American Cancer Society Reviews | Glassdoor

American Cancer Society Reviews

Updated September 22, 2017
1,044 reviews

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2.9
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Gary Reedy
221 Ratings

1,044 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Work life balance is non existent (in 104 reviews)

  • No work life balance, training process isn't helpful and most is unnecessary, lots of hours for little pay (in 39 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (7)

    "Illinois Division Management Deceptive Hiring Practices or Bad Management Styles Tolerated?"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Rather Not Say! in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Rather Not Say! in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The fundamentals of what ACS is and what it stands for is highly important for the welfare of the nation and free world. There are some very good people (staff members and volunteers) who devote an extensive amount of time to this company and it's cause. Most involved wear their hearts on their sleeve for the cause to eradicate Cancer. The staff members for the most part (at least in the Illinois area) want to work for a cause that they care about.

    Cons

    I have heard on more than one occassion the phrase "they are like a Cancer" from Upper Level Managers when referring to an unhappy staff members and/or volunteers that are speaking up about various issues they dislike.....This should not be tolerated and those using this phrase in reference to those who speak up should be terminated on the spot if even uttered. It does a severe injustice to the cause that ACS is trying to eradicate.

    Staff members are pushed the limit with limited time constraints. Both hourly and salaried employees are not getting a clear picture when hired as to the amount of hours they will need to participate in "after office hour events."

    Even well organized staff members do not take lunches or breaks even though they are entitled by law.

    Existing high staff turnover rate at some Regional Offices need to be assessed. Is their bad or misleading hiring practices or are there bad management skills being utilized when hiring new staff members? There is always a reason for high turnover rates at a company. Especially when an excessive number of people "find new work".....There is always a reason they are looking. They are unhappy with something or something is going on that they didn't "anticipate" before hire.

    Event vs. staff ratio's need to be looked both in Income Development and at the Administration levels at the offices. There is no comparison in the increasing number of the events vs. the organizational increase in staff members. If the number of events increases so is the current work load on the current staff members. So the number of staff members should increased if excessive participants are expected or forecast. I believe this is why new events are developed.

    With the excessive turnover rate the current staff members who remain end up training new staff members making for very few experienced staff members at some Regional Offices. From what I have experienced management is doing nothing (that can be visually observed) to solve the turnover rate at the offices. This makes for a very disorganized non-for-profit office. Good stewardship is one of the backbones of this company and I don't believe a constant revolving door for employees is a cost efficient method in any company. It seems like some offices spend more money and time look for and hiring new employees constantly instead of supporting the current ones they have. They are experienced and can add great value to such a large operation. This methodology of management is eating up the donation money coming into the office that could be used on valuable research.

    The company is not quick to hire nor to add temporary administration staffing, if needed, with an increased workload.

    Advice to Management

    In my opinion Senior Manageent needs to take a look at the existing turnover rate at your Illinois offices. It is detrimental to the cause. I am of the belief that extensive turn over rates says something about the organization and/or the management styles being practiced. Perhaps some type of a reverse evaluation would be helpful. I've seen this done in other companies and this can be very helpful to the Managers to address the problems in the office.

    I also do believe that Management Personnel should be responsible in attending all of the after hours meetings in order to see the amount of time and effort the current staff members are experiencing.

    Volunteers are always saying, "Where is the employee we worked with last year? last month? or last week?" I believe that site management level staff members should be adressing those volunteers who are effected by the extreme turnover rates. Perhaps they should have to explain at the after hours functions why so many staff members have left. This may cause a turn around in the morale at those offices who have the issue.

    I further believe that the turnover of staff is seriously impacting the amount of donation dollars which are donated for Cancer Research and Cancer Patient Care. ACS Management is basically throwing away valuable research dollars in using time to search for new staff constantly. That is a severe injustice to the constituents who are supporting the cause.


  2. Helpful (3)

    "Wonderful MIssion, Very Poor leadership"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Income Manager in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Income Manager in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The ability to serve people in need. There is a lot of misinformation about cancer; there is a lot of fear amongst those who have been recently diagnosed and very little assistance for those who have to plan their regime of theraphy. The Society is there to help. There are many great programs that can be implemented in the community that will make a difference. There are many volunteers you meet who make it a very interesting and worthwhile career. If you are wanting to get rich, look elsewhere. If you want to make a positive impact and make a difference, you may want to give it a try.

    Cons

    Management is on a different page. Upper level management have their own agendas that do not align with that of the overall organization. Information is never shared with staff and priorities are always changing. There is no work-life balance. The expectation is that you work 24/7 and bring in the money and then bring in more money. Yet, management has a total disconnect with those who do the grunt work. There is a true caste system in play here and never do the two intermix. Don't expect recognition for a job well done. However, you will hear plenty of criticism when goals aren't met.

    Advice to Management

    Start thinking about what the mission is all about and realize that when you say you're okay with one hundred percent turnover, you are setting the place up for failure. Management has to relate to the staff and not the other way around. To tell a team "you should be lucky to have a job" is insulting, regardless of the current economic situation. When times get better, brace yourself for an exodus of unhappy staff.

  3. Helpful (4)

    "One big mess"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Community Manager - Development in Wichita, KS
    Current Employee - Community Manager - Development in Wichita, KS
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    To support cancer survivors, educate the public and fight for medical breakthroughs.

    Cons

    High turnover with little concern for why this is a problem (which is a waste of constituents' dollars since training employees is so costly), complete disregard for work-life balance, HR doesn't stand by their workplace policies, crisis prevention practices appear to be non-existent (senior management expects employees to work all-night Relay-For-Life events after a full day at the office and then drive back home 50-plus miles on zero sleep, which is as bad as driving drunk), no comp time for crazy hours during event season, will put employees and volunteers in harms way during dangerous weather conditions rather than having a "plan B" in place for outdoor events, treats good-hearted volunteers like dirt if they are not giving more than 100 percent, poor training for new employees in a sink-or-swim environment and much, much more.

    Advice to Management

    Explore why turnover is so high and seek solutions. Also, HR should see that regional offices are adhering to organizational policies in regards to employment and diversity practices.


  4. Helpful (5)

    "Mentally Stressful!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Atlanta, GA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Atlanta, GA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    If you get a good team where the supervisor is fair across the board in all respects, then it is a good place to work for a great cause.

    Cons

    Very manipulative supervisors. Only worried about their own progress and status. Most director level and up have reached that level not because of their accomplishments but only because of the length of time they have been there. They have no respect for your education or past experience.

    Advice to Management

    Need to have their managers at all levels assessed and investigate why so many people are quitting ACS.


  5. Helpful (7)

    "Wonderful External reputation - Terrible Internal culture"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Atlanta, GA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Atlanta, GA
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    Offers great programs for cancer patients and their families, it can be rewarding to feel like you are working for a good cause.

    Cons

    Negative environment that is very hierarchal, very title driven culture, lots if inflated titles and salaries, promotions are given based on who you know not what you know, hard for minorities to advance in organization, most minorities are in support level positions, incompetent supervisors/managers that are self promoting and egotistical, lack of accountability for people managers.

    Advice to Management

    People managers should be help accountable and rewarded based on how well they manage their staff and represent the organization's core values internally. Ongoing diversity and sensitivity training should be manadatory for all staff.


  6. Helpful (2)

    "Not a great place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    You only work 7 hours a day

    Cons

    The pay is very low.

    Advice to Management

    Don't bad mouth your team members to other team members


  7. Helpful (6)

    "To be able to provide a service to people and make a difference in their overall health, don't expect fair pay or respec"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Quitline Counselor in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Quitline Counselor in Austin, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The benefits are good, your co-workers are awesome in that they are also trying to make a positive difference in the lives of people.

    Cons

    Poor management, pay is extremely low considering the education and qualifications of most employees, and employees are not treated with respect or courtesy. Due to extremely poor management, the Quitline program was shut down and "sold," to another company out-of-state whose version of the our program was "not even close" to the services and time, and continuity that the Quitline provided to people all over the country.

    Advice to Management

    Spread the wealth of The American Cancer Society to the people who are doing the bulk of the work to help Americans. Hire managers who are qualified and not "yes" people. Cut the pay of the the CEO and top administrators and pay the employees what they deserve!

  8. Helpful (5)

    "Incompetent Management, low pay, long hours"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Community Manager in Roanoke, VA
    Former Employee - Community Manager in Roanoke, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The PTO allowance is great (but they do have a problem allowing staff to use it). The benefits are decent but not great.

    Cons

    Leadership is disconnected from field staff
    Management is completely incompetent
    Long hours (I averaged 68.2 hours per week and at times exceeded 80 hours per week - my supervisor even called to press me on work issues the day my child was born)
    The organization is bloated and wastes an incredible amount of money

    Advice to Management

    Learn to value your field staff. Your middle management needs a complete overhaul. Learn to be more nimble and adapt to change.


  9. Helpful (4)

    "Disappointing"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Santa Ana, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Santa Ana, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Proud to know that I am making a difference in getting others involved in the fight against cancer.

    Cons

    Lack of leadership and direction. Poor management. Lack of recruiting volunteers.

    Advice to Management

    Hire capable managers.. Pay more for qualified managers to get better results.
    Highly advise that all staff, including TEMP Positions and Outreach fill out an anonymous report of managment.


  10. Helpful (2)

    "SVP is an extremely poor leader."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Mid Management in Charlotte, NC
    Current Employee - Mid Management in Charlotte, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Wonderful volunteers and most staff are there for the right reasons. Upper management is completely disconnected to the realities of the field. Far too much politics, with transformation everyone is just jockeying to keep their own jobs. No communication between departments so one doesn't know what the other is doing and they all want to give direction to the field!

    Cons

    No way to enjoy the work/life balance that is promoted within the organization. Most staff never have time to take the PTO they have earned. Decisions are made in Atlanta and don't always apply to other areas. NO management support.

    Advice to Management

    Get back in touch with the field and the volunteers that make this organization great.


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