Morgan Stanley Smith Barney

  www.morganstanleysmithbarney.com
  www.morganstanleysmithbarney.com

Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Reviews

Updated October 8, 2014
Updated October 8, 2014
483 Reviews
3.1
483 Reviews
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Morgan Stanley Smith Barney President Greg Fleming
Greg Fleming
143 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Good understanding middle management about work/life balance (in 15 reviews)

  • Good benefits/PTO, fast-paced learning environment, great advisors (in 22 reviews)


Cons
  • There is a disconnect between the companies desire for Financial Advisor Associates to succeed and their actions (in 20 reviews)

  • Invariably, unless you are part of a team you will not make it through the training program (in 13 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Good Experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Intern in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Intern in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Stable career and good work/life balance. My experience as an intern was fairly enjoyable. Got to work on some cool projects and upper management lets you work on whatever you want as long as you finish your other work.

    Cons

    Not enough work--had to search projects out. Small teams and not much collaboration. Fairly quiet office with an older crowd.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    VP

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

    I worked at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Smart people, friendly, learn a lot, eager to teach

    Cons

    Long hours, a lot to do

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    More leadership

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    Luck will shape your experience here

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

    I have been working at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    If you happen to pick the right group to join, then your experience can be awesome...at a discounted salary compared to other banks.

    There are a lot of fun projects to migrate archaic platforms to a new technology stack.

    If you're interested in learning something new or stretching your knowledge, make sure to pick the right group and right boss. You'll know it's the right group when people in that group are smiling and happy even when they are crazy busy.

    Cons

    Salary is relatively low compared to other banks. However, if you're in the right group, you have the flexibility to learn and do new things that you wouldn't be able to do in other banks.

    There's a big chasm between employees who are working on legacy applications versus the employees building the new applications. It's sad because I like the people here.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pay your top talents at the very least what they are worth in the market. At some point, we all get tired of getting less money and we will eventually move on.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Politics may limit job mobility for entry-level professionals

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Associate in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Associate in San Diego, CA

    I have been working at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Looks great on a resume, learn great skills, being able to work with top clients, good work/life balance, pay is decent. if you absorb all the information and go beyond your job requirements, this can be a real plus to your resume in the long run.

    Cons

    work may sometimes be dull, cold calls, many times it felt like a sales job instead of a finance position. upward mobility is limited as an associate.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    Financial Advisor Associate [FAA]

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

    I worked at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    1) MSSB paid for Series 7 and Series 66
    2) Experience life in Corporate Shark Tank
    3) Access to MSSB analysis
    4) Powerful Name
    5) Good benefits

    Cons

    1) Cut Throat and Back Stabbing Culture
    2) Lack of transparency regarding time table; MGMT reneged on time table
    3) You are on your own. Can not trust MGMT or Senior FAs. Everyman for himself mentality. MGMT says has amnesia about past conversations. Can not trust MGMT
    4) Only way to succeed at the FAA role is having having family money or have extensive list of close friends who are millionaires
    5) Business model is to bring in new FAA, use FAA's contacts to close business, give FAA a small % of commission on his leads, then kick FAA out the door when all contacts on his list have been worked
    6) MSSB provides no leads or old clients to manage
    7) Senior FAs are very predatory and promise the world but will not sign partnering contract before closing FAA's prospects

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Business model is outdated and predatory. Give new FAA old small accounts to manage so they can float until business closes.

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

    Great introduction to wealth managemnt

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

    I worked at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney as an intern (more than an year)

    Pros

    Friendly and helpful staff. HR is very helpful through the onboarding process. Coworkers were professional and pleasant. MSSB gives access to 'corporate perks' via an online platform. Office communicates additional opportunities, events, etc via email.

    Cons

    Hard to get accustomed to all MSSB's resources in a short amount of time. Compliance tests are long and annoying, but a necessary process.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    The grass is greener...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Morgan Stanley Financial Advisor in Morristown, NJ
    Current Employee - Morgan Stanley Financial Advisor in Morristown, NJ

    I have been working at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Professional atmosphere, great colleagues, old ML guard leading co.

    Cons

    little further distance to travel

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    don't cut our comp or support staff...look to the higher apid execs for cost savings

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Would definitely go back to work with the right person!

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney

    Pros

    Great people to work with (varies from branch to branch) semi-flexible, great benefits and pay.

    Cons

    The commute was strenuous. Some not so nice co-workers.

  10.  

    Wealth Management Technology

    Current Employee - IT in New York, NY
    Current Employee - IT in New York, NY

    I have been working at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Free coffee and tea. Ability to telecommute depending on the manager.

    Cons

    Managers do not know how to manage and they play favoritism. It seems consultants outnumber employees. A lot of functional redundancy and overlap. People are insecure and a lot of infighting for projects. Strange how the CIO pressures us to reduce our spending, tells us there isn't enough money for better pay and bonuses, tells us our project funding is being cut, along with regular talk of headcount ramp-downs, but managers fly back and forth from NY to London to India. Also, plenty of senior managers hired from the CIO's previous company, who then hired their team members from the company, even though we went through a hiring freeze.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11.  

    Good company but has become stagnant with pay and employee advancement

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

    I have been working at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Nice people, stable work in bad economic times

    Cons

    The salary is a little low compared with other companies.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Increase salary to market to keep employees

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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