Consumer Reports

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Consumer Reports Reviews

Updated September 3, 2014
Updated September 3, 2014
39 Reviews
2.8
39 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Jim Guest
11 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Times they are a'changin.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Editorial  in  Yonkers, NY
    Current Employee - Editorial in Yonkers, NY

    I have been working at Consumer Reports full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Excellent mission, nonprofit, important service to consumers

    Cons

    Clueless management, flailing about for a solution to a changing industry

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 5 people found this helpful  

    Don't Believe the 5-Star Reviews

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

    I have been working at Consumer Reports full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    - Union shop, although the union has little teeth these days.
    - Gymnasium.
    - Top-notch editors

    Cons

    - Incompetent, callous management
    - Questionable business plan
    - Fear rules the day
    - Staff stretched to thin
    - HR is an arm of management and doesn't administer to employee needs

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The current upper management won't listen to any dissenting recommendations, so I don't feel compelled to give them. I do have to say that all of the recent 5 Star reviews were written by desperate management looking for a new CEO and Editor (they've been turned down countless times because nobody wants to lead in such a toxic environment).

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Interesting organization in transition

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Content Creation  in  Yonkers, NY
    Current Employee - Content Creation in Yonkers, NY

    I have been working at Consumer Reports full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Many great staff and managers trying to reinvent this venerable brand for the diigital age. Great place to work and make a real difference (and a name for yourself) if you are energetic, keen to make an impact and in tune with the future vision. Friendly culture. Some VPs have really clear ideas but others (why are there so many?) seem to add little. Great organizational mission to help all consumers and make the world a better place - what's not to like about that!

    Cons

    Long serving and very vocal staff whining about the good old pre-digital days can be a real drain. Many seem to think they are entitled to a job for life and have no idea what it's like to work in other places. Some lower level managers seem out of their depth. Outgoing CEO (he's overdue to retire) seems indecisive and obsessed with making old-timer staff happy. Terrible cafeteria - not exactly Google!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Find a new CEO soon and make sure it's a good one. Stop pandering to old-timer staff so much with endless all staff briefings and awful Q&As, they'll whine whatever you do. Just make great things happen!

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 2 people found this helpful  

    I've loved working at Consumer Reports for about the last 10 years or so.

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

    I have been working at Consumer Reports full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    The people here are wonderful. There are doctors ready to take on the healthcare industry and to use evidence-based ratings for surgeries, hospitals, physicians. The journalists are really smart and committed, and the engineers and scientists are topnotch people working with a mission. Working with smart, committed people is a turn on, frankly. I have had a number of jobs, but this is the first where I almost always want to get to work. A senior colleague of mine at CR calls the place "geek chic." Going to the labs and seeing how they test products (and they are always asking the rest of us to join in on testing), collaborating on a story with other investigative journalists, like those at Propublica, watching the talented organizers in Texas, Yonkers, DC and San Francisco work with committed citizen activists -- this stuff is really fun.

    The place is going through a pretty radical transformation to get in front of the curve that's overtaken print legacy publications. What to do with mobile? How do you monetize it? OK, the website was a big thing in the late 90's -- the first of its kind and largest to charge subscribers and to be ad-free -- but what's the next big thing? Or the next several medium sized things? Everyone is trying to figure that out and CR, in the last year particularly, has brought in new digital product and services leaders to move the place forward. The proof is still to come, but they are energizing the place.

    I like seeing a number of people who were unsung stars get promoted -- which has been happening recently. We're getting a mix of new talent and ideas from the outside, which is shaking up the culture in good and sometimes tumultuous ways, but also promoting talent from within. It's not always comfortable to be in the midst of such transformation, but it's also very exciting.

    When I first came to CR there would be no cars in the parking lot by 5 or 5:30 pm. I wasn't used to that. And almost every month there was another party for someone who had been there 25, or 30 or 40 years. It was like my Dad's generation's experience of work life. There are lovely things about that, but also down sides. That culture is changing, making some people feel like they are losing a family that they had come to depend upon. But for folks like me, who never intended to be one place for 40 years, it's a good thing.

    Benefits are really good. And there is a real understanding among leadership, even while they drive things forward, that people have to have a work/life balance. Some of the senior leaders (particularly, but not only, the women) are really good about extending that to their staff, as well as showing that they have that even while they are so committed to their work. That's a really nice thing about the place. And if something tough happens to you on the family or personal front, this place really rallies around you and gives you the support and flexibility you need.

    Cons

    CR needs to do more to develop people and show them they have a career track. And of course transformation is unsettling. Some long time leaders have been let go. New senior leadership often wants new deputies, so some of that is to be expected. What's hard for many of my colleagues, and occasionally for me as well, is to see someone who loved the place and was devoted to the mission, and who contributed greatly for years, end up having to leave. If you've been other places, you know this happens. CR just isn't / wasn't used to it. And so there is uncertainty, but also excitement. The biggest thing we're waiting on is who the new CEO will be. There's a search on now.

    The other thing that is a con, is that the place really does need to do a better job with diversity at many levels, including the most senior.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen, engage, keep your doors open and find better ways to recognize the talent around you. And figure out how to make it more clear to folks that they have a career trajectory at CR. It's a small place, and leadership positions don't always open up as often as one would like. How do you get around that? You need to be thinking more about that, and being creative.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Lost its way

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Manager  in  Yonkers, NY
    Current Employee - Manager in Yonkers, NY

    I have been working at Consumer Reports full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    The company has a great mission--to inform and protect consumers by providing ratings of products and services and working for a safe marketplace. In general the employees are on board with the mission and feel like they're helping consumers. On-site gym is nice.

    Cons

    In addition to the endless rounds of layoffs, management does not seem to have a plan going forward to resuscitate the business. Laying off people will not solve the problem--you need to add other revenue streams.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    Fortunate to enjoy my work and am respected, but there are issues here

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    Current Employee - Content Creation Group  in  Yonkers, NY
    Current Employee - Content Creation Group in Yonkers, NY

    I have been working at Consumer Reports full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    Some perks, benefits (time off, healthcare costs, work hours), relatively relaxed working environment, company recognizes need to fix problems and is trying.

    Cons

    Piss-poor financial compensation for middle management; execs say they are open to hearing from employees, but they don't want to hear ANYTHING that goes against their plan; glacier-like movement on fixing website ills; union environment (too much overpaid dead wood that can't be fired); more gripers than hard workers.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You need to do actually listen to the concerns of people. Too many meetings and "training" sessions; let us do our jobs. Upgrade computers!!

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 3 people found this helpful  

    My experience: Insane work hours, good benefits, senior management out-of-touch.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Managing Editor  in  Yonkers, NY
    Former Employee - Managing Editor in Yonkers, NY

    I worked at Consumer Reports full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Interesting work. Friendly co-workers. Onsite fitness center. Good benefits.

    Cons

    Senior management out of touch. Needed information not shared with the rest of employees. Insane work hours (often 60 hours a week, uncompensated if you're in management). Little to no recognition by senior management.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be more in touch with employees. Share information essential to the performance of their jobs. Acknowledge employees for job well done.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 2 people found this helpful  

    Incredible mission and culture negatively impacted by loss of tech talent and HR issues.

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

    I worked at Consumer Reports as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    Ethical mission, wonderfully maintained up by research, survey, and testing staff. Advocacy teams are second-to-none. Unique opportunities should abound here.

    Cons

    Major politics in HR. Work/life balance under attack due to new approach to Talent Acquisition function. Major loss of technology personnel.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Accelerate opening NYC technology center. Revert Talent Acquisition approach to be less politics-focused, more ethical, more customer-service oriented, as it used to be.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 5 people found this helpful  

    Fear and Loathing in Yonkers

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Test Project Leader  in  Yonkers, NY
    Current Employee - Test Project Leader in Yonkers, NY

    I have been working at Consumer Reports full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Talented people, nice cafeteria, test-sample auctions

    Cons

    New management is incompetent, uncaring, and sometimes cruel.
    Management uses the threat of layoff or firing to motivate employees to do more in less time and with fewer resources.
    Co-workers are stressed out, fearful of being next to get the axe.
    Lying is considered valuable in interoffice communication; it is only a matter of time before this lack of ethics makes its way into the publication.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat workers like human beings.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 4 people found this helpful  

    No longer a good place to work

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

    I have been working at Consumer Reports full-time

    Pros

    The staff that does the testing and actually creates the products is dedicated and terrific, if unheralded. Good benefits, though eroding. May still be a reasonable place to work if you're a test engineer or in IT.

    Cons

    Zero accountability for some senior managers, a few of whom are lacking in conscience. They have license to do just about anything they want to those below. E.g. They recently fired CR's chief editor without cause, with the blessing of both HR and the CEO. There's widespread fear among day to day staffers that any of them could be next. If this is the kind of place you'd like to work, good luck!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Board of Directors: Get your heads out of the sand and learn the truth about the goings on in the organization by speaking directly with rank and file. Then remove those responsible at the top who have ruined what was once a proud and admirable organization. Restore integrity, honesty, and competence to CR's management.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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