Northern Trust Reviews

Updated March 24, 2015
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Northern Trust President, CEO, and Director, Northern Trust Corporation and Northern Trust Company Rick Waddell
Rick Waddell
334 Ratings

44 Employee Reviews

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  1. 2 people found this helpful

    Employees Are Not Valued

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Asset Management in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Asset Management in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Northern Trust full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    There is a pension plan.

    Cons

    Even though 2014 was an excellent year for the company's earnings, most employees didn't get a raise. The only employees who seem to like working for this company are the employees who've worked for Northern Trust their entire careers, and they manage, and are managed, by fear. Everyone else is surviving until they can move on. There's virtually no opportunity for growth, advancement or promotion for most employees, and the hiring practices have gone downmarket to save money. Most new hires are right out of college, or a few years out of college, and not too bright.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    How do you expect to reach revenue goals if you don't share your bounty? Where's the motivation?

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful

    Run, do not walk, away!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Legal in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Legal in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Northern Trust

    Pros

    At this point, very little to recommend this place. They have a company cafeteria?

    Cons

    All jobs that can possibly be moved overseas are being moved. This even includes functions that may not be legally outsourced, but in the name of bringing down costs and despite high profitability, it continues. Entire departments have been wiped out and the work sent to India. Good senior people are gone, and they have been replaced with people who have no background in the financial services industry but who are cost cutters.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    All of this will come home to roost. At some point you will face the Lilly Ledbetter claims that you deserve, as well as the age discrimination claims that will together with the Equal Pay claims cost you a fortune.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 2 people found this helpful

    Don't Get Sucked In

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Teller/Line Assistant in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Senior Teller/Line Assistant in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Northern Trust full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Three weeks vacation to start, higher pay at entry level (though it remains stagnant at that point).

    Cons

    Middle management is unprofessional and, frankly, unkind. I witnessed my manager scream at an an employee while slamming her hand on a counter. This type of behavior was encouraged. Company rarely promotes from within. Employees tend to feel more fearful for their jobs than happy to be there. On a whim, management would move employees to other locations. In the time I was there, I was moved 6 times between 4 locations even though my manager knew I had moved to be closer to the original office. I came with 10 years of banking experience and once I saw how poorly retail banking was run, I began applying for other positions. No one even considered me.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Understand that your employees make your business run. Punishing employees does not encourage desired behavior. Promote from within and work on career goals with them. Actually treat employees like the "partners" your culture claims they are.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5. 3 people found this helpful

    Stay Away !

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Northern Trust

    Pros

    Absolutely none. Northern Trust is a place for people who just do not care.

    Cons

    Salaries across the company, Room for advancement, Politics, ZERO TALENT !

  6. 4 people found this helpful

    The worst place to work in technology

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Technology in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Technology in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Northern Trust full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    There are no benefits whatsoever to working at Northern Trust. It is the absolute worst place to work if you are in technology.

    Cons

    This is the worst job I've ever had in my 25+ year career in technology.

    Northern has a one-size-fits-all mentality when solving problems. If the solution does not meet their predefined process, it cannot be implemented.

    The ability to work efficiently is impeded by strict adherence to PROCESS instead of intelligence and common sense. The drive for quality is undermined by over-reliance on cheap offshore labor that produces sub standard work product, much of which must be redone.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Fire yourselves.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful

    Stay Away

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

    I worked at Northern Trust full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good people to work with

    Cons

    No funding for work,lots of lay offs, poorly managed

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 6 people found this helpful

    Team Leader

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Team Leader in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Team Leader in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Northern Trust full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    CEO and senior officers do have good plans in mind. However, it would be very hard to clean up the bank with so many dishonest managers.

    Cons

    most employees were cut to save money. Promotes managers who have no clue on the job. Very political company. Will not recommend to family member. Company does not retain good employees or employees that know the work. It is hard to move within the bank. There is no career advancement for the good employees since people advance based on political connections.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 3 people found this helpful

    Lack of investment in new hires

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Analyst Investment Operations in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Senior Analyst Investment Operations in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Northern Trust full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Nice name on your resume.

    Cons

    It is hard to be successful at a job you were hired to do when the first two weeks on the job there was no training at all. The two days of training they provide is very poor and basic. If you can't get by on those two days, your manager contacts HR and alerts them they hired the wrong person.

    IT does a terrible job granting access to the software programs you need to do your job. It took me a month before I was given a phone number and it took a week to get a email address.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    investment more money in training your new hires in operations. Just because they may have experience from another firm, doesn't mean they are experts in the archaic proprietary software you use. It's no wonder why there is so much turn over in the Operations Group and compensate your employees in the back office.

    No opinion of CEO
  10. 8 people found this helpful

    I was hired to do a specific job, but when I refused to compromise on the principles I was told to uphold, I was demoted

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Head of A Major Division in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Head of A Major Division in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Northern Trust full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Benefits are well above average.

    Cons

    There are two tribes at this company. The Brotherhood is the power tribe. Very WASPY. Everyone else belongs to the underclass, and is treated accordingly.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Because of the culture of "in tribe" vs. "out tribe" there is no path to the top echelons for regular people. The political atmosphere is toxic, and taking a principled stand that goes against the belief system of the Brotherhood is career suicide.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 7 people found this helpful

    Highly Underappreciated and Severely Underpaid Employees

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Second Vice President Tax
    Former Employee - Second Vice President Tax

    I worked at Northern Trust full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    - 4 weeks of vacation

    Cons

    - Accountants are pushed to a building on the South side of the Loop and are not in banking buildings. Not a "One" group feel.
    - Cheap on pay with it's "Partners" - well below industry standards
    - VPs are removed from the work their staff and seniors are performing and unrealistic about time lines internal due dates.
    - Salaried individuals are not given any recognition when overtime is put in and it's excessive during busy periods.
    - VPs unable to think outside the box and do not meet industry standard practices
    - Lack of a sense of teaming due to the VP frowning on communication- people do not talk to each other even though they are working in the same group and on the same project people.
    - Company Policies are not followed in each department and apply to ONLY certain.
    - Unreasonable expectations and lack of resources creates unnecessary overtime for all
    - Redundancy in the work to create job security as I quote direct from the VP
    - Lack of effective work-life balance despite the fact that Northern says they promote the issue.
    - Cheap budget meaning the resources you do have are inefficient and dated for tax return preparation and tax research.
    - Preferential treatment provided to certain individuals who have been with the department longer.
    -Expectations that if you are the new person you are given the shaft when it comes to office coverage and pto during holidays and during non-busy season.
    - Honesty in this department is not a given.
    - Professionalism is not a priority within the group I was in and really was almost embarrassing to clients.
    -Low budget so raises are not within industry standards and limit earning potential. This also translates into no holiday parties or company outings.
    - Lack of communication from top down approach - ie 400 people will be let go in 2014 and 2015 was announced in Crain's Mag before even being communicating it to their own employees.
    Overall the group I worked in I felt was less than acceptable when it came to professionalism which really in the end created a hostile working environment. I would say that anyone considering working for this company take a serious look elsewhere before signing any employment contract with them.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The lack of leadership of the department and the inability to keep up with industry standards and practices sets Northern way low on the list of companies I would ever want to associate myself with ever again. I have worked in BIG 4 and other investment companies in tax and never saw the circus you people allow VPs and Senior VPs to play. Employee retention and moral have sunk to all time lows and it's clear why now it's only a matter of time before your clients realize it too.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

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