Hitachi Consulting

www.hitachiconsulting.com

Hitachi Consulting Reviews

Updated January 9, 2015
Updated January 9, 2015
386 Reviews
3.0
386 Reviews
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Hitachi Consulting President and CEO Philip R. Parr
Philip R. Parr
188 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Work life balance is good but although depends on the project (in 41 reviews)

  • The culture is very relaxed and the people are great (in 29 reviews)


Cons
  • Can be stressful and sometimes work/ life balance can be a challenge (in 14 reviews)

  • Senior Management is out of touch with reality (in 13 reviews)

More Highlights

47 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    Stay away- Company is only interested in money not your career.

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

    I have been working at Hitachi Consulting full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    It gives you a paycheck.

    Cons

    There are too many items to list here. But in short the executive leadership only cares about cost cutting measures. Employees work hard all year to go through the annual review process (GARM) this will ensure how their raise and bonus will look like , but focusing on the employee and his/her development is NOT a priority for leadership.

    So if you aspire in working hard and being rewarded for your efforts - this company is not for you.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop trying to compete with big companies like Deloitte and IBM. If you pay peanuts you get monkeys. If you treat your employees poorly don't expect a ROI.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    A cultural and political nightmare, with the possibility of getting good work experience.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Consultant in Denver, CO
    Former Employee - Consultant in Denver, CO

    I worked at Hitachi Consulting full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Projects at Hitachi Consulting (HCC) are generally a good way to gain lots more experience than you would working at an 'industry' job. You will interact with lots more people (even high level people, like controllers, C-levels, directors, etc.) than you would in a day-to-day operation. This, along with tight project deadlines (remember, consulting is expensive - time is always of the essence) will make you learn how to work efficiently, be detail-oriented, and deliver good results. With a good project manager (which are unfortunately hard to find), you will be given coaching in how to handle yourself professionally, which is extremely valuable no matter where you end up. A company shutdown went into effect from Christmas to New Years, which was free PTO - that was nice. There are rumors this might be going away due to recent financial performance of the company. I was also taken to lots of team dinners on the project's dime, which was also nice.

    Cons

    The biggest problem Hitachi suffers from is inconsistency. Meaning: inconsistency in how projects are managed, inconsistency in how employee performance is evaluated (forced distribution), and inconsistency in how different types of workers are treated. I'll expand on each of these.

    1) Inconsistent Project Management. Hitachi employs a very large amount of project managers, as they are core to the business. Their job is about keeping the project running smoothly, doing status updates, making sure deadlines are met, and shielding workers from out-of-scope project requests from the client. The problem is that HCC has no consistency in how projects get done. My personal experience showed me both sides of the coin: one project had me working with the best manager I've ever had - they handled status meetings, managed client expectations and assigned deliverables, guided us into meeting deadlines, and gave professional coaching at every turn. Then, I worked on another project with the worst manager I've ever had. He badmouthed his own workers, created fire drills for every single issue the client brought up (even though many of these could've been handled by managing expectations correctly), and didn't follow any sort of project plan. His workers were left to pick up the pieces. Unfortunately, you are more likely to work under a bad project manager than a good one, as stories like mine are common. If you do work with a good manager, keep them close and hope you can work with them often. This piece of advice is extremely important, because your social network will determine how you rank against your peers. Which leads me into:

    2) Inconsistent Employee Performance Evaluation. I've waited a year since I left HCC to review the company as I wanted to gain experience at another consulting firm to compare and contrast how HCC does performance reviews. I remain very unimpressed with how Hitachi handles employee evaluations. The primary reason being politics. If you decide to work here, make sure your personality is very extroverted and that you can make friends easily, because your job depends on it. The reason this happens is due to the company's performance review process (called the GARM) which assembles your career advisor (your representative) and company leadership (managers and above) to review every person. It is structured like this: the employee writes project and annual reviews, which are then reviewed with your career advisor. Your career advisor then represents you in the GARM meeting (much like a lawyer represents a client) by defending a good rating because of your accomplishments over the past year. Then, a discussion period happens in which anyone can comment on your performance. Here are my issues with this process: A) Your project manager(s) may not be present when you are being evaluated - so, your career advisor (who already has their own job to do on top of representing you) must present your accomplishments and defend you. The people who know your work may not even be present when being officially evaluated. B) As anyone can chime in when a person is being evaluated, a single comment can be the difference between you getting a promotion or not for an entire year (no matter your work accomplishments or work ethic). This is why it's extremely important to play politics and make friends with leadership and people who will be in your GARM session. You want nothing but good things said about you, otherwise your peer that has made the right connections may walk away with that raise, not you. C) Forced ranking - after the GARM meeting is over, senior leadership will then receive a list from HR of how many people can be ranked in each category (1 for worst, 5 for best). This means that if most of your office got 3's (normal; good performance), leadership must knock others down to 2's or 1's. Remember my advice on making friends? This is where those negative comments can also hurt you, even after the meeting is over. It just takes one thought or comment to knock you down from being a good worker to being given a performance improvement plan from HR. In short: your actual job performance is only 50% of what matters in official evaluations. You can work endless overtime by making sure the client gets what they need, but if you managed to make someone upset with you during the course of the year for the smallest thing, it is the difference between being promoted or not. Play politics or perish.

    3) Differences in how types of employees were treated. I often found that there is a social hierarchy in how types of employees were treated at the company. Management is looked upon as most favorable, while IT workers are generally looked at as a necessary ingredient to get a project done. This might be because of the political culture HCC has; IT employees are generally not as good at politics as the management employees. Indian employees were hit the worst - as many of them were relying on the job with HCC to get green cards they were treated extremely poorly, as if dangling that option in front of them and letting them know if they didn't sacrifice everything for the company that option would never happen. It was hard to watch. Women were also not treated as well as their male counterparts - there was a 10 to 1 ratio of upper management of men vs. women. Rumor has is that salaries were also lower women than men.

    To sum it up - if you play politics well and can manage your project workload along with 'extracurricular' activities to increase your standing in management's eyes, you will probably do well here. If you care about being evaluated based on your work, I'd advice looking for employment elsewhere.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The current culture is toxic and does not reward hard work employees do on projects. Forced ranking will drive good employees away (especially those without the political skillset of others).

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    Avoid this company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Houston, TX
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in Houston, TX

    I have been working at Hitachi Consulting full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    It pays the bills. Hitachi looks good on a resume, although the Hitachi Consulting has absolutely nothing to do with the parent company. Hitachi in name only.

    Cons

    Management is clueless. Unrealistic financial goals each year, that are used as an excuse to avoid salary increases, decent bonuses and/or promotions. Ridiculous metrics that are constantly changing and an Oracle system that contain incorrect data to track them. Promotions are given to the chosen few "yes men". Salaries are below other comparable firms. Sales team is lacking. Only training available is CBT. Made to take ridiculous courses, instead of practical technical ones.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Try to put together a real strategy, instead of managing by spreadsheet. Processes are ridiculous. Make it easier to accomplish the end task, which is providing a quality product to our customer.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 3 people found this helpful  

    Not a great company to start your career, especially if you're an engineer

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Consultant in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Consultant in Los Angeles, CA

    I worked at Hitachi Consulting full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    The company has a open-door policy overall, you can reach upper levels of management very easily. The social scene is nice for younger employees.

    Cons

    If you are looking to start a consulting career where you gain exposure to multiple businesses, and learn and apply your skills on short-term projects, this is definitely not the company for you. At least not in the LA region, and especially not if you're technology-focused. You will be put in a long-term project where you will stay for upwards of 2 years, driving to some LA suburb, and working on boring projects using aging technology. Think you will have more flexibility at a smaller firm, and get a more personal experience? Wrong, do yourself a favor and accept that offer at the bigger firm. Don't make the mistake like me and waste these crucial early years of your career.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Give your lower level employees the mobility to move around projects. That is what they joined a consulting company for.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Great place to work, if you are a developer or project manager either right out of college or ready to settle down.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Manager, Specialized Services in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Manager, Specialized Services in Seattle, WA

    I worked at Hitachi Consulting full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    - Unlimited Vacation Time
    - Ownership of Projects
    - Variety of Projects
    - Travel

    Cons

    - Travel
    - They aren't sure what to do with specialists
    - A lot of cliques
    - As a specialist, you won't be able to display the work you've done after you leave.
    - Apple computers only given to upper management, forcing designers to use old PCs that can't handle the graphic needs of the Adobe Suite.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Understanding the mid to senior level employees capabilities and focuses is crucial to keeping those resources happy. Forcing those who have industry experience into project management roles, when that is neither their focus or strength will not accomplish this.

    Additionally, understanding the role of specialists and what it takes to for them to do their work, both from a process and hardware standpoint is crucial. Currently, specialists are clumped in with everyone else, and expected to learn development or project management to succeed.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 3 people found this helpful  

    Hitachi Consulting is a highly dysfunctional company with lack of integrated strategy on a regional or global basis.

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

    I have been working at Hitachi Consulting full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Untapped potential of Hitachi corporate in Japan, including the potential reach into many relevant industries.

    Cons

    There are many:
    - Significant lack of visionary management;
    - Strong focus on transactional sales and delivery;
    - Lack of SME depth;
    - Highly political and bureaucratic;
    - Poor teaming and little collaboration among and across the consulting service lines.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I would not provide advice to current management. Instead, if able, I would replace most all of the senior U.S. executive staff with fresh, collaborative, innovative thinkers.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 2 people found this helpful  

    Nothing positive to say

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Consultant in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Consultant in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Hitachi Consulting full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Nice SF office, training readily available, if you want to do software implementation this is the place

    Cons

    hyper-political, willingness to engage in whispers campaigns, consultants concerned with looking good then doing good

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 9 people found this helpful  

    Adventures of a Road Warrior

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

    I have been working at Hitachi Consulting full-time

    Pros

    Every project is different, which means some projects are great and filled with awesome people. Hitachi is one of the few companies around that pays out per diem rather than actuals, which really makes being a road warrior worth it. There are plenty of travel opportunities, and you are able to take advantage of the points (airline, hotel, etc.) easily. In general, you can work from home on Friday, and managers tend to be understanding of time off for doctors appointments that you cannot take care of during the week.

    Cons

    First of all, every region is different. I have heard many different stories and experiences from all over the country, and it seems to depend on where you are at. This is my experience from my location.

    -There is a huge push to try and force an office community. This means many clubs, after work events, corporate get-togethers. This is nice, and is a good way to get to know people, but it should be my choice to go, and my annual review should not reflect how active I am in these activities. Our annual review process seems more hinged on how many groups you are involved in, rather than the quality and effort of your work.

    -When hired straight out of school (or with limited experience), you are placed in a core group. This is billed as a great opportunity to build your skills and try new areas. However, in practice, you will be placed wherever they can put you so that the company can make money. This means that once you have any sort of experience in one area, you will stay in that area til the end of time. In theory, you can work your way into the career direction that you would like, but in hard economic times like these, it's highly unlikely.

    -The annual review process is very drawn out, and very secretive. Like most consulting firms, you are represented by an adviser who presents you in a meeting and fights to get you a fair ranking (from 1-5). You are compared amongst your peers in your level (which means you are compared against some people who are creating applications from scratch as well as people who create training documentation. While both are valid and necessary portions of the job, there are extreme differences in the level of effort and skill sets that are needed to complete each project). You do not get to represent yourself. Your performance evaluation hinges on someone who may have never worked with you, and may have only spoken with you for a few hours out of the year. Results are released about two months after ratings have been determined by the group. This delay is caused by the "Secret" review that is undergone by the executive levels. They will fight to keep all reviews within a bell curve, and will change ratings as necessary to keep that perfect curve. This results in some people unfairly being rated negatively to keep that curve. And again, in this review, your participation in the extra community building teams is HIGHLY taken into consideration.

    -Some other reviews have nailed the big problem with our clients. We accept projects that no other firm would accept. These are projects with unrealistic expectations (work that they want completed within 6 weeks, that realistically is going to take 6 months). When all the other firms walk away, we step right in and, in most cases, fail because we are not set up to succeed.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    People are leaving in droves. I have heard the excuse that "they are just not meant for consulting". If this is the case, why do people go to other consulting firms? Listen to your employees, and maybe these talented performers will start staying.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    Two words, not good. Pretty disappointing. Ppl are not friendly, particularly the staff that runs the office. Puppy Mill

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Manager, Specialized Services
    Current Employee - Manager, Specialized Services

    I have been working at Hitachi Consulting full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    - Could look good in resume
    - Exposure to clients issues could be the saving grace to working here. This is where the learning happens.

    Cons

    - terrible culture
    - work ethics (many don't respond to emails)
    - Very hierarchical management style (look up, not down)
    - difficult to get anything done that is not billable
    - poor training
    - sink or swim

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    Has generally been very good, but in the last couple of years with new leadership in the US, things have deteriorated.

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

    I have been working at Hitachi Consulting full-time

    Pros

    Good, fun, smart people on projects

    Cons

    US Leadership team lacks ability to lead and motivate people. Vertical Industry teams are hostile to horizontal Solutons teams

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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