PwC

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PwC Reviews in McLean, VA

Updated December 24, 2014
Updated December 24, 2014
93 Reviews
3.5
93 Reviews
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PwC US Chairman & Senior Partner Robert Moritz
Robert Moritz
93 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • No work-life balance during busy season because the nature of assurance work (in 257 reviews)

  • You learn a lot about how to run complex businesses in fast-changing environments (in 132 reviews)


Cons
  • Work-life Balance does not exist as much as they say they are still working on it (in 930 reviews)

  • Long hours that often keep me at the office or working from home late at night (in 866 reviews)

More Highlights

93 Employee Reviews Back to all Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    great company, but will wear you down

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Tax Senior Associate in McLean, VA
    Former Employee - Tax Senior Associate in McLean, VA

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

    Pros

    - great benefits
    - great people
    - lots of flexibility
    - excellent training

    Cons

    - expectations don't seem to be commensurate with the compensation
    - promotions and company standing seem to be very political-based
    - they will overload you with work over time even when your schedule is already full and doesn't accommodate
    - even though they say it is easy to rotate around within the company, it is not nearly as easy as they make it seem, especially if you are considered a vital cog within a particular group or engagement

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    - listen to your staff's complaints and try to address them, particularly with the compensation
    - focus on adjusting your structure for evaluating employees (the new Snapshot program seems very faulty)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Needs to be more accommodating and flexible for its employees

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Advisory Associate in McLean, VA
    Former Employee - Advisory Associate in McLean, VA

    I worked at PwC full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    It's ok for decently talented people, I guess.

    Cons

    It's huge. You get lost in the numbers. They don't really differentiate between great and ok candidates. Wide range of ability. Pay is meh versus rest of consulting industry. No exit opps (they don't pay for MBA).

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop sucking so much... You don't listen to the associates, when they probably have the best suggestions for improvement. You won't retain and build talent if you treat your building blocks badly. And you won't develop talent if you don't differentiate between the best and the not-best.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    Washington Federal Practice: Robotic, vanilla and bureaucratic

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Associate - Advisory in McLean, VA
    Former Employee - Senior Associate - Advisory in McLean, VA

    I worked at PwC full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Great training opportunities, great culture (typical employee is hard working, not arrogant), great brand. I am still impressed with service discipline of partner down to new associate

    Cons

    As one partner told me, "This is not a meritocracy." Upward advanced is dictated on loyalty to aligned Director & Partner... no ability to cross-sell or jump to another team despite ones expertise or value.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Reconsider promoting terrible people

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Long hours, good benefits, decent pay, huge name

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Associate - Advisory in McLean, VA
    Current Employee - Senior Associate - Advisory in McLean, VA

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

    Pros

    Benefits are pretty good
    * "flexible" work schedule options (note that at PwC "flexibility" definitely goes both ways -- the firm expects you to flex when it needs you to as well)
    * performance bonus generally fair
    * above average pay increases yearly

    Cons

    Working 9 to 5 (or 9 to 6) really isn't possible. Everyone has a smartphone and people are expected to be responsive at all times. Even if you're only at the office for 8 hours a day, you'll still be expected to keep your phone handy. Worse, your performance is judged relative to your peers, which can breed a pretty competitive environment if you're on the bench and have lower than normal utilization.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The college recruiting model has served them well for a long time. However, I've noticed that the more recent start classes out of campus are less willing to put in the effort and hours that previous classes were. Partners, directors, and managers should recognize this and start adjusting expectations with clients accordingly (I think the younger folks are right -- no reason for us to be working 50-60 hour weeks). In my vertical, we have a number of people that will do 9 to 6 even if the rest of their team is doing 9 to 8.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Great company if you can fit in.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - WFP Senior Associate - Advisory in McLean, VA
    Current Employee - WFP Senior Associate - Advisory in McLean, VA

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

    Pros

    Great training opportunities, great industry experience, great benefits and perks, and a name other companies know and respect.

    Cons

    No real work/life balance; less likely to retain staff of a certain age if their seniors; some market teams clearly have cliques that if you don't fit in, you will have a difficult time as an employee.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Find a way for coaches and mentors to do more than 'ticking' the boxes-making them accountable will go a long way in building better employees experiences.

    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Crash course into the busy corporate world.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Tax Associate in McLean, VA
    Current Employee - Tax Associate in McLean, VA

    I have been working at PwC full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    I have only been here 8 months and my email, linkedin are flooded with recruiting emails.

    Cons

    Low pay in comparison to the hours you work. Getting stuck in a group becomes a problem as well. Once you get in the firm, it isn't as easy as managers make it sound to move around.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire upper level leaders who focus on building the team rather than their own image.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    Nice first job after college

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Experienced Tax Associate in McLean, VA
    Current Employee - Experienced Tax Associate in McLean, VA

    I have been working at PwC full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    You can gain insight into all different types of business.

    Cons

    Long hours and no work/life balance.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Catalyst Hire? No thanks.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Advisory Director in McLean, VA
    Former Employee - Advisory Director in McLean, VA

    I worked at PwC full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    PwC's "brand" is remarkably high and it brings in a lot of remarkable "catalyst" hires from industry and government.

    Cons

    The problem with PwC and catalyst hires is that the firm has no real way of utilzing them or properly integrating them into practice groups. Other directors and below resent new personnel coming in at their level or above, potentially taking promotion chances away from them. Work life balance is non-existent in the hunt for the almighty dollar. SMEs are sucked dry of information, but not given origination credit or billable hours, and then discarded. And permeating the culture of the firm is an often unwarranted arrogance of "we're the best."

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Scale back the bureaucracy. It's there to use against unwary new hires at ARC, not predict metrics. Seriously. Pull in a number of former catalyst hires and interview them about the process and their experiences. Build a real program for experienced hires that really trains them for consulting and firm practices. The sink-or-swim approach is an utter failure. Barring that, stop hiring catalyst hires. You are doing them, your clients, and the firm a disservice.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    For Experienced Hires do your homework on PwC's Federal Advisory group before you start

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

    I worked at PwC full-time

    Pros

    Federal advisory practice is small so there is a start up feel-everybody is needed to do everything at some point-makes for good business experience for associate levels; junior staff have good mobility to move around; you will be rewarded if your focus is client delivery and you meet utilization - very strong emphasis on billing and project work even up through Director in a lot of cases; for big firm consulting you work a lot but this was within tolerance

    Cons

    Culture in PSP is territorial and non-collaborative - worst I've seen - the account ownership mentality creates strong barriers to get cooperation; collection of legacy cliques (BearingPoint, PRTM, PW, Booz Allen, Booz & Co), so many unreconciled legacy cultures. Know which firm you're going to first. Not a people first culture, very negative in tone day2day. Downside of delivery first culture is that other sins are forgiven - if utilization is high, other aspects of performance overlooked e.g. many lack interpersonal polish you'd expect in a brand name consulting firm.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Where to start? I could say treat personnel better, but I'll focus on the growth potential. PwC's Federal Advisory practice is all over the map in what it wants to be the client, but lacks the internal collaboration and is not in tune with the Federal buying patterns (RPH, use of omnibus). Without growth you won't retain talent no matter how you treat them.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Bait and switch

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Advisory Manager in McLean, VA
    Former Employee - Advisory Manager in McLean, VA

    I worked at PwC full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Good salary and benefits.
    High-calibre colleagues.

    Cons

    Dysfunctional, incoherent management.
    Many (admittedlyt, not all) partners seem to have the same autonomy and lack of regard for peasant as medieval barons. If you didn't have your head up the lower end of the right person's alimentary canal, you riisked being totally sidelined.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    At least in Advisory Services, get your act together!

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

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