First Niagara Financial

  www.firstniagara.com
  www.firstniagara.com

First Niagara Financial Reviews

Updated September 28, 2014
Updated September 28, 2014
48 Reviews
2.4
48 Reviews
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First Niagara Financial President, CEO, and Director John R. Koelmel
John R. Koelmel
22 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    I like to work here but the salary leaves much to be desired.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Loan Servicer in Lockport, NY
    Current Employee - Loan Servicer in Lockport, NY

    I have been working at First Niagara Financial

    Pros

    The best reason for me to work at First Niagara Bank is the fact that I have 5 weeks vacation

    Cons

    The management has a major problem with letting the employees know that they are appreciated.
    Except for a Chosen few.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Think of everybody when there are reviews, everyone needs more money not just a small percentage.

  2.  

    Dissapointed

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

    I have been working at First Niagara Financial full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    PLenty of work, small company, great teams to work with.

    Cons

    Management is creating a gap between them and employees. Hostile work environment. Unwilling to listen or change. Only thing that matters is looking like they are making progress. All the decissions are being made by contractors.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change. Keep your promise of bringing work inhouse. Pick a strategy and direction and stick to the plan. See it through.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Disconnected

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

    I worked at First Niagara Financial full-time

    Pros

    Small regional bank with good presence

    Cons

    False expectations set. Company felt unclear with its direction. Pay was not on par with similiar competitors.

    Doesn't Recommend
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  5.  

    WPA wants out!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - No Thanks in Pittsburgh, PA
    Former Employee - No Thanks in Pittsburgh, PA

    I worked at First Niagara Financial full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    The culture that is created in most branches are special and unique...for the most part and it's a job in a bad economy.

    Cons

    This place is falling apart at the seams. Terrible leadership and no direction. Employees are over worked as jobs have been over the past two years. Branch staff can not take a lunch b/c of staff shortages. Advancements are often given to good old boys club rather than individuals that actually work hard and deserve it. No supplies no water no marketing whatsoever no technology no customers no presence. Oh yeah...we are going double and triple your goals. Wonder why they would do that???? Nothing makes sense at First Niagara.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Respect your employees for what they do everyday in the extremely poor environment in which you have created. Most are disengaged, fed up, and over it.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    It's ok

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Customer Service Representative in Phila, PA
    Former Employee - Customer Service Representative in Phila, PA

    I worked at First Niagara Financial full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Good team environment and culture

    Cons

    Unorganize and the training is sub par

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pay attention

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Could Be Worse, Could Be a Lot Better

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - No Thanks in Buffalo, NY
    Current Employee - No Thanks in Buffalo, NY

    I have been working at First Niagara Financial full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    It seems that most individuals have good intentions, provide good customer service and care about the company. There appears to be a strong business plan and an emphasis from Senior Management on carrying that plan through. The company is ambitious and all the acquisitions seem to have worked out.

    Cons

    The "happy" culture they promote is fake. They overwork and undervalue employees. The environment is cutthroat. All the acquisitions brought in too many different groups of people and nobody has direction except for where they used to work.
    Many mid-level managers are power hungry and have no problem throwing an employee under the bus in order to save themselves. Employees who give even the slightest push back receive retaliation and are outcast and made to feel bad.
    What we use in the branches works for the most part but it takes too long to get customers what they need. Even small transactions take too long and there are a lot of headaches. Equipment breaks a lot compared to where else I been.
    No appreedciation and unrealistic expectations and they keep quietly cutting jobs and we are expected to pick up the work of people who leave or are let go without bringing in more people.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    They don't care. They live in a different environment than we do and don't see, or care to see, what's really going on.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    Clear lack of direction and very poor senior level communication skills

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Team Leader in Buffalo, NY
    Current Employee - Team Leader in Buffalo, NY

    I have been working at First Niagara Financial full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Co-workers
    OK Salary for WNY
    OK Benefits
    Flexible time/shifts

    Cons

    Zero advancement in IT unless you come from outside the company.
    Lack of focus/too many projects in flight.
    Heavy effort to out source all services they can.
    Sr. IT Leadership are all talk/no action.
    More project mangers then they know what to do with.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Start at the top and work down quick. The relationship between IT and business units is horrible and only getting worse. Pick a handful of projects and work on those to completion. Listen to the people in the trenches instead of high priced/low yield consultants.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9.  

    Not good

    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Teller in Pittsburgh, PA
    Current Employee - Teller in Pittsburgh, PA

    I have been working at First Niagara Financial part-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Benefits are good ....that's about it

    Cons

    Turnover is high...company is constantly changing staff!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Practice what you preach!

  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    FNFG teller

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Back Up Head Teller in Lockport, NY
    Former Employee - Back Up Head Teller in Lockport, NY

    I worked at First Niagara Financial full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    you receive a paycheck every 2 weeks

    Cons

    -no opportunity for advancement even if you are more than qualified for the job openings
    -everything operates on favoritism, even if you have the best numbers you are not promoted

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get to know all employees and utilize the talent that you have, instead of promoting off of favoritism

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Leadership catastrophe

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

    I worked at First Niagara Financial full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    great logo colors; decent PTO; community involvement

    Cons

    Weak Leadership; Weak Organizational Development and HR departments; extremely political environment; little accountability; no infrastructure (although they are spending some major $$ just to catch up to competitive market) poor stability and portfolio ratings, ESOP plan decreased by>60% during 2012, stock price is pitiful.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Recognize that the organization can only progress to the level of the leader--the organization has been set up to become a case study for learning by neglecting to properly assess talent and culture before executing M&A activity--listen to your employees before pulling the trigger, they are your greatest assets and have the ability to fill the gaps and blindspots of management. Also, competence levels of execs needs to be evaluated--many are in way over their heads.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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