Virginia Department of Health

  www.vdh.state.va.us
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Virginia Department of Health Reviews

Updated May 23, 2014

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3.3 9 reviews

9 Employee Reviews
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    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities

     

    Depends on your Supervisor

    Program Coordinator (Former Employee) Richmond, VA

    ProsHad a great supervisor, he communicated with me clearly and frequently. He gave me increasingly challenging and independent work as I learned.

    ConsState organization, so paperwork and bureaucracy got tiresome. As a part time employee I was limited to 1500 hours of work per year, which was not so bad considering I only worked there 9 months on a temporary assignment, but would be frustrating otherwise.

    Advice to Senior ManagementPut some time into communicating with those directly under you, and suggest that they do the same.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities

     

    Managers seem to have their own agendas.

    Administrative (Current Employee)

    ProsGreat place to work for those that can make things happen in public health.

    ConsThere are no growth opportunities, difficult political environment, and disorganized leadership.

    Advice to Senior ManagementGet on the same page, communicate with your staff, and earn the trust of your staff.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities

     

    Poor management & supervisors play favorites - frequent turnover at all levels

    Epidemiologist (Former Employee) Richmond, VA

    ProsWorking for VDH will give you a chance to work for the greater good. There seems to be fair amount of collegiality in some parts

    ConsSupervisors in the Office of Epi play favorites, and overall management seems to encourage competition to see who can report information first, vice finding out actual, verifiable details. Budget constraints limit valuable professional training opportunities.

    Advice to Senior ManagementI find it ironic that the Department of Health does not encourage healthy lifestyles. The chief tool utilized seemed to be potluck with little or no emphasis on healthy eating. Additionally, it is absolutely unacceptable for a report of bullying to be swept under the carpet & ignored.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Great mission and coworkers, but poor management

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsWith over 4700 staff across the state and $500M in budget, there is much potential to do a lot of good for the public. This is especially true in our 119 local health departments, where staff work directly with community members on a daily basis.

    ConsThe central office is bloated. There are over 600 staff there and many of them are not needed. Many poor managers have been placed in key positions, including many if the deputy commissioners and office directors. This has led many good employees to become jaded and quit. Managers tend to micromanage, with few exceptions to this rule. And what they manage has more to do with bureaucratic nonsense than actual business operations like program performance and even financial performance (staff have been laid off due to managers not monitoring their spending)! These practices are incentivized by the most senior levels of management, who equally do not focus on the real aims of public health.

    Advice to Senior ManagementDo not micromanage. Delegate much more responsibility. You need to trust your people to do the work. If they can't handle it, fine, fire them and get someone who you CAN trust. Monitor your finances. Start holding your staff accountable for public health goals. It is your job to take obstacles away from your staff so that they are free to do their work; do not be a roadblock.

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities

     

    Just okay

    Consultant (Former Employee) Richmond, VA

    ProsFlexibility in terms of work balance. Didn't have to go back to the office after out of the office site visits.

    ConsSame thing as with every government job. NO way to break out of the standard routine. Not willing to take any recommendations for improvement or increase efficiency.

    Advice to Senior Managementbreak the red tape.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities

     

    Learning a lot, paying the price!

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsLearn an exorbitant amount about Public Health, Policy, Finance, Stakeholder/Consumer relations, anything you can get your hands on is here!

    ConsBe careful about your negotiations of your initial salary. Once you are in, do not expect to see jumps in your salary even with promotions (competitive or otherwise). It is the nature of business here and other businesses as HR is strict with what it can/cannot do.

    Advice to Senior ManagementUnderstand that people with degrees have gone to school for that field... this is why they have something to offer and are truly looking forward to performing the work with their skills. This does not mean that they want your job!

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities

     

    VA Department of Health is a great place to work!

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee) Richmond, VA

    ProsSome of the nicest, most hardworking people I have ever had the pleasure to know. I can think of a dozen people offhand who were incredibly busy themselves and yet would stop to help me or answer a question. They also taught me a valuable lesson: A big hug is a powerful stress-reducer on a challenging day.

    ConsGoals of projects are sometimes under-communicated to key participants. Some meetings lacked focus and wandered off topic.

    Advice to Senior ManagementNone

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities

     

    A Cancerous Organization Plagued by Incompetent and Dysfunctional Management

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsSome of the nurses, doctors, and nurse practitioners want to do a good job and do their best despite a poor workplace environment. The services provided to the general public are indispensable.

    ConsThis is not even typical bureaucracy; it's really much worse. There is much vertical violence in the lower echelon of the organization, between acting managers and nurses and support staff. Higher level managers (directors and so forth) play musical chairs as no one seems to hold these positions for more than a few months. Thus, any unethical activity exhibited by lower management goes unnoticed, ignored, or simply unpunished.

    Many of the acting managers are keen to the fact that they're simply not employable outside of this organization. Thus, it seems that they do whatever is necessary to maintain their pay grade and associated power. Abuse of power is used to intimidate (BULLY) or eliminate whoever, whenever. No one is safe, as management has:

    -Fired a long-time worker while on medical leave.

    -Falsely accused a worker of wrongdoing, firing him/her.

    Both of the previously-alluded to employees were reinstated after further review. No punishment was passed over to management for their malicious intents and/or neglect. Additionally, the organization routinely abuses the cruel 12 - 18 probationary period to unload young nurses like contract employees (freeing up budget space by eliminating future overhead - this is their sad attempt at financial management) or to simply get rid of those they do not like. This makes me wish Virginia had unions, or something to PROTECT the worker, as no one else is going to do it.

    This is a vile organization, but one of the few spots to practice public healthcare. Thus, many who want to get into the field end up here and leave quickly or are terminated. There is no money and insufficient services are ultimately provided to a community in desperate need. Both internally and externally, this organization is viewed as a joke but no one seems to do anything about it. It's sad, and it will take a huge scandal (and there will be one) for anyone to take notice.

    Advice to Senior ManagementI guess this one should go all the way upstairs:

    Hey Gov. B: Clean house at VDH.

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

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities

     

    Great Experience

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsProvided great experience as a recent graduate.

    ConsParking is not a paid employee benefit.

    Advice to Senior ManagementGreat leadership

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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