by Heidi Riley
Fastenal is an international company specializing in supply chain management and serves the business-to-business (B2B) sector.
“We sell products and solutions such as fasteners, safety gear, chemicals, hydraulics, welding, and power transmission – anything that makes the world run,” says Christopher MacDonald, General Manager of the Fastenal location in Charlottetown.
“We were quite busy here after hurricane Fiona, especially with power transmission lines that came down.”
“The company manufactures about 377 million products and ships 90 percent of their own products using their own fleets,” says Claudia LaForme, Regional Recruiter for Eastern Canada.
“About 20,000 employees work in 3,200 locations of Fastenal, and there are over 520 specialist occupations within the company.”
The Charlottetown location has seven employees. “We currently have openings for at least one or two more people, and we are hiring at present,” says Christopher.
“There are all kinds of opportunities here. The company offers part-time and internship opportunities for students. You can start by working part-time while going to school and work yourself into a career.”
Christopher has worked for Fastenal for 22 years and has a Bachelor of Commerce degree. “The thing I really like about working at Fastenal is that we have decentralized decision-making. You are not told what to do all the time. You can make your own decisions and grow within your decisions.”
When Claudia started with Fastenal six years ago, she was working on her Bachelor of Business degree. “I was not sure if I was interested in marketing or finance or logistics or accountability. We learn so much in school, but we don’t get real-world experience. When I first started, I learned about all of that.
“Each location of Fastenal is run like a small business, making their own decisions and doing their own selling and logistics with the support of the multinational company. When you are a student working with the company, you can learn a lot. You can start in two separate paths: supply chain or marketing/sales. You can grow and learn what really interests you, and you have many options.”
What skills and experience do you need to work at Fastenal?
The company runs its own school of business that helps employees grow during their years of work. “New hires do not need to know about fasteners or coding – you will learn as you go,” says Claudia. “I am still learning about new products and technology.
“Working with Fastenal is a great opportunity for students who want to grow and learn about the B2B sector. The stores are open from 7 to 5 pm – no weekends or evening work is required.”
Students interested in an internship or part-time positions need a valid driver’s license so that they can visit the customer’s site in a company vehicle.
Claudia says 95 percent of the company’s leadership roles are promoted from within. “We take care of our employees, and we make sure they grow towards the path they want to take.”