There are newer employer reviews for Harvard University
There are newer employer reviews for Harvard University

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Helpful (1)

Harvard = Excellence (but keep it to yourself)

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Current Employee - Program Coordinator in Boston, MA
Current Employee - Program Coordinator in Boston, MA

I have been working at Harvard University

Recommends
Approves of CEO
Recommends
Approves of CEO

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 Management

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.

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  1. Helpful (1)

    Not as much $ as private sector, but worth it for benefits and stability.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Accountant in Cambridge, MA
    Current Employee - Accountant in Cambridge, MA

    I have been working at Harvard University

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The best reasons to work for Harvard are the generous benefits package that is offered, and the work-life balance provided by the time off. Also significant is the brand name of the university and the size of institution, which means many opportunities in the accounting/finance side of things are consistently open in various schools and departments around campus.

    Cons

    The decentralized structure can make some work difficult, since every school or group handles things in their own way. Also, many long-term employees can be resistant to change and increased efficiency through changed business practices, which can be extremely frustrating at times.

    Advice to Management

    Larger bonuses for high performers to recognize performance.

  2. Helpful (1)

    Great career stepping stone but you'll have to work hard

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Graduate Student in Cambridge, MA
    Current Employee - Graduate Student in Cambridge, MA

    I have been working at Harvard University

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The name opens all kinds of opportunities once you look for a job. It helps with your next salary also. Having Harvard on my resume has been the key to getting many job interviews and was directly responsible for getting me 10%-20% more pay in one of my job offers. People tend to be very impressed with the name.

    Cons

    It is very competitive and graduate students get very little respect. Professors don't have much respect for a student's time -- they will call meetings only when it suits them and will be consistently late. They don't give much positive feedback and they don't spend much time thinking about their students' projects. The good part is that it encourages independence.

    Advice to Management

    Treat graduate students with some respect.

There are newer employer reviews for Harvard University
There are newer employer reviews for Harvard University

See Most Recent

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