Vertex Pharmaceuticals Reviews

Updated June 21, 2015
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Vertex Pharmaceuticals President & CEO Jeffrey Leiden, M.D., Ph.D
Jeffrey Leiden, M.D., Ph.D
5 Ratings

Pros
  • Great benefits for full time employees (in 10 reviews)

  • The work-life balance is great, but it does depend on your group dynamics (in 5 reviews)

Cons
  • The company does actively promote that employees maintain a work-life balance (in 8 reviews)

  • Senior management does not take care of lower level staff (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

10 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (2)

    Management disrespectful to employees

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

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

    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Employee benefits are good - the stock awards are why people are hesitant to leave, vacation / time off at year end

    Cons

    Micromanagement, politics, devaluing employees, corporate greed, lying to employees, no training for new people without experience, two faced (corporate values sound good but they aren't lived)

    Advice to Management

    They've gotten all the feedback from employee surveys but don't care - just cash in on their stock and bonuses without regard to how to treat people


  2. Frantic, disorganized upper management ruined the company

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

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

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

    Pros

    People were motivated to help the patients. Workers through middle management hard working, smart, and caring.

    Cons

    Upper management had no game plan - priorities and goals shifted daily, even hourly.


  3. Helpful (2)

    Colleagues are leaving to escape mistreatment

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manager in Boston, MA
    Former Employee - Manager in Boston, MA

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

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

    Pros

    The benefits, assuming you can get permission to take a vacation. Vertex had a history of employees staying for a long time, but many of these folks have been laid off. Historically, people were promoted based on their contribution, the work they were actually doing, so job growth was rewarded. But that went away due to belt tightening. Unfortunately, Vertex's Pros are mostly a thing of the past.

    Cons

    Horrible senior management that does not live by the Vertex corporate values, favoritism leading to promotions of people lacking the qualifications to do the job well, ongoing layoffs. Employees who are willing to stick it out are treated badly.

    Advice to Management

    Clear out the rot that has crept into Vertex senior management over the past few years, and start over with a goal of returning Vertex to its former status of a truly great place to work. Keep in mind that employees are the most valuable asset a company has, they are a primary requirement both to serve customers needs and to keep shareholders happy. Boston is a small place, and word is getting out to stay away from Vertex.


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  5. Helpful (2)

    Great vision, horrible execution!

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

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

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

    Pros

    It used to have a great culture. A lot of great restaurants around the new world headquarters that was built in Boston.

    Cons

    A lack of cohesiveness and interaction between groups creates failed opportunities. Beweare middle managers that will stab you in the back in order to advance their careers. Multiple layoffs have all been at the staff level; management has hardly been affected.

    Expect to work a lot of extra hours for no recognition.


  6. Helpful (1)

    Don't believe the hype

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

    I have been working at Vertex Pharmaceuticals 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

    Hopefully it looks good on my resume

    Cons

    Management doesn't listen
    Recognition doesn't exist
    Forget about work-life balance
    That special kind of passive-aggressive politics

    Advice to Management

    FOCUS, listen to the people, and fix the ship. Do something when you know there's a problem rather than pretending it doesn't exist.


  7. Helpful (2)

    Worst company to be a contractor

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

    I worked at Vertex Pharmaceuticals as a contractor (More than 3 years)

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

    Pros

    If your a perm employee- lots of vacation and great perks
    if your a contractor-nice cafeteria

    Cons

    Worst company to be a contractor. You are told your part of the vertex family but then are not invited to company functions because you are a contractor, constantly being let known you are expendable and admins and upper management are allowed to treat you like your are their servant. You cannot complain because you are a contractor. Too many managers who can never agree so you are constantly being given conflicting information.On the financial side, I have seen extreme waste of money by management.

    Advice to Management

    remember your contractors are people and deserve to be treated like people not drones.


  8. Helpful (5)

    Bad idea to take this job

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Director in Cambridge, MA
    Former Employee - Director in Cambridge, MA

    I worked at Vertex Pharmaceuticals 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

    Interesting science
    Quality research organization
    Pay and benefits

    Cons

    Poor senior management, especially financial - cash burn rate is outrageous. Tend to throw money at problems and duplicate efforts throughout the organization.
    Politics trumps all - winners and losers in that game. Losers are too often the competent people.
    Disconnect between values and behavior
    Irresponsible hiring/firing - you may get a nice offer today but don't be surprised if you are laid off in six months!

    Advice to Management

    Acknowledge where you are. Great science cannot save this company. If you report net losses on 1+ billion of revenues, you have serious money management problems.


  9. Helpful (7)

    My worst nightmare

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

    I have been working at Vertex Pharmaceuticals 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

    22 days of vacations + christmas week
    free parking

    Cons

    Three kind of persons: The ones that rule, usually very young with little experience (The only place that I have work where a person can be promoted to Sr Director with less than 5 years of experience). If you are liked by them, you become one of them. If you are not liked, you have two options - 1) Stay and be miserable until they get rid of you (I believe that 50 - 75% of their employees get fired and they usually are the more knowledgeable and experienced) , or 2) Leave because you cannot stand the working environment.

    The work-life balance that they offer applies only if you are in the first group.


  10. Helpful (4)

    Time to Grow -up

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Scientist I in Cambridge, MA
    Former Employee - Scientist I in Cambridge, MA

    I worked at Vertex Pharmaceuticals

    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Benefits are out of this world, Salary is top level, Internal business training is nice. Everybody has a say in meetings!! Friday Wii bowling

    Cons

    In a word:Clueless. The work environment differs so much from one division to another that it likes working in different companies. High exodus risk. People that are in control are so out of touch with the day/day. LoTs of showboating!!!!

    Advice to Management

    Stop wasting money on Facebook and allowing a popularity contest to run the show. You should be making therapeutic agents, not ski outings


  11. Helpful (3)

    Mixed results

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Researcher in Cambridge, MA
    Former Employee - Researcher in Cambridge, MA

    I worked at Vertex Pharmaceuticals

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

    Pros

    The people really understand what your strengths are. They ask for your feedback in terms of what could be done better. The people rally to help you out in your projects. You're assigned some worthy projects that you're able to dive into. You're provided with tools necessary to do your job. They invest in you, they think thoughtfully through how they can support, and they encourage you. The bonus awards are there to recognize you in all of your efforts. The environment is thoughtfully decorated and makes your day as pleasant as possible. Cafeteria is passable -- at least they have one.

    Cons

    Sometimes, despite your trying to prove yourself, your position is not heard as thoughtfully as you might hope for. You try hard, you put a lot of effort in, and sometimes, you're just met with silence, lack of approval, or ignored. Morale could be a lot better. The downside of working in a pharmaceutical environment is that drug candidates take years and years and years to get to the market. And throughtout that process, the FDA can easily pull the plug on a candidate. You invest a lot of time and effort -- and with one bad clinical trial, all that work disappears.

    Advice to Management

    None.



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