Cambridge Associates, LLC

  www.cambridgeassociates.com
  www.cambridgeassociates.com
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There are newer employer reviews for Cambridge Associates, LLC

8 people found this helpful  

This is a true in-depth review of the associate job.

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Career Opportunities
Current Employee - Investment Performance Associate  in  Arlington, VA
Current Employee - Investment Performance Associate in Arlington, VA

I have been working at Cambridge Associates, LLC

Pros

- Cambridge offers those with no finance background the opportunity to say they work in "finance."
- We literally have all types of majors in our Performance Reporting department and you need absolutely no experience or knowledge to excel at the job.
- It is a great opportunity for those with low expectations, who are waiting to go back to school. or who wish to take the CFA for free. The firm pays for all three levels of CFA testing along with reimbursement for tutorials and such.
- The work is also very easy and you often work 9 to 5. The culture of the reporting department is also fun because everyone is under 28 years old and it is very collegial ie happy hours and lots of joking around.
- You also get 3 weeks of paid vacation along with many holidays to start (please see cons section also!)

Cons

- Absolutely no incentive to go above and beyond ie no bonuses.
- You basically work for people who are about a year or two older than you which can create an odd hierarchy.

- Here is what you will actually be doing:
you will have 10-15 clients
you will collect all 10-50 statements from each client's hedge fund/mutual fund/etf investments
you will enter the market value, transaction, and return data into their proprietary software system
once your "analyst" (the 2 year older guy) checks your homework, he will say "run the report"
you will press a button and churn out the report
you will check the report, your team leader will check it, the analyst will check it, then the consulting associate will check it.
you will get edits and be asked to change certain things or rerun the whole thing
you will send it back up the lines
it will be sent to the client
you will do this every month for almost every client or every 3 months for ones that get only quarter reports

- How do you get promoted? Every "analyst" you gave a report to has to say "I think he's ready for the promotion." Then, if there is a spot open, you will move up.
- And what does moving up mean? A couple thousand dollars more and you get to ask associates to do all the minutia grunt work on you reports. But, you still answer to the consulting associate and largely do the same thing ie checking reports.

- Recruited for the job as if associates would be active in the consulting process which turned out to be misleading.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

- Give bonuses to drive hard work. Gift cards don't work that well for young professionals.
- Stop recruiting from top undergrad b-schools! These kids are often overqualified and this work turns their brains to mush.
- Hire kids out of smaller schools and community college, pay them less, and save the firm a ton.
- Organize some interaction with the consultants to let people with real industry experience mentor these young folks (that's most likely the reason they came to Cambridge in the first place).
- Make consultants, local professors, or somebody lead continuing ed sessions.

Doesn't Recommend
No opinion of CEO

132 Other Employee Reviews for Cambridge Associates, LLC (View Most Recent)

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Fantastic First Job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Consulting Associate  in  Menlo Park, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Consulting Associate in Menlo Park, CA

    I worked at Cambridge Associates, LLC

    Pros

    Great people, collegiate work environment, very intellectually stimulating, great opportunities post Cambridge, opportunity to meet a lot of the best money managers in the world.

    Cons

    Lower than industry pay, top performers not rewarded, lots of dead weight, progress is slow, small bonuses, don't try hard enough to keep their top associates.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Try harder to retain top talent in both the associate and consultant levels. I think a lot of talented people end up leaving because the pay and promotion schedule isn't catered to the top performers.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great Firm, Good Work, Poor Pay

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Consulting Associate  in  Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Consulting Associate in Boston, MA

    I have been working at Cambridge Associates, LLC

    Pros

    - Opportunities for personal and professional growth
    - Brilliant Consultants/MD's always available to explain rationale or investment philosophy
    - Unrestricted access to clients, managers, etc...

    Cons

    - Base pay is very low
    - Bonus structure doesn't lend itself to inspiring above-and-beyond performance
    - Hours can be grueling at times

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Cambridge Associates is a well-managed firm. CA's work hard and put in the effort to differentiate Cambridge from its competitors. That hard work and aptitude should be rewarded with a pay structure more in line with the industry norms.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
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