Advisory Board

www.advisory.com

Advisory Board Reviews

Updated January 26, 2015
Updated January 26, 2015
296 Reviews
3.5
296 Reviews
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Advisory Board CEO and Director Robert W. Musslewhite
Robert W. Musslewhite
194 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • There's a good work/life balance; you're kept to or about to a 40 hour workweek (in 32 reviews)

  • happy hours are very frequent when the weather is nice (in 24 reviews)


Cons
  • The current managers just need to keep in mind the work/life balance of their employees (in 30 reviews)

  • The salary is pretty low for the sales and marketing associate role (in 14 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Great place to work

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

    I worked at Advisory Board

    Pros

    Intellectually rigorous, perfectionist culture. Always learning. Smart, interesting, ambitious people. Commitment to service.

    Cons

    Very young, very white employee base. Culture is definitely of highly privileged recent college grads.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Diversity--in socioeconomic background, educational background and work history, race, ethnicity, age.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Manager of Operations

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Manager of Operations in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Manager of Operations in Washington, DC

    I have been working at Advisory Board

    Pros

    Great company, great work life balance, great colleagues, many opportunities for advancement, decent salary

    Cons

    There aren't that many cons with this role as you really control everything about your career

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    None

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Great company culture, work/life balance, people. Poor salaries.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Technical Analyst in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Technical Analyst in Washington, DC

    I have been working at Advisory Board full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great company culture, work/life balance

    Cons

    Don't get paid as competitively with other companies.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
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  5.  

    Great co to start your career-- you've just got to survive in marketing

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Sales and Marketing Associate in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Sales and Marketing Associate in Washington, DC

    I have been working at Advisory Board

    Pros

    Amazing culture
    Promotion from within
    Personal enrichment through development activities
    Transparent review processes

    Cons

    Position is grossly underpaid
    Promotion from role is based on timing and potential-- can be a long waiting game
    Little to no control over what product you are placed on

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Please invest in your talent by promoting less turnover and higher salaries for associates to ensure more strategic sales processes. Consider changing evaluation tools for the MAs based
    On their product

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great if you're just starting out, but doesn't function like a typical software company.

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

    I worked at Advisory Board full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    All of these pros depend heavily on your position, department, manager and especially your team. These are the pros that I experienced, but I know that other positions and teams are not given the same opportunities or judged by the same merits as mine.
    - Mentoring: I was lucky enough to get a manager that wanted me to grow and succeed. If I wanted to learn something new I was usually given the time and opportunity to do so. He backed up my decisions when I needed it and advocated for me during my review sessions.
    - Promotions and raises are indeed merit based (again, though, this depends on your manager and the expectations that are set for your position). During my time there I received promotions at both of my major review cycles.
    - There is a lot of opportunity to work on internal/side projects if you're interested in a change of pace (and most managers are supportive of it).
    - Compensation and benefits are really good. My starting salary was at the national average despite having little experience in the position I was hired for and my raises were over 10% each time.
    - Education/Conference budget is pretty good.
    - Work/Life balance is respected and encouraged. WFH is generally not an issue.
    - The offices are quite nice (in Austin) and have a lot of variety in meeting spaces. Top of the line hardware (laptop/desktop, monitors) and software with reasonable times between upgrades. It can sometimes be difficult to expense unique software, but if it's critical to your job you can usually get it approved.
    - Opportunities for travel (depending on position), and the possibility of traveling to the India office if you have a lot of team members there.
    - Generally a good place to work when you're just starting out. They tend to take chances on those that are enthusiastic and that have potential.
    - Regular happy hours, some corporate sponsored events and a lot of social people.

    Cons

    Despite all of these cons I generally did enjoy my time at ABC; unfortunately over the last year the software side has increasingly been assimilated into the corporate world. Culture has suffered and all of the negatives have become that much more obvious. Despite the cons, the company will likely continue to grow for a long while.
    - The Advisory Board side of the company began as a research and consulting firm and only acquired the software development side much later. Many of the Advisory employees became managers in the development side, which means that they've struggled a lot figuring out how to be a software company. They were successful because they had no competition early on, which led to huge growth and further growing pains.
    - A result of the above is that for a long time the company has had no idea what Agile means. Product Managers, Sales, Marketing, and anyone else with the customer's ear regularly promises features so that they can sign contracts. This is without consenting or notifying the development team, and those features take priority over other features or enhancement work. This makes it nearly impossible for anyone to work on anything 'innovative' or to contribute major ideas. The only people who get to work on 'innovative' ideas are on completely separate "Incubator" teams and you better believe that the execs tout their accomplishments at every all-hands meeting.
    - There's not a great history of smoothly incorporating acquisitions into the rest of the company.
    - More silos than an industrial cattle operation.
    - Despite what the PR hiring videos tell you, it's very difficult to change positions if you end up wanting to go a different direction in your career. This is especially true if you are good at what you do (but aren't passionate about it). Just like at any other company, it depends completely on whether there's a position open where you want to go and how quickly they can backfill your current position.
    - The company loves to take credit for it's employees accomplishments (for example, peer pressure - to the point of bullying - to 'log' your volunteer hours so that the firm can feel warm and fuzzy about 100% participation).
    - The departments with the smallest teams doing the most work (and the highest stress) often get the least recognition (if any) from upper management and executives.
    - So many meetings that it often gets in the way of working. Even if you will get nothing valuable out of the meeting, you are expected to go because you're in a certain department.
    - The feedback loops (and language barrier, at times) between the US and India offices can be painful.
    - Development teams often have way too many developers, which means others need to work twice as hard to keep up with the pace of releases.
    - The kitchen is fairly well stocked but almost never with anything healthy. Too much soda and sugary sports drinks.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire people to management that know how to lead a development company. Recognize smaller teams and learn about your employees that have titles you don't understand. Begin recognizing your failures at least as much as your accomplishments and put effort into improving them instead of waiting for the rest of the company to do so. Stop making promises that other people will be on the hook to fulfill. No direct complaints about the CEO, but I have no idea what he does other than give long speeches about how great the company is.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Great work environment, with strong focus on quality work-life-balance

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Marketing Associate in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Marketing Associate in Washington, DC

    I have been working at Advisory Board

    Pros

    Fantastic focus on work life balance

    Cons

    Lower than average compensation for DC employment

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Amazing culture, lack of professionalism/respect

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Marketing Associate in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Marketing Associate in Washington, DC

    I worked at Advisory Board

    Pros

    Great HR benefits, superfun workforce, big on work/life balance

    Cons

    The culture of management is all about over promise, under deliver. They tell you about all kinds of opportunities within the company but then do everything they can to prevent you from moving. Also, the lack of management training and professionalism makes it a fun workplace, but one that is terrible for mentors/managers you respect/admire.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Excellent Pay, Great CEO, unreliable, unpredictable work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Consultant in Nashville, TN
    Former Employee - Consultant in Nashville, TN

    I worked at Advisory Board full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Pay was excellent for consultants------when we were deployed on a project. Youthful company, with a young, extremely bright and dynamic CEO. You are working with the cream of the crop in their respective fields. Projects are challenging, but fun, especially if you love to travel.

    Cons

    For consultants: When not deployed on a project, the pay is horrible; not enough to live on. The health insurance is outrageously expensive. Project work is unpredictable; you may work continuously, or you may go months without work.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get to know your consultant employees. If they are not staying busy with projects, then they are not making money. Perhaps they could be cross-trained in other areas, so that they can afford to put food on the table and continue to work for the company.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 3 people found this helpful  

    Too much growth has led to distance from original values

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

    I have been working at Advisory Board

    Pros

    Centered around the customer, great benefits, supports career growth across the firm (up to a certain tenure)

    Cons

    Lack of work-life balance (while the company at large has taken efforts to improve this it doesn't translate to manager direct report level), slow decision making process at all levels (impacting employee understanding and buy in to long term vision particularly at the division level), inability to successfully integrate new offices/acquisitions

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Research Analyst in Research and Insights, 9th floor.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research Analyst in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Research Analyst in Washington, DC

    I have been working at Advisory Board full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Decent pay, good benefits, young people. Plenty of happy hours. Definitely recommend this employer as long as you don't work in research as an analyst.

    Cons

    Poor work-life balance during "crunch," no individual thinking, company churns through new grads.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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