Digital First Media

www.digitalfirstmedia.com
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Digital First Media Reviews

Updated March 4, 2015
Updated March 4, 2015
29 Reviews
2.0
29 Reviews
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John Paton
19 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Great people, terrible management

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

    I worked at Digital First Media

    Pros

    Great people. Hard workers. Not much else on pros.

    Cons

    There are plenty to choose from. The company isn't run well. The company talks great, but has no idea how to grow into a formidable media powerhouse that it thinks it is. There are way to many chiefs. I see a lot of we can do "this" and we can do "that"... but they don't have the capability to do either, but then ask employees to "figure it out" in order to do both. The culture also is terrible. Constant cutting of resources, but still need to get the same work done. I literally had 3 different titles at the same time (depending on who I was talking to - which specialty was applicable), yet only got paid for one title (and not even sufficiently). And that brings me to another con - pay. Salaries are below cost of living for college educated folks in the markets. I can go on, and on.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat your employees with respect and value. And reward them for great performances.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    Lots of talk, very little action

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

    I worked at Digital First Media full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    I honestly can't think of a single pro of working there. It used to be innovative. At one point, there was a great team of employees there. Neither of those apply now.

    Cons

    Upper management is largely clueless. Is driven by short term monetary goals and lacks a fundamental understanding of consultative sales and how to truly become a partner with their clients. They are only interested in their own job security and providing short term gains for the investor.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Nothing I can say here that they would adhere to.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    Out of touch

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Reporter in Ypsilanti, MI
    Former Employee - Reporter in Ypsilanti, MI

    I worked at Digital First Media full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    DFM hires some of the best and brightest reporting talent, especially ones fresh out of college. You'll work with passionate, caring reporters who have a real drive for news. The work-life balance is OK, you'll have a lot of opportunities to work in your community and create your own schedule around your beat.

    Cons

    Poor leadership from higher ups has created a rift between those doing the work and those making top-dollar. Decisions are made from the top that seem out-of-touch with the current state of media. Reporters are given unreal expectations for producing copy (5 posts per day). Pay is also quite low compared to competitors.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get in touch with your staff. Your actions and mindless "investing" in "new technology" is hurting your relationship with your reporters and the communities you serve. Focus on the product instead of flashy gimmicks.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5.  

    Whatever you do, don't do it.

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

    I worked at Digital First Media full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    The employees that have managed to stick around are pretty great.

    Cons

    Want to work your butt off only to get nothing in return? Then DFM is the perfect fit for you. I went above and beyond the normal call of duty with nothing given to me in return. At one point, the group editor decided that he was going to change the policy for holidays — and not tell anyone — and then enforce the change, which was upheld by corporate. Makes me wonder what other types of policies are also being enforced. You're also restricted from working in an office and are expected to work at coffee shops all day. Raises haven't been given to employees in years and it seems like the fun perks of the job — like getting double or triple time for working a holiday or overtime (good luck even trying to get that) are often removed with or without notice.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to your employees, offer raises, release the chains and let them be.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    Good people, bad structure

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

    I worked at Digital First Media full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Energetic staff at most properties looking to put in the time to do good work

    Cons

    Staffs are cut left and right with no consideration on the impact of remaining workers left to get the paper out

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Staff your newsrooms, pay decent wages to reporters and editors

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    just clueless

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Ad Sales in New Haven, CT
    Former Employee - Ad Sales in New Haven, CT

    I worked at Digital First Media full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    worked with some good folks, front line folks were great. Initially able to work remotely to avoid the daily desperation and chaos.

    Cons

    Management was just so disconnected from reality. Killed the print product and threw out a new digital platform constantly. One month you'd visit a client and tell him you now had the best digital product since sliced bread, the next you'd go in with something else and have to say 'ok, this is really the best thing since sliced bread. Kinda hard build trust that way.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Maybe make an effort to understand that if your customers can't trust you, you're pretty much screwed.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Avoid this company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Vice President in Denver, CO
    Former Employee - Vice President in Denver, CO

    I worked at Digital First Media full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    The company is comprised of many talented people - most of who are working at its local newspapers. If the reports are correct, the best thing that can happen for local papers is to be sold to another owner.

    Cons

    Very political at the corporate level where quality work doesn't count nearly as much as who you're friends with. The c-level executives are oftentimes more interested in one-upping each other than looking out for the best interests of the company.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    They won't listen so this is useless.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9.  

    Hard times for newspapers

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

    I have been working at Digital First Media

    Pros

    People on the front lines are smart and work hard.

    Cons

    Not a lot of growth opportunities. Lots of turmoil.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Define a clear strategy and commit to it. Saying you're for sale isn't it.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great people, faltering business plan

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Copy Editor in Philadelphia, PA
    Former Employee - Copy Editor in Philadelphia, PA

    I worked at Digital First Media full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    I work at a local paper, so I can't speak for the entire company. But here are my observations:
    - Dedicated local staff that really believes in what they do and wants to keep local journalism alive
    - New web sites and print design have modernized the products
    - Good place to learn and practice new media skills

    Cons

    - Overall business plan failing, hedge fund owner looking to sell properties and titles
    - Multiple rounds of layoffs cutting into and degrading the core editorial product
    - Pay low even for this business, plus high co-pay / contributions on health care plan; no raises for several years
    - Future very murky at the moment

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    - Find new owners, maybe local, that can live with a smaller, but more sustainable profit margin
    - Market local titles better
    - Stop cutting core content staff and slow the turnover of digital sales staff
    - Find new sources of revenue such as full-service digital business marketing, specialty sites and web development

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    DFM..."Buyer" Beware

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Multi Media Account Executive
    Former Employee - Multi Media Account Executive

    I worked at Digital First Media full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    The vast majority of the employees were the absolute heart of this company but the executive management team destroyed any notion that Digital First Media (formerly Journal Register Company) was the place to learn, grow and thrive.

    Cons

    Disconnected, ruthless and laser focused on the "digital dimes for print dollars" mantra, senior management effectively killed the cash cow (print) long before the digital components were positioned to make up the difference. As one national media agency representative recently commented..."Digital First Media is one hot mess."

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Unfortunately, senior management stopped listening to the employees a long time ago.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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