HKS Reviews

Updated September 17, 2014
Updated September 17, 2014
17 Reviews
3.5
17 Reviews
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Recommend to a friend
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HKS President and CEO H. Ralph Hawkins
H. Ralph Hawkins
14 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Hard work, good company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Job Captain/Intern (Architect)
    Current Employee - Job Captain/Intern (Architect)

    I have been working at HKS full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good people to work with. Standards and quality control in place. Great projects and interesting design.

    Cons

    Long hours and little pay. Red tape and high bureaucracy.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Allow more experiences to younger staff and more work/ life balance.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Great projects, but low salary and terrible benefits.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Leading Sports Project Manager in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Leading Sports Project Manager in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at HKS full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Exciting projects and knowledgeable staff.

    Cons

    Pay is low, with bonus structure that is supposed to make up for it. Some years it does, some years it doesn't. Health benefits are bad. Very high deductibles and out of pocket costs.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change the pay structure and health benefits to be more like those of your competition.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Poor Talent Mgmt System

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

    I have been working at HKS full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    I enjoy working with devoted healthcare architects/planners/designers.

    Cons

    The company has a very poor feedback mechanism and talent management system.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The people who are often promoted/supported/fostered at HKS are identified at the onset. However, if you weren't part of the initial talent identification, it is very difficult to be recognized by leadership. Even if individuals substantially develop and grow talent, leadership continues to only groom those identified at the onset of their employment.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5.  

    Overall, a good company to work for but with some flaws (like any other) but mostly good people and work.

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

    I worked at HKS full-time

    Pros

    Good people, decent pay for architecture/design fields, decent benefits. Nationally and internationally recognized work and employees. Provide many resources to try to help you succeed.

    Cons

    Poor communication from management at times, when they do communicate they micro-manage, confusing promotions processes. New location is not exactly as convenient as they would like you to believe.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Family-oriented firm, if you are related to a Principal

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Designer in Dallas, TX
    Current Employee - Senior Designer in Dallas, TX

    I have been working at HKS full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Worldwide practice and sometimes interesting projects.

    Cons

    Very low pay, relying on incremental bonuses to make up the difference. Year-end bonus is a "make-or-break" payment, meaning it could be a great year financially, or a lousy one. (More lousy ones the past few years.) Leadership makes many staff reductions, EXCEPT if you are related to a principal (son, daughter, spouse, etc.) - then you are most likely safe.

    Extraordinary focus on making money as the primary goal. HKS has never really set the world on fire design-wise - it made its fortunes in production work for other firms. While acquisitions of other firms to get into new markets has brought in some new talent, it also skips over long-time mid-senior leaders for principal consideration. New generation of principals are not as knowledgeable and classy as the ones that have recently retired.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stabilize the reductions. Get rid of some of the big-ego principals. Develop a more transparent system for promotion and bonuses.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    HKS is an incredible place to work. Great work life balance

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

    I worked at HKS full-time

    Pros

    Their IT department is small. Hence, you wear different hats, which enables you to learn a great deal. It was a great experience in this regard.

    Cons

    IT management micro-manages employees to the point where they feel stifled.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Have confidence in your employees, they are very talented.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Sound management practices with equitable opportunity

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

    I worked at HKS full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    You will be given enough rope to hang yourself, or prove your worth. Either way, the opportunity to learn and grow and contribute is available. Savvy leaders with experience.

    Cons

    Markets and economy impact this industry. Discipline and planning should be a personal and a professional trait.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    My advice to management would be to continue their responsible (if not always popular) management style.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    It is a great family oriented firm.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Principal in Dallas, TX
    Current Employee - Principal in Dallas, TX

    I have been working at HKS

    Pros

    The people, the values and the wonderful projects. Overall, it is a successful company in regards to client satisfaction and a business oriented climate. Our designs have greatly improved over the last five years.

    Cons

    The economy has been difficult for our profession and HKS has not been totally immune . The loss of 28% of the staff since the Fall of 2008 was difficult for everyone.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Continue to communicate with everyone with open transparent dialogue. All of us feel more informed and prepared when we know what is going on

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Good Place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Executive Assistant in Dallas, TX
    Former Employee - Executive Assistant in Dallas, TX

    I worked at HKS

    Pros

    Fair and good to work

    Cons

    Large company -sometimes get lost in the crowd

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Go easier on the staff that have families

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    The real scoop

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Dallas, TX
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Dallas, TX

    I worked at HKS

    Pros

    - Location
    - Some of the people are great
    - There's some glamour to it - clients, projects, offices, industry

    Cons

    - Lots of politics
    - Cut lots of staff in downturns
    - Very hierarchical
    - Too cost conscious at times

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Respect non-titled employees more. Improve communication with non-titled employees - don't rely on the grapevine. Invest more money in employees - you will get more results and loyalty.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

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