Booz Allen Hamilton

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Booz Allen Hamilton Reviews in Annapolis Junction, MD

Updated Jun 18, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

3.7 31 reviews

84% Approve of the CEO

Booz Allen Hamilton Chairman and CEO Ralph W. Shrader

Ralph W. Shrader

(19 ratings)

75% of employees recommend this company to a friend

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Work-life balance is generally pretty good but also depends on the client you support(in 283 reviews)

  • High opportunity ceiling; great benefits; worthwhile challenges; ability to influence work that matters(in 99 reviews)


Cons
  • Lots of relatively large changes over the past two years have impacted benefits and work-life balance(in 103 reviews)

  • lack of work opportunities for personal growth and promotion, too many staffing levels(in 44 reviews)

31 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews
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    Booz was a great place to work for. I would recommend to others.

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee) Annapolis Junction, MD

    ProsWork / Life Balance was excellent. Company moved to "hoteling" environment in 2010. Pretty cool concept to save money. Employees that are a Senior Associate or above have office space, below, can check in to an office for the day if they would like to work from the office. Otherwise you can work from home, you are supplied with a laptop and company phone and any other tools you need to work from home successfully.

    ConsMost larger companies have similar challenges, but overall felt very good about the environment in Annapolis Junction, MD.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    3 people found this helpful  

    A once-proud firm on its way to becoming an also-ran contracting house.

    Associate (Current Employee) Annapolis Junction, MD

    ProsBooz Allen has contacts everywhere. If you're looking for qualifications for a certain project or introduction to a government organization, you'll find a contact easily.
    There are lots of ways to keep in contact with colleagues. For example, one can search employee profiles on the intranet and have conversations on just about any topic on Yammer.
    Corporate parties are well-funded and well-planned.
    The company seems to be amenable to flexible work arrangements.
    The firm carried all its employees during the government shutdown. A welcome gesture when other contractors were being released for lack of funds.

    ConsEverything shuts down for a month at the end of the fiscal year. It becomes frustrating when one has an active, funded contract but can't purchase, travel, or charge time because the company has to spend four weeks reconfiguring its accounting system.
    Speaking of accounting systems, nothing propagates automatically between systems. This means there is a relatively high probability of someone somewhere along the line fat-fingering your numbers. It also takes a long time to go from establishing a project to actually being able to work on it.
    I work in the Booz Allen Hamilton Engineering Services ... entity. Long story short, we were a division of another company, which Booz Allen acquired. They decided to keep us a separate entity, because Booz Allen isn't set up to do engineering work. However, this means we neither operate as a separate company nor operate as part of the Firm. So, for example, we have to run through two separate approval chains for everything - not conducive to fast-paced engineering work. It is also ambiguous who has control over what funds, who is managing what project, etc., which leads to infighting instead of cooperation.
    The firm is so proud of carrying its employees through the shutdown. However, with employees expected to work 10+ hours of unpaid overtime every week, that seems like the very least it could do.
    Finally, the firm is much too risk-averse. It encourages innovation, as long as the innovation doesn't threaten established processes or require purchasing anything. They're so afraid of their name appearing on the news that any novel project will be rejected at the highest levels of management.

    Advice to Senior ManagementEither spin off Engineering Services into a completely separate company, or fully absorb it. Get your corporate systems more automated and interoperable. Take more risks or risk becoming an also-ran contractor.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Good company, but not for long-term employment

    Staff Technologist (Current Employee) Annapolis Junction, MD

    ProsThere is an opportunity to telecommute and that has been helpful at times.

    ConsUnfortunately, like many companies. BAH has fallen victim to the change in the economy and as contracts are either not won or not renewed, many people are given lack-of-work letters and shown the door.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

  1. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
    • Culture & Values
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    longtime employer

    Management Consulting Associate (Current Employee) Annapolis Junction, MD

    Prosgreat family atmosphere, good training for future opportunities

    Conslack of work opportunities for personal growth and promotion, too many staffing levels

    Advice to Senior Managementprovide growth opportunities and new contracts

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    Amazing, team oriented Executive Assistant team!

    Executive Assistant (Former Employee) Annapolis Junction, MD

    ProsCompany really vetted me and "trained" me well to succeed for a very short period!

    ConsAmazing opportunity could end without notice based on industry assignments.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    Varies greatly based on team and contract

    Consultant (Former Employee) Annapolis Junction, MD

    Pros- Good pay/benefits

    The retirement plan is now a regular 401(k) where Booz Allen will match up to 6%, although you have to be working at Booz Allen on December 31 to get that entire year's employer contribution (you always get your money). This is actually a good change assuming you are changing employers every couple of years, as the old plan had more free money but took 6 years to fully vest.

    - The people at Booz Allen are very nice and helpful and many of them are very intelligent too.
    - For people starting out, you can progress nicely through the lower ranks and get the pay bumps that come along with it.
    - My contract had an excellent work/life balance. Flexible hours, work from home some days, relaxed conditions. Other contracts may not be as nice.

    Cons- Like many other contractors right now, pay increases (aside from promotions) are small
    - Being billable (making the firm money) is key and anything that is not billable is hard to get done. This may mean you find yourself in a position that you don't like, but since you're making the firm money, you're going to have trouble changing positions.
    - If your contract ends, you will receive a LOW (Lack of Work) and have 2-3 weeks to find new work that will keep you 100% billable. Obviously, that is a stressful situation and it is unfortunate because your past performance is not accounted for when receiving the LOW.

    Advice to Senior ManagementTo keep talent around, put them in positions they enjoy and stop threatening them with LOWs the second they stop making the company money.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    1 person found this helpful  

    Still a decent company

    Senior Consultant (Current Employee) Annapolis Junction, MD

    ProsNice people, easy to network
    Interesting projects
    Flexible hours
    Nice amenities (flavia coffee, tea, sugar, creamer, hot chocolate, plasticware, paper towels, etc.)
    Competitive compensation and benefits

    ConsCut back on 401K (6% matching instead of a 10% no matter what)
    More focused on employees being billable (you'd have to make up the however many hours you spent in training)
    Upper management is unorganized and do not know everything that is going on with their employees
    Raises have been low recently (even 0% in some cases)
    Takes a long time to switch projects

    Advice to Senior ManagementStop being so obsessed with billable hours and communicate more with your employees to see if they're satisfied with how things are going on their project.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Getting Better

    Lead Associate (Current Employee) Annapolis Junction, MD

    ProsRecent shift to deliver a more technically-focused set of career paths are good, albeit a little misguided. Leadership recognized that as a company delivering technical intellectual capital they were going to have to break out of the consulting-based staff assessment model. This will help position them to allow technical people to prosper within the firm. Excellent direct management.

    ConsAs is typical, the higher up the chain you go, the more detached leadership is from the real delivery problems. Going up-the-chain to address delivery issues often results in lip service rather than results, leaving you to take care of it yourself.

    Advice to Senior ManagementBe more transparent. Good people appreciate this, and your people are your only assets.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    • Approves of CEO

    3 people found this helpful  

    Good Company, need better managers, too big for it's own good

    Associate (Current Employee) Annapolis Junction, MD

    ProsGood Benefits, very stable company, ability to do some training and expand knowledge.

    ConsToo much poor management, too large, too many retired officers in charge. Managers in charge aren't connected to employees well and many managers are not technically proficient. The difference in culture between Headquarters and outlying areas is pretty big. Company is more like a large government agency, than an agile company

    Advice to Senior ManagementGrow your managers, let employees who are capable have more responsibility and stop hiring all retired officers.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    • Approves of CEO

    5 people found this helpful  

    Overly Hyped Consulting Company With a Tarnishing Image

    Associate (Former Employee) Annapolis Junction, MD

    ProsBooz Allen manages to employ some of the most intelligent and outgoing folks in the industry, and they support some of the most important and overarching government programs contracted out. They push their employees hard to be the best they can be, which helps develop them into very competent professionals. They push their culture to be the best consultant pretty hard, and also really drive home good ethics.

    ConsIt's a very aggressive, self absorbed culture. The 360 degree review process is excessive and very broad, essentially forcing anyone with an inclination to move up in their career to get their hands into many pots. This is great for developing experience, making a name for yourself, and extending your wings, but most employees do just what it takes to check the box on their assessment.

    It's extremely difficult to change contracts or industries, and some programs (mine was like this) actually try to sabotage this by playing mind games with you and internal political games. I was part of the interview team and heard several stories by former employees that expressed distaste for not being able to move within their career.

    Management can be self absorbed, political, and they are more concerned about profits and developing their career due to how agressive the culture is.

    Thankless environment. No matter how hard you worked and innovated, there was always a reason you could have done better and why you didn't make the cut for a promotion. Even worse is when you worked to develop a product or solution, only to be told good game andhave it moved on for someone else to manage because they need you billable.

    Benefits started out pretty good, but since then the ECAP program has been cut and employees no longer get the 10% gift into their retirement account. Copensation was 20% or so less than competitors.

    Unless you drink the punch and fit in to the "good ole boys" club, its going to be very difficult to advance.

    Advice to Senior ManagementRevisit what made the Booz Allen brand so valuable since 1914 and begin to gravitate back toward that. Drive a culture that combines desire to be the best with support for your employees, they are your biggest asset. Eliminate the politics, self absorbed culture, and goold ole boys club - life proves this is not a recipe for success.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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