Goodwill Southern California Employee Reviews

Showing all 49 reviews
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
They are not transforming lives through the power of work
management (Current Employee) –  Southern CaliforniaJuly 31, 2015
Was a great place to work for in the beginning but as the company made the move to be a mainstream retail company, they seem to have forgotten their mission of transforming lives through the power of work. Retail associates are very rarely made full time and get no benefits. Assistant managers can not move up within the company because the District Managers put impossible tasks in front of you to over come. They only care to increase the stores business to make their monthly bonuses. Approach members in a hostile and threatening way. If you have a second job the District Managers expect you to work your schedule against theirs despite only getting 15 to 20 hours
Cons
No benefits, poor pay, hostile district managers
Was this review helpful?Yes45No3Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
"Goodwill to those with "Special needs", but "You don't matter if you don't!
Food Services (Current Employee) –  Los AngelesJuly 25, 2014
This is my first experience with Goodwill, in any form. As a new employee for this company, and/or non profit organization...I have to say with all honesty...WWWOOOWWW!!! Logically ...anyone, or company would research the Industry in which they choose to try and penetrate,and/or be part of, but not Goodwill. You would think the company that hired a professional Consultant in the Industry that they would like to penetrate, would at least consider the advice, and/or experience that they are paying for, but not Goodwill." If you have no disabilities and are thinking of applying to Goodwill..I advise you to reconsider for your own good, and wish you good luck if you do except any position with this company. It seems their true motto seems to be...."Goodwill to those with Special needs, but You don't matter if you don't."
Pros
Good benefits.
Cons
From my obesservations, and experience...no organization, ownership, and a boat load of contradiction.
Was this review helpful?Yes44No8Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
Excellent Experience
District Manager (Former Employee) –  Los Angeles, CAMarch 1, 2016
If you take initiative with your career, you can absolutely grow with the agency. A great non-profit serving an excellent cause to provide the vocationally challenged with training and job searches.
Was this review helpful?Yes4No1Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
production and fun to work
Retail Associate/Customer Service (Former Employee) –  Lake Elsinore, CAMarch 12, 2016
liked working with customers and liked fast paced work it was fun being a team member there..manager was nice and fun to work with.. alot to learn at goodwill and everyone is very freindly
Was this review helpful?Yes6No3Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
poor managment
data entry (Former Employee) –  orange,caNovember 1, 2012
i work for this company for 5 years. i never get promotion. the only way to get another position if you kiss the boots of your manager. i get raises of 23 cents. every two years. the managment get 500 dollars bonus every month.
Pros
nothing
Cons
everyhing
Was this review helpful?Yes55No5Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
Interesting and great atmosphere to work in!
Assistant manager (Former Employee) –  Inland EmpireMay 30, 2014
Former employee. Low pay but great benefits! No room for advancement. Upper management has no clue!
Was this review helpful?Yes35No14Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
Full of potential, but no direction
ASSOCIATE / DONATION ATTENDANT/Key 6 (Current Employee) –  Los Angeles County, CAJanuary 29, 2016
If you told me this company was organized by all the decision being made by drawing random ideas drawn out of a hat, i would say "hmm, things are starting to make more sense," and suddenly this place wouldn't be so bad. Unfortunately considering the CEO makes over 400k yet most of the cuts seem to come at the cost of the low-wage workers and the contributors/costumers, i can't hlep but expect more.

Here is a typical day at Goodwill:

Production - Donations
On average, and by average i do mean every single day, you will come into work with a manager (or a whole team of managers - including keyholders and assistance - even the DM occasionally) who seemingly has no real grasp about what to do on that day. Primarily when it comes to organizing incoming donations, which, when it is plentiful (which is a great thing as donations are the store's only inventory) can build up very fast, especially at a store like mine where you average anywhere from eighty to a hundred-and-twenty donations that take up a lot of space. If you're working this department, the manager usually has you pile boxes and bags somewhere on a truck or in the production area, and by the end of the night you all live with the place being more of a safety hazard than a work space. Imagine boxes and bags piled so high that the slightest aftershock can send them tumbling over, potentially killing an employee. It became common to pile and even block exits just to get all the product inside the store. If you question a manager regarding the process, you usually get told to just do as your told or the manager
  more... is no where to be found to begin with. Often there is no one to cover your break/lunch, so donations is left unattended for things to get stolen or disorganized if you managed to organized them. Of all my time in donations, and i spent over a year working by myself in the department, i've never had a manager know how to properly organize the product so that it doesn't turn into a safety hazard or a complete mess. The best ideas/practices for organizing things have come from regular workers who managers typically don't want to hear from. The typical Goodwill manager is not very good at managing things (time, people, resources), at least from my own experience.

Production - Key6

The company has changed up the system of pricing a couple times now. One system they invested in actually cost them a lot of money as they decided to abandon it (scanning all items as opposed to manual pricing by hand of each item). This should really be the easiest part of the job, but once again, managers make it difficult. When someone is put into Key6, two prerequisites should be considered: common sense and patience. Common sense is that you don't price a dirty pair of shoes that one wouldn't want for free, let alone the six to ten dollars your manager may have you price it as. Or, if you have something you aren't sure of its value, ask co-workers opinion, as they may have knowledge of that product that you do not and that could lead to being worth more. Instead, both managers and associates typically just rush everything through the door. Patience becomes an issue when management feels like the product isn't coming out fast enough, but refusing to consider that firstly, you may be working alone and sometimes doing the job of two people because the store cut hours, and now tasks that previously took two people is expected to be done by one, for the same wage, in the same manner, within the same time limits. Patience is also a factor when a product that could sell for fifteen to twenty dollars is priced to sell for five dollars simply because the associate or management didn't want to take an extra minute two clean the product; wipe it down or at the very least dust it off.


Sales Floor/Cashier

Like Key6, this is another department that really should run smoother than it does, but either the company's cutbacks or the managers organization skills make the sales floor a sporadic environment, often with one associate (not a manager of any kind) left to deal with dozens of customers and try to organize five different sections of the store at once. While this is a another flaw of management, because no lower wage worker should be expected to do what most managers get paid to do (who has a staff of associates to delegate task to), this has made me better at multi-tasking, but even my own abilities are stressed because anything a manager thinks they can delegate to you, they will. On the average day as a cashier i can expect to answer the same question a couple dozen times, and not always due to the costumers, but things like price tags not being updated, checkout lines not being organized, or even not being able to locate a manager for assistance.


What You Learned

What i've learned from working at Goodwill Southern California for almost four years is that anyone that sticks with this company (at least the retail level) develops a careless attitude and usually is just trying to get by. I see this attitude from DMs, store managers, and associates. Not only at my store, but every other Goodwill i've been to seems to deal with the same issues as i have, and it saddens me that a company founded on charity can take so much life out of people simply because nothing is organized. Workers are either overworked and underpaid, or you don't do much work at all and end up with a promotion. Since i've worked for the company, within the stores i've worked at (i've worked at multiple locations) i have seldom seen the best workest get the promotion to management. That is the only way i can explain why management is so terrible across the board, and its that whoever is doing the promotion is not paying any attention. Or some worse cases, i've seen managers promote an associate knowing that their DM seeks to move those new assistants/key holders to other stores, except the manager doesn't want to lose the employees that make their store run well, so they promote the least qualified person and the DM has no idea what their getting because they don't visit stores for more than five minutes a week and don't really know any of the employees outside of the manager. This happens because the DM changes somewhat often. I've been here three years and i've had three four DMs. When first employed by Goodwill i was very eager to show my worth so that i could move up within the company. But i've seen odd hiring practices (people of only one race or gender being targeted for employment), and experienced too many managers incapable of managing others, that its almost impossible to even be trained. People just get promoted and the rest is up to them seemingly, which leads to each group of new managers knowing less and less about how manage a store, particularly one such as Goodwill. Goodwill is the type of organization that has made me feel like hard work doesn't get you anywhere unless you can manage to do so independently, for yourself, apart from joining an organization. I know i shouldn't feel this way, but when i was hired by this company i was pretty happy and even now i present myself with a positive attitude. Every single day customers tell me how much they appreciate my service and so i return that sentiment by giving them my best costumer service, because while not all, many do appreciate those that put forth the effort on their behalf, i only wish i could find the greater effort to move to a place where more often my effort is appreciated.

Co-Workers

This unfortunately, is another aspect of the job directly related to management. Despite this, more often than not, i work with people willing to work, but as soon as they encounter the great level of disorganization within the store, they start to care less and perform less and become slightly more difficult to work with if you're an associate who they don't feel the need to listen to. Despite this, i have very rarely had an issue with a co-worker that couldn't be solved with patience. I can say that at my store most if not all of my co-workers often look to me for direction. I take it as a compliment but it also adds stress when i'm also just an associate, yet my co-workers never feel comfortable getting help from their managers, as they are seldom helpful. Sadly i've seen good associates become managers and watch their work ethic and organizational skills drop off almost immediately. I can't explain it.


The Hardest Part of the Job

The hardest part is finding ways to smile while at work. Or rather, not wanting to walk off the edge of the earth before, during, and after your shift. I can be feeling just fine before getting to work, yet as soon as i walk through the door, its as if i want to die right there, any way possible. I know i should be appreciative of the job and income opportunity, but there is no life in working to be poor, especially if working while depressed because of your job.

The Most Enjoyable Part of the Job

The wide range of donations and people you interact with. Goodwill is combination of history museum, antique store, and with its variety of contributors/customers, its as if you are traveling the world without leaving the store. There are so many personalities between the contributors and co-workers that you can't help but feel some sort of emotion when you know things can be much better. Because you see people working hard and trying their best to make sense of things that the company itself does not care to care about, or so it seems.
  less
Pros
If you have no income, its something.
Cons
Management. Not a very professional setting.
Was this review helpful?Yes17NoReport
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
good place to work
Youth Career Advisor (Former Employee) –  Los Angeles, CAMarch 27, 2014
Good place to work, Good benefits, everyone welcome you, provided you with training. I learned diferent programs.
Was this review helpful?Yes24No6Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
The unfortunate truth of Goodwill of Southern California.
Coaching Specialist (Former Employee) –  Los Angeles, CAFebruary 2, 2013
I worked as a Coaching Specialist for a year and observed Goodwill mistreatment of its staff. I saw workers who had dedicated 10 plus years fired and tossed aside without even a goodbye. This all stems from Goodwill's "at will policy" which allows them the right to fire you with little to no cause. I also observed a back-stabbing mentality that I thought only existed in County work and was shock to see it in a non-profit. I tried to keep focus on the mission which is to help disabled workers but that also was a let down. The management would treat our group as second class citizens making them just shred books for recycling and paying them less then minimum wage justified by a loophole in the labor law. Their are some good people that work there unfortunately they probably will be fired due to some cost cutting measure. This is the unfortunate truth of Goodwill.
Pros
working with the clients
Cons
administration, pay scale, treatment of staff.
Was this review helpful?Yes55No4Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
The unfortunate truth about Goodwill of Southern California.
Coaching Specialist (Former Employee) –  Los Angeles, CAFebruary 2, 2013
I worked as a Coaching Specialist for a year and observed Goodwill mistreatment of its staff. I saw workers who had dedicated 10 plus years fired and tossed aside without even a goodbye. This all stems from Goodwill's "at will policy" which allows them the right to fire you with little to no cause. I also observed a back-stabbing mentality that I thought only existed in County work and was shock to see it in a non-profit. I tried to keep focus on the mission which is to help disabled workers but that also was a let down. The management would treat our group as second class citizens making them just shred books for recycling and paying them less then minimum wage justified by a loophole in the labor law. Their are some good people that work there unfortunately they probably will be fired due to some cost cutting measure. This is the unfortunate truth about Goodwill.
Pros
working with the clients
Cons
administration, pay scale, treatment of staff.
Was this review helpful?Yes105No6Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
poorly managed
Sales Associate/Cashier/Donation Center (Current Employee) –  Diamond Bar, CADecember 6, 2015
it is a poorly managed company, with great people working there who deserve to work at better places, they can never make up their minds on how they want things done, so we are learning new ways every week
Pros
short distance from home
Cons
no hours
Was this review helpful?Yes12No6Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
Good work place for experience
Medical Assistant / First Aide (Former Employee) –  Los Angeles, CADecember 23, 2015
My co-workers were the best, they helped and trained me very well. I really enjoyed working at the Medical Office and helping out the patients that came in.
Was this review helpful?Yes5No1Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
productive and efficient work envoriment
Key Holder to Assistant Store Manager (Current Employee) –  Hacienda Heights, CAJune 22, 2015
Many responsibilities are done as a Goodwill Assistant Manager. Opening and closing the store is well preformed. As a morning manager task that were made to be done are scheduling lunches and breaks; getting all registers and cashiers ready for the day. Organizing money for deposits and counting company’s safe. Supporting and encouraging employees to push out 12 racks of clothing and $2,225 (goal) carts of donations a day. Night managers task are closing all registers; cleaning sale’s floor and restrooms. Managing end of day goals and money. Emails made throughout the whole day to Direct manager on store’s updates. Positive feedback and environment was provided for employee and managers.
Was this review helpful?Yes24No10Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
Valuable Internship
Clerical Assistant (Former Employee) –  Pomona, CAMay 29, 2014
The workplace was amazing i was able to learn what each individual liked so that way i already knew how to handle things when working there. I had an issue with separation between co- workers, But other than that everything else went just fine. Management was enjoyable to a certain extent. I really enjoyed working there because i enjoyed the type of work given. I just wish that the internship was more organized and that they had things cleared with district on what was allowed for interns to learn hands on and what wasnt instead of "playing it by ear" and if the internship was intern to hire position.
Pros
great people to work with, constant development in the field, free lunch every now and then.
Cons
no positions available for interns, interns are extremely restricted to what they can work on.
Was this review helpful?Yes29No7Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
Volunteer Experience
Volunteer Work (Former Employee) –  San Bernardino, CANovember 24, 2015
Really Enjoyed My Volunteer Experience
Co-workers were very helpful and nice
i learned alot about retail . Managers Were Great Leaders.
Great Customers,Never Had any Issues
Was this review helpful?Yes7No3Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
great company
Cashier/Sales Associate (Former Employee) –  Henderson, NVSeptember 17, 2015
I have nothing bad to say abi]out this company. Great coworkers great management soild work envierment. great hours just a wonderful place to work for.
Was this review helpful?Yes14No6Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
No consistency
Sales Associate (Current Employee) –  Long Beach, CASeptember 17, 2015
For such an established company they are very mismanaged. My store alone has gone through about 6 head managers in the two years I've been there and there have been about 3 different district managers in the two years I've been at this company.
Was this review helpful?Yes29No3Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
Great place to start a career move
MEDICAL ASSISTANT (Former Employee) –  Los Angeles, CANovember 4, 2014
I began my work day with a great breakfast from the company cafeteria .Then to my dept long in to my computer start making calls to clinics or working on files ,I learned how to be more patient with disable people my eyes were opened by there kindness and warmth their abiltiy not to get upset no matter what the situation ,My coworkers were kind and helpful .Hardest part of my job watching someone not pass a drug test and get job that is needed MY Director gave me a chance to grow and be self suffient in company never was a micromanager was a nice person .The best part was working with the disababled
Pros
Company growth
Cons
leaving
Was this review helpful?Yes22No9Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
productive
human resources clerk (Former Employee) –  los angeles caAugust 25, 2015
I enjoyed working with the company learned new tasks that will benefit me in my work experience. My collogues were very nice helped me when I needed the helped with a task
Was this review helpful?Yes14No4Report
Job Work/Life Balance
Compensation/Benefits
Job Security/Advancement
Management
Job Culture
They have a wonderful mission but execute the retail business side poorly.
Donation Attendant (Current Employee) –  Saugus, CAOctober 10, 2012
inefficient and ill managed, under appreciated. normal crew and staff are amazing people, including some lower level management. Overall the company is being inefficiently run and it frustrates me to continue spinning my wheels and seeing no improvement in either our facilities or management.
Pros
sense of accomplishment
Cons
over worked, frustrating, mismanaged
Was this review helpful?Yes60No6Report

Overall rating

3.4
Based on 49 reviews
5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star

Ratings by category

Work/Life Balance
3.5
Compensation/Benefits
3.0
Job Security/Advancement
2.9
Management
3.0
Culture
3.2