J. C. Penney Reviews | Glassdoor

J. C. Penney Reviews

Updated May 21, 2017
5,413 reviews

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Full-time Part-time

3.1
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J. C. Penney Chief Executive Officer Marvin Ellison
Marvin Ellison
527 Ratings

5,413 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Work/life balance is nonexistent (in 121 reviews)

  • Trying to get people to open a credit card with you (in 292 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Poor earnings return on investiment due to inempt management"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Optical Store Manager in Olympia, WA
    Current Employee - Optical Store Manager in Olympia, WA
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    You get discounts on merchandise

    Cons

    District and Regional management claim it it my way or thr highway.
    When putting down employees they say "It is retail"

    Advice to Management

    Don,t waste your time retraining your Regional and District managers. Fire them immediately and hire a staff of professionals who are successful with peope. Many senior folks at home ofice protect their jobs by sticking together and convincing owner no one can do it better. A well thought replacement plan with profesionals from other industries would give our company a chance to survive.
    Unfortunately, the Regional managers are afraid to get rid of their District managers because of their close personal relationships.


  2. "Good for retirement, not growth."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Assistant Procurement Specialist in Plano, TX
    Current Employee - Assistant Procurement Specialist in Plano, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    I cant think of any. Its a great place to come and retire. Other than that it's stagnant and low paying.

    Cons

    Low pay, bad benefits, backstabbing is not a singular thing here. The whole company takes pride in back-stabbing fellow associates. There is NO sense of teamwork here.

    Advice to Management

    Treat employees better, provide industry leading pay and benefits rather than the industry slacker. Get rid of the back-stabbing culture.


  3. Helpful (1)

    "Where not to take your career......"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Plano, TX
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Plano, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    When I started it was a great place to work with good benefits, work life balance, reasonable but on the low end of the pay scale.

    Cons

    With all the changes in upper management they are all bringing in buddies from other companies and pushing aside those with a great knowledge base. All the savings are coming on the backs of the employees and long term employees are being pushed out as a result to drive savings even further. To many new people playing the buddy game that don't have the knowledge or the skill set to be in the positions they are in. It is definitely a who you know not what you know place.... Not your parents JCPenney and the Golden Rule is out the window.

    Advice to Management

    Leave as they are only doing things to line their pockets and there friends pockets...... But that is like most C and VP level management these days.... Get rid of the me, me, me mentality and really do the winning together - don't just use it as a slogan that is meaningless.


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  5. Helpful (1)

    "JCPenney, an awful place to work."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Thousand Oaks, CA
    Former Employee - Sales Associate in Thousand Oaks, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    working for jcpenney as an associate meant that I had a flexible schedule. the company was very easy to work with in a sense that i could change my availability whenever I wanted to. to be honest there really arent a lot of good things to say about this company unless you happen to be a 50 year old woman looking for a nice steady job, which the company calls "lifers". i dont know if that term is used throughout the industry, but it was depressing to hear them referred to as "lifers" indicating no room for advancement. on the flip side, its a steady job if you dont do anything awful like steal, or try to punch a manager. even then they would probably let you stay due to the high turnover rate.

    Cons

    the downsides are abundant. the way they do pay raises is particularly sly. the maximum pay increase is .30 every year. it can be lowered on account of performance. this pay raise barely keeps up with the minimum wage and inflation. its criminal how they do this.
    there is little or no room for advancement unless you want to be a "lifer". and that is a depressing thing to be indeed. do not work here. this company is awful. the whole atmosphere is that of deception and intracompany politics resulting in an entity that puts emphasis on mindlessness and menial work. go work at macys, much better company. i worked for both.

    Advice to Management

    stop treating your employees like they have nothing to contribute to the company. recognize outstanding performances, and reward accordingly. the management treats the employees like george bush treats the american people. they baby them. its sad to see. they really need to pull their heads out of their asses and start fostering an environment that is conducive to a good place to work. everyone who leaves that company hated that company. i would say that even higher management dislikes working there. treat everyone like they mean sometihng, and the employees will treat the company like it means something to them.


  6. "Not a Wise Company Choice for your Retail Management Career - Run!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Sales Support Manager in Michigan City, IN
    Former Employee - Sales Support Manager in Michigan City, IN
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    If you're a manager, run, don't walk, from JCPenney!

    If you are looking for a part time night/weekend job, this could be an opportunity for you. You won't make much money in a non-commission department, but if you are a good salesperson, you can stand to make pretty good hourly wages in fine jewelry, window coverings, and other commissioned departments. I had some commission associates whose benefit rates (what their hourly pay averaged out to be over a year's time) were around $15.00/hour. Not bad for a part time job.

    Cons

    Where do I start? I began my career at JCPenney just out of college, as a management trainee. I worked for several stores in Massachusetts, and one in Indiana, for four years total. I did a good job, so I was promoted quickly. Note: at JCPenney, good job means: Going above and beyond by working many more hours than you're scheduled, especially when a corporate visit is imminent (can be often depending on what store you're in), completing hard physical labor without much downtime, and sacrificing your personal life in order to serve the company. Bottom line: you are expected to be there when they want you there, at any time of their choosing. When a visit is planned (usually with litle notice), you can and will be called at home to come in and get the store ready. Even in the middle of the night. Even on your day off. As an SSM, many of my supervisors called me at home to ask some of the most inane questions (not their fault - bad training at JCP).

    JCPenney has a tendency to transfer its managers a lot. You will advance more quickly, fall into favor with district management, and make more money if you comply with their relocation demands. If you don't comply with them, they will often "find a way" to get rid of you. When you're getting transferred hundreds of miles away from friends and family, you're unable to attend family events and make plans with friends. At first I just thought this was a "coincidence", but I now firmly believe that this is one of the "benefits" JCPenney realizes by transferring its managers around constantly. It's easy to expect you to be there six days a week for 10-12 hours a day when you have no plans outside of work. It's easy to expect you to work holidays when you have nowhere else to go. Also, and perhaps, another "coincidence", the longest I spent at any one store was 14 months. That's not long! So, just as soon as you settle into your new apartment/house/life and start to make some friends, is approximately when you'll be whisked away to the new job, and have to start from scratch again. I really don't think this is a "coincidence" at all. It would be far cheaper for district management to transfer managers to closer stores than to uproot them and transfer them to stores 100+ miles away. I think they see the silver lining in what they're doing... It's also harder to leave the company when you're in a new area and have no contacts established for networking, to find a new job.

    Examples of how my family life were affected include examples from the minor to the very major, including, but not limited to: missing my boyfriend's holiday work party (on a day I was scheduled off, my schedule was changed the day before), sitting at home alone on Christmas Day, missing my niece's first communion, missing a family reunion, and worst of all, not seeing my grandfather before he passed away. (He had been admitted to the hospital, death was imminent, and I had a day off and planned to drive the 2.5 hours to see him, but something came up at the store, I couldn't leave, and he died that day.) It should be noted that all of these events occurred on days/times that I was SUPPOSED to be off, but things changed at the last minute. Another example - not personal, but with another manager I worked with at a store in Massachusetts... his wife was giving birth, and he was called at the hospital, within hours of her C-section, being asked to report to work (by our district manager, I assume?) He wanted to be with her after her major abdominal surgery and the birth of his child, but yep, Penney's had the audacity to contact him.

    As far as I'm concerned, JCPenney has no regard for its employees' lives outside of work, especially at the management level. I have worked for six companies in my life, and none of them, even another retailer, were such horrible employers as JCPenney.

    Advice to Management

    The treatment of employees has to improve. The general feeling of every single store is one of stress. I have worked in four stores - all different, but all the same in that respect. Everyone is overworked and emotional. It's downright ridiculous. District and store managers, as well as any other first-level manager who needs it, should be trained in managing stress and emotions at work, professionalism, not playing favorites, and managing people.

    Mr. Ullman was hired the year or two before I left JCP. He *appears* to be trying to do a good job - "winning together", etc. However, since nothing has actually changed, that is just serving to tick off the associates even more. JCPenney needs real change, which will include eliminating some DMs and SMs who are part of the problem, as you know, you're losing talented managers left and right.


  7. "It's called JC Penney, not JC Dollar, for a reason."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Studio Coordinator in Jensen Beach, FL
    Current Employee - Studio Coordinator in Jensen Beach, FL

    Pros

    Management is off-site, affording a certain amount of freedom. Good job for someone who does not need to make a living wage.

    Cons

    Low salary, little room for advancement, management at the regional and corporate level are out-of-touch with solutions to problems at the studio level

    Advice to Management

    Listen to us and take seriously what we have issues with. Compensate and give incentive to the non-commissioned members of the team. Less emphasis on the sales people, and more equal distribution of the recognition. If the sales people are rewarded with trips for sales volume, the people that make that possible for them should also be rewarded.


  8. "Supervisors need to be monitored by Store Manager"

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

    Pros

    Associates can work according to their availability. The training for a job is very detailed and covers almost everything that an associate should know. It has medical coverage, paid time off and retirement benefits for those who qualify. It's a job in this terrible economy. Manager very nice and available.

    Cons

    Supervisors who have been with JCP for years, who spend their time hiding in their offices on personal phone calls or with personal visitors, or in the lunch room They are not on the floor, supervising, watching, straightening. They don't come to customer service when called by associates. Sometimes don't even answer over the walkie talkie. Customer service is supposed to be number 1 and isn't when associates can't get supervisors to come take care of the problem. How much time could it take to schedule employees for your department? Not the many hours they spend in their offices. I feel they are taking advantage of the manager by not doing their jobs. Supervisors being on the floor assures associates are doing their jobs, helps lower shoplifting incidences, helps keeps the stock organized, helps keep the customers wait time shorter and sets a great example for associates. Supervisors show partiality to some associates by giving them more hours to help them out and letting them take unscheduled breaks. Rules should apply to all. Credit applications seem to be of utmost importance to some supervisors and associates. Customers standing in line while associate begs customers to open credit application and then taking the time to fill it out. The words "Credit Apps" should never be spoken over the walkie talkies. It makes customers feels that is all JC Penney is interested in. Associates who get more credit applications are treated as if they are more valuable by Supervisors.

    Advice to Management

    Call Supervisors in one by one and ask them what is happening in the store.


  9. "If you are a college student, Find a better paying job."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Warwick, RI
    Current Employee - Sales Associate in Warwick, RI
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Not much of anything. I am sure you can find better elsewhere.

    Cons

    Low Pay.
    Workers throw one another under the bus.
    Too much emphasis on Charge Credit Applications.
    When you are a new employee make sure you stand up to the veteran employees they like to throw you under the bus, avoid ringing at all costs, and hide out cleaning all night.
    Their turnover rate is high, which explains why they have people who have been working a short time and then ones that have worked their over 20 years.

    Advice to Management

    I don't have any problems with the Management. I like my managers. They don't have control on how much we get paid.


  10. "don't work there"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Stocker in Hamilton, OH
    Former Employee - Stocker in Hamilton, OH
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    i liked the hours but that was it.

    Cons

    worst job i ever had. The boss stood me up on the first interview and was rude to me after. I didn't work there long but the people i worked with were bitter and petty so i wouldn't suggest it. there are no benefits for part time employees and their "customer service policies" read like they are trying to brainwash you.

    Advice to Management

    treat your employees with respect and they might be nicer to the customers without you having to brainwash them.


  11. Helpful (2)

    "JC Penney's pays Decorators Terrible!!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Custom Draperies in Tulsa, OK
    Current Employee - Custom Draperies in Tulsa, OK
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    I Love all the people I work with!

    Cons

    They drop your pay after 20 weeks $2 hr because they want you to get commission, It's pretty hard to work up the commission in this department, you do more sales instead of Designing!! Don't do this job if you are an Interior Designer, they lure you in with lies telling you it is designing, IT"S NOT!!!!This job is way to much stress for what they pay!!!

    Advice to Management

    Hire sales people for Custom not Interior Designers!!


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