Vanguard Reviews

Updated August 4, 2015
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Vanguard Chairman and CEO William McNabb
William McNabb
55 Ratings

Pros
  • Fairly easy to maintain good work/life balance (in 120 reviews)

  • Great benefits (PTO & Healthcare) (in 67 reviews)

Cons
  • most employees are complacent in this call-center environment (in 53 reviews)

  • This can make work life balance impossible since their can be mandatory overtime or the inability to take earned vacation (in 16 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

98 Employee Reviews

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  1. Run before you get Outsourced

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

    I worked at Vanguard full-time (More than 8 years)

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

    Pros

    Vacation time. Retirement account funding. After that there is nothing special. If you just want to punch a clock and turn in mediocre work this is the place for you. Just so long as you do not get outsourced.

    Cons

    If you need 10 years or more to retire you probably wont see that retirement. Your job will be outsourced to India in a great visionary program called Right Sourcing. People will even tell you that this is going to make Vanguard better. The empire that St. Jack built is sinking. It is no longer an employer of choice or a great place to work.


  2. Helpful (1)

    It Project Manager

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - IT Project Manager in Malvern, PA
    Former Employee - IT Project Manager in Malvern, PA

    I worked at Vanguard full-time (More than 8 years)

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

    Pros

    They offer a great product. There is job stability. Good benefits and the people are overall very nice. Free parking and a great location.

    Cons

    If you are older, don't bother. Youth is valued more than experience. Pay is lower than other similar companies. Promotions are few and far between.

    Advice to Management

    Value all workers. Youth is great but experienced workers are just as important.


  3. Helpful (4)

    The good, the bad, and the ugly

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

    I have been working at Vanguard

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

    Pros

    The company used to be great. But it still is for someone coming right out of college. It is not the best place to retire

    Cons

    The company has changed drastically over the last couple of years. The company that claimed it would never outsource started to outsource. The health plans are most basic and crappy. The institution is now only trying to make numbers.

    Advice to Management

    Try to work for the team and manage your superiors instead of the other way around. Management is disconnected with and distant from the team.


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  5. Helpful (6)

    Just say no

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

    I have been working at Vanguard full-time (More than 10 years)

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

    Pros

    Vanguard provides a lot of vacation time. There are onsite amenities that make it convenient like dry cleaning and onsite clinic in Pennsylvania. Some managers are very flexible with schedules and some are totally rigid so its the luck of the draw.

    Cons

    If I could rate this at 0 stars I would. Despite all of the accolades, this is a company that does not value diversity. Not just in the areas of race or culture. Older, more tenured employees are routinely "managed out" to make room for younger, less experienced, darn near right out of high school cheap labor. The organization does not realize that the cost of training these kids is far higher than giving its tenured workforce a better salary. Salary by they way is a joke. There are some reviewers that feel the total compensation package makes up for the low salary. But for the drama that one has to endure just doesn't seem to make up for it in my opinion. You are not rewarded for your work; you are rewarded by having the most "friends." The better you play the game, the better you can advance. Buck the system once and all hope is gone for you. If your name ever shows up on Crew Relations' radar you are blacklisted. You will never advance. If you do, its just to keep you from suing. Your life will be made miserable and you will still be managed out at some point.

    Advice to Management

    Unfortunately nothing written here will make any difference to management. Although the CEO is a decent person, he is insulated by his staff and he doesn't really know what truly goes on in the trenches.


  6. Helpful (6)

    Don't drink the kool aid (or work in Flagship)

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Flagship Assigned Representative in Charlotte, NC
    Former Employee - Flagship Assigned Representative in Charlotte, NC

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

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

    Pros

    At the beginning of your employment, much is done to provide the employee with a feeling of being part of a "team".... i.e. fun contests, rally's, even a Vanguard band you can listen to during certain events. Good training program for Flagship Assigned Reps

    Cons

    Rigid work environment Poor mid-level management Discrimination towards pregnant women (yes I hired an attorney) Your career opportunities include: mid-level management of a call center OR be the subordinate of a mid level manager in a call center.

    Advice to Management

    People do hire attorneys to represent them when they feel they are being treated unfairly.


  7. Helpful (2)

    Get Licensed and Get Out

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

    I have been working at Vanguard full-time

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

    Pros

    Co-workers are great and down to earth. The benefits package is good if you can stand to work 40 years in a place with low pay and limited career growth (if you are not in the PA office/head quarters).

    Cons

    You are a robot. It is a call center role that is super monotonous. The manager you get makes all the difference in the world. The manager I was recently assigned to could not put her CFP book down long enough to do her job or assist with requested career growth and networking opportunities. Her team's engagement scores reflected it.

    Advice to Management

    Hold managers accountable for their team's low engagement scores so they will actually to their job instead of studying and taking care of their children on the clock. Make the pay slightly more competitive. Do away with the program that puts young college grads in a management position after a 6 month rotation. They come out knowing nothing, are useless, and no one respects them. Make it an internship position instead. Shock, I just bent the cost curve!


  8. Helpful (4)

    Know how to "play the (political) game."

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Client Service Representative in Scottsdale, AZ
    Former Employee - Client Service Representative in Scottsdale, AZ

    I worked at Vanguard full-time (More than a year)

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

    Pros

    As long as there is open time available, employees have the ability to schedule their own vacation time without having to go through a manager for review/approval. Nice/modern office environment. Gym, numerous cafes, dry cleaning, and urgent care; all on site.

    Cons

    1. My biggest advice? Brown-nose and become buddy-buddy with management as fast as possible. As growth opportunities and being selected for special project work is all about who you know NOT how well you do it or your education. Management will try to sell the brown-nose technique as "networking" and encourage employees to "network" in order to advance but at the end of the day it's still brown-nosing. When I worked there, there was a small inner circle of employees repeatedly chosen to participate in "special projects" who were selected by management. 2. Vanguard prefers those they pick for the VADP program. VADP employees are treated like royalty and given preference and opportunity to choose which department/area to work in after doing a 1-year rotation. VADP employees usually consist of young 20-somethings with no work experience who are fresh out of college. This means, someone with 15-years of experience and loyalty at Vanguard will be overlooked when competing against a VADP employee for the same position. 3. Highly political. 4. Think before you post! I made the mistake of accepting a lateral move into a Specialized Service position and inadvertently locked myself into a year contract within Specialized Services role where I could not promote out. No one told me this when I applied and only told me after I accepted the position. 5. Trust no one! Just like phone staff, TLs who are skilled at office politics are the TLs who will make it and promote, yet, in front of phone staff, TLs will claim to stand-up for what is right for clients and their staff when in reality they are more concerned with "playing the game" in order to promote. 6. Technology in Participant Services is constantly crashing/giving system errors. Most employees experience 2-4 crashes per day yet are still held to productivity standards. Management is aware but still does nothing to "fix" the problem. 7. Low pay

    Advice to Management

    Be as transparent as possible and cut out middle-management.


  9. Helpful (2)

    Hello India! Goodbye Loyal Crew.....

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - IT Software Developer in Malvern, PA
    Former Employee - IT Software Developer in Malvern, PA

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

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

    Pros

    Time off Benefits package is pretty good, Retirement benefits are outstanding

    Cons

    Serious lack of quality leadership in Line Management positions. Line managers are implementers, meaning they implement a policy, and don't really think about anything critically. Soon the majority of the work will be done in India. Marcante has this goal to transform IT, he will transform it all right, straight to a 3rd world country, meanwhile he is going to throw a number of loyal Crew Members on the street. Vanguard used to be a company that you could be proud of, and be proud to work there. Now you walk the halls of the Office of the Future and just wait for them to tell your team you have been out sourced. If you need 10 years to retire and you work in IT, good luck, you probably won't get it.

    Advice to Management

    Remember your Core Values. You want an engaged workforce, but you long ago forgot why you had one to begin with.


  10. Helpful (3)

    OK place for young and first job, but pay not good enough, almost all jobs are phone rep positions in Arizona.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Customer Relationship Associate in Scottsdale, AZ
    Former Employee - Customer Relationship Associate in Scottsdale, AZ

    I worked at Vanguard full-time (More than 8 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    - Great training at hire, and help you get the licenses you need to do your job - Used to allow employees to take e-learnings and attend events during the day as long as the department is not busy, but they decided to get rid of employees, hire more contractors and give employees little room to breath taking call after call after call all day. -Great insurance, that keeps most of the employees around

    Cons

    - Vanguard talks about themselves as the most ethical employer, and brag about how they've never laid off employees even in the worst economic times, but they did mass firings and they still do and pretend it's because of the employees' performance. Funny thing is, they plan every move they make, One time in 2008 or 2009, my department's supervisor told us that HR only gave him permission to promote 3 out of 10 employees from Grade B, to C. It was depressing, esp for me because I was new to that team and he was friends with all of them. Of course, I was given a "needs improvement" despite what the numbers say... -Vanguard doesn't like investors that are just starting out... ie, the more money clients have, the more they're loved and treated, more perks. For everybody else, costs are higher, and they don't even want your money! - Management is a joke! Most of the supervisors do not even have their first degree let alone MBAs! The person with the biggest mouth and somebody who likes to be around management will get the supervisor job. If you can't kiss up to the upper management, you'll be a phone rep for the rest of your stay! -Vanguard doesn't value their employees that have been with them the longest, unless of course they are the CEO or upper management. Those that have been there for many years cost Vanguard more, and what they want you to do is move up or move out! But almost all the jobs are phone rep jobs (about 80% or more) and there is nothing else to do. VG is a call center. If you can't move up, obviously moving up requires you knowing someone in upper management, a vacant position and compete among the many who want that job. And if you don't succeed in moving up, then all of a sudden, mysteriously, your performance gets so bad that for your own benefit, Vanguard HR will talk to you into resigning, that way, you'll have a chance to get another job. All of a sudden, they are your best friends! And you have no choice but leave, before they fire you. They do this to many, but they do it systematically so it won't be noticed by other employees. They take one employee at a time per department... or something like that! They are very clever! Anything to cut costs!

    Advice to Management

    Just stop pretending and tell the truth...if you have to fire somebody, and you know it's because of VG's cost reduction strategy, don't just obey. You have ethical responsibility to do the right thing. We know your job is on the line too, because you are hired to obey HR, but somebody be brave and speak up for the sake of the employees.


  11. Helpful (5)

    IT Software Developer

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

    I have been working at Vanguard

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

    Pros

    401K contributions free breakfast and lunch once a year John Bogle's books for free

    Cons

    Racial Intolerance and discrimination In-competent Management Deep rooted bureaucracy Sub-par pay No growth opportunities

    Advice to Management

    Pay attention to the people who vented out here and make changes quickly before the company falls apart and the legacy of John Bogle gets tarnished forever.



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