Booz Allen Hamilton

www.boozallen.com

Booz Allen Hamilton Reviews

Updated January 25, 2015
Updated January 25, 2015
2,283 Reviews
3.3
2,283 Reviews
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Booz Allen Hamilton Chairman and CEO Ralph W. Shrader
Ralph W. Shrader
1,367 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Work-life balance is generally pretty good but also depends on the client you support (in 295 reviews)

  • High opportunity ceiling; great benefits; worthwhile challenges; ability to influence work that matters (in 106 reviews)


Cons
  • The Work Life Balance that it promises is often not the reality (in 114 reviews)

  • It is not uncommon for a person to be hired and then let go in a few months for "lack of work" (in 49 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Good place to work

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

    I have been working at Booz Allen Hamilton full-time

    Pros

    Current employee that has been working here for 2.5 years, straight out of undergrad. Lots of opportunities due to being a huge firm, competitive pay and benefits, intelligent employees, great culture for those who enjoy collaboration/socializing, etc.

    Cons

    While there are a wide range of opportunities (there is a career path for almost every type of profession), it's still possible to be pigeonholed into a specific role based on your resume, if you aren't careful.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  2.  

    Booz Allen in Transition

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

    I worked at Booz Allen Hamilton full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Solid company with very good benefits. Personnel are collegial and collaborative. Management is accessible to employees. It is a client sensitive company. Pay appears competitive for this current market.

    Many of the Booz Allen managers addressing the military are ex-military. The PRO is that this management has contacts in the military, understands how the military works, and can communicate with the military. There is a CON and that is listed below.

    Cons

    The CON to having primarily ex-military addressing the needs of current military is that they come from the came operational culture and therefore, may tend to reinforce existing military operational processes with few new improvement ideas.

    Many higher paid senior non-management Subject Matter Experts have left the company, which may help the overall cost of employees but could impact Booz Allen's long standing diversity claims.

    The management in place does not fully benefit from the diverse work history of it's employees because managers tend to define employers by the job they are currently doing.

    The company also appears to be in transition from advisory work, which set Booz Allen above it's competitors, to possibly becoming another managed services firm which, over time, will detract from its' brand image.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Respect employees work history and what they can do, and could do, based on their work experience. Hire and promote business managers as well as retired military to address the military client's needs. Clients are burdened by budgetary restrictions and are may be less willing to pay for advisory work therefore, find a way to meet client's operational requirements within this fiscally competitive market, without sacrificing the Booz Allen brand image.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    A1 Professional Company

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

    I worked at Booz Allen Hamilton

    Pros

    Great management, exceptional training opportunities and chances for promotion -

    Cons

    My experience with BAH can only be addressed as pros

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Booz Allen is my Career

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Lead Associate in McLean, VA
    Current Employee - Lead Associate in McLean, VA

    I have been working at Booz Allen Hamilton full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    - One of the most influential and competitive consulting firms in the DC area.
     - Job security; the company wins enough work to ensure that the core talent remains employed and in relevant client work
     - I truly believe I work with the most talented staff
     - I trust in the leadership to be honest with employees
     - Competitive pay, benefits, training, etc.

    Cons

    - Dress code is still the most conservative in the area (although if you like dressing sharp this is the place!)
     - Recent changes to 401K ("ECAP") in order to remain cost-competitive
     - No bonus structure for junior and mid-level employees (although awards are always given)
     - Very frequent re-org and significant HR changes (at least 3 major re-orgs in 8 years)
     - Somewhat confusing internal information distribution (too many portals, share drives, etc)

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    - Consider increasing available reimbursement for training, plus allocating more hours for training
     - Relax the restrictions on hoteling for employees who work at BAH site every day
     - Provide better office supplies, especially PENS!
     - Maintain clear and frequent communications during periods of change. You've done very well during the commercial split, Carlyle buy-out, market re-org, and recent People Model changes. Keep it up.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Great place to grow your career - if you land on the right team

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

    I have been working at Booz Allen Hamilton full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    I was on the traditional "management consulting" side of the business. Leadership quality is uneven, but when it's good this is a fantastic place to be. This company wins just about every kind of work that exists in the federal government, so if you're proactive and part of a successful team you'll get opportunities to try a lot of different things. I've done data analysis, strategic planning, communications, organization design, human capital management consulting, etc. If you get stuck, with 25k+ employees and a strong culture of collaboration you can usually find an expert to help you out from within the company ranks within hours. Most of the clients are good to work with and the projects are interesting. My typical project was 6-18 months, which felt like a good balance between stability and variety. Unlike some companies, the end of a contract doesn't mean unemployment unless things are really bad in your market (or you are expensive with a niche skillset). Tell your management you want to advance, raise your hand to help with proposals and marketing work outside your client work, and you can be promoted every 1-2 years - especially if you are a strong writer and have some leadership experience already. Work hours are extremely reasonable; as a manager I typically logged 45 hours/week or under and was hitting all my marks for clients and internal management alike. Proposal season in August-September is rough but you know it's coming and leadership does a good job "sharing the wealth" so the same people don't get relentlessly piled upon. Internal training is almost non-existent these days, but the $5k annual tuition reimbursement easily makes up for that and the firm has deals to get people into external instructions programs that fall within that limit.

    Cons

    Balancing client work (often performed at a govt. office) with firm responsibilities gets frustrating when you have technical issues accessing IT resources due to security requirements on the part of the government or the company. This is a daily fact of life. Some government work locations are better than others. Compensation is not great compared to what you can get in other industries, but within the industry it seems reasonable, and to be fair the requirement to be billable to government clients limits the firm's flexibility in this area. I suppose the trade-off is less money in exchange for more support, interesting projects, and good name recognition among federal consulting firms. Senior management comes off as being untrustworthy at times, such as during the aborted stealthy removal of parking/transit benefits this past summer, but this is mitigated if the intervening leaders are good. Benefits (health care, 401k supplements) continue to erode, which has not been great for morale.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Consider giving managers more flexibility with compensation, including variable or incentive pay. It's demotivating when the difference between a star performer and an ok employee is ~2.5% in the annual salary increase. I've seen people hired at a junior level who will never catch up to peers who were hired after a few years of experience elsewhere, even if they out-perform them. Eventually they figure this out and leave. It's a waste. Recent changes within the past year to give more flexibility to set compensation increases and determine promotions at the Principal level are a HUGE step in the right direction.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Great experience

    Former Employee - SEDI Cohort
    Former Employee - SEDI Cohort

    I worked at Booz Allen Hamilton as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Learned a great deal through internship and had many opportunities to network with management and individuals higher up on the corporate ladder. The internship was split up into working as part of an existing team in Booz Allen and working as part of a group of interns on a project solely for interns, and both taught teamwork and provided ample opportunity to take away technical experience.

    Cons

    The experience you get working here really depends on the team that you are placed in. I was fortunate to be placed on an amazing team. The intern project also seemed to depend on what group of interns you were placed with.

  8.  

    Stable company with some room to grow in the private sector but has the government pains of all contracting companies

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Lead Engineer in Annapolis Junction, MD
    Current Employee - Lead Engineer in Annapolis Junction, MD

    I have been working at Booz Allen Hamilton full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    -Increasing remote delivery positions
    -Investing a lot in internal data science resources
    -Reward loyalty to the company
    -Very accommodating to work/life balance

    Cons

    -Politics
    -Sometimes push you to do something because they need to fill a position
    -Education reimbursement is too low to consider furthering education at top schools

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
  9. 10 people found this helpful  

    Great place to work once you come to terms with the culture.

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

    I worked at Booz Allen Hamilton full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great benefits, a wealth of knowledge and experience in the company, mentors are at every turn, culture is aimed at developing and growing employees.

    Cons

    When I first showed up to work I noticed immediately I was by far the youngest person around. I thought at first that was normal but then I noticed more and more over my next 4 years that there is some age discrimination. Not in hiring or blatant but it exists. I was passed over as the lead on projects multiple times by people who were just as, or even less, qualified than I was but they were older. They claim to be a "flat" organization but the hierarchy is very clear. Because most of the staff is former military the culture subsequently became a very militaristic type work environment. In most ways it was good but it did not allow for a lot of chances to disagree or challenge the status quo without being seen as a troublemaker.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to the young people. I promise you that if you give them autonomy and responsibility they will take the firm to places it has never been before. We used to be a top dog but now we are seen as that old dog who has picked his spot with government and waits for its scraps. We have a group called the Strategic Innovation Group, they have not innovated a thing, ever! They take other peoples ideas and try to build on them. You CANNOT innovate sitting in McLean, VA you need to embrace tech and changing times and go out and find the next big thing that is going to put you back on the map!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Unique Culture

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

    I have been working at Booz Allen Hamilton full-time

    Pros

    Booz Allen seems to want to offer employees a long term career with the firm. Booz is flexible when it comes to work schedule. The firm offers plenty of opportunities to get involved in the firm. Annual assessments are more than just a "check in the box." The firm offers opportunity for promotion which is unheard of from Booz Allen's competitors who require managers to be retired commissioned officers.

    Cons

    The Booz Allen culture isn't for everyone. The firm expects employees to work beyond the normal 40 hour work week without the opportunity to earn overtime pay. Firm does not allow for employees to keep per diem overages.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Increase medium salary offering for employees living in the Hawaiian Islands to be complementary with employees working out of the Washington D.C. area. Oahu's cost of living is extremely expensive like the east coast and yet salaries offered seem to be $20 - $50K less.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Great people, amazing work life balance

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

    I have been working at Booz Allen Hamilton full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Work life balance
    Colleagues are smart and helpful
    Training opportunities all the time
    Career Growth

    Cons

    Wish there was bonuses for Senior Consultants. Now that reviews are yearly, I wish I could get more feedback in the year rather than one lumped annual assessment

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep it up, Booz is still a very enjoyable place to work.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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