Scott Dobroski, a Glassdoor spokesperson, identified three components in employee reviews that tend to relate most directly to long-term employee satisfaction. These include a positive company culture, good career opportunities, and trust in senior management. Workers at companies that have the most dissatisfied employees indeed tend to complain about an absence of these benefits.
For example, while the average CEO has a 67% employee approval rating on Glassdoor, most of the CEOs of the 19 companies on this list have a worse than 40% approval rating.
The important question employers must address when developing a management and pay structure is how much resources the company should devote to keeping employees happy. While spending more money on pay, training, and benefits can improve employee experiences and therefore potentially lead to greater productivity and happier customers, it can affect the bottom line in the short term. Most corporations must determine the minimum they can give up to maintain stable productivity and minimize turnover.
Glassdoor and other parties have conducted research that conclusively demonstrates that there is at least a relationship between happy employees and successful businesses, at least in part because it often contributes to happier clientele. “We know that when employees are engaged and more satisfied in their work that can lead to greater productivity, greater collaboration, and greater creativity,” Dobroski said. “When employees embody some of those attributes, they trickle down to their customer base.”
Two of the companies on this list, Alorica and Teleperformance, each primarily serves as call centers for other companies. The presence of these two companies on this list suggests that in some businesses, it is likely far more difficult to maintain happy employees. Call center workers must spend their entire day dealing with dissatisfied, often angry or abusive customers.
Most of the companies on this list, in fact, are customer-facing organizations. The difficulties of dealing with customers likely partially contribute to the composition of this list. However, as Dobroski noted, many customer-facing corporations have generally satisfied employees. Dobroski suggested that companies in any industry can improve employee satisfaction by listening to employee feedback and seeking to foster a better relationship with workers.
While Glassdoor generally cautions that pay is not necessarily the most important driving factor in the customer experience, it should be noted that the companies on this list generally tend to pay their workers less. At nearly all of these 19 companies, the most commonly reported annual compensation on Glassdoor is lower than the national average annual wage of $49,630.
Editor’s note: A previous version of this article erroneously the logo for Genesis Healthcare System in the summary about Genesis Healthcare. These are two separate companies — the error has been corrected.
To identify the 19 worst companies to work for, 24/7 Wall St. independently examined employee reviews on Glassdoor — this is not a Glassdoor commissioned report. To be considered, a company had to have a minimum of 1,000 reviews on Glassdoor and be currently operating and headquartered in the United States. Some corporations were excluded when major corporate changes took place affecting the structure of a company, so that it would be unfair to use reviews of what was effectively a different company. Employee counts and net income data refer to each company’s most recent annual financial report, when available. Employee counts in some instances refer to the parent company’s workforce.