NRECA Reviews

Updated June 30, 2015
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Jo Ann Emerson
8 Ratings

15 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    too much management

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

    I have been working at NRECA full-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great salaries and benefits, but not as competitive with the larger DC companies.

    Cons

    Too many politics and senior management needs to prioritize and understand what is happening across the board. Some areas do not offer work/life balance.

    Advice to Management

    Lessen the unbelievable layers for such a small company.


  2. Helpful (13)

    NRECA is out of touch with its members and employees.

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

    I worked at NRECA

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Great benefits, competitive salary for non-profit sector, solid work-life balance and friendly staff.

    Cons

    There is no upward mobility. You stay in the same job, doing the same thing year after year. The organization is very slow to change in both culture and processes. Management talks the talk. Promises are made, but nothing every changes. If you are looking for a 9 to 5 job, with little to no change, and limited opportunities, this organization is for you.


  3. Helpful (15)

    Politics and downward spirals

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

    I worked at NRECA full-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    There are certainly groups within NRECA worth their salt. A few. If you aren't in one of those groups, NRECA is a huge waste of time. If you like getting paid for low-levels of quality and not put a lot of thought into your work - aka, just being in it for the paycheck, this is a sweet gig. Lifers on the order of Government employees that fill seats and do nothing else will be at home here. If you can stand it, it's a great place for that. Coaching on how to answer surveys such as Computer World Best places to work surveys, and Blessing White/Gallup surveys so you always know you're giving the answer expected by the association, which is very important. They go to great lengths to take the guesswork out of what the "right" answer is. The IT department is led by VERY smart individuals. When they learned the new CEO was "baselining" IT's performance, they managed to get the company that has consulted and advised their direction/technology decisions over the past decade to perform the assessment. A master stroke, if you think about it. You've paid company X to tell you how to run your business. You do everything company X says. Time comes for review of your decisions? Hire company X to determine if the advice THEY gave you, and you've followed to the letter without question, was good advice. What were they going to say? "We gave you bad advice but keep paying us handsomely every year for more of that bad advice?" It was a shining act of brilliance to so brazenly rig the outcome for a report going to a new CEO.

    Cons

    If you're in tech, the IT shops makes a lot of awesome noises about new tech and good development. They don't follow through with it very often, but they make the right noises and do try - but politics drive everything there. The end result is that a large swathe of the IT department, while strong in their roles, would be like indoor cats trying to survive in the wild if they looked for employment elsewhere if they've been at NRECA too long. If you want to be a lifer somewhere? This is your place. 2:1 ratio of time spent in meetings to time spent coding. If you do Web Development, know that there is no serious web development going on there. The IT group responsible for outward facing web sites is led by someone who acknowledges a near total lack of understanding of the technology and is so bad at outputting high quality, engaging sites, that the association has actually removed the responsibility from them to Communications in an acknowledgement of the sheer ineptitude of the team top-to-bottom. Yet they are still a team that claims responsibility for web b/c once the real work is done, they make text updates for interested parties. A situation which only arose out of the desire of aforementioned manager to protect the team's jobs at the expense of efficiency of people owning their own content. They went so far to protect that setup as to spend MILLIONS of dollars on SharePoint, only to hinder it's implementation b/c to do so it was believed would put the low-skilled web team members at risk (the majority of that team). As a bonus to that situation, the person who runs the team does so like it's a high school clique. Meetings among the team regularly devolve into rudderless wanderings of people not clear on what they should be doing, who understand the lack of impact they have on the overall workings of the association, and know they're lucky to just have jobs. A case in point, when the abjectly poor management of the group's director was pointed out, daily 'scrums' were implemented to facilitate information exchange. Turned out nothing is ever discussed except who is late, and who actually had anything to work on (a frequent occurrence b/c no other groups in the association believe in their quality of work). The end result being an additional place, on top of the 4 already mandated, employees are required to capture their daily tasks and duties. I suspect that was done due to a manager incapable of understanding the information he was even dealing with, but it works to the teams benefit b/c in light of not having anything else to do, reporting on all the nothing they're actually doing DOES fill time nicely. The benefits have been under attack for years. They got progressively worse each passing year. Now they are subpar at best. A bad place to be for an insurance provider. The CEO, who replaced an amazing leader in G. English, is running the place to the ground.

    Advice to Management

    do better


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  5. Helpful (11)

    Mixed Feelings

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

    I have been working at NRECA

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

    Pros

    Great education benefits and depending on your manager flexible hours.

    Cons

    Educational benefits doesn't equal career growth. If you are looking for career growth this is not the place. There is little incentive for employees to go beyond what is expected. Poor management, leadership, and organization politics create a toxic work place. should I stay or should I go? is a thought that frequently rings in my head.

    Advice to Management

    Employees who worked at NRECA for many years are just as much valuable as the new ones you are recruiting. Employees do not become disengaged overnight...soon enough the new employees will arrive at being disengaged if you don't change the management styles and how we do business. Surveys are not true measures of employee engagement--not many people are telling the truth because they fear of retaliation or being singled out.


  6. Helpful (5)

    Management Out of Touch

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

    I worked at NRECA full-time (More than 3 years)

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

    Pros

    An opportunity to be part of a larger, historically significant movement in American history.

    Cons

    Only two percent of the employees had any real world experience working in rural electrification at the distribution (local) level. Very bureaucratic and politically oriented. Little work-life balance.

    Advice to Management

    Get out of the office more. There is a world beyond the Beltway.


  7. Helpful (8)

    Toxic environment

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

    I have been working at NRECA

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Good benefits, 401K match, retirement security pension plan, competitive pay, good location, many good coworkers.

    Cons

    Very cutthroat environment. There is little to no cooperation between groups. Big egos in upper management thrive on conflict and the workers are stuck in the middle. The result is a culture of fear and uneasiness. Also, no strategic direction other than opposition to any clean air measures.

    Advice to Management

    Check the egos at the door. Show some appreciation for the work being done. Get rid of the tea party politics and look towards the future.


  8. Helpful (10)

    Going downhill unfortunately

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

    I have been working at NRECA full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    NRECA offers excellent benefits and has attracted a lot of good, long-term employees who always keep in mind they are working for the members who own the local co-ops. They take lot of interest in the health of their employees.

    Cons

    It has become a very unsettling place to work. A lot of talented people have left either voluntarily or by pink slip, contributing to a major morale problem. Decisions are made by supervisors more by the seat of the pants than with any well thought-out pattern and "saving ones territory" has become the norm, unfortunately.

    Advice to Management

    The level of communications with mid- and lower-level employees is very poor. The computer system is antiquated. Can't remember the last time anyone in my unit received praise for going above and beyond the call of duty.


  9. Helpful (4)

    Hopefully gets better

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

    I have been working at NRECA

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great benefits Mission is worthwhile Good location Employees are dedicated The members of the association are some of the greatest people that you will get to deal with Pay is better than most associations

    Cons

    Management is very top heavy. Too many supervisors are paranoid and do not encourage employees to grow or learn new skills. IT does not keep with with the times. Web site is grossly out of date.

    Advice to Management

    Let change happen. Stop being defensive and opposing changes desired by the new CEO. The new CEO is a breath of fresh air. Let her enact her plans. Stop being obstacles.


  10. Helpful (5)

    Good learning experience but deadend career path

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

    I worked at NRECA full-time (More than 5 years)

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

    Pros

    You can really find a second family here, lots of long time employees. The location is convenient and there was opportunities for learning and training. If you find yourself in good department and people you will be happy.

    Cons

    Now that I am at a big public firm realize that the place is so antiquated. Uses old school technology, not with the times. This place reminded me of when I worked in the US government earlier in my career.

    Advice to Management

    Get with the times in terms of systems and technology.


  11. Helpful (13)

    Learned a lot of things to NOT do

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

    I worked at NRECA full-time (More than 10 years)

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

    Pros

    Pros: A core group of employees across the organization is passionate and committed. If you're looking for stability, this is your place. There are people at this association who have worked for no other company in their adult lives. The people who work at NRECA are exceptionally nice. Seeing people who care about you as a person makes going to work a little easier. Some managers care very deeply about their staff and about the work their staff is doing. If you are lucky enough to work with one of those managers, your experience can be vastly different than the guy's down the hall. If you want training and you are in the right department, you can advance your theoretical knowledge here.

    Cons

    Most people at NRECA do not pull even half their weight, which leaves a core group of employees working ridiculous hours, on weekends, on vacations. The number of managers is outrageous, and nothing gets done because those managers all expect the core group of employees to do all the projects simultaneously. That may be the case at many large companies, but it shouldn't be the case at a nonprofit association. NRECA has aggressively avoided updating its antiquated, proprietary systems and shunned technology as a means of doing business. Innovators who want to introduce new ideas are ridiculed, often publicly, for wanting to do things differently than they've been done before. In most departments, what little change that happens comes from offering ideas to senior management, letting them bastardize the idea and present it as their own, then doing whatever senior management says without question. Those employees who brave speaking up against those managers in meetings risk bullying by those managers, in front of their peers, and not getting assigned to good projects in the future. Most employees' skills rot at NRECA because no one, especially IT, is allowed to use the latest advancement in their fields. I've spoken to several former colleagues who have found it difficult to transition because we had no chance to apply relevant skills while at this association. There also is no real career plan for growth within the company. Advancement is through politicking and sometimes changing departments. When taking engagement surveys and external surveys such as Best Places to Work, several managers made it clear to their staffs that we were to express only positive opinions and that our performance reviews were based on our department's responses in such things. That happened before the new CEO arrived. Hopefully she can turn around the rampant bullying by senior management and refusal to accept negative feedback as a catalyst for change.

    Advice to Management

    Embrace social media (such as this site) as a way to learn what people really think of your association. Stop hiding from negativity and thinking social media is to blame for feedback. Become part of the conversation.



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