied for :/

    1. I know I really didn't think you would have to do that in a management position...


    2. Yeah same, I definitely understand for a sales position, but for the position you went for it seems totally unnecessary. Maybe a blessing in disguise if that's how the 'interview' was! xxx

  3. i couldn't do it!
    i'd feel like crying, especially because people shopping are normally so rude if they're not interested. its soul destroying!
    hope you're ok after the experience, hope to speak soon.
    laura xx

    1. Some people were awful, they either looked straight through you or snapped at you! Not fun! Xxx

  4. Traffic Stopping puts me off buying from whatever brand it is. I love buying make up etc but if someone stops me to try and force sell me something I then kind of get all stubborn and won't even look.
    I love Benefit make up but I've heard some terrible stories about some of the counter girls, one on their FB profile about the way a Down Syndrome Girl was treated so I am a little warey shopping with them now. Not saying they are all like this but it has put me off a little.

    UK Beauty Blog, I Follow Back


    1. Oh really?! Thts awful! I know what you mean it has put me off them a bit! I honestly dont know how people could do tht every day! Xxx

  5. I mentioned your blog in my last post;


  6. i always feel bad for the people having to do that job, i would find it so demoralising! x

    1. I kno i was in debenhams earlier and felt like running up to the benefit girls and giving them a hug! Lol xx

  7. Oh my god that is so weird! I totally understand if you were wanting to be a sale assistant but an account manager being put through that, really?! I would hate having to do that because I hate people doing it to me lol! Now following you :) xx

    1. It was honestly a nightmare, if i wanted a job like that i would sell cars! Im sure the commision would be better! Lol thanks for following xx

  8. I have never tried the Benetint, it looks really nice, I normally use high beam love it too. I use the body shop version of the Benetint but i'm open to new ones xxx Laurzie