Kansas City Southern Reviews | Glassdoor

Kansas City Southern Reviews

Updated March 21, 2017
33 reviews

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2.3
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David L. Starling
8 Ratings

33 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Conductor"

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

    I worked at Kansas City Southern full-time

    Pros

    Got good experience with people and management

    Cons

    All different kind of hours

    Advice to Management

    I was in management from 2003 to 2005


  2. "Run from KCS as fast as you can!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Former Employee - Conductor/Engineer in Shreveport, LA
    Former Employee - Conductor/Engineer in Shreveport, LA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Kansas City Southern full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    pay is decent for the industry

    Cons

    Management at all levels is horrible to work for. There has been a lot of very good managers fired and replaced with sub standard employees to say the least. The unions are weak don't do very much to help. every railroad i've worked for since leaving KCS has been better then them. There is alot of good employees with college degrees working in train service that can't move up into management for what ever reason. If your thinking of railroading for a career do yourself a favor ask any employee of another railroad what they think of KCS before applying.

    Advice to Management

    get rid of all mid level managers and start over. There are good long term employees with college degrees that KCS actually helped pay for that can't get a job in management. why don't you do an actual undercover boss experiment and see for your self whats wrong with your comapny


  3. "STAY AWAY"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Salary is Good - But it is not enough

    Cons

    Management at all levels calls at all times of the day. When they say 24/7 they mean it. You will have no life. Management lies to their managers about their staff.

    Advice to Management

    Learn IT before you try to run it.


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  5. Helpful (1)

    "Lacks Leadership"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Kansas City Southern full-time

    Pros

    Workers are dedicated and try their best to achieve success.

    Cons

    Company fires personnel indiscriminately without regard to performance. Lacks leadership for supporting & developing people. C-Suite is not transparent resulting in a disloyal workforce.

    Advice to Management

    Provide clear feedback to employees if not satisfied with performance. Do not allow perceptions to trump reality.


  6. "Decent Job"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Kansas City, MO
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Kansas City, MO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The atmosphere within KCS is pretty laid back making the job "doable". Salaries compared to the industry is low but decent.

    Cons

    They don't promote from the inside and if they do, they choose low experience workers and make them AVP or VP before even looking at the people with the real experience. Another cons is that, let's say you apply to an open position, if your salary grade is higher then they just say "your grade is higher, we cannot offer you a job" even though you are qualified. Usually they prefer low salary employees to do the hard work. Turnover is high.

    Advice to Management

    To look at the inside people first before going outside.


  7. "Average Employer"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Craftsman in Kansas City, MO
    Current Employee - Craftsman in Kansas City, MO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Kansas City Southern full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Pay and benefits allow you to live comfortably.

    Cons

    Good ole boy system is the governing structure that controls this organization. If you are a minority, meaning non-Caucasian, it will be very difficult to advance in this corporation or expand your talent and skills beyond what you were hired to do if you don't know anyone with a higher position within the company. If you have no other options, be the best at what you are hired to do with this company and you won't have to worry about harassment or being fired, it is smart and intelligent individuals at the lower levels that allow this company to give returns to stock holders and stake holders while making profits every quarter. The Directors and Managers are not business competent, but they are experts at recognizing smart, quite, executioners that strive to be the best without taking credit. These are the silent movers of this organization.

    Advice to Management

    True, you have been successful with the organizational structure you have by promoting Caucasians only, but remember all systems that is built on discriminatory practices comes to an end. Give every employee the chance to advance and contribute to growing the company if they are qualified. The future will be determined by this one factor.


  8. "No upper mobility"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Management Employee in Kansas City, MO
    Current Employee - Management Employee in Kansas City, MO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Kansas City Southern full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Benefits are adequate but not great.

    Cons

    They rarely promote from within.
    They require degrees for Director and Management positions but there are people without even an Associate's as Managers (and with no RR experience) because they are a friend of a VP, etc.
    If you are good at something they will not promote, they will just add an additional responsibility with no pay raise.
    If you are a minority your chances of moving up are even less.

    Advice to Management

    Stop paying your new hires with no experience 175K + and give incentives and promotions to those who do their jobs because they are the ones that keep the company doing well. Also, look further than your 5 or 10 "golden children" that you promote yearly.


  9. "Too many chiefs, few little indians"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Linux Engineer in Kansas City, MO
    Former Employee - Senior Linux Engineer in Kansas City, MO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Kansas City Southern full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Fairly stable and profitable company. Average salaries and benefits. Stock remained profitable the 5 years I was there.

    Cons

    Management top heavy. Slim on staff that actually do the work. Technology is about 20 years behind. Staff is still living in the mainframe era of 20 years ago. Employees are hired with an expectation of one job description and title, but then expected to be an everything jack of all trades. Home life / work balance is jacked! Railroad retirement is over-rated.

    Advice to Management

    Trust the people you hire to do their job and stop micro-managing. Shuffle your papers and rub elbows...leave the running of the company to those that have a clue!!


  10. "Company Culture"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Conductor
    Current Employee - Conductor
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Kansas City Southern full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great benefits and great co workers. Working with one other person a majority of the time.

    Cons

    Union, it is nearly impossible to get fired no matter what type of employee you are.
    A lot of uncertainty with layoffs, with little information given by management. Company hired more people during a recent layoff. Gave new hires 2 weeks of classroom training. When new hires got to job location ready to begin their ojt, company told them they were no longer needed. These guys were dressed and ready to work. It was a slimy move the company.

    Advice to Management

    Hire competent people. Little to no communication between management and the union. Its a constant battle.


  11. Helpful (3)

    "Would never recomend."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Kansas City, MO
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Kansas City, MO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Kansas City Southern full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Pay sounds good. Things you are told in the interview process never happen. 80% of upper management is rude and should never have been placed in the position the hold.

    Cons

    Working in a culture where you can never do enough. No family life.

    Advice to Management

    There is plenty of management to ask questions and blame others.



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