Save the Children Reviews

Updated August 29, 2014
Updated August 29, 2014
52 Reviews

3.7
52 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Save the Children President & CEO Carolyn S. Miles
Carolyn S. Miles
16 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Work / life balance is improving with the arrival of new CEO (in 3 reviews)

  • nice working environment, laid-back, well-respected organization (in 3 reviews)


Cons
  • Upper management--lots of changes (in 4 reviews)

  • Leadership is completely lacking, and individuals at a Director or VP level shun decision making (in 3 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Accounting Intern

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Accounting Intern  in  West Columbia, SC
    Former Employee - Accounting Intern in West Columbia, SC

    I worked at Save the Children as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    Encourages independent work, gives plenty of opportunities to allow intern to apply the knowledge he/she gained in an academic setting. Great company culture. Results-oriented. Diversity is welcomed.

    Cons

    Not many opportunities for career growth as intern. Diversity across generations (Baby Boomers, X, Y) was not prevalent.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Overall a great experience

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC

    I worked at Save the Children as a contractor

    Pros

    Super excited people in many different departments! It's great to work with people who are incredibly passionate, hardworking, and kind.

    Cons

    I only have one con; while about half of the management team in the DC office is wonderful, the other half is pretty abysmal when it comes to treating the employees in their department well. Having VPs throw temper tantrums when a meeting has to be moved is outrageous.

    Approves of CEO
  3. 8 people found this helpful  

    Great Mission - Bad Career Move

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

    I have been working at Save the Children full-time

    Pros

    A great mission and flexible work schedule. A lot of "Career training" available. If you need a flexible work schedule this is the place - for a while.

    Competitive salary for a non-profit.

    The underlying desire is there among most employees to really make a difference in the lives of children and tends to attract some very smart and interesting people.

    Cons

    Terrible Senior Management, No Career Movement, Participation in "Career Training Programs" ultimately leads to no career movement.

    Many of the Senior management tend to create an unnecessarily competitive environment which lead to a tense working situation. The struggle to be recognized among mid managers lead to an almost impossible environment for teamwork and ultimately very unprofessional behavior.

    To anyone who both wants to make a difference and is also career oriented, Save the Children is a mixed bag. Yes its a great mission. Unfortunately the organization is a career killer and most of the talent realize this after a few years and jump ship to other organizations. Senior management accountability is almost non existent.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    A lot of very talented employees, on ALL levels, leave due to lack of career movement and a feeling of being taken advantage of. Many resort to staying only for flexible work arrangements.

    As a non-profit you need to deliver on promises to dedicated employees and create REAL opportunities to grow and be challenged or you will continue to have good people jump ship at the first opportunity.

    Show appreciation for talent who are willing to dedicate there lives and careers to the mission and the mission will be a huge success. The cost of losing good employees is much more than the cost of keeping them.

    Suggestion - A real 360 degree evaluation program of senior management in which all employees under them are required to participate in. Senior management should be held publicly accountable to these 360s.

    Neutral Outlook
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  5. 7 people found this helpful  

    The select few of upper management are very impressed with themselves

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Program Associate  in  Westport, CT
    Current Employee - Program Associate in Westport, CT

    I have been working at Save the Children full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    A good mission, important work to be done

    Cons

    Very political and upper management protects their power base at all costs. Maintaining and enlarging their turf takes precedence over the mission or hiring/keeping talented people.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Look to hire effective people rather ones that help the managers protect their turf.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Positive experience with dedicated people

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

    I worked at Save the Children full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Very mission and goal oriented. Employees are dedicated to doing the right thing for children. Work / life balance is improving with the arrival of new CEO.

    Cons

    Decision process for management seems a little ad hoc sometimes. The organization needs a reliable stream of undesignated funds for its programs. Year to year funding is to volatile.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Need a clear mission for US programs. The department seems adrift.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 3 people found this helpful  

    A place I felt proud to work, but needs staff restructuring.

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

    I worked at Save the Children as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    Amazing causes that got you inspired to work everyday.
    Casual environment where everyone got their job done.
    Managers that were flexible and understood your strengths and needs.

    Cons

    I felt some departments needed restructuring, due to inefficient job allocation. (Few people's job titles matched their duties.) Lack of standardized procedure in some areas. Some people had poor understanding of current marketing techniques. Resistance to change.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire a consultant to see if company resources are being maximized.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 6 people found this helpful  

    Mismanagement is endemic, employee development is not a priority, and creative, hardworking individuals are not valued.

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

    I have been working at Save the Children full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Pay is good for a nonprofit, the reputation (deserved or not) looks good on your resume, and the people who are not in management positions tend to be very bright, friendly, passionate and hardworking.

    Cons

    Leadership is completely lacking, and individuals at a Director or VP level shun decision making. This would be ok if the rest of the organization was allowed to work to its true productivity, but alas, Save the Children managers tend to focus much more on keeping their positions and stifling creative ideas (a culture of "business as usual") than on employee development. It's too bad, because the number of excellent people coming into the organization is phenomenal, and they tend to leave within a year or less. Unless you plan to be field based, this is not a place where you will grow professionally.

    Save the Children needs to figure out a way to work within its mission. It is becoming impossible to see the difference between Save the Children, Mercy Corps and CARE. The concentration on rampant fundraising (especially with US Government money) instead of on what people really want and need (supposedly the backbone of development and humanitarian work) is beyond disheartening. Save the Children will chase any money that is tossed before it.

    Lastly, the finance department is a mess and it makes the working lives of anyone who has to depend at some point on finance for clear policies or guidance very difficult.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Not all managers should be managers. Folks who have risen in the ranks, mainly because of years with Save the Children, shouldn't necessarily be supervising people. Management takes skills and a level of caring about people that is lacking from your current managers. Make them advisers or use the "up or out" approach, but the process currently implemented is poisoning the organization.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great intentions bad management

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

    I have been working at Save the Children

    Pros

    I'm proud to work at Save the Children and for an ogranization that helps to improve the quality of peoples life. Vacation is generous, if you can use it.

    Cons

    If you aren't one of the "in crowd" you won't get anywhere. If you want to settle, it's the place to work.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Try to listen to what the employees say. If you want to move forward, you need the support of your employees and can actually learn from them.

    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    Good work-life balance. Diversity.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Intern  in  Westport, CT
    Former Employee - Intern in Westport, CT

    I worked at Save the Children

    Pros

    Good work-life balance. Diversity. Nice people.

    Cons

    Detached location from the city.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    more internship opportunities abroad would be helpful

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  11. 9 people found this helpful  

    Hypocrisy, abuse abound at Save the Children

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Director, Human Resources  in  Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Director, Human Resources in Washington, DC

    I have been working at Save the Children

    Pros

    The mission of Save the Children is to provide lasting and positive change for children. There is no argument that this is a worthy cause. Many, many children and families' lives have been changed for the better due to the amazingly good work of the staff of STC. The commitment and passion shown for those in need is amazing.

    Cons

    STC manages today as it did 35 years ago. Rather than a decision making process based on truth, facts and ROI's, decisions are based on political connections, tenure within the organization and how much money will it raise. Abusive, hostile treatment of employees is commonplace. Discrimintory practices are ignored, even when raised to Sr. Management. Fiscal responsibility is shallow at best. The HR department in Westport, CT is incompetent, and in need of an audit. There are violations of USAID requirements as well as EEO requirements. For an organization that employs more than 6,000 and has been around for 75 years, I was shocked by what I found.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Sr. Management needs to take a hard look at itself. Several members of the Sr. Management team should be replaced by professionals who know how to run a business and who understand that a non-profit can be run like a for-profit and still achieve it's mission. The disconnect between their public image, the mission and their internal behavior will be your undoing.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

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