Cambridge Associates, LLC

  www.cambridgeassociates.com
Work in HR? Unlock Free Profile

Cambridge Associates, LLC Reviews

Updated July 14, 2014
Updated July 14, 2014
130 Reviews

3.6
130 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Cambridge Associates, LLC Chairman and CEO Sandra A. Urie
Sandra A. Urie
92 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • For the industry, there is good work/life balance at Cambridge Associates (in 22 reviews)

  • Opportunity to learn about all asset classes through due diligence on top investment managers, research, etc (in 14 reviews)


Cons
  • Long hours during peak periods, work can sometimes be repetitive (in 12 reviews)

  • status reporting, and (3) data entry (in 8 reviews)

More Highlights

71 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1. 3 people found this helpful  

    A Place for Average People to Have a Sedentary Career in Finance

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Consulting Associate  in  Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Consulting Associate in Boston, MA

    Pros

    Pro
    Exposure to over 30 years worth of private equity, venture capital, hedge fund, and public market data that cannot be rivaled.

    Caveat-
    You will have to hunt for this information, though, as is the IT and internal software does not make it easy to find or couple relevant data streams to eachother.

    Pro
    The people of Cambridge are generally good, nice, amicable people

    Con
    It's all an act. The illusion of professionalism masquerading as professionalism itself

    Cons

    Everything ties back to the salaries that Cambridge pays, which discourage talent from staying and doesn't attract new talent from joining....

    Cambridge's organizational infrastructure was designed by Rube Goldberg; a company full of middlemen that shuttle hot potatoes.

    Client's are dropping Cambridge on a nearly weekly basis.

    Management is filled with people who's primary skill is loyalty to Cambridge, not true business line acumen.

    Knowledge is so compartmentalized that no one - even at the board level - knows what's going on.

    Consultants are more like waiters than subject matter experts. They sell the same products and managers to all of the clients, negating the tales of personalized portfolio tailoring that they advertise.

    Cambridge is a chronic overpromiser and underdeliverer to clients, employees and itself.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take people's advice and do the opposite of what you're currently doing.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    It has been comprised of long hours, very low pay, high demands, and little respect.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Consulting Associate  in  Dallas, TX
    Current Employee - Consulting Associate in Dallas, TX

    Pros

    If you want to go straight from undergrad to business school they have a great connection with top universities. Harvard, Yale, Wharton, etc consistently recruit from Cambridge.

    Cons

    Dont ever EVER work in the Dallas office.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    none

    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO
  3. 8 people found this helpful  

    This is a true in-depth review of the associate job.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Associate  in  Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Associate in Arlington, VA

    Pros

    - Cambridge offers those with no finance background the opportunity to say they work in "finance."
    - We literally have all types of majors in our Performance Reporting department and you need absolutely no experience or knowledge to excel at the job.
    - It is a great opportunity for those with low expectations, who are waiting to go back to school. or who wish to take the CFA for free. The firm pays for all three levels of CFA testing along with reimbursement for tutorials and such.
    - The work is also very easy and you often work 9 to 5. The culture of the reporting department is also fun because everyone is under 28 years old and it is very collegial ie happy hours and lots of joking around.
    - You also get 3 weeks of paid vacation along with many holidays to start (please see cons section also!)

    Cons

    - Absolutely no incentive to go above and beyond ie no bonuses.
    - You basically work for people who are about a year or two older than you which can create an odd hierarchy.

    - Here is what you will actually be doing:
    you will have 10-15 clients
    you will collect all 10-50 statements from each client's hedge fund/mutual fund/etf investments
    you will enter the market value, transaction, and return data into their proprietary software system
    once your "analyst" (the 2 year older guy) checks your homework, he will say "run the report"
    you will press a button and churn out the report
    you will check the report, your team leader will check it, the analyst will check it, then the consulting associate will check it.
    you will get edits and be asked to change certain things or rerun the whole thing
    you will send it back up the lines
    it will be sent to the client
    you will do this every month for almost every client or every 3 months for ones that get only quarter reports

    - How do you get promoted? Every "analyst" you gave a report to has to say "I think he's ready for the promotion." Then, if there is a spot open, you will move up.
    - And what does moving up mean? A couple thousand dollars more and you get to ask associates to do all the minutia grunt work on you reports. But, you still answer to the consulting associate and largely do the same thing ie checking reports.

    - Recruited for the job as if associates would be active in the consulting process which turned out to be misleading.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    - Give bonuses to drive hard work. Gift cards don't work that well for young professionals.
    - Stop recruiting from top undergrad b-schools! These kids are often overqualified and this work turns their brains to mush.
    - Hire kids out of smaller schools and community college, pay them less, and save the firm a ton.
    - Organize some interaction with the consultants to let people with real industry experience mentor these young folks (that's most likely the reason they came to Cambridge in the first place).
    - Make consultants, local professors, or somebody lead continuing ed sessions.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  4. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
  5.  

    Mixed feelings about PRG/MIG experiences thus far.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Analyst  in  Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Analyst in Arlington, VA

    Pros

    - The consultants are smart, hard working, and dedicated to C|A's cause.
    - The firm is well respected; a thought leader within the pension/endowment space.
    - Strong work ethic exhibited throughout the firm.
    - Generous earned time off.
    - Fellow analysts are pretty cool.

    Cons

    - Management in PRG/MIG is extreme in their views.
    - Limited internal mobility both within the department and at the firm.
    - Monotonous work and underpaid for extreme work hours.
    - Little to no recognition for work being done.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Advice to firm wide management: take a second look at how the Wilson office employees are managed.
    Open internal opportunities to all employees.
    Focus more on development and less on keeping the norm.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Monotonous work, smart colleagues, not much room for advancement.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Analyst  in  Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Analyst in Washington, DC

    Pros

    Smart, hard-working co-workers. Plenty of internal company resources within the financial services industry that allow analysts to learn easily if interested. Sponsorship for the CFA and CAIA are also a nice perk.

    Cons

    Only a decent salary with not much room for growth. Job is highly cyclical, involves doing the same thing quarter after quarter. A lot of micro-managing within the firm.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Need to find a way to give entry-level employees more room for growth within the firm so that they will want to stay for longer.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Poor compensation and lack of career advancement makes it difficult after two years

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Research Associate
    Current Employee - Senior Research Associate

    Pros

    -High quality exposure to investment managers
    -Looks good on the resume
    -Initial good experience, but fades as time wears on
    -Good work/life balance
    -Management is open to hearing your issues, but it often does not go past this.

    Cons

    -Poor compensation and lack of ways to motivate employees.
    -Lack of cross collaboration among research departments makes employees incredibly siloed.
    -Any advancement (at least in manager research) is just a recognition of work performed with no additional responsibility being given.
    -One of C|A's "pillars" is to "Attract, leverage, and retain the best talent", but management focuses solely on attracting and especially leveraging talent doing little to nothing to try and retain any talent despite saying that you are a valued member and they want to retain you.
    -Advancement is limited at best. The highest level someone can achieve comes with an 18 month commitment which does not contain any real additional responsibility or explanation as to why a commitment must be made.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you really wish to retain the talent that you have leveraged take steps to address compensation and benefit issues. Management is too worried about the profit sharing plan while ignoring fairly compensating lower level employees that are not granted access to the profit sharing plan. Additionally, have a clear plan on how you want employees to develop over their career and have clear responsibilities as you "promote" employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8.  

    Cambridge Associates Manager

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Manager  in  Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Manager in Arlington, VA

    Pros

    Good intiaial experience for young college graduates. Looks good on resume. Ability to work on multiple projects / asset classes. Most employee leave for business school after three to five years.

    Cons

    Pay is sub standard for finance industry. Limited upward mobitlity. Corporate philosophy is very backwards looking, and firm management is afraid to be bold in taking new direction.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The future is not going to look like the past so stop looking in the rear view mirror. Founders' philosophy worked 20 years ago; time to re-assess.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

Worked for Cambridge Associates, LLC? Contribute to the Community!

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.