Associated Press

www.ap.org

Associated Press Reviews

Updated January 21, 2015
Updated January 21, 2015
109 Reviews
3.4
109 Reviews
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Associated Press President and CEO Gary Pruitt
Gary Pruitt
34 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Excellent working day flexibility and work-life balance (in 7 reviews)

  • Simply the best news organization to work for as a journalist (in 7 reviews)


Cons
  • Limited mobility in terms of upper management (in 10 reviews)

  • If you are not covered by the news unions, there are little to no raises each year (in 4 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Fascinating work, lousy pay

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Reporter in Bangkok (Thailand)
    Former Employee - Reporter in Bangkok (Thailand)

    I worked at Associated Press full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    The AP offers one of the last opportunities to work overseas as a foreign correspondent. You will work with a large network of talented colleagues stationed across the globe.

    Cons

    You can't spell cheAP without the AP. Salaries are not sufficient compared to other major American news organizations.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Incredible experience, limited room for growth

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Editor
    Former Employee - Editor

    I worked at Associated Press full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Fast-paced, intense, and constantly varied work environment. Constant opportunities to cover fascinating stories all over the nation and world. There is no substitute in the news business for how much you can learn so quickly here. Outstanding camaraderie among staff. Some managers are excellent mentors. Union pay scale and protection. Solid reputation for career.

    Cons

    Unsustainable workloads, stress, and hours. Constantly shifting (and sometimes conflicting) company strategies and priorities. Some ineffective and downright incompetent managers and staff manage to survive and thrive. Reliability and competence is often punished with less desirable hours and more work. Want to move up? You will probably have to move cities: a lot.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The rapidly changing nature of the news business can't be overestimated, so it's not surprising that major news outlets like AP are constantly trying to respond to the changing environment. But it always seemed like every six months there was another memo shifting focus. It was hard to take them seriously, because everyone knew another memo would be along shortly. Focus on hiring good staff and give them the time and resources to report good stories.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Great People, But Still a Sinking Ship

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Journalist
    Former Employee - Journalist

    I worked at Associated Press full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    The AP's has a still-impressive group of amazing journalists who defy odds each day to break stories. If you like your job as a journalist at AP, then it's because the work can be very interesting. You get to meet an amazing range of people in the course of your work - state, national and world leaders, business professionals, activists, artists and freaks. That is, however, if you can manage to get one of the dwindling number of reporting jobs.

    Cons

    Sadly, the AP has struggled financially for about 10 years and the unfortunate result is that it has basically gutted many of its news bureaus, especially overseas. So it's not only hard to get a job there, once you are in a job, it is hard to advance or even transfer to another location. This is especially true in its overseas operations, which at one time were its flagship. The journalism business has long receded from its heyday of "your ticket around the world" but at this point AP employees are lucky to get a ticket home, let alone benefits like 401(k) or paying for children's education overseas.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Top management culture has been one of panic as well as ruthless - but not well-considered - cost-cutting and hiring freezes. There have been across-the-board hiring freezes that leave key positions unfilled. The anxiety that all this has caused has resulted in a mass exodus of employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Nice working env

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Associated Press

    Pros

    Nice working environment. Team members are cooperating

    Cons

    No career progress, no training

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    Overall, an exciting place to work, with an important mission

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Associated Press part-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    One of the best aspects of the AP is knowing that getting the news out accurately, quickly, and fairly is an important mission. This probably depends on how you feel about the press in general, but the AP in particular has to serve many audiences, conservative and liberal, domestic and international, large cities and rural areas.

    It is also not an enormous company in terms of total employee count, although it has a wide footprint around the globe.

    Cons

    The biggest challenge facing the AP is its shrinking customer base. Daily newspapers in the US are vanishing and cutting costs, and although the need for a wire service increases as papers cut their own staff, some simply cannot afford to be members of the cooperative. That has lead to challenges at the AP, as they have had to change their focus to some degree away from the traditional newspaper base, and concentrate on fast-breaking online news outlets.

    And many of those also compete with the AP. So the entire company has to continue to cut costs, trim personnel, and consolidate bureaus.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Communication about the direction of the company is meager, although the current president is making an effort to improve that. Within divisions, especially within Technology, there is a still a lot of improvement needed.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Little investment in talent - DC office

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC

    I worked at Associated Press full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Get to work with very smart people, little nonsense and the feeling of working on very important and serious issues in the heart of DC -- politics, elections, Supreme Court, etc. Protection under the Guild, OT pay and getting your stories in front of millions of eyes across the globe is tough to beat. Great camaraderie with co-workers.

    Cons

    Flexibility depends on the editor. Do not expect a raise unless you hold the management hostage with the possibility of another job elsewhere, and even then, don't expect them to see you as an investment, no matter how long you have been there. Much of management think they are better than non-management. And there is little cultivation of career advancement except for those in the inner-circle.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Invest in your talent. Many people have been very loyal to the AP for many years, only to see little hope of career advancement. Money isn't necessarily the only thing that will keep people there and motivated. A title change or inclusion into different projects would help. Even a simple, "thanks!" or "great job" goes a long way.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    I worked at Associated Press

    Pros

    Paid training. Relaxed supervision. High standards. And it doesn't hurt when they bring in lunch to us at our desks, and round upward in calculating hours.

    Cons

    Don't like needing a new name tag every day as if my employer can't remember who I am.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pop for durable name tags.

  9.  

    Company with a great history with a questionable future

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Associated Press

    Pros

    High standards, talented colleagues, variety of work

    Cons

    Training is given to only the privileged few. No clear path to advancement.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Encourage women to apply for promotions. Spread out the training

  10.  

    Great talent, but behind the times

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Business Analyst in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Business Analyst in New York, NY

    I worked at Associated Press part-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    The best of the best in journalism. Ethical, thoughtful management. Surprisingly collaborative and share a common mission. Financially sound for the immediate future due to solid leadership.

    Cons

    Lack the internal skillsets and infrastructure to advance the company in the digital space. Lagging in vision and constantly playing technology catch-up. Business model means AP is beholden to their board, and therefore extremely limited.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Freelance

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Associated Press as a contractor (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Balance your time and be responsible for your own success

    Cons

    Hard to really get your foot in enough to make a livable wage

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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