What makes a company “bad”? Is it offering employees low wages for slave labour? Is it forcing employees to work long hours, leaving them with no time for family? Or is it subjecting employees to unsafe working conditions? The answer may possibly involve all three. Factors such as inadequate compensation, unconcern for work/life balance, and poor working conditions can take a company from “bad” to “worst”. The companies on this list failed to get the memo on one or more of these factors.
In order to compile a list of twenty of the worst companies to work for, I started by gathering names of companies with less than stellar reputations. A company with a history of underpaying its employees could just as easily land on this list as a company which failed to comply with fire safety regulations. Once I had obtained a large number of guilty companies, I began crafting a top twenty. I used data from Glassdoor and Comparably to rank these companies on three key factors: employee compensation (which includes pay and benefits), work/life balance, and working conditions (which includes work hours and work environment). I then calculated the average ranking of each company across all three factors to determine the order of the top twenty companies.
Without further ado, here’s a list of twenty of the worst companies to work for.
20. Yum! Brands, Inc.
Yum! Brands is the best of the worst companies featured on this list. It includes such popular fast food restaurant chains as KFC, Taco Bell, and Pizza Hut. While the food may be yummy over at Yum! Brands, the wages aren’t. Yum! Brands was listed as the second lowest paying company in 24/7 Wall St.’s 2015 special report. It has since improved, earning a score of 3.8/5 for comp and benefits on Glassdoor, and ranking among the top 45% of companies on Comparably in terms of employee compensation. It’s score of 55/100 in this domain, however, leaves room for improvement.
It may come as a surprise to find Apple on a list of the worst companies to work for, but there are two major reasons for its inclusion on this list. First, Apple was listed as the fourth most stressful tech company to work for according to a report by PayScale, with 66% of employees citing their job as stressful. Stress can lead to a host of negative health conditions, so more than half of your employees experiencing stress at work isn’t a good sign. Second, Apple appeared on MoneyInc’s list of five companies boasting the worst working conditions. Specifically, Apple factories reported high suicide rates among workers and forced overtime of up to 200 hours per month. The next time you search for jobs on your iPhone, spare a thought for the Apple employees who might be thinking of jumping out of the nearest window.
18. Foot Locker
No, Foot Locker didn’t earn its position on this list for shoving its employees’ feet inside of a locker. Don’t fool yourself, though; it isn’t a perfect company, either. Foot Locker was ranked the ninth worst retail company to work for on Ranker. Perhaps this is because of the long hours that employees must work. Or maybe it’s because of the horrendous referee uniforms that employees must wear. Either way, working at Foot Locker isn’t an ideal scenario. Its worst scores on Glassdoor are for comp and benefits and senior management, which may be explained by the fact that managers are seen as having favourites. Foot Locker only reports a 48% positive business outlook on Glassdoor, which isn’t encouraging. Employees believe that there’s little to no room for growth. Other than that, Foot Locker doesn’t show signs of any major problems, which is why it’s only 18th on this list.
17. Office Depot
Like its name suggests, Office Depot is an office supply chain, a rival to Staples if you will. It beat out Staples for a spot on this list, but might not want to brag about it. Office Depot was ranked worst retail company to work for on Ranker. This ranking might have something to do with substandard pay and benefits. Office Depot is among the bottom 45% of companies on Comparably when it comes to employee compensation. It reports a worse positive business outlook than Foot Locker (23% on Glassdoor), while only 44% would recommend it to a friend. As expected, its weakest categories on Glassdoor are senior management, comp and benefits, and career opportunities. Interestingly, Office Depot is among the top 5% of companies on Comparably in terms of work environment. Perhaps its positive atmosphere makes up for the low wages.
16. Papa John’s
Papa John’s makes pizza and disgruntled employees. The company was announced as the second worst company in America by the Center for Popular Democracy. It was involved in a class-action lawsuit for underpaying its delivery drivers. This ill-advised practice was enough to place Papa John’s in the top ten companies offering the worst compensation according to my analysis. Consistent with my findings, Comparably indicates that Papa John’s falls in the bottom 35% of companies in terms of employee compensation. It did, however, manage to make the top 10% of companies regarding work environment. At least the delivery drivers were having fun while they were being swindled out of money, right?
Who hasn’t been to McDonald’s and thought, “They must be making cuts somewhere to sell their food this cheap”? Well, they’re cutting back on their employees’ wages, that’s where. McDonald’s made several worst lists, including 24/7 Wall St.’s special report of the lowest paying companies in America, where it placed third. It also made the top twenty worst retail companies to work for on Ranker. This isn’t shocking when you consider McDonald’s reputation for offering low wages, assigning inconsistent work schedules, skimping on employee benefits, and making employees work unpredictable hours. Employees’ biggest complaints about McDonald’s, however, typically involve low wages. The restaurant chain is among the bottom 35% of companies on Comparably when it comes to employee compensation, and among the top ten companies on this list offering employees the worst compensation. The next time that you find yourself ordering a Big Mac, think about leaving a generous tip.
14. Tyson Foods
Tyson Foods made this list for one major reason: its horrific working conditions. Along with Apple, Tyson Foods made MoneyInc’s list of five companies with the worst working conditions in America. At Tyson Foods, workers wear adult diapers because they’re denied bathroom breaks. They slash each other with knives and sharp tools because they’re packed in like sardines on the assembly line. Doesn’t this sound like an appealing job? It’s not for the faint of heart, that’s for sure. Predictably, Tyson Foods made the top five companies with the worst working conditions in my analysis. It also made the bottom 35% of companies on Comparably with regards to work environment. Employees of Tyson Foods have it easy, though, compared to the Tyson chickens who were scalded alive.
13. TJX Companies
TJX Companies operates T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, HomeGoods, Sierra Trading Post, Winners, and HomeSense, among other retailers. Its products are tasteful, but its work practices are not. According to 24/7 Wall St.’s special report, TJX Companies is the seventh lowest paying company in America. Three of its retailers (HomeGoods, T.J. Maxx, and Marshalls) made the top 20 worst retail companies to work for on Ranker. Worse, TJX Companies is among the bottom 5% of companies on Comparably in terms of employee compensation. It’s also among the top five companies offering the worst compensation in my analysis. You may want to retrieve the resume that you just submitted to T.J. Maxx.
Walmart made this list for being 24/7 Wall St.’s lowest paying company in America. It’s also one of five companies with the worst working conditions according to MoneyInc, along with Apple and Tyson Foods. In 2013, one in six Walmart clothing factories in Bangladesh failed to meet safety standards, one factory even collapsing because of this. Looks like Walmart’s low prices come at the cost of several human lives. Walmart then refused to sign a pact to improve factory conditions, which is shady to say the least. Walmart likewise made Ranker’s list of worst retail companies to work for, coming in at number two. It made two top ten lists in my analysis: worst working conditions and worst work/life balance. Walmart may want to roll back on the negative work factors a tad.
Walgreens is a pharmacy chain that may want to get a prescription for how to treat its employees fairly. The Center for Popular Democracy named Walgreens the worst company in America, based on thousands of votes. Walgreens has been accused of promoting employees to salaried positions to avoid overtime pay, resulting in employees earning less per hour than their hourly coworkers. Unsurprisingly, this company is among the bottom 25% of companies on Comparably in terms of employee compensation. Walgreens made the top ten companies with the worst working conditions in my analysis, but, interestingly enough, just missed the top ten in the compensation category. It ended up at number eleven, much like its position on this list; foreshadowing, perhaps?
10. Express Scripts
Keeping with the theme of undesirable pharmacies, Express Scripts is a pharmacy benefit management company (the largest in the United States), as well as a Fortune 100 company. It was the second worst company on 24/7 Wall St.’s list of worst companies in 2016. It’s among the bottom 35% of companies with regards to work environment on Comparably. Express Scripts made the top five companies with the worst working conditions, and the top ten companies with the worst work/life balance in my analysis. Long hours are a common complaint, with many employees working 10-hour days. Those hours will definitely skew work/life balance in favour of work.
Perhaps having “mart” in your company name isn’t such a good idea if you want your company to make a “best” list. 24/7 Wall St. listed Kmart as the sixth worst company in 2016. It is the fifth worst retailer to work for according to Ranker. It’s among the bottom 5% of companies on Comparably in terms of employee compensation. Kmart came out as the company offering the worst compensation in this analysis. Sears Holdings Corporation, which owns Kmart, was listed as the eighth lowest paying company by 24/7 Wall St. in 2015. Low pay and long hours are two common complaints from Kmart employees.
8. Kraft Heinz Company
Everybody has consumed a Kraft Heinz product in their lifetime. Whether it’s Heinz ketchup squirted over a juicy burger, or a Jello-O shot at a college party, Kraft Heinz has satisfied consumers’ cravings for years. Whether it’s satisfied its employees is another matter. Kraft Heinz Company was rated the tenth worst company by 24/7 Wall St. in 2016. It’s among the bottom 5% of companies on Comparably for employee compensation. With regards to the current analysis, Kraft Heinz made the top three companies with the worst working conditions, and emerged as the company reporting the worst work/life balance. Heinz ketchup suddenly acquired a sour taste.
7. Forever 21
Forever 21’s clothes might look cheap, but nothing’s cheaper than the company’s work practices. Forever 21 was rated the worst company in America by 24/7 Wall St. in 2016. It’s ranked the 15th worst retail company to work for on Ranker. According to Comparably, it’s among the bottom 25% of companies in terms of work environment. Forever 21 made the top five companies with the worst work/life balance, and the top three companies with the worst working conditions in my analysis. The company is infamous for forcing employees to work overtime without pay (sometimes as late as 2 A.M.), and for detaining employees during lunch breaks or after shifts to search their bags for stolen merchandise. Talk about trust issues.
6. Family Dollar Stores
Family Dollar was rated the third worst company by 24/7 Wall St. in 2016. It was listed as one of five companies touting the worst working conditions according to MoneyInc, in part due to employees having to sleep at stores overnight and being refused medical attention during work hours. It’s among the bottom 35% of companies on Comparably with regards to employee compensation, using the Walgreens strategy of promoting employees to salaried positions to avoid paying overtime. Family Dollar made the top ten companies with the worst working conditions and the worst compensation, as well as the being the company with the second worst work/life balance in my analysis. It can be hard to imagine a company with the word “dollar” in its name paying its employees anything more.
Dillard’s isn’t a restaurant that specializes in pickles; it’s a department store in the United States. It came out as the ninth worst company in 2016 according to 24/7 Wall St., but has since worsened. It’s among the bottom 5% of companies on Comparably in terms of employee compensation, with only 10/100 employees believing they’re paid fairly. Dillard’s is certainly in a pickle (okay, that’s my last pickle joke). Dillard’s emerged as the company with the third worst work/life balance, and placed among the top ten companies with the worst working conditions and the worst compensation in my analysis. Employees believe that Dillard’s has unrealistic sales quotas. Perhaps they have unrealistic ideas of how a company should run, as well.
Some people subscribe to Bell; others subscribe to DISH. If you haven’t guessed it already, DISH is an American satellite television and internet provider. The company was listed as the seventh worst company in America by 24/7 Wall St. in 2016. It just cracked the top 20 worst retail companies to work for on Ranker. According to Comparably, it’s among the bottom 45% of companies in terms of employee compensation, and among the bottom 30% in terms of work environment. DISH made two top five lists in my analysis: worst working conditions, and worst work/life balance (tying for third place with Dillard’s). DISH is perhaps best known for its poor customer relations. Can you blame them when their employees are miserable?
Xerox is one of those names you’ve heard before, but don’t quite know what it means. In a nutshell, Xerox is a document technology company. What is a document technology company, you ask? Well, it sells printers and photocopiers, among other things. What Xerox doesn’t sell, however, is a positive work experience. The company was listed as the fifth worst company in 2016 by 24/7 Wall St. According to Comparably, it’s among the bottom 10% of companies in terms of both employee compensation and work environment. Yikes. Xerox made the top ten companies with the worst work/life balance and the worst compensation in my analysis, as well as being the company boasting the worst working conditions. Might I print out a few suggestions for improving your work experience, Xerox?
RadioShack may have filed for bankruptcy several times, but it still has enough stores open to make this list. RadioShack emerged as the eighth worst company on 24/7 Wall St.’s list of worst companies in 2016. It’s also the eighth worst retailer to work for on Ranker. According to Comparably, it’s among the bottom 45% of companies in terms of work environment, and among the bottom 5% of companies in terms of employee compensation. RadioShack made the top ten companies with the worst work/life balance and the worst working conditions, and emerged as the company offering the second worst compensation in my analysis. It might not be such a bad thing if RadioShack goes out of business.
Truth be told, I’ve never felt comfortable being inside of a Sears store. Maybe it’s the general clutter pervading the aisles, or maybe it’s a sixth sense that the company isn’t a shining example of good business practices. Sears is cited as the fourth worst and the eighth lowest paying company in America by 24/7 Wall St. MoneyInc lists Sears as one of five companies with the worst working conditions, while Ranker lists Sears as the sixth worst retail company to work for. It’s only more bad news from there. According to Comparably, Sears is among the bottom 20% of companies with regards to work environment, and among the bottom 5% in terms of employee compensation. In my analysis, Sears is among the top ten companies with the worst work/life balance, the top five companies offering the worst compensation, and is the company with the second worst working conditions. I don’t feel so bad about disliking Sears anymore.
- Ad Free Browsing
- Over 10,000 Videos!
- All in 1 Access
- Join For Free!