First Niagara Financial
2.3 of 5 41 reviews
www.fnfg.com Buffalo, NY 5000+ Employees

First Niagara Financial Reviews

Updated Dec 7, 2013

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2.3 41 reviews

                             

32% Approve of the CEO

First Niagara Financial President, CEO, and Director John R. Koelmel

John R. Koelmel

(22 ratings)

30% of employees recommend this company to a friend
21 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews
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Needs Improvement

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Lockport, NY

I have been working at First Niagara Financial as a contractor for less than a year

ProsSmall enough not become utterly capricious and random, like Bank of America. Also small enough to still be somewhat responsive to reality on the ground.

ConsMiddle management ranks are becoming like all others in the banking industry; that is, simple power players and not problem solvers and protectors of assets.

Advice to Senior ManagementWhen you import management talent from other banks, understand that you are also importing some of the worst aspects of American banking culture. STUDY the science of what makes for good managers, and you have to WORK HARDER to keep your sense of "great culture" that you are in jeopardy of losing as we speak.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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First Niagara has a local feel for a large company

Intern (Current Employee)
Buffalo, NY

I have been working at First Niagara Financial as an intern for more than a year

ProsFNFG was very flexible and the culture was great. I learned a lot from upper management.

ConsWorking in a cube, you aren't able to interact as much with fellow coworkers.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Could Be Worse, Could Be a Lot Better

No Thanks (Current Employee)
Buffalo, NY

I have been working at First Niagara Financial full-time for more than 5 years

ProsIt seems that most individuals have good intentions, provide good customer service and care about the company. There appears to be a strong business plan and an emphasis from Senior Management on carrying that plan through. The company is ambitious and all the acquisitions seem to have worked out.

ConsThe "happy" culture they promote is fake. They overwork and undervalue employees. The environment is cutthroat. All the acquisitions brought in too many different groups of people and nobody has direction except for where they used to work.
Many mid-level managers are power hungry and have no problem throwing an employee under the bus in order to save themselves. Employees who give even the slightest push back receive retaliation and are outcast and made to feel bad.
What we use in the branches works for the most part but it takes too long to get customers what they need. Even small transactions take too long and there are a lot of headaches. Equipment breaks a lot compared to where else I been.
No appreedciation and unrealistic expectations and they keep quietly cutting jobs and we are expected to pick up the work of people who leave or are let go without bringing in more people.

Advice to Senior ManagementThey don't care. They live in a different environment than we do and don't see, or care to see, what's really going on.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Stressfull

Teller (Current Employee)
Rockland, NY

I have been working at First Niagara Financial full-time for more than 3 years

ProsJeans Day, lovely teller system, fun work environment, make your own branch signage

Consgoals are very high and there is a lot of pressure when it comes to making them.

Advice to Senior ManagementStop giving unreasonable goals and get a better incentive program for the tellers

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Okay, but...

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at First Niagara Financial

ProsSomewhat collaborative culture.
Decent salaries for W. New York.

ConsUnintentional bait and switch...company needs to learn true strategy.
People are nice, but the level of outside/large company experience at management/senior level hinders the company growth potential.

Advice to Senior ManagementCompany needs to restructure itself in order to clearly understand your potential career path.
Advancement maybe possible only if you are in the right role.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Horrible Place to work

Teller Supervisor (Current Employee)

I have been working at First Niagara Financial full-time for more than 3 years

ProsNot many, Benefits are pretty good for now but word of insurance being cut some next year is circulating.

Conscompany does not care about employees at all. Raises are measly if you are lucky to get one. Most locations are short staffed at all times so you end up not being able to take break while customers yell at you for making them wait.

Advice to Senior Managementgive up and sell. Most employees here have given up and are looking elsewhere.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Clear lack of direction and very poor senior level communication skills

Team Leader (Current Employee)
Buffalo, NY

I have been working at First Niagara Financial full-time for more than 5 years

ProsCo-workers
OK Salary for WNY
OK Benefits
Flexible time/shifts

ConsZero advancement in IT unless you come from outside the company.
Lack of focus/too many projects in flight.
Heavy effort to out source all services they can.
Sr. IT Leadership are all talk/no action.
More project mangers then they know what to do with.

Advice to Senior ManagementStart at the top and work down quick. The relationship between IT and business units is horrible and only getting worse. Pick a handful of projects and work on those to completion. Listen to the people in the trenches instead of high priced/low yield consultants.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Great local and mid-level leadership

Personal Financial Associate (Current Employee)
Uniontown, PA

I have been working at First Niagara Financial full-time for less than a year

ProsI have great local and mid-level leadership.

ConsThe company is still catching up to the 21st century in some ways.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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it's okay.

Teller (Current Employee)
East Windsor, CT

I have been working at First Niagara Financial part-time for less than a year

ProsCompetitive pay, HR & Tech center is very helpful.

ConsAdvancement within company takes a while.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Not good

Teller (Current Employee)
Pittsburgh, PA

I have been working at First Niagara Financial part-time for more than a year

ProsBenefits are good ....that's about it

ConsTurnover is high...company is constantly changing staff!

Advice to Senior ManagementPractice what you preach!

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at First Niagara Financial reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for First Niagara Financial CEO John R. Koelmel. All 21 reviews posted anonymously by First Niagara Financial employees.