US Bureau of Labor Statistics
3.6 of 5 39 reviews
www.bls.gov Washington, DC 1000 to 5000 Employees

US Bureau of Labor Statistics Reviews in Washington, DC

Updated Mar 18, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

3.6 25 reviews

                             

78% Approve of the CEO

US Bureau of Labor Statistics Commissioner Keith Hall

Keith Hall

(9 ratings)

73% of employees recommend this company to a friend
25 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews
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Great agency to work for; little turnover and many lifetime employees

Program Analyst (Current Employee)
Washington, DC

I have been working at US Bureau of Labor Statistics full-time for more than a year

ProsBLS is a great statistical agency and has great leadership and vision at the highest levels

Conslower-level management can sometimes be lacking, but that can occur at any agency

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Stale Environment

Intern (Former Employee)
Washington, DC

I worked at US Bureau of Labor Statistics as an intern for less than a year

ProsAccess to tons of data analytics and very smart people

ConsA somewhat stale environment and not much room for growth.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Economist at Bureau of Labor Statistics

Economist (Current Employee)
Washington, DC

I have been working at US Bureau of Labor Statistics full-time for more than 3 years

ProsLow stress work environment, comfortable work/life balance

Consrather monotonous and unexciting, not the most emotionally fulfilling work

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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It was a nice environment to work in.

Video Conference Engineer (Former Employee)
Washington, DC

I worked at US Bureau of Labor Statistics full-time for more than 3 years

ProsWorking in a Government building.

ConsIt wasn't the best location all the time.

Advice to Senior ManagementHire more contractors, they know what they are doing.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Pride in bls work, great pay and relaxed

Economist (Former Employee)
Washington, DC

I worked at US Bureau of Labor Statistics full-time for more than 5 years

ProsBls is good a great place to start, especially if you want to go to grad school. They help pay for it. A lot of "lifers". Great training options. Generally you get promoted up to a 12 easily, which isn't true for other economics positions. People have pride and care about the work. Great food options with union station and food trucks. Love the gym!

ConsCan get bored. Some older employees don't do much and is frustrating. Some people are pretty awkward, but we are statisticians and economists.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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If you like asking people to complete a survey, then this could be a good place for you.

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Washington, DC

I have been working at US Bureau of Labor Statistics full-time

ProsMost reviews on Glassdoor prior to this are incredibly accurate.

Workers are courteous, well-educated and interesting to talk with about work and other topics.

BLS Headquarters is located right across from Union Station- Lots of options for commuting and for eating lunch or dinner.

Gym in the building that is less expensive than any other in the DC area.

Work schedule options are unheard of anywhere else. Flex schedule, core hours, tele-commute, credit time. Most of which do not exist in the private sector.

An unusually large amount of returned Peace Corps Volunteers, and first generation Americans adds a diverse perspective to the workplace culture.

No pressure to join AFGE Union Chapter beyond a single sales pitch during the first week.

People seem to quickly decide if working for the Bureau of Labor Statistics is a career or just a job for the time being. The people that stay past 10 years are, for a variety of reasons, usually diehard BLS fans that enjoy working there and look forward to retiring from there. These 'lifers' are great for morale.

Mathematical Statistician positions receive higher pay start to finish and a more degree-related workload than a lot of other employees. If you are a Stats graduate this is a good place to work.

ConsMost reviews on Glassdoor prior to this are incredibly accurate.

Bureaucracy reinforces many negative stereotypes about government agencies.

The current budget situation is inflexible. Spending line items have had little to no change since 2008. This means that money can be appropriated to where it may no longer be needed while other areas are unable to obtain funding. Please note that this is not just at BLS as the same rule applies to several federal agencies. Budget cuts have hurt morale in the past and may continue to do so.

A large amount of employees seem to lack significant private sector work experience, outside of peace corps volunteerism or academia.

The returned Peace Corps Volunteers, and first generation Americans can be cliquish.

Some people get promoted with commensurate salary increases faster than any greater responsibility can be assigned. Some people double their salary within a few years but do little more work than when they started.

The work schedules are often such that the building can feel eerily empty at times.

The AFGE Union Chapter is surprisingly strong considering that actual dues-paying members are far less than half of the total employees.

Old computer systems with bugs. People without backgrounds in computer science are far too involved with IT processes that should be contracted out. Senior management probably realizes that current technology exists that would probably lead to payroll cuts between 3-5% from efficiency gains alone but prefers to develop systems in house to maintain the status quo.

The headquarters building has a ridiculously large security presence. Getting into the building is like going through TSA security at an airport, it can take several minutes to get into the building if security guards have to use the metal detector wand on a person who keeps setting the walk-through detector off. If you are going for an interview, please keep this in mind.

The recession and after effects appear to have made some employees hesitate to jump ship, even though some made the decision to leave within there first week. These people show up and do the bare minimum their position requires. These 'short-timers' are bad for morale but the process for removing career status employees is difficult.

Advice to Senior ManagementFight to become more independent from the Department of Labor and become part of the Chamber of Commerce. This would likely increase the credibility of the impartial, non-partisan status which BLS is supposed to have. Request that the Secretary of the Department of Labor stop commenting on BLS press releases. Movement to the Commerce Department hiearchy could increase voluntary survey participation in the business community.

Contract the IT out to an independent third party, it will hurt in the short-term but it could ease the current budget pains.

– I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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good entry-level work experience

Economist (Current Employee)
Washington, DC

I have been working at US Bureau of Labor Statistics full-time for more than 3 years

ProsThe guaranteed salary increases are great for entry level employees to develop a pretty good salary history before moving on.

ConsVery limited potential for upward movement once you've reached the end of your career ladder.

Advice to Senior ManagementOffer a premium pay scale. BLS is one of the few departments that employee economists not on a premium pay scale.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Just okay

Intern (Former Employee)
Washington, DC

I worked at US Bureau of Labor Statistics as an intern for less than a year

ProsGood hours, good people. Simple environment, well defined tasks, flexible hours, decent salary, overall a medianly good place to work at.

ConsBureaucracy, bureaucracy, menial tasks, repetitive work, red tape, limited creativity, office politics, nothing too exciting compare to the private indusrptry in terms of exit opportunities and advancement opportunities

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Not what you expect

Economist (Current Employee)
Washington, DC

I have been working at US Bureau of Labor Statistics full-time for less than a year

ProsIt is a good place to get your foot into the government door. The work is easy in terms of difficulty. Depending on your office, your coworkers will be of similar age so that makes it more interesting.

ConsThe work is tedious/mind numbing. It is not challenging in any way shape or form. Coming from an academic background I expected things to be easier than what I have been working on but the type of work I do is no where near worth the salary I make. The senior management is caught around 10 years in the past, which is normal for government from what I can deduce. For example, I am unable to use a laptop in meetings to take notes. They micromanage much of the work that middle management assigns and in many cases does not go through middle management to assign workloads.

Advice to Senior ManagementManagement needs to be more clear about what each position is and the level of work you will doing. They need to not micromanage as much (a little is acceptable and I even like it so you can get to work with a superior) as well as be more open to the changing world of technology and how it can impact the work we do. Utilze your employee's talents and don't force a round peg into a square hole because that is how you have done it for 20 years. I am under utilized to an extreme and am actively searching for a new job due my dissatisfaction with this organization.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Statisticians - best place to start your career

Mathematical Statistician (Former Employee)
Washington, DC

I worked at US Bureau of Labor Statistics full-time for more than 3 years

ProsIf you study stats in school, this is the premier place to start your career. Top brand name and a much better location than the Census Bureau. Opens a lot of doors in DC. I've been in the private sector and other agencies and the BLS was the most challenging job I've had. Once you do stats here, almost everywhere else is easy. The pay in the private sector doesn't get better until you get in the GS-14/manager range.

Better equipment, less politics, more collaborative and better training than the private sector. Good place to get your bearings while you figure out what you want to do longer-term. Pay is good up to GS-13.

ConsQuickly tap out at a 12 in any agency under the 1529/1530 designation; will need to move on to other agency or other company to get 13 and above without waiting behind a queue. You can get more money through bonuses in the private sector after GS-14.

Job can become a rut, even the research-related ones. Very automated, not a lot to contribute.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at US Bureau of Labor Statistics reviews and ratings in Washington, DC — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for US Bureau of Labor Statistics CEO Keith Hall. All 25 reviews posted anonymously by US Bureau of Labor Statistics employees.