Discover

www.discoverfinancial.com
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Discover Reviews in Chicago, IL

Updated February 25, 2015
Updated February 25, 2015
225 Reviews
3.9
225 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Discover Chairman & CEO David W. Nelms
David W. Nelms
225 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Work life balance; culture; people; benefits; diversity; solid executive team (in 77 reviews)

  • great benefits given to employees beginning day 1 of employment (in 62 reviews)


Cons
  • There is not a great work/life balance, and you are always expected to work overtime (in 15 reviews)

  • being on the phone constantly which i knew by applying at a call center job (in 23 reviews)

More Highlights

225 Employee Reviews Back to all Reviews

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Best Big Financial Company In Chicago Area - Hands Down

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Treasury Analyst in Riverwoods, IL
    Current Employee - Treasury Analyst in Riverwoods, IL

    I have been working at Discover full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    This may be group specific (I work in Finance - Treasury) but you can literally write your own ticket at Discover. Management is very responsive to ideas and letting people work on ideas and improvements they feel passionate about. The opportunities to broaden your horizons are frankly limitless and the pay is very solid. I regularly get exposure to high level employees including Head of Investor Relations, Treasurer, CFO etc. Benefits are top notch as well with a very generous base vacation package of 25 days and match on the 401K that works out to 7% on a 6% contribution (3% is contributed whether you do or not). Facilities are also top-notch and improving rapidly.

    There's even an offsite location in Chicago for people who don't want the city to suburban commute every day (they also cover some train commute costs and have shuttles from the building to the train station)

    Cons

    Staffing probably needs to be beefed up a bit in some departments but its understandable that costs need to be controlled given the cyclical nature of credit cards.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Bonuses aren't huge for the people at the bank (unlike other banks) and banking holidays aren't observed but this is to be expected given that other people at the company wouldn't find this fair.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Great place to work.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Associate in Riverwoods, IL
    Current Employee - Senior Associate in Riverwoods, IL

    I have been working at Discover full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    fast pace, nice people, interesting work.

    Cons

    none for me, everything is good.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Discover is a terrific company to work for.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Manager in Riverwoods, IL
    Former Employee - Senior Manager in Riverwoods, IL

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

    Pros

    Great benefits, especially recent moves towards greater flexibility, work from home.
    Large Paid Time Off and Sick Day bank
    Competitive salaries
    Challenging work and ability to gain cross functional experience
    Commitment to excellence

    Cons

    External hires seem to be preferred by most managers over internal candidates so career growth can be limited. This is likely due to areas of expertise that Discover may not have developed internally due to expansion into new lines of business, and so there is an advantage to external candidates in these growing line businesses.
    Many areas of the business are still highly silo'd

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
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  5.  

    Challenging workplace with room for growth

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Riverwoods, IL
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Riverwoods, IL

    I have been working at Discover

    Pros

    Discover uses a collaborative management style which allows for all employees to provide information and make contributions. DivaDiversity is a strength and there are opportunities to grow.

    Cons

    Decision making can appear to be slow but once a decision is reached nearly very is on board with it. My commute is too long but that's base on where I choose to live.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Product differentiation!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Project Manager

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Riverwoods, IL
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Riverwoods, IL

    I have been working at Discover full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great benefits; 30 days of PTO; very laid back in most areas of the company

    Cons

    A very top heavy company overall; it may take some time to move up the ladder, but it is not impossible...

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    To keep younger talent, must promote and/or give different opportunities within current role

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  7.  

    Worked as a summer marketing intern, incredible experience to say the least.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Intern - MIP- MarketingProgram in Riverwoods, IL
    Former Intern - MIP- MarketingProgram in Riverwoods, IL

    I worked at Discover as an intern (less than a year)

    Pros

    It is so clear that Discover puts their employees first and truly cares about them. Amazing work life balance, several opportunities for growth and change, diverse and open environment, relaxed dress code, and flexible work.

    Cons

    The pay could be a little more competitive, but for an intern or young professional I feel the pay is adequate/sufficient. The only huge con I can point out is Discover needs to be a little more innovative. They hire all of these young professionals with amazing creative ideas but are so stuck in their traditional "old school" views that they don't see how much the financial industry around them is changing. We are the next generation and if Discover wants to stay successful in the future, young professionals with innovative and creative mindsets are the key.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Do not be afraid to take risks, the safe route will not help us remain competitive and innovative in the future. Listen to your young professionals, our ideas might seem risky at times but they are what will put us past the threshold. Leverage your assets Discover.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Great Company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Associate in Riverwoods, IL
    Former Employee - Senior Associate in Riverwoods, IL

    I worked at Discover

    Pros

    Ability to move around to different positions without any problems

    Cons

    To much dead weight in middle management

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Clean house

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Decent but changing rapidly

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Contractor - Project Manager in Riverwoods, IL
    Former Contractor - Project Manager in Riverwoods, IL

    I worked at Discover as a contractor (less than a year)

    Pros

    * Decent people
    * Decent benefits and salary
    * A growing company
    * A well funded company
    * Opportunities to have flexible time and telecommute (just recently came into play at the beginning of 2015)
    * They offer wi-fi for your personal devices, but you have to log into the wi-fi with your username and password.

    Cons

    *Each department is their own "silo" and might not necessary want to work with "silos" in the same company. This presents an issue because it then becomes a political football game and people get hurt in the process.
    * Many VPs and Directors have their "preferences" when it comes to using certain vendors and will fight you on going with a different vendor even it is makes good business sense to do so.
    * Discover is trying to become "hip" and a place where people want to work at, but it is obvious that they are trying to force it. Some of the things they are doing is taking out the cubicles and replacing them with a computer lab style layout.
    * Lots of contractors or employees that may or may not be from this country. (This may or may not be a good thing.)
    * There are many changes going on, but Discover does not seem to be very good at communicating those changes. There are often policy or procedure (more likely this) changes that impact how people interact with the Discover bureaucracy, but those changes rarely ever get communicated or knowledge transferred effectively.
    * There are a lot of unwritten rules, policies, or procedures. The worse part is, Management expects you to magically understand these and not break them.
    * There seems to be a culture of backstabbing and pettiness ranging from Directors down to regular staff: see unwritten rules above. Be wary of your coworkers or the people around you.
    * The way the building numbering system to find a room or a cubicle is not organized in a manner that is easy for beginners or even people who have been there awhile to use. Expect to ask people constantly where something is.
    * Discover rarely starts their meetings on time. Expect an adjustment to "Discover time".
    * Discover still runs Lotus Notes.
    * Reserving of rooms is done through Lotus Notes, but understanding where those rooms are is impossible. See the above comment about building numbering system.
    * There is a company directory, but it is through the intranet Discover website and not the email application. Expect to have to go to several different systems on a regular basis to do simple tasks that would just take a few seconds to it taking several minutes.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I would follow the KISS "Keep It Simple, Stupid" principle. There is no reason why Discover has to be so complicated on a daily basis that it takes so long to get laptops, name plates, buying stuff, or whatever. Everything about working at Discover is harder than it should be. The only thing easy about the place is the nice furniture in the common areas.

    If Discover ever expects to become a Top 100 place to work, it has its work cut out for it. I would start with getting rid of the ridiculous computer lab style that is currently in trial, initating a simplication policy for so many of the systems or procedures or policies, having better communication or documentation, and/or may be even getting rid of certain level of management to change things up and get fresh blood in.

    In comparsion to the many other companies out there, Discover is not a bad place to work, but it isn't the best place to work either. Discover is flushed with funds right now and there is a real opportunity to make it a better company. I would take that opportunity to make things better.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    Great place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Riverwoods, IL
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Riverwoods, IL

    I have been working at Discover

    Pros

    Working with a lot of smart people.
    The management is great. They are honest and believe in the mission statement

    Cons

    No mentoring program. Most middle managers are clueless of how to lead.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Need to do a better job of getting a buyin from your directors to move the company culture.
    upper management is implementing new things to encourage options to work environment. The middle managers dont get it.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Work life balance is fabulous, but promotions are limited

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Riverwoods, IL
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Riverwoods, IL

    I have been working at Discover full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Love work life balance, the company has a clear mission and vision. Discover truly cares about its customers and employees. I love working there

    Cons

    However, the promotion to a director level is so limited. Directors stay with the company forever with very few rooted to VPs.but because of that you see some of directors are pretending to add values, not taking any risk and significantly slowing company growth.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take a closer look at all Directors, see who are not on the top of their game, promote mobility to director level, there are too many great sr managers are leaving because of that. It is difficult to pretend to add value when you actually can add it

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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