Great-West Financial Photos
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“Prudently managed company that offers solid job stability but with some areas of improvement within call centers ”
- Comp & Benefits
- Work/Life Balance
- Senior Management
- Culture & Values
- Career Opportunities
I have been working at Great-West Financial full-timePros
Parent company out of Canada takes a measured and conservative approach resulting in the company meeting or exceeding quarterly financial objectives as well as creating a corporate work environment of trust and stability. Unlike most other financial services firms, Great-West very rarely engages in employee layoffs. Their fortunes are not principally tied with the prevailing winds of the stock market like those of some other major financial services firms in the Denver area.
New CEO with a sterling pedigree has been put in place effective last May. Lots of new talent as a result of JPM acquisition and merger with Putnam's retirement business. Very excited with the new executive management team.Cons
Good ole boys (and girls) club mentality of VP level down to middle management. A "do as I say, not as I do" approach towards the rank and file staff. Favoritism and politics abound and if you're good at "managing up," you'll be successful with these sorts of people.
Non-call center departments have a pretty good work/life balance. Call centers, however, not so good. Call centers engage in "lean staffing" which results in constant heavy call volumes, erratic hold times, and a "reactive" rather than "proactive" response from line managers.
Unrealistic service level goals and the constant cancellation of employee meetings (one-on-one's, team meetings, training sessions, etc.) in the name of meeting those unrealistic service levels with the limited amount of staffing has had a poor effect on morale. High turnover due to burn out and stress has been common over the years, resulting in senior management imposing freezes on staff from posting out for other positions. This has created a culture of indentured servitude.
A work force management system is used to handle the staff's daily schedule and activities. This system is seen as very restrictive and de-humanizing to staff. There is very limited ability to get time off for vacations or even schedule doctors appointments. WFO system viewed by phone reps and managers alike as uncaring, by-the-book, and inflexible. Line managers have their hands tied when dealing with WFO staff; very little authority or autonomy.
The call center culture contradicts the work/life balance that senior management regularly claims to promote. Basically, there are two sets of rules-one for call center staff and one for non-call center staff.
Thus, a vicious cycle has been started-high stress, low morale, and micromanagement/high turnover/inability to pursue other opportunities within the company/loss of talent to outside
employers/low morale and turnover/repeat.Advice to ManagementAdvice
Senior management should step out of their offices and/or attend fewer closed-door meetings and spend more time walking the floors of their respective departments. The rank and file staff are on the front lines and often have a perspective of the business and a pulse of the client that's impossible for senior management to see or obtain from sitting behind their desks.
Treat every staff member-regardless of how high or low on the totem pole they fall-as the professionals you expect them to be. Foster an environment of trust. Set high but achievable and realistic goals. And finally, listen to your staff members; value their insights and opinions and you will gain an ally and loyal employee who will walk over hot coals for you and the company.RecommendsPositive OutlookApproves of CEO
Getting an Interview
Getting an Interview
- Application Details
I applied online. The process took 2 weeks – interviewed at Great-West Financial in January 2015.Interview Details
After applying online (job was listed on indeed and on company website) I was contacted via email by a company recruiter from CO. There was a short phone interview, then a follow up interview, and then I was asked to take 2 online tests - one a multiple choice on customer service, the other similar to a GMAT- or GRE-type multiple choice question (but much easier than those exams).
I was also asked to consent to a background check.
I was called in for an in-person interview that was pretty light and easy. After my background check came back problem-free, I was offered a job. The whole process took about 2 weeks.Interview Questions
Negotiation DetailsThere was no negotiation. Before the offer was extended, I was asked whether the amount would be acceptable and I said that it would be ...Accepted OfferPositive ExperienceEasy Interview
- There were no difficult questions Answer Question
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Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance is the southern arm of a northern parent. The company, a subsidiary of Canada's Great-West Lifeco and a member of the Power Financial family, represents the Great-West group's primary US operations. It offers life insurance and annuities to individuals and employer groups. Under the Great-West Retirement Services brand, it administers employer-sponsored retirement products including defined-benefit pension and 401(k) plans. Additional Great-West services include investment consulting and fund management. Great-West Life & Annuity markets...