The Standard

  www.standard.com
  www.standard.com
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5 people found this helpful  

Tremendous potential unrealized

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Career Opportunities
Former Employee - Manager in Portland, OR
Former Employee - Manager in Portland, OR

I worked at The Standard

Pros

Very high support of community involvement though employee giving and volunteering
Conservative financially
Ethical
Financially viable
Strong orientation to excellent customer service

Cons

Poor senior management leadership
Internal competition (criticism) favored over cooperation
Politics preferred to results
Employees are not rewarded for promoting new approaches to problem solving
Tremendously outdated systems and processes

Advice to ManagementAdvice

There is little trust that managment "Cares about people". Results are below par due to this.

Doesn't Recommend
Disapproves of CEO

102 Other Employee Reviews for The Standard (View Most Recent)

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  1. 5 people found this helpful  

    A pretty good culture, with a few caveats

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portland, OR
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portland, OR

    I have been working at The Standard

    Pros

    The benefit package is relatively generous, managers are reasonable for the most part, there is ample opportunity for development. Working downtown is a plus in my mind, and makes it possible to use transit to commute.

    The culture is quite benign compared to what I'm used to at other large employers in corporate America. Despite some passive-aggressiveness indigenous to the Pacific Northwesterners, the majority of people I work with are pleasant enough and avoid drama and histrionics.

    Another point is the community involvement. Most places don't care about things like volunteer time, or hosting employee art shows, or allowing military bands to use their front doorstep as a stage during Fleet Week.

    Now make no mistake that the Standard is a publicly-traded corporation and makes decisions based upon business value first and foremost, no matter how warm and fuzzy their published values might seem. But in their defense, if you find your position being eliminated, The Standard is not a place where you will find a box on your desk at 9AM and are asked to leave the premises by 9:30AM escorted by a guard - which is the modus operandi for most corporations today.

    Cons

    The CIO, with the board's support, recently initiated a sourcing program which will shift many IT functions to India. I think there were other options available, but after making years of promises of a streamlined, leaner, cheaper and more responsive IT organization, our CIO had no choice but to throw this Hail Mary (or Hare Krishna, in this case *snicker, snicker*) in order to preserve his job.

    I think the drawbacks and repercussions to the sourcing strategy will most likely be severe enough to cost Mr. O'Brian his job within 18 months. In the meantime, we'll adapt as necessary to keep our operations afloat and projects on track.

    In terms of Senior management, there is a whiff of old-time stodginess apparent just below the C-levels, enabled by a consistently sycophantic cadre of yes men directly below them. The biggest impact is a systemic aversion to new technology and a torpid way of innovating processes, if innovation happens at all.

    My message to some of the other posters on the thread - if you see less than optimal behaviors and processes, become part of the solution! Present a new idea! Troubleshoot a flawed process! Don't complain when your'e asked to test a new product, since testing is integral to successful change management. Don't idly moan and groan while the world passes you by. Step up to the plate, or be quiet.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    -Drive adoption of new technologies more quickly
    -Have the discipline to release the consistent low performers in operational roles
    -Give senior managers a more direct connection to the realities on the ground to provide proper context to business decisions driven by the competitive environment at large
    - IT must become considerably more responsive to the business's needs

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  2. 6 people found this helpful  

    Hey if you want to work hard and get little pay or a bonus this job could be for you....

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Disability Benefits Analyst in Portland, OR
    Current Employee - Disability Benefits Analyst in Portland, OR

    I have been working at The Standard

    Pros

    Great people to work with and in my time my supervisors have been good to excellent. As a large insurance company based in Oregon they have lots of opportunities out of the home office if you live here. You don't have to relocate back east or to the midwest like most large insurers. They are a good, solid and conservative run company and this can be a good thing. They have good sound underwriting practices and don't take on a whole lot of risk by underselling to land a bigger group. As long as they run their business like then have been the future is bright for them....

    Cons

    however if they keep running things like they are they will have a hollow analyst pool in the future. Literally for the last 2+ years we are expected to manage a desk of 2 people. Errors are common as people are too busy to pay attention. Many experienced and long time analysts and claims handlers are burned out and will be leaving. when your bread and butter is your claims (and experience) these are the types of people you cannot afford to run off yet they have been doing so for some time. Minimal raises and a weak bonus program are not enough incentives to keep the bulk of your workforce happy. You want us to handle the amount of work we are doing perhaps a more generous incentive program would be recommended. When 3/4 quarters have been downgraded due to unfavorable claims experience perhaps instead of creating a new fluff layer of mgmt try understanding the work loads you place on people. Management would rather pay back performance guarantees then hire more people...

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Does Sr management actually understand the work loads of their employees?? Do they understand the consequences of new policies and procedures as many of these new procedures burden us even more. Perhaps they do but they sure don't explain this to the employees. Supervisors are well aware of the needs yet they are burned out too and know help won't be coming.

    No opinion of CEO
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