U.S. Government Accountability Office

  www.gao.gov
  www.gao.gov

U.S. Government Accountability Office Reviews

Updated October 13, 2014
Updated October 13, 2014
81 Reviews
3.5
81 Reviews
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U.S. Government Accountability Office Comptroller General Eugene Louis Dodaro
Eugene Louis Dodaro
47 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Great culture, wonderful work-life balance, they really care about their employees (in 23 reviews)

  • A great place to learn how to do rigorous policy analysis (in 6 reviews)


Cons
  • Also poor performers and intellectual bullies are rampant (in 4 reviews)

  • Not a lot of promotion opportunities and annual salary adjustments are generally smaller than those of executive branch agencies (in 4 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Positive experience

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

    I worked at U.S. Government Accountability Office full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    -Positive work atmosphere
    -Training and other perks
    -Flexible schedules
    -Intelligent, motivated workforce

    Cons

    -Projects are heavily focused on process; analysis often suffers
    -As others have noted, risk aversion
    -The band pay system is, for most, all valleys and few peaks
    -Top-heavy management

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus more on policy analysis rather than pushing to identify recommendations. In particular, I got the sense that for certain teams the search for financial recommendations drives the approach.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Good place to begin a career in public service with lots of structure and discipline.

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

    I worked at U.S. Government Accountability Office full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Professional development opportunities and ability to work in different subject areas even within a team. Fair work-life balance.

    Cons

    Nepotistic, there are little or no opportunities for minorities due to what is called the "unwritten rules" which took the agency several years to acknowledge exists. Even with the acknowledgement of the unwritten rules against minorities, not much has changed.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Rid GAO of nepotism and placing the glass ceiling on minorities. You must change the culture of the agency.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Stable job but few opportunities for advancement.

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

    I worked at U.S. Government Accountability Office full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Interesting work, stable job, good people.

    Cons

    Not a lot of promotion opportunities and annual salary adjustments are generally smaller than those of executive branch agencies.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Performance reviews should be objective and fair; invest in your best employees if you want to retain them.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Visual Communication Analyst is a great job and love to work with other people.

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

    I worked at U.S. Government Accountability Office

    Pros

    Pros is advancement with other positions at GAO and the people there are great. Best place to work in DC.

    Cons

    Not much of what to think of bad.

  6.  

    OK experience for liberal minded, great experience for conservative.

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

    I have been working at U.S. Government Accountability Office full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Senior level management at the director level is astounding.

    Cons

    Very conservative environment, not for the liberal minded. A lot of old people. Organization does not really have any power. You basically shuffle paper all day. If you are a young person, think of the movie Office Space, that is actually how you will feel if you work there.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You cannot put analysts as a mangers. In order to be a manager, you cannot just mange projects but you need to know how to manage people. Make your analysts take human capital training before promoting them.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Work at GAO

    Current Employee - Senior Economist in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Economist in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at U.S. Government Accountability Office full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Meaningful and interesting work, with possibility of strong policy impact. Great colleagues. Excellent work-life balance.

    Cons

    Somewhat bureaucratic process to doing the work.

  8.  

    Great place to learn a lot and dig into policy analysis. Very risk averse and slow to move, could be good or bad.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Analyst (Band 2A) in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Senior Analyst (Band 2A) in Washington, DC

    I have been working at U.S. Government Accountability Office full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    GAO is a great place to work with the ability to learn about a broad variety of subjects very quickly; you are given a lot of responsibility and are able to interview top officials across government and elsewhere.

    Cons

    GAO is very risk averse and this can result in not making recommendations that another consulting-style organization might. In addition, promotions can be sometimes dependent on history with GAO instead of ability.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Could be better, But internal politics holds everyone back

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

    I have been working at U.S. Government Accountability Office full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    There are many talented people.

    Cons

    No upward mobility for some people , even if they are talented and competent

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Make sure that the technology actually helps people become productive, Don't just deploy for the sake of something new.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    excellent

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Engagement and Administrative Operations Assistant in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Engagement and Administrative Operations Assistant in Washington, DC

    I worked at U.S. Government Accountability Office full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    a good place to work

    Cons

    things are different now. competeing with jobs have changed.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    good for managers

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Overall positive, collaborative work environment, great work-life balance"

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

    I have been working at U.S. Government Accountability Office full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    -I find most all colleagues to be supportive and collaborative
    -Great work-life balance in terms of hours, telework, and accommodating time for vacation
    -Opportunity to study a wide range of federal issues
    -Less political than executive agencies as GAO does independent work

    Cons

    -Reduced budgets have limited opportunities for promotions and created a highly competitive environment amongst peers in the same teams. The promotion process is political and arduous and seems rather subjective.
    -Attention to detail for documentation requirements and the writing process can be extremely tedious at times.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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