Harvard University

  www.harvard.edu
  www.harvard.edu

Harvard University Reviews

Updated October 27, 2014
Updated October 27, 2014
517 Reviews
4.0
517 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Harvard University President Drew Gilpin Faust
Drew Gilpin Faust
229 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • For administrative positions, the work/life balance is decent because staff are unionized (in 47 reviews)

  • Lots of freedom, interesting work, great benefits, unbelievable resources (in 51 reviews)


Cons
  • bad work/life balance, low pay, minimal training unless actively sought out (in 17 reviews)

  • low pay, ceiling/plateau for researchers, no clear path for researches in public health, isolating environment (in 14 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Extremely positive. Be keen to apply technology into your life.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Faculty Aide in Cambridge, MA
    Former Employee - Faculty Aide in Cambridge, MA

    I worked at Harvard University as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    Harvard University is a well-structured organization that truly values and focuses on higher education. My experience at this entry-level position has been extremely positive. I learned a great deal pertaining to research. For the enthusiastic/sincere learner, this is an amazing place to be.

    Cons

    Cambridge/Boston is not a low-cost environment to live in. Be keen to apply technology into your life.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Great place to work

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Harvard University

    Pros

    Nice people, good funding for research, nice location

    Cons

    Parking not widely available or affordable

  3.  

    Excellent benefits, some great departments and people, can be sluggish and hierarchical.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Coordinator in Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Coordinator in Boston, MA

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

    Pros

    I like the academic atmosphere, hours and benefits, paid time-off, etc. Being part of the inner-workings of a world famous institution is sort of fun. Lots of opportunities for training within the University (computer classes, discounted extension courses, etc.).

    Cons

    Depending which office or school you work for, the culture can be stuffy, sluggish, overly hierarchical, bureaucratic, tough to get ahead or move around, get things done, etc. Parking is tough for car commuters.

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Great employer

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Program Coordinator in Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Program Coordinator in Boston, MA

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

    Pros

    Great people, excellent benefits, great setting.

    Cons

    Hard to move up within the company.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Great research facilities and network.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Fellow in Cambridge, MA
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Fellow in Cambridge, MA

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

    Pros

    I enjoyed having the chance to learn things outside of my PhD field.

    Cons

    The work-life balance was poor. Had to work many weekends, but then again that is what is expected when you do postdoc work.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Gold standard of fundraising

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

    I worked at Harvard University full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Profound respect for colleagues, the way things are managed and the constant challenge to serve as the gold standard of development.

    Cons

    It will take a while to climb the ladder since most employees are highly ambitious and competitive. There's also politics involved, as with everything, where if you work with the right people daily you'll advance sooner.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Curatorial Assistant

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Curatorial Assistant in Cambridge, MA
    Former Employee - Curatorial Assistant in Cambridge, MA

    I worked at Harvard University as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    Flexible hours and friendly coworkers!

    Cons

    Parking on-location can be pricey

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  9.  

    Helps you get what you need from your employment

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Course Assistant in Cambridge, MA
    Current Employee - Course Assistant in Cambridge, MA

    I have been working at Harvard University part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Generous pay and nice administration makes an employment at Harvard very pleasant. There are lots of people happy to help you with questions and concerns, and you can expect very nice treatment from your employers. There are so many things you could do at Harvard, you're bound to find something that pays well and offers opportunities for you to grow. Looks good on resume as well.

    Cons

    There is not a lot of training and you're expected to do what you have to from the start. You're given a lot of responsibility that may seem a little overwhelming at times, but you learn at the job and improve. Working with students sometimes is challenging, but rewarding.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    More training and fewer expectations would be nice

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    Lots of smart people, great brand, can be professionally confining

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Fellow in Cambridge, MA
    Current Employee - Fellow in Cambridge, MA

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

    Pros

    The university resources are terrific and by and large are accessible to all--libraries, courses, people. Very open environment in terms of colleagues and ideas

    Cons

    The biggest issue, seriously, is that it is not in the Silicon Valley or New York or LA, so if your field has a commercial center their, for example technology, then you will be surprisingly isolated and behind the curve unless you travel and make an effort to stay in touch. Not true of bio, of course. Harvard is very hierarchical, and you simply have to get used to there always being people with more status, and once in awhile being reminded of your place. That said, to the outside world your place in the Harvard hierarchy tends to matter not at all, given that Harvard itself feels imposing to others. Harvard can become lazy-making for some professionals, as there is a sense of already being at the top of whatever you are doing, and the world outside tends to believe that of you as well, no matter what you really accomplish during your time there. So focus on accomplishment.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Basically I think things run pretty well. Great labs. Great opportunities to learn.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    great on-campus job

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Harvard University

    Pros

    flexible schedule, good pay, rewarding work

    Cons

    work is completely self-guided, tutoring opportunities are taken quickly

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep doing what you're doing!

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