Posted by Willy Franzen on March 27, 2008. Jobs updated daily.
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I love American Express. When my girlfriend ran over my iPod Nano (ok, I dropped it on the ground behind her tire and didn’t know it, my bad) their Purchase Protection Plan covered it. When my money was running a little short during the holidays, I won a 25% off Amazon.com coupon through their MyWishlist Promotion. It made buying gifts a lot easier. When my Mother and Grandmother went to visit my Aunt, AMEX provided a free companion ticket. It was 2 for the price of 1. There’s no credit / charge card company that treats its customers as well as American Express does.
They also treat their employees well. They’ve won more top employer awards than we care to list. Their products and services are unparalleled, they’re passionate about their business, and they always seem to put customers first. They have an amazing brand, which is the 15th most valuable in the world. Yes, their brand alone is worth more than $20 billion. This all translates into an extremely strong employment brand.
Unfortunately, American Express’ Careers website is a prime example of failure of the last mile; in fact, it’s an absolute disaster that diminishes the employment brand that AMEX has worked so hard to build. When you first get to American Express’ Careers Home Page, it looks ok. It’s titled “Staffing_Careers Home_US,” which is completely accurate, but neither welcoming nor user-friendly. This may not be a huge issue, but if you’re using Google in your job search, you’ll realize that when these titles show up in the search results, it makes it hard to find what you’re looking for. This may be a small nit to pick, but it’s representative of deeper problems that you will find as you navigate deeper into the AMEX Careers site – especially on their Campus Recruiting section (hey, at least they have one).
We appreciate that American Express has decided to provide visitors with a plethora of career related information, but they’ve done it in a fashion that cluttered, inconsistent, and difficult to navigate. We don’t want to rant too much, so we’re just going to highlight the areas that will offer you the most value. You can get started at either the Campus Recruitment Process page or the US Campus Recruitment page, unless, of course, you’re looking to work in Europe or Asia-Pacific (by the way, our international student readers will be happy to know that AMEX does offer visa sponsorship for many positions). Individuals with graduate degrees will want to look at the Global Leadership Express program. You’ll also want to read the Get To Know Us page to get a better understanding of the businesses that American Express operates.
You’ll probably find that these pages don’t really have the information that you’re looking for. For instance, the Campus Recruitment Process page talks mainly about internships. Even the pages with good information have poor navigation and formatting that make the content hard to absorb. It seems like American Express does a much better job of on-campus recruiting, and that online recruiting just doesn’t matter to them. You can end up wasting hours wandering around American Express’ Careers site, when all you’re trying to do is find job listings for college students.
Despite the lack of organization on American Express’ career site, it becomes pretty clear that entry-level hiring is a big part of what they do. Hiring occurs in 8 Functional Areas (American Express Interactive, Marketing, Customer Care, Risk & Information Management, Finance, Strategic Planning Group, Human Resources, and Technologies) and Four Business Units (Global Consumer & Small Business Services (GCSS), Global Business-to-Business, Finance, and Support Functions). Or at least that’s what they tell you. When you actually start searching for jobs on their site, you’ll see that jobs are actually organized by job function, which partially overlaps with the Functional Areas. Did we forget to mention that the only way to find a job on American Express’ site is to use their job search function?
Depending on how you navigate to AMEX’s job search function, you may get the impression that you can search specifically for entry-level jobs (especially if you came from this page). From what we can tell, you can’t. If you add the words “campus” or “entry level” to your search, you will find some appropriate jobs, but you’ll probably miss out on a lot of others. Your search will definitely be more productive if you can narrow it down using keywords related to the Functional Area that you’d like to work in, but who knows if such a tactic will even yield accurate results. It seems like the only way to find AMEX’s jobs for new college graduates is to wade through all their job listings, or to search your college’s job posting site for American Express listings. We wish we could go through all 566 jobs that are currently posted and pick out the ones that look suitable for new college grads, but we’ve banged our head against the wall enough tonight.
Like I said in the first paragraph, I love American Express. I also hate sounding like a complainer, but it’s unacceptable for a company of American Express’ stature to completely ignore usability on their careers site. Just because the strength of their brand brings them more applicants than they’ll ever need doesn’t mean that they should overlook the opportunity to use the power of the Internet as a recruiting tool. One Day, One Job is about helping you find meaningful work after you graduate college, but it’s also about improving the way companies present their career opportunities online. If great companies like American Express can’t get it right, then who can?
Links to Help You Begin Your Research
If you have found any tricks to navigating the American Express Careers website, please share them in the comments section.
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