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Some Things Cannot Be Planned

Name: Monica H.
Job Title: Account Coordinator – US Cards – Marketing & Customer Service

I never thought that I would find myself in financial services. I considered being a police officer, a member of the U.S. Air Force, even being a counselor for young adults. I believe I’ve considered these careers because I really enjoy helping others and making a difference—it’s so fulfilling!  I never thought I’d be able to do that in the world of finance.  Aside from work, I am a proud mother of a very bright 4-year-old daughter. She is truly my motivation to always challenge myself and to be my very best. My hobbies include: spending quality time with my daughter, being outdoors, singing, and trying new things like places and food. 

Before working at Discover, I worked in customer service part time for UPS. At the time, my daughter was a newborn and I knew we couldn’t survive on part time employment. I tirelessly searched for decent jobs in the area and came across Discover. I applied, interviewed, and was hired.  This was my first full-time position. Just after a few weeks in training, I was forced to leave work due to an unforeseen family tragedy. During this chaotic time, I chose to reapply to Discover and Discover gave me a second chance. And for that, I am forever grateful.

I have had the opportunity to help so many people. When I was a phone agent, I was able to talk with thousands of customers and help with issues as small as fee removals to turning tears into laughter. As both an Accounting Coordinator and intern at Discover Headquarters in Riverwoods, IL, I’ve been able to assist with procedure updates, and agent training to enhance the overall customer experience.  I have found my time at Discover truly enjoyable and I don’t plan to leave anytime soon.

 A step in the unknown could lead to “wealth”

One day my team leader approached me and told me that I would be a great candidate for the Headquarters Immersion Program (HIP). At the time, I didn’t know much about the program, only that I’d be leaving my daughter for four months to work. I didn’t think that I was emotionally prepared to leave my daughter for such a long period of time, as I’ve never done so. After going home and deeply considering all of the opportunities that could unfold, I decided to apply, and I’m SO glad I did! It’s been one of the best experiences I’ve had in life! I’ve had the opportunity to meet so many wonderful leaders, expand my network, learn more about the business, develop new skills, and experience Chicago life, all while creating lasting friendships.

The difference can be a simple smile…

I feel that I make a difference every day when I come to work. No matter what is going on in my personal life, I make a point to ALWAYS smile, to be professional, and to be polite. Kindness goes a long way and you never know how a smile may brighten up someone else’s day. That kind of energy is infectious, and I enjoy spreading it.

My mother says I’m obsessed with Discover because I’m always talking about how great the company is as well as Discover swag. She says, “If I see you wear one more Discover shirt…”

But truly, it is a great company! Any company that will invest in your development is amazing! I’ve been able to take trainings online, attend a financial literacy course, participate in an in-depth leadership program called Aspiring Professionals, go to college through the Discover College Commitment program, and participate as an intern in the Headquarters Immersion Program. Every bit of development has elevated me to the next level in my career.

Working with a company that cares

Discover has so many great benefits. Two of my favorites are the family assistance program and the Discover College Commitment. Being a parent to a young child comes with some challenges. I love the fact that Discover values its employees enough to invest in providing care for family members. In the event that my daughter has a day off of school, I can request a provider to come to my home to care for her, or take her to a child care center at a discounted price. I’ve also been very fortunate to take advantage of the Discover College Commitment program that pays 100% for my education. It just doesn’t get any better than that! I don’t know too many companies that are willing to pay for your education 100% up front!

I’ve worked for other companies where I just felt like a number, an employee without a name. At Discover I’m Monica. I’ve come from other companies that focused heavily on seniority instead of performance. I love the fact that Discover is performance-driven because it truly makes the environment an equal playing field. I also love the fact that I am able to voice my opinion and be innovative. Here I’m recognized because I help drive results and that makes me feel valued.
Aside from feeling valued, Discover is a company that truly upholds the values it stands for and I see this not only for employees but leaders on a daily basis. A company that stands behind its word is a company that I’d want to work for any day.

Value

Currently I’m interning as a part of the Customer Service and Engagement (CSE) Strategy team. We are the team responsible for strategizing and creating an optimal experience for several employees and customers. Our team collaborates with marketing and field leaders to ensure our employees are able to effectively deliver information to our customers. We get to hear the concerns of our employees and customers first-hand and make the necessary changes/ updates to improve their experiences. Prior to my internship, I worked on the Business Enterprise Solutions Teams/Customer Support Unit, where my primary function was processing monetary adjustments to customer accounts. In all my roles at Discover, I find the work to be extremely meaningful because what I ‘m doing is impacting others, so I always give my best to ensure accuracy and satisfaction.

Get here as fast as you can…

To anyone wanting to work for Discover, I’d tell you to be prepared to work for a company that truly cares. Not only does Discover care about its customers and we show that with consistently winning JD Power, *(Discover was ranked Highest in Customer Satisfaction with Credit Card Companies by J.D. Power 4 out of the last 5 Years). Discover truly cares about its employees and we see that daily with recognition, constant development, and the amazing benefits we receive.

*Discover received the highest score in the J.D. Power 2014-2016 and 2018 Credit Card Satisfaction Studies of customers’ satisfaction with their primary credit card. Visit jdpower.com/awards

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Outdoorsman. Volunteer. Operations Specialist.

Name: Saulo J.
Job Title: Operations Specialists in Consumer Banking

Career shopping

In 2015, I was looking to start a serious career.  During my search for good companies online, I applied to Discover and a few other companies. Luckily, I got multiple job offers but chose Discover; it just felt right. It was during my tour, in my interview, that really left an impression on me. I noticed “everyone” smiling and seemed so happy, this showed me a company I would love to be a part of.

Experiencing excellence

I have had many great experiences but I have to brag for once. One of my best memories here was when I won the Pinnacle of Excellence award. Winners are selected by senior leaders for displaying outstanding leadership behaviors and “living” the Discover values while delivering excellent business results. The award ceremony for Pinnacle is hard to explain—it’s something you have to experience for yourself.  When management appraoched me about me winning, it was heartwarming because I did not expect it.  I had no idea I was being considered.  Turns out, just beingmyself is all it took to qualify! I can’t take all the credit.  The Discover environment really helps provide you with essentials to be yourself.  This is what makes Discover excellent.

 Being yourself by giving back

Discover allows me to be my true self in many ways but mostly through volunteering.  I’ve always wanted to give back. Discover opens up the door for employees to volunteer in multiple ways continuously.  Because of this, I’ve giving back to my community more than I ever had in my whole life. Volunteerism is one of my favorite values because it benefits others.  It gives my  community additional resource that they may not have had.  Volunteering educates both the community and myself on what’s available and who’s there to help.  I’ve had the opportunity to volunteer at Habitat for Humanity, Mulligans Manor, Pride Walk, back to school clothing drive and many more.

 Contributing to what makes Discover different

Discover puts their customers in better financial situations. While working in the Card Member Assistance (CMA) Charge-off Department, I was on a phone call with a customer who had a delinquent account.  When I first started talking to her, she didn’t want to hear me out but I knew we may be able to provide her some new options. I had one opportunity to really make an impact, so my exact words were “Just hear me out for one minute. And if what we have doesn’t help you, you’re more than welcome to hang up.” I’m sure she was shocked. After offering her a different payment option, she started to cry! She was so thankful. She took the program and thanked me because she had no idea that Discover provided these types of options and “workout programs” that help customers in true financial hardships—I know we made a true impact on that customer.

A day at Discover

Every day is different. It’s an amazing company to work for and they treat their employees’ great. Our positive work environment makes you want to come to work. If you’re looking to grow within a corporation, Discover is an amazing place to start a career.

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Father of four. World Traveler. Department Manager.

Name: Topher A.
Job Title: Card Operations Department Manager

Deciding on Discover

I was working at another local call center, as a supervisor. I became friends with a few Team Leaders from Discover and was really impressed with the way they spoke about their jobs. They told me about all of the training and development they received to become better managers and leaders. I decided to invest in my own career by joining the Discover family. I started as a Team Leader in Discover Student Loans.  Since my start, I’ve worked in Customer Service and Engagement (CSE) and Cardmember Assistance (CMA). Discover delivered on my need for professional development and offer some great benefits that’s  hard to match anywhere else.

Invest in yourself

Discover offers its employees many professional development courses. I have learned how to better handle difficult conversations and how to prioritize activities so that I am working on what is most important. Today, we are rolling out the Discover Management System (DMS) to the field.  DMS is a tool to help us deliver more value to our customers as efficiently and effectively as we can.  I am being further stretched to follow its principles. I am excited with the thought that my work will be more closely tied to creating value for our customers.

 Coming together for our customers

Discover is different than any other company that I have worked for. They truly put people first. While other companies may focus solely on the bottom line, Discover is constantly evaluating the impact of our decisions on our customers and employees. While working with our Balance Transfer group, I visited our Balance Transfer team in Phoenix, with whom we engage in friendly internal competition. However, upon my visit, the department manager for Balance Transfers in Phoenix rolled out the welcome wagon.  He invited me to spend a few days with him, where he shared all of his strategy material and best practices. He was a great example of collaboration, despite the fact that our departments were competing with one another. This is just one example, where people have put the best interests of the company and our customers above their own.

 Coming together for each other

Not only does Discover celebrate diversity, the company is truly inclusive of all types of people. Discover values every individual, as long as they are willing to treat others with dignity and respect. I had the opportunity to live in South America for a few years. As a result, I speak Spanish and Portuguese. I participate in the HOLA (Helping Organize Latino Achievement) Employee Resource Group at Discover, where I work side-by-side with other HOLA members, a really great experience over the last few years, as we celebrate and promote inclusion of the Latino culture here at Discover. They make me feel like I am a part of the family.

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From Temp to Full Time

Name: Jarel A.
Job Title: Team Leader

I am a Team Leader of the Private Consolidation Loan team in Lake Park, UT.  I have a double major in Business Management and Marketing. And I love sports and family.

I started with Discover as a temp agent, just looking for part time work while I maneuvered through school. I ended up really liking what I did and decided to stay until I could finish school. I didn’t have to change the way I walked, talked, and dressed. I was able to remain the same person without being judged on how I presented myself. So far my experiences at Discover are very good.  I’ve had the opportunity to move up very fast in the company. I’ve learned a lot about banking and how things operate in the workplace. Discover doesn’t really seem to have a cap on the level of growth opportunities available here.

Focus on Development

Discover helps my professional development by allowing me the opportunity to utilize my knowledge and expertise on a daily basis. I return that to my team by focusing on their development at work and their goals in life.  A lot of my agents are close to my age and it helps them to have an example right in front of them, successfully doing what they aspire to do.

We are here to serve the customer

The most apparent difference with Discover is the outstanding amount of positivity in the workplace.  My departments helps students by providing financial assistance so that they can follow their dreams.  I remember working with a customer that wasn’t really able to make much ground with an issue. They were…  I worked with this customer on a daily bases to escalate their case by … .  The result was a 180, they were able to…

Take the opportunity

If you want to do something greater you have the opportunity to do it here at Discover.

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Authenticity allows for great leadership…

Name: Brittnee F.
Job Title: Card Operations Team Leader

My aunt worked at Discover when they started up. She relocated to Utah as Contact Strategy Consultant and tried to get me to apply for years but I was intimidated because I didn’t have a college degree. But after working 10 years in the food industry, I was ready for a change! I decided to apply.

I’ve had so many great experiences here! I have met amazing people who I now call family. My husband and I were able to take our first REAL vacation to celebrate our 5 year anniversary in Maui. This was a trip I won at Discover through our Winter Winnings program, a rewards program for the top 50 performers who win extremely large gifts

I have worked at Discover for almost 6 years. I’m a Team Leader in Card Member Assistance (CMA), who enjoys attending horror conventions, reading, spending time with my husband, pets and my godson.

Creating an environment where all feel safe and can be their true self…

I have made a real difference at Discover by really making sure that I remain authentic. Expressing myself through physical appearance is something I enjoy. I have a lot of tattoos, piercings, crazy colored hair, and a Rocker Chic style. I’ve been told I would never be successful with how I present myself but at Discover, they allow me to be me every day when I am at work and I don’t have to hide it.

Due to the environment, the people I work with and Discover acceptance in diversity, I was finally able to be comfortable with coming out to many family members, friends and colleagues as bisexual. I work very hard in the New Albany PRIDE group as one of the 2019/20 Chairs because it is important that LGBT employees feel recognition, appreciation, safe and have a voice. Discover is different! It is a company that allows you to be your most authentic self. I believe when you are able to be your authentic self, you are more motivated to do your job every day and you feel comfortable.

Discover is more than just a job

Discover has helped me so much in professional development. Before Discover, I had been in other leadership positions but it was only a job. Here, I’ve been able to develop into a true leader and showcase my passions. Before Discover, I was in college to get my teaching degree so helping others learn is my passion. Now I use my abilities to develop my agents. I’ve had opportunities to learn about networking, to help with my public speaking, and to learn how to have an effective conversation.

There are so many opportunities within the company. There is always something new to learn. It shocks me that Discover offers up to 90% tuition reimbursement on education assistance.  It amazes me to work for a company that started out with 4 weeks vacation time.

The work I do is meaningful

My team is the base of all of CMA, we are the first step in correcting delinquency. As high-risk accounts come to us, we provide excellent customer service versus high focus on collections. It is important that we have a great conversation with the customer so that we can assist them in keeping their account in good standing.

I once had a customer call and talk to me with some of the most horrid things I had ever heard. Although it was difficult, I made sure to remind myself, “He is stressed and upset because of his situation.  Do not take this personal.  And all people handle things differently.” I looked at all possibilities we had to help him, covered these options then allowed him to make the choice on what he thought would be most beneficial. By the end of the conversation, the man was crying with gratitude. He felt so bad for the things he had said. I told him I understood that we all need help sometimes. A lot of people would remember that as a terrible experience but for me it was very eye-opening.  I learned what patience and genuine empathy can do for a person.

Walk me through a day in the life of working on your team

I actually am in charge of 2 teams. Those teams are the Pre-Delinquency team and the Discover Business Card Process team. I come in, make sure I go through emails first.  Then I look at the schedule to see what agents are here.  After that, I look at my calendar to see what I have scheduled for the day.  This allows me to work around the things I need to do and coach agents from call listening. I always like to coach regardless of whether it was an amazing call or a call with many opportunities. As a Team Leader, I am also responsible for handling their timekeeping, compliance and making sure they understand how to remain compliant. Giving my team daily updates on their performance is important and valuable.

Come work with me…
I would say that Discover is a great company to work for. The benefits are amazing, the opportunities are amazing. They have more to offer than any other company I have ever worked for. I even have family that has been in the same job role for 20+ years, with another company, and don’t have the benefits employees receive here on their first day. Visit discover.com/careers.

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The Ohio State University Alumna. Chicago-land Native. Associate Project Manager.

Name: Katie P.
Job Title: Associate Project Manager – Card Operations and Decision Management

The road to Discover

At OSU, I graduated with my degree in Finance from Fisher College of Business. During my senior year I accepted a position in the Operations Leadership Program (OLP) here at Discover. The OLP is a 2 year rotational program.  My first year was in Customer Service, as a Team Leader, before rotating to Customer Protection Services. Currently, I am doing project work and will be completing the program this summer and just celebrated my 2 year anniversary this past May.

Embracing Change

I had the incredible opportunity to work in collaboration with our Talent Acquisitions team in recruiting our most recent OLP cohort. Like many of my fondest experiences at Discover, it was one that pushed me out of my comfort zone. Representing the other members of the program and the supporting Senior Management was a new leadership experience for me. We really dug into the current process to understand improvement opportunities for both the business and candidate experience. Co-leading these improvements with the recruiter (who had phone screened me just 2 years prior) was a blast, and I was fortunate to gain a much better understanding of their side of business. This particular experience was a milestone in defining goals for the early stages of my career.

I learned quickly when I started that I wasn’t great with change.  Since then, I’ve since focused a lot of my personal growth on embracing it. Change is constant at Discover; and while it only seeks to be positive, it often can do the opposite on people’s emotions, thus impacting their outlook on their work. Understanding the “why” behind a new direction has not only helped me, but has allowed me to be effective in helping others manage change.

Develop Yourself through Developing Others

Since starting at Discover I’ve always really enjoyed learning about and discussing people’s career aspirations; so meeting and interviewing the candidates was extremely rewarding. My unchallenged top priority as a leader is to make those on my team, as well as outside of it, happy at work. I work towards that goal by remaining open myself. I encourage openness and positivity with the customer-facing staff I lead; which only stands to foster the most genuinely positive experience for our customers.

There are countless opportunities and benefits open to everyone at the company to further their growth and development. The leadership around me has always taken high interest in my goals and aspirations.  They’ve also aligned me with opportunities I never imagined I’d have at this point in my career. In short, I feel incredibly fortunate for the way I’ve continuously been challenged in both my work and personal growth.

Advice for Discover and Beyond

At Discover or not, my advice is to build your career at a company where you truly believe in their mission. My first credit card was a Discover card well before I began working here. Whenever I needed to call Discover Customer Service, I always loved the way that I was treated.  Fast forward, I am sitting on the other side with the opportunity to lead those same wonderful individuals talking to customers, just like me. With your job and career being such a large portion of your life, I think it’s necessary to work somewhere that you fundamentally believe in what you’re doing. At Discover, that’s been seamless for me.

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A Cosmetologist, Photographer, and Proud Discover Employee

Name: Larry M.
Job Title: Lead Account Specialists – Card Operations

I’m originally from Central Michigan, born and raised. I’ve lived in Arizona since Halloween 2017 and I love it. I’ve been a licensed cosmetologist for over 5 years now and do hair on the side for fun, as well as photography for friends and family.

When you have good friends

My childhood best friend of 19 years works for Discover on the banking side of the business, and she knew I’d love it here. She got me to move out to Phoenix, AZ, where the call center is located and apply. I’ve always been really good with people and customer service, so I took her word. And I’ve loved it since day one!

The experience I’ve had so far with Discover has been quite the ride. I came in wanting to know about how to make it big into the company, how to win all the awards and recognition, and how to get my name known by a lot of people. I’ve done just that by just doing my job and being a people person. One of the best experiences I’ve had was winning Customer Service and Engagement (CSE) Achievement award, where I was recognized for being in the top percentage of employees for great phone stats and customer service amongst my peers. It was such a good feeling to know that I make a difference just by doing the work that I do.

A place that will let you grow

I’ve never held a job position where the company has so much opportunity for personal and professional development. The lessons and coaching I’ve received have helped me learn that I want to be a leader one day within in a professional setting, which I never dreamed would actually happen. Discover sees potential in its employees and really pushes us to grow into ourselves both professionally and personally.

I am myself fully at Discover

I’ve never fully been able to be 100% Larry at my past jobs. There was always something that I had to hold back; whether that be my fun, optimistic attitude, or just my general positivity. Coming to Discover, I’ve been able to shine and show people my positivity and optimism on a daily basis.  At Discover, this is welcomed with open arms. It’s infectious when you bring that light into a workplace and you see it spreading around like a wildfire.

Being able to see how I’ve helped my agents by coming into work with a positive and optimistic attitude, was a game changer for me. It was amazing to watch the agents really thrive from my positivity.

The difference with Discover

This experience is unlike any other job I’ve held, honestly. I don’t have to worry about coming into work and just keeping quiet and getting my work done. I can come into work and show who I am as a person and still get the work done. Before I never looked forward to coming into work. But Discover is different in every aspect because I look forward to helping our customers and my peers. Also, Discover makes sure their employees are taken care of and can be their selves in their work environment, and that’s what really stands out to me.

Benefits that gives a piece of mind

The biggest benefit that surprised me is the amount of recognition that employees can get. I’ve learned in the past that I’m the type of worker that needs to know that my efforts and my work are paying off. Being recognized as much as I have been is what really drives me to push forward. The other big benefit of working with Discover for me is the health benefits. I’m an asthmatic and having those benefits from day one helps put my mind at ease.

A different look at handling back-to-back calls…

My work and the work of my department is meaningful to the company because we handle a lot of back-up for the other departments. This means we answer calls that are waiting in the call channels. This could make work super busy, but our team answers those calls in a timely manner so that our customers get the help they need.

Work to make an impact and leave the best impression…

I try to make an impact daily with multiple customers. But the ones that really stand out to me are the ones where I help our customers with questions about a change to their credit score. They usually come in worried and concerned – as I would be too.  But I’m able to give them the information to help them figure out what’s going on. To literally hear the worry lift off their shoulders is the most rewarding part of my job. It’s such a good, heartwarming feeling when a customer thanks you for what you’ve done.

I’d say go for it!

If you love helping people and also love having a positive, upbeat, and welcoming work environment, this is the place for you. I can honestly say that Discover has changed my life and I plan on making this job into a career, and the same thing can happen for you too. All you have to do is be yourself and give it a try.

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“Doing the Right Thing” is the Heart of Discover

If you work for Discover, you know you can expect to hear the echo of one of our core values, “Doing the Right Thing,” day in and day out. Of all the guiding principles and values that drive our culture, “Doing the Right Thing” is the most prevalent.  As a company, it’s our golden rule.

Providing great customer service is at the core of everything we do.  We know that by doing the right thing for our customers we are able to have a positive impact on their lives. From an everyday phone call that impacts just one customer, to a new product feature or launch that can impact many more, we keep what’s right top of mind.

Throughout the year we ask employees to share stories of how they’ve helped a customer in need. This helps us reflect on the ways we’ve been able to make a difference and touch the lives of so many in the communities we live. Today, we’d like to share how our customer service agents are able to help customers by living our truest value of “Doing the Right Thing by:”

• Treating our customers with compassion when they’re experiencing a personal hardship or having difficulty managing their finances
• Demonstrating patience with new and existing customers who need help finding the banking or credit card product that serves their financial situation best
• Helping a customer understand their statement, make a simple payment over the phone, or showing them how to maximize their rewards
• Reducing panic in a customer who has lost their card and demonstrating how they can freeze payments instantly the next time it’s been misplaced
• Helping a customer manage their payments and minimize their interest through the upcoming holiday season, one of the busiest times of the year

Want to work for a company with customer-service like ours and people that strive to do the right thing every day? Check out our openings today.

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Diversity and Inclusion is part of our DNA

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Diversity and Inclusion is part of our DNA

At Discover, we strive to create a work environment where unique individuals can come to work each day and make a real difference. Discover’s Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) efforts in particular are aimed at using the differences in your perspectives and backgrounds to create value and success for the company. Our diversity is one of our greatest assets and we believe it’s one of the main reasons we are able to serve our customers so well.

Since the launch of a dedicated D&I program at Discover, we’ve seen tremendous growth in initiatives  that support an inclusive culture both inside and outside of our office walls. In 2013, we started our efforts with seven Employee Resource Groups (ERG), a number that now stands at 10 Employee Resource Groups and 39 ERG chapters across all of our major locations.

Discover’s ERGs help us recognize that there is strength in our differences and remind us that diversity and inclusion is part of our DNA. In order to help our ERGs make the most impact to employees, our communities, and the business, we make sure the strategic plans for each group align with overall company strategies and include activities that:

  • Build cultural awareness
  • Impact professional development, and
  • Grow our customer base

The Mission of our ERGs

ERG Mission
Accentuating Discover Abilities (ADA) To foster an inclusive environment where individuals with disabilities are valued and respected, thereby maximizing the empowerment of the individual and company performance.
Asian Professionals at Discover (APAD) To enhance Asian cultural awareness by creating and supporting volunteer opportunities while fostering an environment that promotes professional development.
Black Organizational Leadership at Discover (BOLD) To provide a support network for employees at Discover that fosters an inclusive environment that promotes growth, leadership, and talent development.
Generations of Leaders at Discover (GOLD) To create environment that fosters opportunities to collaborate across Discover leveraging employee talent, experience and knowledge to positively impact our leadership and financial well-being.
Honoring Military & Veterans (HMV) To bring awareness and understanding of military-related skills that impact Discover, identify veteran employee needs and work to drive business solutions. HMV strives to act as a focus group evaluating Service member benefits and coordinates activities to highlight and honor the military both at Discover and within the community.
Helping Organize Latino Achievement (¡HOLA!) To be at the center of the Latino community by sharing insights that can help Discover harness the full potential of its employees, partners and customers. ¡HOLA! will create and develop the leaders of tomorrow through professional development, networking, cultural awareness and knowledge sharing.​
Native American Professionals at Discover (N8V) To create an inclusive environment for Native American professionals by promoting Native American heritage through education, networking, cultural and social opportunities. N8V partners with local Native American communities to give exposure about the company’s core values, beliefs, products and services.
PRIDE – Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Allies To unite the power and potential of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and ally employees in their careers and to contribute to Discover customers, employees, suppliers and communities.​​​​​​​
Professional Women Impacting Results (PWIR) To provide development and networking opportunities to further enhance the effectiveness of women across the organization.
Young Professionals of Discover (YPOD) To ignite progress, inspire others and cultivate tomorrow’s leaders. YPOD aims to provide developmental, networking and leadership opportunities for motivated young professionals and their advocates, supports and reinforces Discover’s core business objectives by leveraging personal and professional insights to spark innovation, while enhancing the company’s reputation through voluntary service in our communities.​

Learn more about Discover’s Employee Resource Groups.

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An innovative way to promote the success of our employees

Jon Kalpan vp-training and developmentTell us about yourself: My entire career has been devoted to expanding opportunity by providing meaningful, impactful, and engaging learning opportunities to others. I started my career as a high school teacher in Oakland, California, teaching Economics and Government to 12th graders. I spent about ten years in public education, teaching everything from math and science to English literature. I founded and ran a charter school called the Alameda Community Learning Center for several years, but eventually decided the most interesting things in the learning industry were happening in the private sector. I left public education in 1999 and started my corporate life writing development training software manuals in the tech sector. After working in various corporations for several years, I chose Discover because it was a place that allowed me to focus on my mission – to use education as a way to help people lead more rewarding and fulfilling lives.

I live in Lake Bluff, IL with my wonderful wife Shari, my two wacky kids, and our five-year-old runty-looking dog.

What is “The Discover College Commitment”? The Discover College Commitment is a new tuition program that provides all eligible U.S.-based Discover employees the opportunity to earn a bachelor’s degree online from select accredited public or non-profit private universities at no cost. The benefit covers tuition and required fees, books and supplies needed to complete select online degrees at one of three schools – the University of Florida (via UF Online), Wilmington University and Brandman University. The benefit has no tenure requirement so employees can start participating as soon as they want regardless of how long they have been with the company, including new employees on their first day.

What was the objective for launching this type of program? When we started working on this several years ago, we had four strategic objectives. First and most immediately, we wanted to improve talent acquisition and retention, especially in our  call centers. Second, we wanted to improve a set of transferable skills for participating employees, helping enhance their critical thought, analytical reasoning, problem solving, and quantitative aptitude. Third, we felt that we could structure the curriculum to deliver a set of strategically relevant capabilities, such as cyber security and computer engineering. Finally, we felt that we could enhance our brand in the market for both potential employees and consumers.

How’s it going so far? It’s still early days, but we’ve been extremely gratified by the overwhelming enthusiasm across the company. In the first two-and-a-half months since launch, nearly 10% of the company has scheduled academic counseling sessions with our education counselors. Moreover, almost 500 employees have submitted college applications to one of our degree programs.

While it will take years to realize the long-term benefits of this program, we’re already seeing early positive returns. Visits to our jobs page are up significantly and company-wide attrition is steadily declining. Moreover, Discover received over 185 million media impressions based on 58 news stories that resulted from this program. Word of mouth has been uniformly glowing.It will be years before we will be able to announce our first graduates, and we know that there will be challenges along the way. That said, we couldn’t have hoped for a more positive start and a uniquely innovative way to promoting the professional, personal, and financial success of our employees.

For more information about the Discover College Commitment program, including eligibility requirements, please visit www.mydiscoverbenefits.com/keyword/education-assistance.