Westat Reviews

Updated August 19, 2014
Updated August 19, 2014
141 Reviews

3.2
141 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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James E. Smith
13 Ratings

Review Highlights

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

  • Work-life balance depends upon the particular project (in 8 reviews)


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

  • No benefits available (that I'm aware of) for Field Interviewers (in 5 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Highly organized company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Field Interviewer  in  Jacksonville, FL
    Current Employee - Field Interviewer in Jacksonville, FL

    I have been working at Westat part-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Highly organized and open communication have been great with this company. As a Field Interviewer I have enjoyed the ability to make my own schedule as I meet new people and I have had some great supervisor's.

    Cons

    Sometimes the hours you are able to work get in the way of family life. You have to call on homes when people are home which is weekends and evenings at and just after dinner time. There have also been times when there were not enough cases to keep me busy but this so far has been fairly infrequent.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep your Field Interviewer's busy or they will end up leaving for more steady PT work.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    AT HOME DATA COLLECTOR

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Data Collector At Home  in  Killeen, TX
    Former Employee - Data Collector At Home in Killeen, TX

    I worked at Westat full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    The work was very easy just conducted online surveys for various clients. The people were generally nice, occasionally would reach someone that was rude or vented for extended periods of time before hanging up.

    Cons

    The main challenge that I had with the company was inconsistent periods of work. You might work for three months and then be on a waiting list for three months.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Great place to work

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

    I have been working at Westat full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    I have been at Westat for 7 years and I really enjoy working here. Extremely nice people, great support departments, laid-back atmosphere. They provide all necessary training and encourage professional development.

    Cons

    Salaries are not competitive at lower grades, that's why a lot of people view the company as a stepping stone to get experience and skills. Pay raises are very gradual and structured and promotions can be very slow since they depend on time in grade and overall time at the company.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Re-think promotions, make them more dynamic and performance-based to retain top talent.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  4. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Nice palce to work

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

    I worked at Westat

    Pros

    1) Decent pay (not great)
    2) Interesting work
    3) Perks (on site subsidzed cafeteria, gym, two annual em,ployee meetings with drinks and food)

    Cons

    Starting to get rid of long tiime experienced employees in favor of younger, less experienced and who willw ork for less money

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Quit laying off your corporate knowledge abse

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great work atmosphere, flexible, interesting projects but lower compensation.

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

    I worked at Westat full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Very relaxed work environment, perfect work/life balance, I never felt like I needed a day off from being overworked. Management respects employees and truly promotes their well-being. Many company events for employees.

    Cons

    Pay is lower than average for area.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Revise compensation guidelines, specifically for technical/IT staff.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Interesting Work, low pay/hrs

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Field Interviewer  in  Casa Grande, AZ
    Current Employee - Field Interviewer in Casa Grande, AZ

    I have been working at Westat as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    As a field interviewer: working from home, flexible schedule, important research. Pays mileage.

    Cons

    Pay, inconsistent hours, work evening and weekends. No benefits. high turn over.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 2 people found this helpful  

    Poor management

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

    I have been working at Westat full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Flexible schedules and work from home options. Good benefits. Cafeterias onsite.

    Cons

    Managers that are not trained in management. They often do not know how to lead, provide guidance on tasks, delegate tasks efficiently, problem resolution, or acknowledge good work. Management has a bad habit of harping on the negative and never acknowledging achievements. Westat is very top heavy with higher grades (PhD, directors, and VPs) being paid the bulk of a project budget leaving very little for anyone else. Everyone else is severely underpaid and unappreciated. Raises are few, far between and are very small. Westat lacks real structure.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Managers need training and not only in software or budget management. They need to learn how to manage people!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    My overall experience as been great. I just can't stay long term due to the low pay.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Interviewer  in  Indianapolis, IN
    Current Employee - Interviewer in Indianapolis, IN

    I have been working at Westat part-time for less than a year

    Pros

    I like the flexible hours, nice people and everyone who works for them like it.

    Cons

    The low hourly pay is the biggest and only negative I have.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I like that you reimburse for mileage, but the hourly rate is really low. I can't stay long term at 11.00 per hour.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    good

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

    I worked at Westat full-time

    Pros

    good flexibility for salaried employees

    Cons

    no growth in the long run

    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    Interesting, challenging, and meaningful part-time work ~ but not for everyone

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

    I worked at Westat as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    You get to work on large, often nationally important research projects. You'll have personal insight into current studies and national trends that you see in the news. Instead of being stuck in a cubicle, you'll be working at home or traveling, meeting new people. On most projects, you have some choice as to which components you prefer: residential or facility, travel or non-travel. The schedule is flexible ~ on some projects, you can set your own schedule. Work-life balance depends upon the particular project. The company pays for training and travel, which is out of state for most people. The company pays for work-related mileage and expenses, and/or provides supplies. Regional supervisors will provide moral support and goal updates. Some contracts are short term.

    Cons

    Opportunities are sporadic ~ there won't always be a survey project available in your area. There is quite a bit of downtime, not always predictable. Supervisors will push you to meet goals even if the caseload doesn't always make this feasible. You may have to make cold calls in person to meet strangers, and you're not immediately welcomed in these distrustful days. You may have to go into bad neighborhoods, meet with problematic people, or persistently persuade people to take part in something they don't want to do (compares to census, social work, collections). The pay is low to average, especially considering the high level of trust, confidentiality, and general importance related to this job. There is very limited opportunity for advancement for field employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Look for new ways to find data when respondents refuse to take part, instead of continually pressing a refusal case until the sampled person feels harrassed.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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