University of Washington

  www.washington.edu
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University of Washington Reviews

Updated Jul 21, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

3.7 553 reviews

77% Approve of the CEO

University of Washington President Michael K. Young

Michael K. Young

(106 ratings)

82% of employees recommend this company to a friend

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Work/life balance is pretty good; vacation and sick leave good(in 38 reviews)

  • Very structured education system and great benefits for student(in 47 reviews)


Cons
  • low salary, not easy to commute, living cost is expensive, campus is not very safe(in 15 reviews)

  • Pay is competitive with other non-profits; not competitive with the private sector (but that's to be expected)(in 13 reviews)

553 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
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    So glad to be out

    Graduate Research Assistant (Former Employee) Seattle, WA

    ProsSelect professors have amazing amounts of funding, and the graduate health benefits are decent. If you get a committee that doesn't chastise you for taking courses outside your department that help you do your research, you have it made!

    ConsThese comments apply only to my old department, I hope. Tenured professors weren't held accountable for their actions (e.g. sloppy teaching, poor advising, sexist remarks), but I suppose that's more a problem with tenure than with UW. Horrendous and toxic office culture, and the administration is often completely oblivious to student needs. You were seen as weak if you prioritized your life outside of work.

    Advice to Senior ManagementDon't solicit money from students BEFORE they graduate. I got several calls starting a year before graduation.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Not a great experience.

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee) Seattle, WA

    ProsI was extremely excited when I received a job offer from UW. I've heard great things about being a UW employee and after doing some research on this site, I saw all the positive reviews and thought it was going to be a great place to work. I was wrong! After a month, I submitted my resignation. I can't wait to be done working here! To be fair, many of my co-workers have told me to explore opportunities in other departments because things can be very different depending on the area you work in. Maybe I just joined the wrong team and the job wasn't a great fit for me. Either way, my advice would be ask A LOT of questions during the interview process to ensure you don't end up in this situation!

    ConsDoes not pay well, archaic systems, unnecessary processes, monotonous work, controlling managers (micro-managing!!!), little autonomy, not a lot of flexibility (regarding work schedule or time-off), extremely formal, tense culture. In a nutshell, this place operates a lot like many companies did 10 years ago. They need to step it up and get with the times!

    Advice to Senior ManagementHire managers that will engage and inspire their employees, invest in new systems and put leaders through change management and LEAN training.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Academic atmosphere with great benefits

    Web Developer (Current Employee) Seattle, WA

    ProsFair compensation, good insurance benefits, 403(b) investment options & match are nice (though match varies based on age, contributions are also mandatory after 1 year; I've never seen this before), access to WA State 457(b), flexible work environment, great work life balance, good professional development opportunities (conferences, workshops, learning materials, "POD" classes, some tuition reimbursement but it's tough to use), plenty of smart motivated people all around the University, pay increases are merit based and beat inflation, low cost unlimited use transit pass (or free with paid parking on campus), good bike accessibility but could embrace bike-commute culture more (showers in buildings and more indoor bike storage, please?).

    Beautiful campus with a thriving academic culture and serious student involvement. You really get out of this place what you put in to it. If you embrace the culture, and embrace "the U", you can have an amazing work experience here.

    ConsThe commute can be hard (time consuming) if you live more than a few miles away from campus. Parking on campus is expensive. Housing & rent prices are expensive near campus. Vacation time is so-so, only 3 weeks to start and you don't reach 4 until your 6th year, this maxes out just shy of 5 weeks in your 9th year. Most graduate programs do not participate in tuition reimbursement (don't plan on getting a free graduate degree by working here).

    Departments on campus are very isolated and "do their own thing". Working for central IT would be a very different experience from working in a different unit or for one of the schools/colleges. This is both good and bad. On the good side, schools and colleges can develop their own culture, be extremely focused on their students, faculty, and researchers, meeting needs central IT never could. But on the downside, this leaves little room for advancement, many smaller IT units function more like a start up than a well oiled corporation (maybe this isn't bad?), and teams can be small, short staffed, and you might not have someone with advanced experience to learn from. This does afford a lot of freedom, and grant a lot of responsibility though.

    Advice to Senior ManagementContinue to provide great feedback to your employees so they know where they stand and what is expected of them. Shelter your employees from as much of the higher level bureaucracy as you can (there isn't a lot of it, but your employees shouldn't have to deal with most of it). Encourage professional development, allow and help your staff get involved in the greater campus community (give them time for this).

    Embrace modern management trends in the tech sector and trust your employees.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

  1. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
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    Work-Study at GU Cancer Research

    Student Assistant (Former Employee) Seattle, WA

    ProsBenefits are good & accessible at UW, even for temporary employees. The lab I worked in showed great flexibility in striking a good work-life balance - work didn't interfere with my studies.

    ConsWages are flat & low for research associates at the lab I work in, leading to discontent. Work-study positions afford limited learning opportunities - the only skill sets I acquired were processing blood samples and handling biohazardous waste properly.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

     

    Great place to work, collaborative and friendly work environment. There is a lot of flexiblity.

    Librarian (Former Employee) Seattle, WA

    ProsHigh quality faculty and staff.

    ConsLike any large university, there is a lot of bureaucracy

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    Lots of opportunities.

    Program Coordinator (Current Employee) Seattle, WA

    ProsGreat benefits. Lots of opportunities for every kind if specialty and most position allow for some degree of flex or alternate schedule.

    ConsBe careful not to get yourself boxed into a dead end career track. Many units and research centers are siloed and can offer only so much advancement before a lateral move becomes a necessity.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    I'm a graduate student at UW

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsThe culture here is very liberal.

    ConsSalary for on campus job as well as TA are very low.

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    Postdoctoral Researcher

    Postdoctoral Research Associate (Current Employee) Seattle, WA

    ProsUW is very family friendly and has great benefits. My work schedule is flexible, though it would depend on your PI for specifics.

    ConsMy biggest con is that my salary is so low for the area. Seattle is super expensive to live and my salary doesn't even cover my two kids to be in daycare full time. Also, postdocs are somewhat invisible in my department. After being here for 9 months, I am still not on the department listserv or the website.

    Advice to Senior ManagementMore integration, better salary.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    Great place for students to work

    Student Web Developer (Former Employee) Seattle, WA

    ProsAlways very flexible with scheduling around school and other obligations.

    ConsNo room to be creative with web development or practice skills used in a career position.

    Advice to Senior ManagementBe more lenient with individual job duties/descriptions.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    One of great learning and self-motivation experience.

    Marketing and Sales Intern (Former Employee) Seattle, WA

    ProsFreedom to market and develop leads in your own unique way. Employees always there to give you feedback or offer advice.

    ConsWe were not given a budget for marketing and promotion. Pretty much had to rely solely on our people skills and sales skills.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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