Southwest Airlines
4.2 of 5 389 reviews
www.southwest.com Dallas, TX 5000+ Employees

Southwest Airlines Reviews

Updated Apr 8, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

4.2 389 reviews

                             

90% Approve of the CEO

Southwest Airlines Chairman, President & CEO Gary C. Kelly

Gary C. Kelly

(338 ratings)

87% of employees recommend this company to a friend
389 Employee Reviews
in

Review Highlights

Pros:
  • "Good health benefits, great 401k matching, good flight benefits if you can use them"
    in 40 reviews
  • "Great benefits - health care, flight benefits, 401K matching, etc"
    in 32 reviews
Cons:
  • "The station where I worked was always understaffed so a lot of mandatory overtime"
    in 22 reviews
  • "The benefits include free (space available travel) and relatively low pay"
    in 11 reviews
  • Show more review highlights

Reviews

 

If you value service and an honest airline DO NOT ride Southwest

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

I worked at Southwest Airlines

ProsThe staff was friendly. I have a 20 word minimum and that's all that I have to say as a pro.

ConsThe flight staff is there to chat and hangout in the back of the plane. I have seen customers turned away or told to hold on while flight staff continues to talk about their own person lives.

For the desk workers if you make a scene and throw a fit you might be compensated for their inevitable mistakes, flight delays, and all around general non hustle to do any of their jobs. This compensation will take a lot of convincing and don't get your hopes up you won't get much (even if your flight is delayed over night)

If you are a loyal customer with issues that is nice and easy to work with they will give you no help for your trouble. It feels like working at a carnival trying hard to help you the least amount possible.

Do yourself a favor choose a different airline, drive, walk I will never fly southwest again. As a customer of over 20 years southwest service has gone down hill quick in the past few.

Advice to Senior ManagementBe the airline you claim to be and gets some morals. People pay ridiculous amounts of money to fly. Work for them stop having them work for you. Things have changed over the past 5 years and I won't be the last to make this decision if things don't turn around quick.

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

  • Culture & Values
         
  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • Disapproves of CEO

 

Terrible Hobby airport

Ramp Agent (Former Employee)
Houston, TX

I worked at Southwest Airlines part-time for less than a year

ProsHealth Insurance and free flight benefits

ConsIf you take up for yourself against a union worker while your still on probation, the entire Ramp Agent Supervisors will make sure you get fired without discussing anything with you. I should know they did it to me.

Advice to Senior ManagementGet a clue. TALK to new hires, don't just take FRANKS word for everything.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

  • Culture & Values
         
  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • Disapproves of CEO

3 people found this helpful  

Not all it's cracked up to be

Ramp Agent (Former Employee)
Minneapolis, MN

I worked at Southwest Airlines full-time for more than 3 years

ProsFlight benefits
Health insurance
Being outdoors
You can work as much as you want to(OT, shift pick-ups)
Regular incremental hourly wages

ConsVery political
There are some very lazy workers
Leadership seems disillusioned and aloof

Advice to Senior ManagementFind a different line of work? There are some hard workind, dedicated people who try to make things better for everone. With the kind of bait-n-switch politics and the other BS managerial tactics that have to be dealt with, it makes things impossible to deal with and very uninviting.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

  • Culture & Values
         
  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • No Opinion of CEO

1 person found this helpful  

Technology department is extremely unorganized

Business Analyst (Current Employee)
Dallas, TX

I have been working at Southwest Airlines as a contractor

ProsIt sounds impressive
Listed as one of the top companies in Dallas
Met a few nice people

ConsTechnology is unorganized, does not share vision except with "the chosen few"
Lets professional services companies run the show without concern or regard for their own employees
Very strict with telecommuting policy and hours in office each day and each week
No regard to work-life balance
Does not assume employees are adults and can be treated as such
Leaders are not trustworthy

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

  • Culture & Values
         
  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         

1 person found this helpful  

Horrible, Hellish-Nightmare of an Experience with Southwest Airlines

Customer Representative (Former Employee)
Phoenix, AZ

I worked at Southwest Airlines full-time for more than a year

ProsGreat Health Benefits, Travel Benefits (standby only)

ConsSchedule Changes monthly and is Seniority Based, Flight benefits are Standby and hard to come by. Most often you are bumped from flights if you don't travel in the AM, Management style is Micro-managing, Lots of senior employees BACK BITE, or run to management. Also, Union is of little help. Everything changes so frequently, and Company Barely train employees. When you start, you are trained over 10 percent of what you actually do, which is 90 percent of things. Management is over critical of your work. Company makes you feel they are DOING YOU A FAVOR, when they hire you because of the thousands of applicants that apply and are denied, plus the offering of possible free flights (which are STANDBY) and not guaranteed. Highly stressful environment. The ambulance always showed up weekly to wheel sick folks out of there. Company built a sick room for those sick. Most people around you were old and young sick individuals. Very mean Team leaders. Open door policy implemented, but you are MARKED if you use. Company tries too hard to PLEASE customers, which comes back to bite them. Now they change that, leading to droves of calls involving angry customers wanting free goodies, and always wanting to speak to a manager. Phone calls almost always involve a problem. When hired, company tried to ACT like everybody is so NICE and Positive. Different story when you get hired. Negative atmosphere. Horrible
experience! Salary is very low for all the work you do. People are paid more at 7-Eleven.

Advice to Senior ManagementChange your attitude. Appreciate your workers. Actually work weekly in Customer Representative shoes to see what we go through. Stop backbiting. Accept employee feedback as a chance to improve. Increase your starting salary. Pay more for people with experience and education. Thoroughly train new employees on at least 80 percent of the job, instead of 10 percent. Survey your company on why so many employees are sick and the ambulance keep coming weekly to pick up sick folks. Stop acting like you are doing employees a favor by giving them jobs. Be more humble. Stop backbiting among employees. Make it a violation of policy.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

  • Culture & Values
         
  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • Disapproves of CEO

1 person found this helpful  

The luv is gone.

Design Specialist (Current Employee)
Dallas, TX

I have been working at Southwest Airlines full-time for more than 5 years

ProsI cherish the wonderful friends I've made in the past. The true Southwest Airlines coworkers are the best.

ConsRecently, with the AirTran merger SWA employees are being forced to follow AirTran's culture, which is based on manipulation, intimidation, and fear. AirTran employees are assigned by their boss to spy on Southwest workers as to when they arrive, leave the office, and even length of time for bathroom breaks. Scare tactics are used by the boss to make Southwest employees feel their jobs are on the line everyday. Working overtime with no compensation is not only unappreciated, but questioned by management as if the employee is to blame. In other words, management will try to fire you no matter how hard or smart you work. You can be a superstar or hero at the office, but still lose your job for taking too much EARNED vacation time. It makes no sense. As someone else has mentioned, Southwest Airlines has never had any layoffs. However, what's hidden is the many number of great workers who have been fired, forced to retire, or forced to quit.

Advice to Senior ManagementShouldn't have merged with AirTran, but too late now anyways. But there is still time to remove them from managerial roles in which they are completely incompetent in.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

  • Culture & Values
         
  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • Approves of CEO

3 people found this helpful  

Not the way to go southwest

Cargo Department (Former Employee)
Newark, NJ

I worked at Southwest Airlines full-time for more than a year

Prosfligth perks, buddy passes. thats about all you can really hope for working here. and spouses and parents fly free.

Consmanual ot, favoritism, racism in Newark Airport , Cargo Dept, and ramp agents. low wages , unrealistic work expectations, hostile enviorment (employees vs managers or make sure you cover your ass because they are trying to get you ). all for about 12 bycks an hour. not worth it.

Advice to Senior Managementtreat EWR like the other airports and make it a comfortable place again.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

  • Culture & Values
         
  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • Disapproves of CEO

 

Coustomer Service

CSS (Current Employee)
San Jose, CA

I have been working at Southwest Airlines full-time for more than 10 years

ProsReally friendly culture. Many employees still understand the fundamentals of costumer and employee relations.

ConsInconsistent work rules, poor use of employee resources department, too many cooks in the kitchen when it comes to corporate managment positions. Growing too fast to maintain the culture that was instilled by the great Herb Kelleher.

Advice to Senior ManagementStop worrying about wall street and get back to fundamentals. This company did not make it forty years on stock quotes.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

  • Culture & Values
         
  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • Approves of CEO

 

Going down hill

Ramp Supervisor (Current Employee)

I have been working at Southwest Airlines part-time for more than 10 years

ProsGreat pay. Good Vacation and Holiday benefits. Able to work lots of hours (also to get injured while doing so). Promotional opportunities abound even for the small minded. Maybe especially for the small minded.

ConsHorrible management the company is getting worse and worse because Managements' misguided thinking that Excel Spreadsheets should dictate how you treat people

Advice to Senior ManagementDo not run the company based solely off of spreadsheets...

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review

  • Work/Life Balance
         
  • Senior Management
         
  • Comp & Benefits
         
  • Career Opportunities
         
  • Disapproves of CEO

1 person found this helpful  

Sweatshop mentality by local management is encouraged by HDQ

Customer Care Representative (Current Employee)

I have been working at Southwest Airlines

ProsCompared to other call centers, SWA is a notch above because they have a union that enforces some guidelines for how workers are treated.
Return customers are used to communicating with friendly, knowledgeable people when they call and do not start the interaction with negative expectation.

ConsCall center leaders are constantly trying to get around the guidelines about evaluations and rules. It is almost always necessary to include a union rep when meeting with a team leader. They pretend ignorance of the union agreement and are encouraged to do so by call center management and leaders in Dallas. The result is an adversarial relationship with a "leader" who is supposedly there to encourage and train reps. The customers who call are often difficult and sometimes demeaning, so it is discouraging not to be supported by those we should be able to expect to be helpful. They add stress to our day instead of the opposite.

Advice to Senior ManagementGet some real training in management principles outside of SWA insider training. There is no reason to create an American sweatshop out of what used to be one of the best customer service organizations in this country. SWA hires the people with the best attitude profile they can find, but their management style brings this asset to a grinding halt with policies that result in "learned helplessness" instead of enabling them to be effective employees.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

Was this review helpful?
Yes | No
Add Employer Response Flag Review
RSS Feed Embed

Worked for Southwest Airlines? Contribute to the Community!

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.

Glassdoor is your free inside look at Southwest Airlines reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Southwest Airlines CEO Gary C. Kelly. All 389 reviews posted anonymously by Southwest Airlines employees.