There are newer employer reviews for Edelman Financial Services
There are newer employer reviews for Edelman Financial Services

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Helpful (5)

Perfect fit for those looking to become part of a small, successful company on the upswing

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

I have been working at Edelman Financial Services full-time

Pros

The employees are fantastic people. It's always nice to work with people you get along with, but there's something even cooler about my co-workers. I've spent time at both of the big offices, Richmond and Fairfax, after beginning my time at one of the satellite branches in Northern VA. Aside from the people being great, the company treats it's employees very well - benefits are above average, salary is higher than most other brokerage firms, and the understanding Edelman has about its employees' personal lives is one I wish all companies would adapt. Very family-oriented atmosphere. I think Ric has done a wonderful job creating a culture that is fun to work in, but also one that has clear goals for advancement and growth.

Cons

Smaller companies are obviously less well-known throughout the industry, so when looking to advance your career after Edelman, it could be tough to convey how much hands-on work and knowledge you attained from the company if the potential employer isn't familiar with Edelman's businesses model.

Advice to Management

it's tough to compete with firms who spend insane dollar amounts on promotion and advertising. I know Ric's radio show and books have worked really well in helping the average citizen understand more about their own financial opportunities, but I also think that catering some material towards larger groups (i.e. small businesses, churches, local organizations) would keep with the ethical and education-focused initiative Edelman implements while also expanding the business and scope of operations.

Other Employee Reviews for Edelman Financial Services

  1. Helpful (13)

    The Truth About Money? You won't retire with much working here.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Client Service Associate in Fairfax, VA
    Current Employee - Client Service Associate in Fairfax, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Edelman Financial Services full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Employees receive perks like the occasional firm wide lunch, holiday inspired events such as an Easter egg hunt, Oktoberfest, and summertime raffles for Washington Nationals tickets and Wolf Trap tickets. The firm also offers some employees, depending on their position, the opportunity to get firm licensing (series 6,7,63,65,66), but you need to be in a position or prove the absolute necessity for said licensing before they will consider sponsoring you. There’s also a casual dress code, they call it the “no tie zone” meaning no suits or ties required except for the rare visit by the board of directors which happens maybe twice per year.

    Cons

    Promotions are extremely rare and only happen within the same group of about 15-20 people in the executive and upper management positions. These are the people who were with the company namesake from the beginning of the firm. Newer employees are typically treated like outsiders invading “their” company and are generally “required” to volunteer and attend one of Ric Edelman’s financial seminars after hours as unpaid lackeys handing out pamphlets. The Executives and Upper Managers have never worked for an actual brokerage firm and have no idea how things truly function within a financial operations environment. As such, there is excessive micromanagement and constant change of direction within the firm. The company has an issue with outsourcing technical jobs to outside vendors. They currently have a group of non-technical staff members attempting to build the company’s CRM software to individual department specifications and they have no idea what they are doing. The firm also recently decreased the 401k from 6% match of 6% pay to 3% match of 10% pay, which is a major blow to employees just trying to survive the current and ongoing recessionary period. There are also no bonuses for the small employee; however Financial Planners receive a cut of the annual fee received from the clientele. Merit increases are on the very small end and seldom match actual cost of living expenses incurred within the DC metro area economy. Employees are strictly prohibited from using company phones, email, and internet for personal use, so you’ll have to make sure you have a smart phone if you want access to the outside world like your family or daycare. Camaraderie is generally prohibited, as it may disrupt or interfere with potential client interviews. The turnover rate is generally high, most likely a condition of the above mentioned scenarios and a lack of team or family feel within the firm. Finally, they claim there is an open door policy but it is tracked by what they call the “big brother” policy. So no matter what you say on the phone, post on the firm intranet, or do otherwise with firm technology, it is recorded and reviewed by upper management, including Compliance and Human Resources. The receptionists at the front desk even mark down the time you arrive and leave down to the minute. If you’re not privy to this, it will be used against you in your review and against whatever merit increase you may expect to receive.

    Advice to Management

    Outsource your technology constraints to outside vendors. Asking your non-technical employees to try and work miracles by guessing on what to do is not working and this is relevant with the many meetings, trainings, changes in policies, etc we endure on a weekly basis. Invest in the employees by offering an honest bonus for hard work done with a cut of what the planners receive. Anyone can follow a script and bring in new assets under management so reward the operations personnel as such. Take the impersonal feel out of the company, we work hard but we don’t get the down time you think we receive. Hire people with actual IT, financial and brokerage experience. It takes someone that has the right skill set to truly complete the job the way it’s meant to be completed.


  2. Helpful (12)

    Not a good fit for people with ambition or looking to grow in their career.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at Edelman Financial Services full-time

    Pros

    Edelman is a good place to work if you need a reliable job that doesn't take too much of your time. For the most part, you can expect to put in your hours and not have to work overtime, nights, or weekends. Although the company seems to change it's direction quite often (they have been bought out twice, gone public and then private, and have launched and then cut a dizzying amount of different products and services), normally this doesn't affect the average employee's day to day life, making it for the most part a safe and predictable environment. All employees get 3 weeks of vacation/sick time (first year employees will have the time prorated from their start date), and never get pressured to skip vacation or come into the office when sick. Fairfax headquarters staff receive some nice perks including free workout facilities and the occasional lunch brought in for staff, and DC area employees can enter raffles for Nationals tickets and Wolftrap tickets. For the most part the employees are nice and friendly, and it's not hard to get know everyone.

    Cons

    For those looking to advance their careers, be aware that promotions are rare and usually happen within the same group of about 10-20 people in middle management positions. Client Service Associates in particular (this position makes up a good percentage of the company) are almost never promoted. Although there are always new projects in the works, there is little opportunity to get involved or exposed to anything outside of your own individual responsibilities unless you are well known and well liked by management, almost all of whom work in Fairfax and rarely meet those who work in the satellite offices. Although the hours are predictable, there is little room for flexibility. 9 hour workdays with a 1 hour lunch are strictly enforced, meaning that you cannot take a 1/2 hour lunch or just eat at your desk in order to shorten your workday. There is some flexibility for working either 8-5 or 9-6 (depending on your department), but that's about the extent of it. Telecommuting is not allowed unless you are a financial planner or in the IT department. Raises also seem somewhat rare and usually do not match cost of living adjustments. The company policy is not to give "raises" every year, but to give "merit increases" to those who deserve them. It's a very confusing and subjective standard. The company itself has changed considerably in the last 5-10 years. They have gone from being a small, fun, family-friendly company that didn't take itself too seriously to a large, national corporation with many fewer perks and a much more impersonal feel. There are many layers of management, making it difficult to feel you have a voice or any influence on the policies and procedures that get handed down to you. Perhaps in part because of this, turnover is high. It seems at least once a week we receive an email stating, "the following individual is no longer with the company" (a good example of the impersonal nature of the staff).

    Advice to Management

    Take the impersonal feel out of the company and go back to the more employee-centric model that used to exist. Invest in the employees, and the company will be even stronger for it.


There are newer employer reviews for Edelman Financial Services
There are newer employer reviews for Edelman Financial Services

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