The Standard Reviews

Updated April 13, 2015
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The Standard President & CEO J. Greg Ness
J. Greg Ness
22 Ratings

30 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    It won't let me give negative stars

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Portland, OR
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Portland, OR

    I worked at The Standard as a contractor (Less than a year)

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

    Pros

    The interview process was fantastic. They put on a good front and really drew you into the company making it seem like they should be in Forbes 100 top companies to work.

    Cons

    The interview process was a facade. They lied! Worst employer I've ever worked for. They openly discriminate against people with disabilities which is sad since those are a great number of their clients. They even reduced the discrimination to writing and asked me not to talk about my disability. If that's the way they treat their employees with disabilities then how do they treat their clients? I was given no direction and left to decide for myself what I should do with my day. I read a book to prepare for a certification at the request of management for two weeks. I repeatedly asked for more work and was told it would get better only to be let go under the facade that I just didn't fit in. They lied when investigated for discrimination and never produced any documentation to prove their reason for ending my contract. The place is toxic and I would avoid it at all costs.

    Advice to Management

    Know what your managers below you are doing to their subordinates before it costs you in court. Learn to treat people with dignity and respect.

  2. Helpful (4)

    Systems Analyst

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Portland, OR
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Portland, OR

    I worked at The Standard as a contractor (Less than a year)

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

    Pros

    Needed the work and got paid

    Cons

    Wasn't impressed with the culture or how I was managed while at this company. I didn't find many people who understood the company's industry, why I was hired to help them, their systems are laughably outdated (like, 25 years out of date!), and the managers were downright awful. No technical skills whatsoever. Rarely had answers to even simple questions. Standard is not a place I'd want to work as a full time employee. I was very happy to get my next assignment outside Standard.

    Advice to Management

    Direction: get some. Training: give your employees some. Culture: get some, it would help your poor employees so much to be part of a company they can be proud of

  3. Helpful (6)

    No vision, opinions not valued, CEO out of touch, low morale, HR clueless

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - BSA in Portland, OR
    Current Employee - BSA in Portland, OR

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

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

    Pros

    The employees who work at Standard are hard working and they care about doing the best job possible for the customers.

    Cons

    All decisions made by the CEO are based on the bottom line, money. What the stockholders want they get. The CEO makes sure of that. Even if that means eliminating employees and benefits. HR makes all of their decisions based on the policies and procedures that have been firmly put into place to protect, not the employees but The Standard, in the event of a possible law suit. Engagement surveys are sent to employees to share opinions and suggestions however the decisions regarding changes have already been decided by the CEO and the stockholders so the surveys are worthless and a waste of time. The repeated theme to employees has been, "If you don't like your job or you are unhappy, you can leave and work somewhere else." Opinions are asked not to make improvements but to see which employees share the same opinions of upper management and stockholders. If you don't share the same opinions, they will find a way to eliminate your job. No opportunities for advancement. You can get an exceeds on a performance review and still not get a raise. HR management is especially uncaring and distant. Bordering on elitist.

    Advice to Management

    1) Next time the CEO speaks at a all employees forum he needs to not swear and use fowl language 2) When a question is asked at the meetings, don't lose your temper and respond by making insensitive remarks that alienate yourself from employees 3) Realize that eliminating employees is not the solution to making revenue goals 4) When you bring in a million dollar system, make sure that it works and that you have competent individuals to roll out the systems with adequate training 5) When HR eliminates jobs, make sure that they have their story straight as to why they were let go. (No skills, didn't share the vision of HR, etc.) 6) When you make a major change or decision, discuss it first with the employees to see what they think 7) When you communicate a major change, don't do it in a sneaky way by quietly putting the announcement in a news story 8) If you have already made a decision, don't send out a survey asking what the employees would like 9) Most importantly realize that the employees who work at Standard are working as hard as they can and they really want to do a good job. Some of these employees are living from paycheck to paycheck so paid time off and cost of living and pay increases are important to them. They are making choices everyday that affect theirs and their family lives so telling them to get another job if they don't like it, is not an option. They are doing the very best that they can.

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  5. Helpful (4)

    Toxic - don't go there unless your other option is the bread line!

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at The Standard

    Pros

    There are some great people there....one just has to spend time looking for them!

    Cons

    Toxic work environment. Complete disrespect for the employees, focus on the bottom-line drives all decisions, and an antagonistic work environment.

  6. Helpful (8)

    Thank God I escaped

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Disability Analyst in Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Disability Analyst in Portland, OR

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

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

    Pros

    The people you work with, and those whose lives you help, are generally very nice. It can be rewarding to know you helped.

    Cons

    Management, which is isolated, arrogant, unethical, and nonchalant about its deficits. Being for-profit, as they stopped doing the right thing, in favor of doing the profitable thing. The workloads - WAY too high, and it simply isn't possible to produce quality and ethical work with integrity). Lack of raises, salary below par, and zero empathy or understanding from management about the impact that has on your life. The stress level is palpable on the work floors, and there have been many employees who've gone out on stress leave, or leave for chronic conditions made worse by the work environment.

    Advice to Management

    RETIRE. You need to remember why this company exists in the first place, and focus on what you can do to restore it as a leader of the industry, and a healthy and positive place to work. In the Benefits department, you need to gut all the way down to the Director level - they are just making things worse, and admittedly have no idea as to make things right.

  7. Helpful (1)

    Boring

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Disability Benefits Examiner in Portland, OR
    Current Employee - Disability Benefits Examiner in Portland, OR

    I have been working at The Standard full-time (More than 3 years)

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

    Pros

    Pays me a little money.

    Cons

    No room for smart people.

    Advice to Management

    None. You're making money for management and the shareholders. Mission accomplished.

  8. Helpful (4)

    Stay away... Look elsewhere... This place is poison...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Policy Administrative in Portland, OR
    Current Employee - Policy Administrative in Portland, OR

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

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

    Pros

    The sense of team and family with your imediate co-workers. Cause at the end of the day you are all in the same sinking boat.

    Cons

    The Following:

    Poor raises regardless of performance
    The class war between the salaried and the hourly employees
    Too much work, not enough people to keep up
    Useless and oblivious upper management that is only concerned with the bottom line
    Poor technology (I.E. Paper files, and 1970's billing systems)
    Poorly written contracts that are hard to administrate
    HR is less concerned with the employee's needs and only out to protect the company
    No advancement oppurtunities, not real ones anyway
    Supervisors picking favorites for open positions, and interviewing people for show
    Completely outdated dress code
    Witch hunts on employees and teams by upper management to attempt to make themselves look better, and or, busy to protect the fact that they are not effective at their own positions.
    Fake bonuses that never meet the standards that they are supposed to
    Extreme cronyism amongst upper managment, HR, and Team Supervisors

    Advice to Management

    The upper management should all quit, and let new people come in. The average raise for the employee's last year was about 1-2%, barely cost of living. The officers of course, all brought home record high salaries and bonuses. They are all posted in Forbes for your review.

    The companies values are to always "do the right thing"... After 5 years of employment here, I have yet to see that played out for either the employees, claimants, or customers. It should be do the right thing, as long as it makes the shareholders happy/richer. But I guess that might be too long to fit on a cheap business card.

  9. Helpful (4)

    Went from 5 to 1 in a year.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Staff Assistant II in Portland, OR
    Current Employee - Staff Assistant II in Portland, OR

    I have been working at The Standard full-time (More than a year)

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

    Pros

    The location is great! Lots of food choices, and after hours fun. Overall, people are engaging, helpful and easy to work with. For an insurance company, they pay better than most.

    Cons

    My manager is scattered, and does not really know how to manage well. An example to this situation: When we are short staffed, due to vacation or illness, the manager thinks it's the right time to cross train people during this time. This behavior is consistent and many examples abound. Going to their boss is not an option as there is a 'club' among them.

    The company also revised its benefit plan for the 2015 year, but rolled out this information a couple of days after their company giving campaign ended; leaving many people feeling betrayed. Since the affected benefits are vacation related, many people were making their 2014 vacation plans on the old policy, only to be surprised with this information a couple of weeks before enrollment of the 2015 year. Lots of unhappy employees because of this change.

    Advice to Management

    Upper management is its own club. They are 'untouchable' in that I don't feel like I can go to them. Going to HR is also out of the question as the employee looks disgruntled. I truly feel like I could do a better job at organizing and making big-picture decisions than my boss. If there is someone causing a high turn-over, their practices should be examined.

  10. Helpful (5)

    Look elsewhere is you expect hard work, great job reviews and expertise to pay off.

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

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

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

    Pros

    Co-workers are very nice people.

    Cons

    Hard work is not valued if you don't know the right people. Doesn't promote from within or reward exceptional work, unless you are in the "right circles". Upper management is overpaid and underworked, and middle management is underpaid and overworked.

    Advice to Management

    Stop the nepotism and back door promotions; hard working individuals get paid much less than people higher up who virtually do nothing. It is no secret that many wonder what some very well compensated people even do at all. Upper management is fraught with cronyism. Surveys are only given lip service. Work overtime and deliver exceptional results? Don't expect to advance more than a paltry 2% per year with a measly bonus even when you get an exceptional review. HR is fine with this. Your employees sacrifice their family time and quality of life to deliver the requirements of their jobs. If people excel they should be compensated.

  11. Helpful (5)

    Do Not Recommend this employer

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

    I have been working at The Standard full-time

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

    Pros

    Flexible work hours
    Paid Time Off
    Team Members are fun to work with

    Cons

    No chance for promotion, no recognition for a job well done, leadership in the organization is lacking, most importantly the leadership has no idea how long it takes to accomplish a task. The expectations for delivery of work is unreasonable. There are so few employees to actually do the work that the stress of delivering any project on time is unmanageable.

    Advice to Management

    Consider firing all the front line management. They are with few exceptions completely unable to lead teams, inspire employees and are completely ineffective in doing their job. Stop asking employees for feedback via surveys when the results are completely ignored.

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