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LAST UPDATED: June 27th, 2019
For over three decades, the people at Express Employment Specialists have been connecting skilled applicants with companies in need. Founders Robert A. Funk, William H. Stoller, and James Gray all worked for the old staffing agency, Acme Personnel, until the agency's president passed away. At that time, the three men continued to maintain many of the Acme offices, but in 1983 developed the agency into what is known today as Express Employment Specialists. Since that year, the company has grown into one of the most experienced, longstanding staffing agencies available. Based out of Oklahoma City, Express strives to bring hope to people who have trouble finding work or who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own. Particularly in today's economy, hope like this isn't so easily obtained. Express has proven that it can thrive in even the lowest economic downturns. Near the company's beginning, the economy in the US took a hit, and while many other businesses failed, Express still brought in more than two billion dollars in revenue.

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The Good

  • No fees
  • Variety of placement options
  • Positions
  • Benefits
  • Availability
Job seekers will never pay a fee with Express. You'll be able to create an account, search and apply for jobs, and find the best-fitting work at no cost. They make their money off of client companies, so you'll have free reign to use their services. You'll also love their variety of placement options. They have specialists in the following industries:
  • Accounting and finance
  • IT
  • HR
  • Healthcare
  • Engineering
  • Sales
While some staffing agencies offer only temporary positions and contracts, Express claims to have it all-commercial jobs, administrative positions, direct hires, flexible staffing, evaluation hires (in which you're hired on the conditions that you pass all of the company's evaluations), and even temporary positions. It's true that many companies are looking for just short-term help, but with the help of Express, you might have a better chance of turning that work into a full-time career. When you do land work through the company, you'll enjoy quality benefits, such as: healthcare insurance, referral bonuses, paid holidays and vacation days, and more. Keep in mind, though, that you'll have to work a certain amount of hours to qualify for these benefits, and they differ according to your location. Even so, it's nice to know that the more work you put in, the more benefits you'll get to enjoy next to your paycheck. Since Express has grown over the years, they now have many locations throughout the US, Canada, and South Africa. In fact, it's so prominent that it has more than 600 offices. Plenty of opportunity for you to find work where you want it. They also have employees and officers that come from the American Staffing Association and International Franchising Association, which means they've got the experts working for you. With so many locations, Express is locally owned and operated, which can work in your favor. It means that for any office you work with, the representatives there will be well informed about the jobs available in your specific area, as well as the local competition you're up against.

The Bad

  • Locally-owned and operated
  • Complaints
  • Waiting list
Being locally owned and operated can be either a dream or a nightmare, depending on where you live. Without one massive ownership over all offices, Express leaves room for inconsistency, poor leadership, and subpar habits with customer service to creep in. The point: Your location might determine your luck with Express, so just be sure to research the offices in your area and pick one that has a credible reputation. Common complaints include:
  • Long waiting periods
  • Little-to-no contact
  • Limited screenings
In some ways, you might also be just a name on a waiting list with Express-which often comes with the territory of a staffing agency. The company can get you a job only as fast as work requests come in from their client companies, so if there isn't much of a need, you're out of luck. And if you do fit the bill, then you get work. It's sort of a "We'll call you" type of a relationship. To be fair, though, a good office will review new applications daily, so hopefully you won't stay on a waiting list for very long. Other than that, Express would benefit from widening their repertoire for industries. They can definitely help you if you're suited for the scientific, administrative, financial, or technological. But in today's world, so many of us go to school for more acute jobs-jobs that branch out of these four basic industries. Express might not necessarily be able to help if you're someone in this category.

The Bottom Line

Truth be told, there are much worse things than being locally owned and catering to common industries. So all in all, Express Employment Specialists is a safe, experienced option. If you need a job, you can likely trust Express to fairly evaluate your skills and match you with a company that sincerely needs you. No matter where you live (if you're in the US), you'll be able to locate an Express office, and you won't pay a fee for getting their help. But before you do, research the offices near you so you can cut your losses and work with one that will give you the attention you deserve. In short, their success means your success. Express values respect for people and, like many other staffing agencies, works hard to match you with the company that needs your skills. But unlike some staffing agencies, they offer every placement option from direct hires, to temporary contracts, to evaluation hires. They also service every state in the US and have locations in Canada and South Africa-which means you can rely on them for both local and international positions.
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