Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

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Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Reviews

Updated March 2, 2015
Updated March 2, 2015
27 Reviews
3.2
27 Reviews
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  1.  

    CMS Innovation Center -- Engaging policy work in a challenging operational environment

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Health Insurance Specialist in Baltimore, MD
    Current Employee - Health Insurance Specialist in Baltimore, MD

    I have been working at Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    - Amazing opportunities to influence the health care system
    - It's possible to find great managers to work under
    - Lots of responsibility without years of experience if you work hard
    - Lots of opportunity for cross-collaboration and team based worked to pursue ad hoc ideas

    Cons

    - Leadership is too focused on the external political environment to spend the requisite amount of time creating clarity and teamwork within the organization
    - Lots of duplicative work and confusion across siloed components that are not forced to work together
    - Very easy to get overwhelmed by the sheer range of initiatives
    - Government operations around contracting, legal issues, hiring, IT systems, and so on are extremely complicated and inefficient -- making teamwork across policy goals and operations extremely challenging

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Zero in on creating clarity around the long term vision and shared goals for the CMS Innovation Center. Reiterate the goals constantly and align leadership and components around meeting the goals. This kind of work requires the Innovation Center's leaders to be present and leading all the meetings on a daily basis--not just once or twice a month. In a nut shell, the Innovation Center's leaders need to be held accountable to meeting shared goals, not just their own product lines -- i.e. model tests.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  2.  

    Student Intern

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Intern - Student in Woodlawn, MD
    Former Intern - Student in Woodlawn, MD

    I worked at Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services as an intern (less than a year)

    Pros

    Very easy, and only have to do work from 9-5. Able to get a full time job from it. People are very laid back. Pays well depending on age and school completed.

    Cons

    Can be boring, don't always have enough for the interns to do. Not a lot of paid leave. No personal growth

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Train the interns more, give them more opportunities.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  3.  

    Not a bad place to gain experience

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

    I have been working at Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    -More opportunity to move up the GS scale than other agencies
    -Hours tend to be long, but there is a lot of leniency on creating schedules, teleworking, etc.
    -Work can be interesting, and has an obvious impact on private industry and consumers
    -CMS tends to receive more resources than your typical federal agency
    -Experience gained translates well outside of the agency if you ever want to leave

    Cons

    -Ability to actually accomplish projects is difficult due to the management structure. Lots of red tape, gate keepers, sign offs, etc.
    -As with any agency, it's difficult to retain good talent and get rid of poor performers. Most of the work in each division or group ends up being completed by a small core of overworked employees.
    -Senior leadership usually does a poor job of supporting employees and generally seem to care more about the job they might recceive after they leave CMS than actually accomplishing the work they are responsible for
    -Hiring and human resources are a nightmare and seem to be completely arbitrary

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
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  5.  

    Has great benefits but a lot of it is poorly managed

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

    I have been working at Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

    Pros

    Good Salary
    Job Security
    Good Benefits
    Flexable hours and work at home

    Cons

    Poorly managed
    Half the people do great work and get all the work dumped on them while the other half socialize and slack off all day
    Some people are hard to work with

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to your employees, they are the ones actually doing the work and know it best.

    Negative Outlook
  6.  

    Ok but not career worthy

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

    Pros

    Stable money and job

    Cons

    No real real room for growth. Creativity is stifled. This are controlled from the central office.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Allow people to speak up AND listen

  7.  

    It is difficult to see how the work actually makes a difference.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Social Science Research Analyst in Woodlawn, MD
    Current Employee - Social Science Research Analyst in Woodlawn, MD

    I have been working at Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Flexible with working at home and work-life balance.

    Cons

    Location is in Woodlawn, enough said. It is a boring area, with nothing around.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Why does senior management not work in the building, but in DC?

    Neutral Outlook
  8.  

    Federal employment

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

    I have been working at Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Flexible schedule, lots to learn about, great place to get experience. As a federal job the salary is good for the work.

    Cons

    Often unrealistic deadlines, sometime the skills of the employees are misaligned with the work. Often there is a change of course mid work.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  9.  

    Good place to learn about healthcare content, not a great place to hone your formal general management skills.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Advisor in Baltimore, MD
    Former Employee - Senior Advisor in Baltimore, MD

    I worked at Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Terrific access to healthcare content and subject matter experts especially if you can spend time in multiple parts of the agency. Many people who work there are very committed to improving healthcare and feel very strongly about the value of building our health system.

    Cons

    The bureaucracy can really weigh you down. There are some perverse incentives in government. There are no financial incentives to market one's success. If anything just the opposite in that if anything, especially something as politicized as health programs, is perceived as being less than perfect it can draw intense criticism. In my opinion this inhibits the sharing and exchange of ideas at times and diminishes opportunities for improvement.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
  10.  

    Constant Change. Never Boring.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Division Director in Baltimore, MD
    Current Employee - Division Director in Baltimore, MD

    I have been working at Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Flexible Work Arrangements, Government Benefits

    Cons

    Acomplishment via Heroics. Lots of staff turnover between components. Other managers poaching staff without a courtesy call. As in most agencies, pay for performance doesn't exist. No tangible incentives to excel other than pride, mission, etc.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pick a direction and stick with it. Become an independent Agency.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  11. 4 people found this helpful  

    CMS - Not just Obamacare

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

    I have been working at Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services full-time

    Pros

    Your reaction to working for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services is likely to be highly individualized depending upon your work unit and manager(s), In general, managers attitude to employees is highly professional. Salaries are generally higher (and in some cases significantly higher) than that job's counterpart in private industry, employees are not expected to work more than 40 hours a week, and managers are not particularly demanding. There is a decent (if no longer spectacular) pension system with some (but limited) 401K matching. Vacation and sick leave is good (and gets better the longer you work there) and most jobs allow for compressed schedules and telecommuting up to two days a week. The quality of many jobs is often dependant on what you bring to the table and your work ethic. Most jobs are located in Baltimore. There are ten Regional Offices, but many of those jobs entail outreach or customer service. IT support is excellent

    Cons

    Token bonuses. Work is often assigned based upon the ability and willingness of the employee to perform it. There is very limited accountability of employees after an initial probationary period, so work is generally not equitably distributed. Many regional office jobs involve resolving problem cases. Obtaining a job, including entry level, generally requires experience in the industries being overseen.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    CMS has been the victim of a mass exodus of experienced and effective employees as they reach retirement age. While civil service rules limit the ability of CMS to hire those employees as consultants, CMS management needs to figure out ways to utilize that talent and knowledge. Many employees operate at a spectacular level, while others do as little as they can get away with. CMS management is hamstrung by existing civil service rules from dealing with mediocre performance, but needs to demand more from employees. The Affordable Care Act website fiasco was likely forseen and the result of White House demands, but CMS management did a poor job in selecting the website contractor and finalizing regulations on a timely basis.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

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