Hill + Knowlton Strategies Reviews

Updated April 15, 2015
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3.7
105 Reviews
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Hill + Knowlton Strategies Chairman and CEO Jack Martin
Jack Martin
40 Ratings

Pros
  • I was at H&K for three years of incredible highs and also terrible downs (in 13 reviews)

  • If you make it known that you want to grow, senior management will really take the time to give advice and mentor you (in 8 reviews)

Cons
  • Work-life balance is verbally encouraged but they don't really mean it (in 10 reviews)

  • H&K as a result has suffered in retaining and winning business (in 9 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

Employee Reviews

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  1. Featured Review

    Helpful (1)

    Major positive impact on my career growth

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

    I have been working at Hill + Knowlton Strategies full-time (more than 5 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    I started at H+K as an intern 7 years ago and have been granted opportunities to work on various projects within various departments, giving me the greatest learning, development and promotion experiences. One of the biggest day to day impacts is working with a great team, who cares about the work we do and contributes to a positive, collaborative, supportive, and goal oriented work environment. Management is always open to and encourages new ideas, improvements and ways to make projects more creative. Also, H+K has put significant time and effort into delivering new industry leading benefits for 2015, including a fitness subsidy, paid time off, training, awards, flexible work schedules and a global mentoring program. The work-life balance has been a major plus for me, and something that would be more difficult to find elsewhere.

    Cons

    Since H+K is part of WPP Group, it can occasionally take more time than expected for certain approvals. However, H+K Management does everything they can to relay information quickly and as it comes from our parent company.

    Advice to Management

    Keep consistently evaluating and implementing best practices in the industry, as you are doing!

  2. Interesting Career Opportunity

    • Work/Life Balance
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Hill + Knowlton Strategies full-time (more than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    During my time at H+K I have had the opportunity to work on some challenging and rewarding projects. I continue to be impressed with the trust that senior management has given me to accomplish on my own, yet they are always available to provide counsel and advice if I need it. I can't say enough about the amazing talent at all levels of H+K. You can always find a subject matter expert (no matter the subject matter!) with the deep experience of H+Kers across the network.

    Cons

    As with other client driven companies, deadlines and customer demands drive work hours. The parent company, WPP, can also pose some procedural challenges, but management does do their best to provide transparency and reduce any impact to employees.

    Advice to Management

    I am really impressed with the new 2015 benefit perks and mentor program. I can't wait to see more programs like these, as well as some of the new training modules soon to be available.

  3. Senior Vice President

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Hill + Knowlton Strategies

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The companies reputation and smart, well connected leadership helps ensure opportunities to work on impressive brands, companies, issues, etc. I sometimes can't believe all I've had a chance to do and have been exposed to! If you are smart, motivated and willing to roll up your sleeves and work you will do well here. If not, you may get by for a while but eventually you will be weeded out.

    Cons

    Whenever you are in a client relations/consulting business, the hours are dictated by them, your clients. A good agency recognizes this. H+K has made great strides to improve work life balance but it eventually comes down to your clients needs and deadlines. Any agency who tells you otherwise, is lying to you or not keeping clients long if they aren't willing to respond to them when needed outside of the "regular" business hours.

    Advice to Management

    I think H+K is on the right path. Continue with what you are doing. And great new hire to run the DC office!!!

  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. Two offices, 15 years... one great career!

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

    I have been working at Hill + Knowlton Strategies

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    I have worked with H+K Strategies for over 15 years and in two U.S. offices. I had no idea when I joined the firm as an Account Executive that I'd stay so long or work on so many great clients. One day my work could lead me to a construction site in southern Georgia where I was part of a house crew on a Habitat for Humanity house and the next it was to New York City where I was part of a team that received two Silver Anvil awards for a ground-breaking campaign we developed for a client. The sky is the limit here. You have to work hard, but my experience has showed me that H+K really does give back as much as it gets from you -- and vice versa.

    I also had no idea that after 4 years of working in one office, life would pull me to a new market and that the H+K office there would accept me with open arms and create even more opportunities to grow and excel. Being part of a global company also has its perks. The access to staff in almost every country in the world... the interesting perspectives we share with each other -- and the wealth of knowledge -- and the sheer talent is truly impressive.

    The last point I'll make is that recently the firm also rolled out some new policies that really are industry leading. If you are looking for a firm that offers a lot, we have certainly upped our game on that front -- from being somewhat behind the times to now being out in front. Every day things like a day off for your birthday or a monthly gym subsidy to the big policies that you need maybe once or twice in a lifetime but when you need them, boy do you need them. How about 16 weeks of PAID maternity leave?! Then there's also work from home options, a decent amount of paid holidays...even a sabbatical option after five years... How many companies can say they offer these things, much less a large, global PR firm?

    Cons

    There has been a lot of transition at the senior level over the past few years, but things appear to be on stable ground now with a great new U.S. CEO who genuinely has the best interest of the firm and its people at heart. Being part of a large, publicly trade company also makes it difficult for consistent raises and promotions when we are tied to global financials, but that is no different than many other agencies.

    Advice to Management

    Keep communications open with the staff, continue to be transparent. Continue to invest in more training and keep a constant focus on "people first" -- great client work with result!

  6. Hill + Knowlton Strategies is a great place to get experience and start your career in PR and communications.

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

    I have been working at Hill + Knowlton Strategies

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    There are great training and development programs as well as everyone gives you an opportunity to be part of the team whether you are an intern or just starting out.

    Cons

    There has been a lot of transition over the last few years, but new employees wouldn't be affected.

  7. Good until the merger with Public Strategies

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

    I worked at Hill + Knowlton Strategies

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Great clients, great people, fantastic opportunities to learn as much about public relations and client service as you could.

    Cons

    Long hours, turnover at the highest levels, not the same place after merging with Public Strategies. Became an old boys club.

  8. Ive had an amazing experience at H+K, with lots of opportunity for growth

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Vice President in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Senior Vice President in New York, NY

    I have been working at Hill + Knowlton Strategies full-time (more than 3 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The people is a great reason to work here, which includes the US Senior Management team. The addition of the Inside/Outside policies, which incudes extended maternity/ parental leave, plus fitness subsidies, flexible work arrangements, ability to work remotely, sabbaticals, tuition reimbursement and more, shows how much the company cares about employees

    Cons

    Although there have been a lot of changes with senior management over the past few years, you can now see a stable, consistent team is in place

    Advice to Management

    Keep listening to the employees

  9. Great company with smart talented staff

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY

    I have been working at Hill + Knowlton Strategies

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    H+K has very smart, capable and ambitious people working at the firm. There is a great work/life balance and very generous benefits and perks that everyone can take advantage of. Additionally, there are excellent training programs and the ability to build relationships across the network.

    Cons

    There can be a challenge when it comes to promotions and salary increases as they are governed by WPP's process and timing which do not always align with employees' career path

    Advice to Management

    Continue to work to cultivate and retain the junior to mid-level talent

  10. Amazing Experience for Hard Workers

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

    I worked at Hill + Knowlton Strategies

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    H+K offers incredible experience with great brands and really smart people. The hourly billing rates are high, so most can be assured that any clients paying that billing rate understand what PR is and value it in some way, so while you always have to prove your value, you typically don't have to explain basic PR tactics to clients. For a global agency, there's actually some unexpected work-life balance perks in some of the offices.

    Cons

    Every large organization has its challenges, and agencies are no different. But unless hard work just isn't for you, the pros greatly outweigh the cons.

    Advice to Management

    My advice to management would be the same anywhere. Especially in a service organization, your people are your greatest asset. Continue investing, appreciate them and listen to their ideas.

  11. Overall, good place to work

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Hill + Knowlton Strategies full-time

    Pros

    Great client basis and all levels of employees seem to have decent access to the high-profile clients. Nice perks (e.g., H+K Inside/Outside) and good insurance.

    Cons

    Slow promotion cycle and lack of transparency around the process. Difficult for employees to determine what they need to be doing in order to get promoted more quickly.

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