GlaxoSmithKline Reviews

These reviews contributed towards 2010's Best Places to Work recognition. See ratings and reviews for all time.
30 Reviews

3.7
30 Reviews
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GlaxoSmithKline CEO Andrew Witty
Andrew Witty
29 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • The benefit package is pretty good and the work/life balance is pretty reasonable for pharma (in 40 reviews)

  • Friendly environment good pay and benefits (in 15 reviews)


Cons
  • like any pharma, very high pressure; tough to establish work-life balance (in 15 reviews)

  • Lack of credibility of senior management (in 12 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Good company overall

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Principal Scientist  in  King of Prussia, PA
    Former Employee - Principal Scientist in King of Prussia, PA

    I worked at GlaxoSmithKline

    Pros

    dynamic, business driven, young, practical, adjust fast to the big environment. In 2008 it was the first big pharm company that dares to cut majority of discovery functions and adjust the structure orgnization to big extent. Good company overall. Good health benefit. Good dental benefit.

    Cons

    Extremely low pay especially for those hired many years ago, do not encourage publishing paper, do not retain the best scientists. Need to have competative pay, do comaparable market analysis and equity research, so those at who have stayed at the same positions will get the same pay/ or even higher pay than those new hires.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    competative pay, do comaparable market analysis and equity research, so those at who have stayed at the same positions will get the same pay/ or even higher pay than those new hires.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Excellent company who care about their employees

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior IT Manager  in  Philadelphia, PA
    Current Employee - Senior IT Manager in Philadelphia, PA

    I have been working at GlaxoSmithKline

    Pros

    GSK is very family oriented and strives for a proper work-life balance for everyone. The benefits & salary are very competitive in the pharma industry. RTP & the Philadelphia are are two great places to work. Mass transit available for workers in center city Philly. On-site fitness centers and convenient parking too. Big potential with new CEO Witty.

    Cons

    Minimal amount of cross training. Employees tend to work in same area for years without chance for mobility. Only select few are given opportunity to job rotations and ultimate advancement. Current environment of downsizing has all employees on edge waiting for the ax to fall in their department.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Continue to push everyone to stretch beyond GSK's traditional business model. Note that not all of your lieutenants may not being willing to give up their ways of working and the message is not filtering down.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Transparency and empowerment are just words in the dictionary

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Product Manager  in  Philadelphia, PA
    Current Employee - Product Manager in Philadelphia, PA

    I have been working at GlaxoSmithKline

    Pros

    The beneifts at GSK are a great incentive. I have yet to see a comparable benefits package from anyone in a pharmaceutical organization. The employee health management is incredible. There are many benefits available to GSK employees that assist in the work and personal life balance.

     In most organizations, the dust has settled with re-organizations due to the current economic climate. For the organizations that have been addressed, employees understand their job objectives and the opportunity for advancement is within reach for the employees putting out the extra effort.

    GSK also has incredible communication from Senior management to worker bee. Communications are constantly being distributed to employees regarding pipeline drugs and opportunities in the community.

    Cons

    Currently, there is a lot of bureaucracy at GSK. I would say this is specific to IT, but I hear this is an issue throughout all organizations. Our former CEO expressed how much he disliked all the barriers employees have to complete their tasks. A lot of legwork was performed to remedy this, and I feel the changing of Sr. Management has caused employees to feel less empowered. The bureaucracy still exists and in 11 years now, it has never been more visible.

    Another downside would be the constant outsourcing efforts. Granted, there is a obligation to stockholders to maximize their investments. The effect that outsourcing has on employee performance and morale is off the chart. The environment used to be a family environment. It feels like a very selfish environment now.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There is a huge promotion by the Sr Mgmt team for empowerment. My only comment would be to practice what you preach. The decisions that are made up above are not transparent as they are promoted, and employees for the most part still feel powerless in decision-making.

    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Great place to work and grow for a long period IF you are lucky enough to find the right management

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - C5 Level  in  Philadelphia, PA
    Current Employee - C5 Level in Philadelphia, PA

    I have been working at GlaxoSmithKline

    Pros

    Competitive pay, long term incentives and benefits once in the management band, work-life balance

    Cons

    beauracracy, HR, beauracracy, HR, and HR

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    have people within the business evaluating talent rather than HR ... focus more on retaining key talent than focusing on functions

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Good place to work.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Quality Specialist  in  Memphis, TN
    Former Employee - Quality Specialist in Memphis, TN

    I worked at GlaxoSmithKline

    Pros

    Excellent benefits, competitive salaries, and name recognition. They probably had the best benefits package of any employer I've worked for to date. Vacation time was good, and the year end shut down around the holidays was great. It's the second largest company in the industry, and I was proud to say that I worked for this company. If you are willing to relocate, the career opportunities are endless.

    Cons

    Poor communication from upper management downward. At my particular site, there was the constant threat of the facility closing. It was an older facility and not quite up to date in many ways as some of the other manufacturing sites.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to your people and communicate openly with them.

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    A insider's view of GlaxoSmithKline from one who has worked in several departments

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Business Analyst
    Current Employee - Business Analyst

    I have been working at GlaxoSmithKline

    Pros

    In the IT sector, the benefits and pay at GSK are above the industry for people coming out of college and contractors. They advocate a work-life balance and encourage people to look after their health in addition to your performance. The people who work there are quite experienced and look out for one another.

    Cons

    GSK is a huge company with many departments so the bureaucracy can neutralize new ideas.

    Each department has its own unique culture depending on the management so I've seen people who feel completely open and able to bring themselves to work while other departments, it can be quite stifling.

    Pay and bonus is kept very secretive despite the move towards transparency. At times, it feels like the bonus and pay is more based on how long you've been at GSK and less based on business performance.

    Recruitment tends to favor applicants with a pharmaceutical background. Unfortunately, that leads to the same type of thinking and ideas. New ideas are rarely introduced because if they fail, the bonus will also be affected.

    The company is very risk adverse (rightfully so in certain areas because of regulatory reasons) but it spills over into areas that need not necessarily so.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Empowerment needs to be demonstrated through ALL levels. The upper management may understand the roadmap and the strategies. The early adopters (usually at the analyst level) also are quick to adapt to new ways of working. But the managers in the middle who the early adopters work with every day, are sometimes not as quick to change and can dampen the spirit of change.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Work for a good manager and life will be great at GSK

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Scientific Communications Director  in  Research Triangle Park, NC
    Current Employee - Scientific Communications Director in Research Triangle Park, NC

    I have been working at GlaxoSmithKline

    Pros

    high salary, generous benefits, many days of vacation, generous severance package

    Cons

    in some management situations you can't take advantage of work/life balance benefits, lack of leadership in mid-level management, the constant fear of job cuts as this industry continues to downsize

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    listen to the new CEO Andrew Witty

    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    GSK - great job with little security

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Pharmaceuticals Sales Representative  in  Richmond, VA
    Current Employee - Senior Pharmaceuticals Sales Representative in Richmond, VA

    I have been working at GlaxoSmithKline

    Pros

    I still feel that GSK offers the best products in their respected classes, and that makes it easy to sell a product and be proud and able to sleep at night. I never feel like I am persuading a doctor to do something that is not the best possible treatment. Aside from products, the health benefits are great, and you start with 3 weeks vacation plus year end shut down.

    Cons

    I never feel like my job is safe. Layoffs two years in a row, and there was very little correlation to success and to those who were let go.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There are a million companies to work for in this industry. Keep the pay competitive and make me proud to work for GSK.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    GSK will weather the current storm well

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Director  in  Research Triangle Park, NC
    Former Employee - Director in Research Triangle Park, NC

    I worked at GlaxoSmithKline

    Pros

    Innovation, career opportinities within the company, sense of purpose, pride in products, working with very smart and passionate people, compensation and benefit package is hard to beat.

    Cons

    Current economic climate and change in leadership resulting in many reoganizations, job insecurity. The comapany is so large that there are many bureaucratic processes and effective communication is difficult. Culture does not reward honesty and open communication. Maintaining 2 US headquarters and dual leadership in many areas did not allow the creation of a single corporate culture in the US.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen and learn from your employees. Ask for and act on honest feedback on how to improve the business. The people working at the 5 foot level know what is going on in their area of expertise. The company culture supports discussing the "good" and not the "bad" or "ugly."

    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    it is a different company now with the restructuring

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Sales Representative  in  Orange, CA
    Current Employee - Sales Representative in Orange, CA

    I have been working at GlaxoSmithKline

    Pros

    it's a large and respected company

    Cons

    smithkline is running the company

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    keep your people where they are most productive

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

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