Symetra

  www.symetra.com
  www.symetra.com

Symetra Reviews

Updated December 16, 2014
Updated December 16, 2014
125 Reviews
2.8
125 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Symetra President, CEO, and Director Thomas M. (Tom) Marra
Thomas M. (Tom) Marra
76 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Great friendly people to work with, reasonable work-life balance and flexibility (in 17 reviews)

  • Some employees are really great people (in 12 reviews)


Cons
  • I am a dedicated employee & hard worker but I'm having to watch my peers fall apart around me from overwork & lack of work/life balance (in 6 reviews)

  • Women in upper management positions are few and far between (if they are in (in 7 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Conservative culture, but change is coming

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - IT Intern in Bellevue, WA
    Former Employee - IT Intern in Bellevue, WA

    I worked at Symetra as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Business is booming and they are hiring like crazy. I was able to work on some high visibility projects within different teams at Symetra. I enjoyed learning about the insurance industry and how IT fits in it. I saw a lot of propositions for change within the IT division, time will tell if they follow through with them though. Work life balance for full time employees who were NOT managers seemed to be okay. I would between 40 - 45 hour work weeks. Managers however I saw work 55+ hour work weeks.

    Cons

    While it is a smaller insurance company, the culture is still very conservative. Most full time employees in my meetings were 45+ and male. Change is slow and managers and their teams are often siloed. They lose sight of what other teams are working on and how they fit into the bigger picture which leads to lack of motivation to do their best work. I am eager for them to chose a CIO. I feel that the IT division will greatly benefit from a full time and dedicated CIO who can best represent the division and its projects. Pay is not on par with other companies in the area. I would suggest they raise the salary for IT interns to make the program more competitive with other companies in the Seattle area.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Grab IT interns before they go off and find other employment after completing an internship at Symetra. The IT industry is very hot in Seattle right now and you will lose good potential full time employees by sitting on your hands and waiting until the last minute to give them an offer.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    slow culture for IT professional

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

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

    Pros

    No downsizes or layoffs. People can work here forever.

    Cons

    In IT there are a lot of people who do not like to work very hard and the culture is slow.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    replace some of the people who have worked there forever, specially the people that work remotely. they do not do very much.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    Great Company

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

    I have been working at Symetra full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    What a way to make a difference!! Being hired by this start up has been great for my career. I'm excited by all the new challenges and truly making a difference. The growth opportunities are amazing, and we are pulling in some very good talent.

    Cons

    No work from home and it seems we're running out of space, but a new design that will be coming next year will be great!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I appreciate the time they give to listen to ideas from the staff. People are very helpful as well.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Customer Service Rep - Don't do it

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Customer Service Representative in Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Customer Service Representative in Bellevue, WA

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

    Pros

    The benefits aren't bad, and you can get decent medical coverage for a reasonable amount of our of pocket expenses, but you have to be willing to share your health status in some detail with the health insurance company.

    Cons

    The training program they promise doesn't exist. I'd say it is the worst on the job training I've ever experienced. With that said, once they think you are 'ready' or at least good enough, you are going to get scored as if you've been trained. The scoring system is a interesting(?), and you are scored by the same team that 'trained' you.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Put together a structured training program, with a schedule and stick to it. Bring in people with experience training. Keep your word. It's hard enough to keep people in a call center like this but when management keeps making promises they don't keep, it's hard to get employees to remain loyal.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Lacking Integrity

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

    I have been working at Symetra full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    The people on the front lines are hard working, in many cases passionate and understand the business.

    Cons

    Middle management suffers from amateur attempts at empire building and clumsy political associations. Power and deference are often given to middle managers without any seeming reason other than past history at other companies. Without a dedicated CIO, the IT department has no representation with the business and is the center of blame for any failures by the business to produce result. On the flip side, the business takes all credit for any successes while IT is simply considered an expenditure of cash. If the business is often forced to make necessary upgrades because the infrastructure has reached a critical level and still can drag their feet if money is involved. HR no longer represents the people but is in place to keep the wheels on the cart. During my time, I never witnessed a single change based on the exit interviews provided by employees who left the company.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire a new CIO who believes in joining business and IT initiatives together. The CIO should be able to stand up and sell IT initiatives, especially critical upgrades, to the executive leadership team and have the business accept that this is for the benefit of the company and not just an inconvenience to be put off. Hire new leadership over HR and remember what it is to represent the workers.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Strong Executive Leadership, Inept core managers

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Annuity Department in Bellevue, WA
    Former Employee - Annuity Department in Bellevue, WA

    I worked at Symetra full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    The benefits are good at Symetra and they have never had layoffs. The company if filled with 8-4 employees happily collecting their paycheck and waiting for their distant retirement. These people are kind, fun, and they do care about the company and its clients. The actuary department and legal seem happy. The executive leadership is very good. The CEO, and top three executives that lead the divisions are top notch leaders.

    Cons

    Above the hard-working masses that fill the Symetra offices, (including the lower managers who are just as underpaid and overworked), there are highly political, nepotistic, pathological, back stabbing people who care about their personal careers more than anything else. I witnessed many instances, department managers up to the vice president level, of window dressing to show their great progress; but the good managers who cared about their departments' sustainability and the company mission always ended up getting thrown under the bus. The 'good guy manager' doesn't win at Symetra because there are so many cunning competitors ready to push them out.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    It would benefit the shareholders rather quickly if they company invested in more management training at all levels.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    This is a great time to work for Symetra.

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

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

    Pros

    Opportunity, culture, work/life balance. I've worked hard and been promoted 3 times in 3 years. My salary and responsibilities have grown commesurate with my desire to contribute and make a difference. I have a great boss and a team that cares about being a part of something more than just working for a paycheck.

    Cons

    Negativity can be a con but this is more about those that have been impacted by necessary changes and tough decisions that need to be made in areas that weren't working, like IT. Company is moving in the right direction in terms of values and culture. Takes time to do things right and a few mistakes will happen along the way. Symetra is definitely learning from their mistakes and moving forward with optimism and a solid vision for where we want to be in 6 years.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep investing in the culture and the advancing the message that your people are your #1 asset.

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

    Pathetic!!

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

    I have been working at Symetra full-time

    Pros

    Really do not have much to say

    Cons

    All these positive reviews make me laugh!!!No morale, the Leadership is not sure what they want!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Business Analyst in Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Business Analyst in Bellevue, WA

    I have been working at Symetra full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    I was hired as a contractor in April, after two months of hard work, I was converted as a Business Analyst. My management and VP recognize my talent, which is very important to me in a company. I also see a lot of opportunities to learn and grow, my manger always encourage me to give out new ideas for improvement, and I have the freedom to execute them as well. I love working here.

    Cons

    no free coffee, but I'll live.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep it up!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Company interested in self-improvement

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

    I have been working at Symetra full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Mid-size company working hard to grow the business and become a national player. Nice location, decent benefits and advancement opportunities. Good people and interesting work.

    Cons

    Continual staffing changes make employees uneasy and affects employee engagement.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change is necessary but some sense of stability would improve employee morale. Work on better defining our culture. Senior management seems a bit uninvolved with the rank and file.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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