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First American probably treats its employees as well as any other public company treats its employees.

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

I have been working at First American

Pros

I benefit from decent pay (despite the fact that I still make about the same salary I made ten years ago), although I do not know whether or not it is comparable to the salary paid for the same job at competing companies. I get the impression that my particular office might pay some of its employees better than our neighboring competitors.

Our Information Technology Department is excellent. The specialists are knowledgeable, smart, usually helpful and responsive, and friendly. (If that last characteristic seems unimportant to you, try working with a snarly I.T. person. I have at other companies, and it's beyond unpleasant.)

Our dedication to technology seems progressive, at least to a point.

Some (although I don't know how many) employees are allowed to work remotely, either full-time or periodically.

Most of the managers are intelligent, dedicated, hard-working, professional, and compassionate persons, who bring those characteristics to the office.

The overall culture, which is attributable to individual employees (including managers) with stellar personalities rather than to the basic structure of the corporation (as I describe in the following "Cons" section) is one of respect, cooperation, professionalism, support, customer focus, education, pride in work-product, and humor.

Cons

Anyone considering working for First American needs to recognize that First American is a publicly-traded company. Like any other publicly-traded company, First American is structured to make a profit and adhere to its legal fiduciary duty to its stockholders. The board of directors does not have the luxury of benevolence to employees, and its only consideration is making money in whatever way is legally possible. Therefore, I imagine that some of my complaints about First American are the same complaints made by employees at other public companies. You must realize that First American may not show you loyalty simply because of your hard work or the time (in hours each day and years of your life) that you have devoted to it or your superior education or your extensive experience or your charming personality. It is a business, and you will be one of its tools, nothing more. So, managers, whether good or bad, whether egalitarian or tyrannical, are pressured to take action--whatever action is possible--to reduce losses and increase income.

I feel like the minion of some tyrant. Some of the aspects of the company that I enjoy are not necessarily bestowed upon other employees. An employee's position is dictated by so many factors, including a given employee's ability to negotiate, as well as how a manager runs its office. My recommendation is to pay attention to the structured items, such as salary and benefits, and try to ascertain the culture of the office in which you will work. Compare those factors to any alternatives you might have.

Realize, however, that those "structured items" could change at any time. Years ago, the hours of operation changed for some offices (longer hours, of course) without any corresponding compensation to salaried employees. (Had we a union, such a theft would not have been permitted.) Many employees were already working more hours than those created by the new schedule; however, the result required more customer face time that had been used for production. Plus, come on, the principle of the thing! Benefits, also, are re-evaluated and subject to change each year (which might include an increase in an employee's contribution greater than any increase in pay). Also, after the effects of the recession became apparent, along with layoffs came pay decreases. I do not think pay decreases are necessarily evil, especially if it helps other employees keep their jobs. (Apparently, though, some offices were still making a profit, yet their employees' pay were reduced anyway.)

Employees across the country are overloaded, especially since layoffs. Managers are expected to reduce costs, increase revenue, and reduce the number of claims (claims being a natural component of the title insurance industry). Managers take advantage of good employees, giving them the most work and responsibility. Those better employees appear to be compensated better than their "less valuable" colleagues; however, I suspect that in some cases those "less valuable" employees should have been terminated long ago. (Politics, excessively sympathetic managers, and incompetent personnel management play roles here.) On the other hand, some of those "less valuable" employees simply take care of themselves by protecting their personal lives (by actually having one) and refusing work if it is beyond human capability to perform it. That perspective (protecting oneself, which I completely respect) combined with the facts of less-effective employees, layoffs, and increased business (yes, more work--I understand that First American is making a profit--at least some offices are) make those employees who work too much (out of fear, guilt, manipulation, promise of a better day, ignorance of being snowed, whatever) miserable.

Of course, managers, too, face that misery. Many managers are asked to manage offices and personnel while doing the work of that personnel. I recognize that plugging holes is part of the role of management; however, those holes should be temporary. It appears that so many managers are bogged down with management, sales, title work, closings, traveling, educating, and getting educated that the expectations are unrealistic. (I am not a manager, by the way.)

Recommends
No opinion of CEO

Other Reviews for First American

  1.  

    stressful, no opportunity for career advancement, compensation not very good

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

    I worked at First American

    Pros

    Decent benefits, that is about it.

    Cons

    Poor Management, can be long hours, stressful, no opportunity for growth

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire and train better managers

    Doesn't Recommend
  2.  

    Good company... needs some pay adjustments though.

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

    I have been working at First American

    Pros

    First American is a stable company. They are beginning to make improvements with benefits but there is still some work to be done in this arena.

    Cons

    Pay is often less than you would find in other large corporations and most of the time it's even less than you would find in smaller companies. Lots of work to be done here.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Please remember that people are people and things come up and we are only humans. Treat your employees like humans and not just another number.

    Approves of CEO
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