University Research Co.

  www.urc-chs.com
  www.urc-chs.com
There are newer employer reviews for University Research Co.

 

Employees need more opportunities for career development and advancement!

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Former Employee - Project Coordinator in Bethesda, MD
Former Employee - Project Coordinator in Bethesda, MD

I worked at University Research Co. full-time (more than an year)

Pros

Some great people and interesting projects. Good maternal/parental benefits.

Cons

Low morale, few career development opportunities, little interest in building capacity of staff, poor human capital management, poor work/life balance, limited promotion potential, low pay. Except under certain circumstances (e.g people with favoritism benefits), employees without MPH, MD, and/or PhD degrees will not go far and will not get to do interesting work, because they are not "technical", even if they have advanced degrees and experience. Favoritism runs rampant with some great employees stuck in their positions for years, while others are undeservingly promoted once or more every year. It is a toxic work environment with in-fighting between departments, managers, and staff. Lots of micromanaging at every level of the company. The turnover rate is through the roof, with a revolving door of staff departures and new hires. Managers are sometimes abusive to staff and unconstructive blame is always being thrown around. Employees spend much of their social time discussing opportunities they are pursuing with other organizations and companies.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Invest more in employees and promote more from within. Many will be in the industry for much of their careers and may not want to work with/for URC in the future. Better starting salaries and raises. Recognize that employees without MPH degrees are capable of understanding and performing "technical" work.

Doesn't Recommend
Neutral Outlook
No opinion of CEO

19 Other Employee Reviews for University Research Co. (View Most Recent)

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great people, horrible work environment.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at University Research Co. full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    1. People, of course. Apart from Sr. Staff, the people at the company are pretty wonderful.

    2. For all the flack that Sr. Staff get, while they're not great at the soft skills, they do bring a lot of knowledge and talent to the table if they could transfer that knowledge down.

    3. The President is probably one of the smartest people you'll ever meet; she's tough but, then, who isn't?

    Cons

    1. You are confined to your division, there's absolutely no cross division collaboration so if you find yourself without billable work in one division, you can't use that extra time to work with colleagues in another division.

    2. There's no room for growth nor encouragement for innovation. However, this is because the company is structured such that staffing is based on the design of the project and, since there’s no cross collaboration, the company isn’t built to move staff around without completely transferring divisions (which is basically the same as quitting in URC parlance). If you really just need a paycheck and aren't concerned with either building a more diversified skill set nor with working at a place that you can invest in, this may actually be a good fit. However, keep in mind that even people that have been at the company 15+ years can find themselves ‘mentored out’ of a job.

    3. I think this was said, but the employee benefits leave a lot to be desired. People generally take lower pay thinking they'll make that up in the benefits package - but this isn't the case. I actually think that people could get beyond their bitter feelings from so little vacation time, such low salaries, etc. if there was at least some encouragement from management that people should enjoy a work life balance.

    4. Lastly, there's no engagement. Information is on a one way road flowing down, there's no feedback going up. The company doesn't engage in any sort of employee engagement survey, HR doesn't do routine exit interviews, supervisors aren't trained in managing people let alone providing or receiving feedback. If anything, there is a sense that employees should be grateful to work their for low pay, which is why URC has been hemorrhaging staff over the last year+.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    My opinion: the company needs to be restructured into more of a pyramid structure, with less senior staff.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    A hostile and toxic work environment due to abusive senior management staff and policies.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Bethesda, MD
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Bethesda, MD

    I worked at University Research Co. full-time

    Pros

    Most of the staff at URC are good people and hard workers. The projects that the company does are generally well-run and make important contributions to the field of global health.

    Cons

    Senior management (with a very few exceptions) make this company a very difficult place to work. Policies and decisions often seem arbitrary and ill-made and do not reflect the best interests of the global health community, the company, or the staff. Most staff are denied opportunities for development and growth, expected to work long hours without compensation or recognition, and inappropriately accused, blamed, and punished for issues beyond their control. The atmosphere here is one of tension at its best and fear at its worst, and many staff (when not fired as a result of the company's decreasing revenue) are choosing to look for other opportunities.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    To turn this company around, you will need to start by changing your attitudes and policies. URC's very competent staff is its best asset, but they must be supported and empowered to do their best work. Your self-serving attitude is bringing this company down.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
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