Advisory Board

  www.advisory.com
  www.advisory.com

Advisory Board Reviews in Washington, DC

Updated December 12, 2014
Updated December 12, 2014
282 Reviews
3.5
282 Reviews
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Advisory Board CEO and Director Robert W. Musslewhite
Robert W. Musslewhite
186 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

155 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1. 7 people found this helpful  

    Research is fantastic, but refuses to pay you fairly...and they're well aware.

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

    I have been working at Advisory Board full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    These comments apply to the Research division. The Analyst and Consultant roles are excellent. The company offers lots of responsibility and intellectually stimulating work for relatively young professionals. The promotion track is quick assuming you are a high performer and the company does a good job of matching individuals to roles that make use of their potential. A major value add is how much you learn about health care as your research and work.

    Cons

    If it wasn't already clear that the Advisory Board under-compensates its staff, now there is data. Engagement down over the last two years, and only 1/4 of staff feel they are paid competitively. Base salaries have not changed in years and the executives who report back about engagement admit the firm isn't doing anything about it. When some staff threaten to leave, they offer a retention bonus that they claim is tailored to you, but it's the same for everyone.

    What makes this especially bad is how successful the company has been in the last 3-4 years. The company has grown immensely, but only the executive staff, who own large stock packages, reap the benefits of it. Why should staff feel motivated to stick with the company if all the benefits of success go to the executives?

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get real about compensation. Quit all the rhetoric about "value proposition" as a way to dodge the dollar compensation failings. You have so much to offer as an employer it's sad to see talented people walk as other jobs recognize the rising costs people face in today's world.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 2 people found this helpful  

    Good experience, but awful pay

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

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

    Pros

    Great people, updated offices make for a creative and enjoyable day, and fantastic benefits (4 weeks PTO, flex time, etc.)

    Cons

    There is heavy favoritism and perks shown to those who bring in the money (marketers, marketing associates). There continues to be the stance that ABC salaries are competitive with the industry, but the fact is that if one person is hired in out of college as a marketing associate and another is hired as an internal-facing role, the MA is guaranteed to make $10K more a year and have the opportunities to win vacations. For both positions, especially internal, you don't make enough to live in the metro area on your own, barely with roommates.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Start focusing on your internal employees and employee retention. If you have a great employee who is about to leave, work with them. Find a solution to keep them on board. If that solution doesn't fall within policy, change it. Pay your employees equally. All entry-level positions should be paid equally (or at least similarly), and you should start showing appreciation for those who keep the business running smoothly, not just those who get you more money.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    It's a good place to get your feet wet in the DC area if you're fresh out of college. I'd work there again.

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

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

    Pros

    The staff is highly educated, driven, etc.

    Cons

    There isn't much diversity in the staff. Everyone pretty much has the same background. ABC focuses on their bottom line before focusing on their employees.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
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  5.  

    Pros and Cons

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

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

    Pros

    They are good at hiring people who are fun to work with.

    Cons

    The pay does not match what is demanded of employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Overworked and underpaid

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

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

    Pros

    Great colleagues
    Fast promotions
    Lost of responsibility at an early age

    Cons

    Much lower salary than similar positions
    Horrible work-life balance and long hours
    Nontransparent promotion opportunities (i.e., a lot of politics involved)
    Managers are very young and often incapable

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    research analyst

    • 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 (less than an year)

    Pros

    I learned a lot from my experiences

    Cons

    The pay is a bit low.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 5 people found this helpful  

    Terrible work environment with a 50/50 shot of having success

    • 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 full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    - Young Work Environment
    - In Downtown DC

    Cons

    - Management is comprised of people who have no industry experience or job experience that are telling subordinates how to work. No freedom, everything is scripted. If you have a good territory you will succeed and make just enough money to live in another state and commute an hour every day for terrible pay. The Marketing Associate role has absolutely nothing to do with Marketing and is strictly Cold Calling.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Let people develop their skills and create an identity through positive reinforcement. Eliminate the COS position because they don't do anything except nitpick without any business experience.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9.  

    Good

    • 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 full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Lots and lots and lots

    Cons

    Couple of things that persistently annoy me

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be realistic with expectations

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Not a good place to work

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

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

    Pros

    The Advisory Board has acquired some great technology. Very flexible working hours. Lots of options for part timers.

    Cons

    Myopic view of how to engage employees. Unprofessional management. Training and development is non-existent.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There is a disconnect between senior management and the rest of the organization. There needs to be a cultural shift, or change in the way that work is conducted and employees are managed.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 2 people found this helpful  

    Your mileage may vary based on how much you fit their mold

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

    I worked at Advisory Board full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Overall, the Advisory Board provides a challenging environment where it is expected of you to perform, learn, and try to succeed:
    - The work and responsibilities are often much more than you would expect from similar roles for recent graduates (1-5 years out)
    - Steep learning curve that provides fantastic experience as you climb it
    - Senior leadership are a great collection of people with intelligence, vision, and execution capabilities. If you get a chance to work with them, they will never cease to impress you with how much they care for the company and its growth
    - A plethora of internal opportunities are available in case you want to take your career in a different direction and this is also encouraged internally
    - The company promotes a lot of work/life balance and culture events, e.g. Happy Hours, incentive trips, community service projects, etc
    - The health and wellness benefits package are great and offer flexibility as well
    - You will either come to love or hate some of your coworkers but those that you love will often turn out to be some of your closest friends
    - Name recognition in DC ... ABC has be around for 30+ years and has made a huge commitment to DC

    Cons

    However, the company continues to drag its feet with solving problems that have existing for years:
    - Once you have peaked on the learning curve, you likely will not see any more opportunities unless you move laterally or see promotion
    - Promotion is advertised as linked to "meritocracy" but in reality, it is based on favoritism at the middle-management level and whether or not you have the "All-American" look/persona
    - Senior leadership is busy and distant enough that they often will only see the rosier picture as illustrated by middle-management
    - A plethora of internal opportunities also means that if middle-management does not feel like you are performing at their standards, they will divert you laterally to another team/department
    - Name recognition in DC ... can also be a bad thing when it is associated with labels like "sweatshop"

    A special note about compensation:
    Compensation at the Advisory Board for any who is a Director or lower (non-Sales) is truly pitiful. According to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, single person households in the DC-VA-MD region and earning below $47,950 are considered Low-Income and below $37,450 are considered Very Low Income. That means, the base salary of all Marketing Associates, Account Management Associates, and Coordinators put them in the Very Low Income bracket and qualify them for Section 8 housing. Even at the Dedicated Advisor / Analyst levels, compensation is still 20% below market for analytical and intensive roles as compared to Deloitte, Booz Allen, and even mid-sized Consulting firms.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Improved compensation, actual growth opportunities, and better middle-management:
    - Compensation ... seriously, what hasn't been said on Glassdoor regarding compensation for ABC? When I speak with colleagues who leave (myself included), this is a huge deciding factor and especially when we know that ABC would never match up to another offer
    - Growth ... this ties in with better middle-management and recognizing employees who need to be on a faster growth path. Egos at the middle-management level consistently drive great performers to leave
    - Middle-management ... promoting from within is great when you give them the management training to succeed or identify those who can be great managers. It would be a huge step to provide that training and stop promoting simply based on prior performance. A good associate / analyst may never be a good manager.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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