Pros: Good pay, good benefits for full time employees
Cons: Unreasonably high standards of quality and productivity, 0 job security, beaten-down workforce after new management decisions
QBE First *was* a very strong team composed of a variety of highly skilled and talented workers, all departments dedicated in one way or another to providing the highest quality customer service to the mortgaging banks and their clients, specializing in the dwelling insurance marketplace.
The company *had* some of the highest tenured individuals out of any company I'd ever worked for previous, some of my colleagues having worked with QBE for over 30+ years. We had great benefits, a 401k company matched savings plan, and for the most part, very caring and attentive management in all departments.
However this all unfortunately changed as the company went into new management, and the corporation decided to make rather foolish decisions to save money and retain clients against their aggressive competition. Over the past couple of years, they began to cut every single department--regardless of the quality and productive success of the department or the individuals in the department.
Our processes and procedures are VERY complicated, and many people cannot meet the incredibly high standards, so when I say that we had a highly tenured team, I mean the people working had the absolute best quality and productivity throughout the company for many many years running, consistently.
The past two years were nothing short of a massacre of layoffs, increasing of standards and working hours beyond human ability to meet, the blocking of almost any ability to request vacation, punishment for unavoidable sick days, and the overall disillusionment of the workforce, followed by their – more... layoff.
Most departments got decent severance packages, however when the work QBE outsourced was too much for the untrained and unskilled teams overseas, they attempted to hire us all back on as temps, which would invalidate our severance packages, make us not qualify for any benefits, and basically screw over anybody who decided to come back.
It is important to note: I used to LOVE working for this company. My team was very skilled, hard working, and everyone REALLY CARED about the company, it's clients, and providing the best quality care for their clients. They used to repay us in kind with good pay, reasonable hours (40hr workweek), and in treating us like adults and professionals. The work was always difficult, but we were motivated to continue, and we never complained, even after the company decided we were no longer people; we worked our hearts out until the company finally let us all go.
Layoffs are understandable, however everything leading up to them in the case of QBE was a gross attempt to force people to leave without their severances, or to get open to being fired for literally a single typo on a non-critical field, despite a lifetime of hard, loyal service. – less