Westat Reviews

Updated March 5, 2015
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3.2
178 Reviews
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Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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James E. Smith
29 Ratings

Pros
  • Work-life balance depends upon the particular project (in 9 reviews)

  • An opportunity to work from home if your home setup qualifies and you are out of state (in 9 reviews)

Cons
  • Low pay and sometimes not many projects available (in 5 reviews)

  • Many supervisors are vindictive by nature (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

Employee Reviews

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  1. Telephone Data Collector

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

    I have been working at Westat (more than a year)

    Pros

    Their surveys are used for important nationwide research projects. I also like the fact that you get paid every week (direct deposit). The night differential pay helps a lot. You can chose your own schedule and can work a minimum of 15 hours a week to a maximum of 40 hours a week. The performance reviews are approximately every six months depending on the hours worked during that time frame. If you are hardworking and committed, you will move forward in this company. Your mentor is your key contact person and replies promptly to your emails. There is so much to learn.

    Cons

    Constant reviews from team leaders can be perceived as micromanagement by some employees. Reviews are important for advancement, quality and training purposes. It is also a good opportunity to meet the team leaders during their feedback.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    It would be good to have a benefits package if possible.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  2. A good work from home company.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Field Supervisor in Rockville, MD
    Former Employee - Field Supervisor in Rockville, MD

    I worked at Westat full-time

    Pros

    Very nice for those who do not want to commute and who are independently motivated to achieve results and are self starters.

    Cons

    It is challenging to demonstrate to your long distance boss that you are capable and trustworthy of working independently. Some are fine and a few are too concerned about control.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Review the on line application process. There are some definite problems with the automated culling process.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. Hoping to make Westat my home throughout my entire clinical trials career

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Rockville, MD
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Rockville, MD

    I have been working at Westat

    Pros

    Great work life balance, challenging and interesting work

    Cons

    Advancement can be difficult for off-site employees

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Provide off site employees great opportunities

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5. An excellent company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Contractor - Telephone Data Collector
    Current Contractor - Telephone Data Collector

    I have been working at Westat as a contractor

    Pros

    Excellent training. Professional, courteous staff. Jobs are available with a mission, if you choose to view things that way.

    Cons

    It would be nice to feel more connected to the company. Community building would be a good idea, but I understand why that's not a priority.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Try to encourage your employees to be more connected to the company, even temporary workers. Build a culture of loyalty. Otherwise, this is an excellent company and I am grateful for the opportunity to work for them.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. HR Assistant

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Human Resources Assistant in Rockville, MD
    Former Employee - Human Resources Assistant in Rockville, MD

    I worked at Westat full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    convenient location, friendly atmosphere, nice interdepartmental relations

    Cons

    Bad pay, no room to grow, low educated people

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Value education and training.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
  7. The best job I ever had and the worst job I ever had as a MEPS traveling interviewer

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Meps Interviewer in Rockville, MD
    Former Employee - Meps Interviewer in Rockville, MD

    I worked at Westat full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Very flexible time work from home, good 401k with some matching and a very good ESOP once you have been vested, Many great colleagues and chances to travel nationally including Alaska and Hawaii

    Cons

    Wow not enough room Most of the supervisors I had were a bit off balance, Much due to the unrealistic expectations to finish completes at a very high 90’s percentile and its not possible so they hint at u that if u can just be in the home with computer going at least 30 minutes even if they run you out after 30 minutes and 70% is left undone they mark the rest of the answers as complete but non responsive? how does that work? Oh and I pointed out that very situation and it was like yelling the emperor has no clothes on!!!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    My advice to Management get real numbers and stop with all the false completes. instead of hounding respondents to continue when they have refused for good reasons, Money, work, kids, school, etc the incentive payment should be more like $100 per person per household and a bonus at the end! and allow the converters and interviewers hire a sitter if need be

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. Westat Field Interviewer

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Field Interviewer in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Field Interviewer in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Westat

    Pros

    Some flexibility for a part time job.

    Cons

    Low pay for skills required, no benefits.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Please consider treating people differently than just more data!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. It's a job

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Westat

    Pros

    You get to work from home.

    Cons

    They don't pay much But it's ok.

  10. 1 person found this helpful

    Unprofessional

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research in Rockville, MD
    Current Employee - Research in Rockville, MD

    I have been working at Westat full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Independence, the gym...pretty much it

    Cons

    unprofessional, bad food, unfriendly, poor management

    I would say your experience here depends on if your direct supervisor likes you or not and this can be a very arbitrary determination. There are definitely "favorites". As for the title of the posting overall the organization is just unprofessional from top to bottom. Very disorganized and CYA attitude among people instead of proactively preventing problems that may occur among staff. Also a very passive aggressive approach to dealing with issues instead of direct conflict resolution from managers. Favored employees or management themselves are free from judgement while others are scrutinized. Also remote employees working on Westat field research...your work is ridiculed and you're very condescendingly spoken about at headquarters which I find pretty distasteful and was dissapointed to be in the presence of. There really is not a value on employees and theres a level of smugness among many. I often remembered field researchers ridiculed and mocked...very us vs them mentality. Lastly, the food is overpriced and bad. The catering service they chose is infamously bad nationally and the workers are often rude.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    help to develop management skills and not managers that are simply senior level researchers with no idea how to actually manage people. hire consultants if needed

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful

    Somewhat convenient side job, do not count on this as a real job

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

    I worked at Westat

    Pros

    Flexible
    Great pay
    Get to talk to people
    Dont have to be couped up in an office
    Dont have to sale anything

    Cons

    Very weird tactics to try to get people to participate in a study

    Keep having to recontact hostile ppl who have no interest in the study

    Supervisors can be very micromanaging and request that you visit homes in the dark by yourself!

    Projects dont last as nearly long as promised

    Intermittent work

    Disconnect between management and reality

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Projects could last longer and reach their participation goal if it was open to the general population in an area and not just to randomly selected addresses.

    Doesn't Recommend

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