California Department of Health Services

www.dhcs.ca.gov
Unclaimed Profile
Add Review

California Department of Health Services Reviews

Updated June 30, 2015
11 reviews filtered by
  • Any Location
  • Any Job Title
  • Full-time
  • Part-time
Employment Status

Reset
2.6
Rating Trends
Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
(no image)
CEO
0 Ratings

11 Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1. Great employer

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

    I have been working at California Department of Health Services

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Good benefits flexible time to balance work life

    Cons

    It's about who you know to get promoted va your skill set

    Advice to Management

    Look at skill set vs who you know there are lots of great people looking for work


  2. So so

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Support Staff in Sacramento, CA
    Former Employee - Support Staff in Sacramento, CA

    I worked at California Department of Health Services full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Easy job. Get to go home on time. Attorneys And support staff are friendly. State holidays plus extra PDD days every year. Pretty good benefits

    Cons

    Pay is low. Job is not mind stimulating. Place has become a revolving door. Specifically office of legal services. At times you feel like you are time clocked

    Advice to Management

    Lighten up. You get more out of your employees when you trust them to do their jobs and who knows, the place may stop becoming a revolving door. Promote more


  3. Stable and easy work

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

    I worked at California Department of Health Services

    Recommends
    Recommends

    Pros

    Stable, easy, co-workers were great

    Cons

    Not challenging enough and not much opportunity for growth


  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. Very poor employee morale

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

    I have been working at California Department of Health Services full-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    The unit I work in is full of positive and caring people. I've learned a lot from my co-workers.

    Cons

    The new upper management has zero concern for employee morale. He has targeted several employees since he has been in his position and he's broken them down mentally. I've watched the great team that we had fall apart. People are taking mental health days off. Many of the great employees have left for other jobs or chosen early retirement. The worst part is that he holds grudges and if you report him to HR or the Union, he will come down on you harder. He has even announced people's personal decisions in meetings, when they were not ready to announce them. He discriminates certain units under him because he doesn't get along with that manager. I never thought I would leave the team that I found here, but now I am looking for another place to work.

    Advice to Management

    Pay attention when you have mass exodus occurring in certain divisions. Pay attention to poor employee moral.


  6. Friendly, relaxed place to work.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Health Program Auditor in Sacramento, CA
    Former Employee - Health Program Auditor in Sacramento, CA

    I worked at California Department of Health Services full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Recommends

    Pros

    It is a fairly relaxed place to work by State standards. Of course, this all depends who you have for a supervisor.

    Cons

    The California State Medi-Cal systems has a lot of problems and is difficult to enforce rules/laws. This leads to job dissatisfaction.

    Advice to Management

    Clean up the Medi-cal system and treat employees with respect.


  7. Helpful (1)

    The Office of Legal Services (OLS) Within DHCS: Poor Management and Terrible Morale

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

    I have been working at California Department of Health Services full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    The overwhelming majority of the people with whom I work are genuinely sweet, caring, intelligent, and hardworking. Most of my coworkers are here because they want to work on behalf of the public welfare. Generally, DHCS offers opportunities to learn about health care systems and the health care industry, especially Medi-Cal, which DHCS administers.

    Cons

    Upper level management within DHCS OLS generally refuses to promote people from within the organization. My coworker once interviewed for two promotional opportunities. She was overqualified for both of them, if anything, and was long overdue for a promotion. Her output was higher than most of her colleagues. When she got neither promotion, she asked upper level management what had happened. Their response was: "Why would I promote you when I can hire someone from the outside with outside experience?" I know of at least one occasion where DHCS advertised another promotional opportunity, many qualified DHCS attorneys applied, and the chief counsel refused to promote any of them. Instead, he re-posted the position and effectively demonstrated his belief that no one from DHCS was qualified to be a senior attorney. Many of the applicants had dedicated their careers to DHCS and some had over a decade of experience practicing law. It is now simply understood within DHCS that if you ever want to get promoted, even for a relatively minor promotion, you have to go somewhere else.
    Besides creating bad morale for employees, the promote-from-outside policy has created managers and senior attorneys who have no experience with the very specific policies and programs of DHCS. The managers typically have no experience performing the discrete tasks that the attorneys perform on the teams that they are supposed to manage. Because the new managers do not know what their teams do and there is little, if any, formal training for them, they focus on minutiae such as writing down when the attorneys come and go from the office and disciplining them for it while serious, underlying structural problems go unsolved. Besides "clock-watching," the culture is generally one of suspicion, fear, and disappointment.
    Once, an attorney was pulled out of a client meeting to be disciplined for parking in the loading zone in order to unload a rolling briefcase. When she tried to ask what the problem was, she was interrupted by one of her two managers (for some reason, every attorney must report to two managers simultaneously) with "Ah ah ah! I am speaking now," as if she were a naughty child. She was told that her opinion of her own performance did not matter and instructed not to talk.
    On a regular basis, managers talk down to attorneys and reprimand them for nonsensical matters such as parking in the loading zone to move hearing exhibits, coming into work after 9am (even though some of us have to travel and put in long hours on the road), taking more than an hour for lunch (even when we are meeting to discuss our caseloads), or not being at their desks (even though we have client meetings during the day). They have been known to sabotage the work of their staff, by accident or by design. One attorney's manager told him, "I'm not responsible for your career," when she messed up some paperwork and he was effectively demoted.
    But they do not stop with attorneys. It is also not uncommon for support staff to face discipline because they are not at their desks. At least two secretaries have come under fire for "staying too long" in an attorney's office, even though they were helping the attorneys manage files. The managers thought that the secretaries should be at their desks at all times, even though the nature of what they do simply does not allow them to be at their desk all day, without circulating to attorney offices, and still be efficient.
    This would be problematic even if DHCS were operating in "business as usual" mode, but it is not. It is one of the state departments tasked with implementing the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), which means that it has been growing and changing a lot over the last few years since the ACA was enacted. Even with the best and most organized managerial structure, this type of upheaval would be difficult. But DHCS OLS faces these challenges with the whimsical practice of deliberately appointing managers who have neither relevant substantive experience nor experience being managers or leaders of any kind. This creates a horrible atmosphere of uncertainty, a lack of accountability in favor of managers "passing the buck," confusion, accusations, and extremely low morale. It also creates long working hours that other state attorneys simply do not have. Except for the senior attorneys who are just a few years away from retirement, at least one team of attorneys has had almost a 100% turnover rate since I started working here only a few years ago. Our practice area (Medi-Cal) is very complex, but most of the experienced attorneys are so dissatisfied that they are anxious to leave. If you were to walk down the hall and poll a random sample of attorneys and support staff at OLS (as I have), you would find that the overwhelming majority of them hate their jobs and are looking elsewhere. If you believe in public service, as I do, you would find this office an incredibly sad place to work.
    Unsurprisingly, it is hemorrhaging attorneys and support staff.

    Advice to Management

    If I were in the upper echelons of DHCS management, I would seriously consider a total sea change in managers within OLS. Most of the people who are there right now are dismally ill-equipped to be managers, both in substantive knowledge and experience as well as in "people skills."
    End the policy of refusing to promote experienced people from within. Go out of your way to demonstrate that you value experience and knowledge by promoting qualified people within the organization instead of alienating them. Stop the policy of "clock-watching" staff, stop treating them like naughty children, and trust them to manage their caseloads and their time. Try to develop smart, useful policies and implement them fairly. Don't talk down to your staff. Show all OLS staff that you value them and their contributions. Invest in quality skills training whenever possible. Try to create a place where people are proud to come into work and feel that they are valued for their expertise. You will face an uphill battle to win back the respect and admiration of your staff, but it is essential for productivity as well as morale that you do so.


  8. Great learning potential

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Office Assistant in Sacramento, CA
    Current Employee - Office Assistant in Sacramento, CA

    I have been working at California Department of Health Services full-time (More than 10 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Learn a lot about health care industry, writing contracts, and managing plans. Work life balance is good, solid 8-5 hours, very little overtime.

    Cons

    Once your in a position it's hard to promote. There is Environment is dirty and building is not kept up properly.

    Advice to Management

    Promote knowledgeable staff before hiring people off the street with no industry knowledge.


  9. Steady, routine work.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Staff Counsel in Sacramento, CA
    Current Employee - Staff Counsel in Sacramento, CA

    I have been working at California Department of Health Services full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Stable pay and job security are great things. This job offers both, while providing a modest salary. Nothing extravagent, especially compared to peers in the private sector.

    Cons

    Pay is not as great as it would be if you were in private practice. Some of the people you will work with are your typical state workers, and there is no way to get around this. Innovation is nil, as is ambition and real drive from your peers. I doubt this is a surprise to anyone working for a state agency.


  10. Department of Health Care Services

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Governmental Program Analyst in Sacramento, CA
    Current Employee - Associate Governmental Program Analyst in Sacramento, CA

    I have been working at California Department of Health Services full-time (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Recommends

    Pros

    There are a lot of different opportunities in this Department from Clerical to Deputy Director.

    Cons

    The personnel section is quiet slow and sometimes can interfere with time off and scheduled leave.


  11. California Department of Public Health - "Physician, Heal Thyself"

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Richmond, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Richmond, CA

    I have been working at California Department of Health Services

    Doesn't Recommend
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    Some of the technical staff and certain managers are dedicated and excel in their respective fields.

    Cons

    The existing culture and infrastructure of the Department is one that creates turf wars that prevents projects and Department goals from being achieved because cross-functional work is neither desired by the individuals nor promoted or supported by management. In addition, communication from executive management has been delegated to individuals who are new to the department but are lifelong bureaucrats. These individuals have promoted an atmosphere where rigidity replaces reason. Because of the civil service system administrative staff are generally compensated for above private sector norms and conversely professional staff are compensated for at lower than private sector. In the past this was seen as compensatory for the "9-5" nature of government work. However over the past 10 years these "9-5" positions have generally increase in scope and many are required to be monitoring email and working through the weekends and nights. All which might be expected in the private sector however, the compensation for professionals has not caught up with private sector.

    Advice to Management

    Transparency
    Timely clear communication,
    Staunch advocacy for professional staff,
     Education of staff about and Implementation of standard matrix management structures where appropriate within the organization.



Showing 11 of 11 reviews
Reset Filters
RSS Feed </> Embed

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.