Harvard University

  www.harvard.edu
  www.harvard.edu
There are newer employer reviews for Harvard University

1 person found this helpful  

Excellence at work

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Career Opportunities
Current Employee - Director in Cambridge, MA
Current Employee - Director in Cambridge, MA

I have been working at Harvard University

Pros

Harvard is a world class institution with smart people, abundant resources and outstanding opportunities for personal and professional growth. The culture within my own academic setting is diverse and respectful of divergent views. Benefits are excellent and life/work balance is taken seriously.

Cons

The university is very decentralized; traditionally organized as 'every tub on its bottom'. It can be tough to navigate the landscape but there is encouragement for greater cooperation across units.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Keep up the good work! As a relative newcomer I am impressed with president Faust's messages encouraging collaboration and innovation across the university.

Recommends
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533 Other Employee Reviews for Harvard University (View Most Recent)

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Harvard = Excellence (but keep it to yourself)

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

    I have been working at Harvard University

    Pros

    Harvard faculty are the movers and shakers of the academic world; Harvard staff are smart and well-intentioned people who are hard-working, detail-oriented and precise. It's rare to find your co-worker shirking his/her duty, or doing shoddy work. It's all about the brand. You can't beat Harvard's brand. Harvard=excellence=hard and careful work.

    Cons

    If you are not on the faculty, you are not integral to the core mission of the university (research and education). You have to be content to be low person on the academic totem pole: Harvard, like most universities, is hierarchical. A major downside is that the attitude toward inter and intra workgroup communication varies widely from school to school and from department to department. In some offices at Harvard, you can go for years without being introduced to others in your 25 person department who are outside your 5 person division. This every-tub-on-its-own-bottom philosophy can lead to process wheel-reinventing; unless a faculty member champions a particular innovation, no one else will learn of it. Harvard Medical School's finance, grant management, education, facilities, and human resource offices all have good reason to share information internally via newsletters and updated websites, yet to my knowledge none of these groups reaches out to share information with faculty and staff on a regular basis (probably because they have to spend so much time arguing procedures/policies with their counterparts on the Cambridge campus). Also, it is very difficult to find a better job within Harvard unless you are staying in the same school - inter-school transfers/promotions are very rare.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Don't hesitate to seize the opportunities offered by the opening of the Allston campus. Make sure that Drew Gilpin Faust can forge a bond of trust with Mayor Menino. Establish bus/Zipcar service so that you can get between the Cambridge and Boston campuses in 10-15 minutes without bringing your car to work. Keep the number of deans in check.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  2. 2 people found this helpful  

    A great place to work

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

    I have been working at Harvard University

    Pros

    Harvard has great benefits and a casual work environment. Management structure depends on whether you are in a department or laboratory. As such, the experience is highly variable between schools and departments. Overall, compensation is competitive but not the best. Having Harvard on your resume as an employer is a definite plus.

    Cons

    Harvard is a massive bureaucracy; this can make it difficult to get things done. Many positions are grant funded and thus are a fixed term. It is possible to build a career, but you have to be ready to move around, unless you happen to be lucky enough to get a long-term permanent position.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    A structured, formal feedback program is needed

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
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