The Standard Reviews

Updated June 5, 2015
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The Standard President & CEO J. Greg Ness
J. Greg Ness
25 Ratings

Pros
  • Allows flexible work hours, good work location in downtown Portland, Customer Service and Retirement Plans are better areas in the company to work in (in 14 reviews)

  • This company has pretty good benefits (in 9 reviews)

Cons
  • Upper management is not trustworthy (in 8 reviews)

  • Big outsourcing to India continues (in 4 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

34 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (6)

    Stay Away

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

    I worked at The Standard full-time

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

    Pros

    There are some good co-workers who try to make for a positive environment. The have an ok community perks package with occasional drawing for free tickets to theater performances, OMSI passes, etc.

    Cons

    Disjointed leadership, constantly changing directions of the company, outdated technology, workload is unreasonable, there is no equity in the expectations from employee to employee, no unified vision for management

    Advice to Management

    You can't just put a fresh coat of paint over the problems with your employee engagement. Significant core changes need to be made to the work environment, management style and technology if you want to remain competitive in the market.


  2. Helpful (4)

    Rotting from the inside to put up a good face

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

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

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

    Pros

    Their best asset is the people that work there, but that is in rapid decline. Work/life balance isn't bad. Base salary isn't awful, but negotiate aggressively because it's not going to go up.

    Cons

    When starting, I was amazed by the length of time everyone had been at the company. Standard was a spectacular employer, until they went public. It's been a slow, steady decline since. They have a great group of people working there, but it's because they've all been there since it was worth being there. They're committed to their jobs because they remember what it used to be.

    Standard is now like any other company. They will razzle dazzle you during your first few weeks on job, but the complete lack of quality training you'll receive is going to be indicative of what the rest of your experience will be. Systems are outdated, employees are all completely demoralized, and management has themselves convinced they're on a good path because the stock price is going up. The only employees sticking around are people who have been around long enough to be in the pension plan, or just haven't found a job elsewhere yet.

    They're going to pitch you a line about how good it is to work there, and how they care about their employees. It will not pan out. They pitch the same line every year, and every year you'll be lucky to get a raise even near inflation, while the executive compensation continues to climb.

    Advice to Management

    Their goal is to please stockholders, not the employees. They're doing a bang up job.


  3. Helpful (7)

    Manager

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

    I have been working at The Standard full-time (More than 8 years)

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

    Pros

    Used to be a good company. The people who know how to run the business are not in management or have retired

    Cons

    I am a moral capitalist. The CEO has zero business acumen, only Greed. His VPs are sycophants. If you don't suck up you don't get promoted.

    Advice to Management

    Get rid of the CEO & sycophants and this company could be a good place to work again.


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  5. Helpful (7)

    Would not recommend that anyone work here.

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

    I have been working at The Standard full-time (More than 8 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Pay within market range. Some good people work here.

    Cons

    They've taken Human out of HR. Jobs are being outsourced to India. No cost of living increases for past two years. Senior management doesn't listen to their employees.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to your employees please. They are leaving and will continue to leave. You will have more money in your' pockets, and The Standard as a whole will have lost its' soul, if it hasn't already. A company can't last forever, without its soul.


  6. Helpful (3)

    It won't let me give negative stars

    • Culture & Values
    • Senior Management
    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.


  7. Helpful (5)

    Systems Analyst

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    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


  8. Helpful (8)

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

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    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.


  9. Helpful (5)

    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.


  10. Helpful (9)

    Thank God I escaped

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    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.


  11. Helpful (3)

    Boring

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    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.



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