The Standard Reviews

Updated August 3, 2015
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138 Employee Reviews

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  1. Worked with the retirement plan product.

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at The Standard

    Pros

    The grad school reimbursement was the best I ever heard of and there were no strings attached to the benefit like many firms have in place.

    Cons

    I enjoyed working there and left on good terms but felt the commitment to that business line was always lacking. Their bread and butter is insurance and you knew it.


  2. Good supportive company trying to do its best.

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

    I have been working at The Standard

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Good benefits and opportunities to move up and into other positions.

    Cons

    If you work in a production level job, time deadlines and productivity goals are demanding. Professional level positions are quite flexible.

    Advice to Management

    Invest in IT and infrastructure commensurate with competitors.


  3. Helpful (1)

    Lots of change, lots of work, good benefits, morale is constantly up and down, very ethical company culture

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

    I have been working at The Standard full-time (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Very ethical company...they go out of their way to practice what they preach in terms of being accurate, timely, and correct. Historically, The Standard used to provide the best customer service in the industry.

    Cons

    This company is not doing enough to build its large customer base. Much of the focus is on small business. Pricing inhibits the sales force from effectively competing. Service levels have fallen following lay-offs and failed or minimal updates to systems.

    Advice to Management

    Roll up your sleeves and job shadow your front-line employees to really learn what's going on, spend the money to update the systems (this has been an issue for many years and very little has been done), don't balance the books on the backs of the employees


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  5. Long term employee

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Contract Analyst in Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Contract Analyst in Portland, OR

    I worked at The Standard (More than 10 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Customer service focus. Good benefits.

    Cons

    Instability in later years. Less focus on customer service.


  6. Good company to work

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

    I have been working at The Standard

    Approves of CEO
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The company has a goo conservative approach minimizing risks on investment. Has a long term vision, good values toward stake holders and employees.

    Cons

    Due to its conservative approach the overall corporation growth is very slow. At the same time considering today's economy I will say it is good.

    Advice to Management

    Only advice will be to continue investing in growth for the future. Looking for potential opportunities abroad to enable an international expansion.


  7. Very good and getting better.

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

    I have been working at The Standard

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The Standard is making some very positive structural and cultural changes. There is a growing culture of mentorship. There is great corporate support and many opportunities for professional development and career advancement. The company is on solid financial footing so the recent financial crisis has been less painful for us than for many in our industry. We have developed some bold and industry-changing ideas that are making us all proud. Also, there has been a recent movement toward sharing with our own employees some of the same benefits that we offer customers through our products and services.

    Cons

    Although I keep hearing that progress is being made, the benefits package is really not what it could be. I was attracted to The Standard by starting pay that was about 15% higher than the top of my previous employer's pay scale for my profession. But at the end of 12 months, with family medical expenses, this move actually resulted in about 5% net loss in total compensation because of the relatively poor benefits package. It also doesn't help that the benefits are so complicated to manage. It's rather analogous to someone assembling a computer from cheap components, then having to use a dozen complicated work-arounds to operate it. There seems to be no practical way for an applicant to know about this before accepting a job offer, but neither would it have been a deal breaker for me. With generous merit pay increases, I was able to get back into the black within about 15 months.

    Advice to Management

    We have placed a lot of confidence in you, and I am seeing a lot of positive movement. Thank you for the recent initiative to finally allow your "most valuable assets" (employees) to "sip our own Champagne." I confess that I sometimes wonder why something so obvious took over 100 years to gain traction among the leadership. And I often wonder what it is about management culture that seems to drain many new leaders of their humanity as they rise up through the ranks from mailroom to boardroom. Still, as I move among the cubicles of our downtown facilities, I pick up the sense that people are pleased and relieved because the published corporate values (which some cynics felt were just marketing tropes) are now being applied in our own workplace family - and that bodes well for everyone. Greg - special thanks to you for your thoughtful, warm, and introspective leadership style. As individual contributors, we are in no position to judge your strategic decisions. But you have set a tone of humility, responsiveness and grace under fire that will have positive trickle-down effects on the "mental health" of the whole organization; and that means a lot, no matter where in the company we work.


  8. Weathering the storm

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

    I have been working at The Standard full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The Standard cares about people. I have personally seen how this company has helped many employees with personal situations and allowed them the necessary flexibility to take care of their families. (Nursed a loved one through 2 rounds of cancer treatments, the unexpected loss of a family member, and divorce). Life is life and if you give to The Standard, they give right back. I have lots of flexibility and independence. I love it. We have so many avenues to get infront of leadership and hear what they have to say. Comments on organization announcements, the bubble, Coffee with our CEO, engagement events, President's forum, team meetings...you name it! We are active givers in the community. It is engrained in our values and mission. I love our benefits, PTO, good medical/dental/vision, match on 401k, and much more. This company even lets you buy more PTO if you want.....GEEZ! I have an open door with my manager, and my skip level and my Executive. If you want to say something all you have to do is raise your hand.

    Cons

    We are an insurance company that is slow to change. The good and bad with having good longevity is that some people just want to do it the way it has always been done. That is challenging when you are creative or innovative and want to create change and efficiency. If you have enough patience and persistence you can influence eventually, but it may take a while. We have some inefficient, archaic systems and processes. I wished there was more opportunity for movement. There are short term assignments and projects and you can volunteer for anything, but not always a move to another area. Although I have a great experience, the overall culture depends on your department. That is not abnormal but we are disjointed and inconsistent in our message.

    Advice to Management

    You have to move quicker. Don't get stagnant. Educate our managers on flexibility, motivation and empowerment.


  9. Nice Work Environment

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

    I worked at The Standard full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Friendly atmosphere with opportunity for advancement.

    Cons

    Very "left-coast" company. Not necessarily a con.

    Advice to Management

    n/a


  10. Helpful (1)

    The Standard

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

    I have been working at The Standard

    No opinion of CEO
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The people are nice and pretty easy to get along with.

    Cons

    Things are often changing but really, everything stays the same.

    Advice to Management

    Hold employees at all levels accountable for results. The results should be based on clearly stated objectives and goals with measurements.


  11. Helpful (4)

    The Standard, Retirement Plans Division. An employee review

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Actuary in Portland, OR
    Current Employee - Actuary in Portland, OR

    I have been working at The Standard

    No opinion of CEO
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Generally a friendly and very polite atmosphere. Most employees are easy to strike up a conversation with. Flexible work schedules and an ability to work from home. Willing to provide various and diverse levels of training. This ranges from classes on job specific skills like programing, professional designation, software applications to softer skills like leadership and communication. There certainly are pockets of people that try to 'do what matters' or 'take the higher road' which are some of the core values of the company. After a very rough period in SRS during 2008/2009 virtually all Senior Management have been fired or retired. This has lead to a new focus by many of the new Senior Management to demand tighter controls and procedures be put in place, which can not be overstated how important this is to achieve succesfully. I consider this focus an immense Pro. Family and friends are easily hired.

    Cons

    Family and friends are easily hired ( yes I meant this to be both a Pro and a Con) Despite the new Senior Management leadership in SRS stating a major focus is to put in place tighter controls and backing this with extensive process control and mapping efforts- with some sucess- there seems to be huge inertia to NOT completely embrace this. There remains huge inertia from upper-mid management and lower against trying to get numerous systems, procedures and financial reporting under tight control. It appears to be a combination of 'my systems' weren't flagged during a audit, or sure it's broke but it's consistent in how it is broke or in some cases it's the old 'I push a button and have no idea if the numbers coming out make sense or not, and I don't care'. Some amount of the above is going to take place in every company but I have seen enough - and been around long enough- to know it's too pervasive at The Standard for my comfort level. And maybe more importantly, we are putting in extensive effort and resources by Senior Management direction to improve processes, this is the time to truely and openly clean up systems, procedures and reporting. If you don't have time to do something right the first time, when will you have time to do it a second time? I spent so much time on the above two paragraphs because I have felt borderline ethically compromised on several occasions. Not a great feeling and even worse when upper management is indifferent to your concerns. There definately is an above average amount of favortism in areas, but not completely stagnating. I know pay is below average ( even my boss told me that) and benefits are weaker then what I have had elsewhere. Many of our systems and capabilities are archaic and almost 'criminally' hamper the ability to make any level of improvement simply or easily. Need to update something worded incorrectly on a page of the website, you get back something like not enough IT resources to do it. Really? need to change one significant word on a web page and The com[pany doesn't have the resources to do that? SO instead we risk a client reding something and getting the wrong impression, or actually the right impression that we incorrectly gave them.

    Advice to Management

    First and foremost, welcome tough news brought objectively and substantiated. Second, continue to invest the time and resources into process improvements and quality controls for all areas of SRS. Insist on a comprehensive, all levels review, including bypassing mid level managers if need be.



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