World Health Organization

  www.who.int
  www.who.int

World Health Organization Reviews

Updated November 19, 2014
Updated November 19, 2014
68 Reviews
3.3
68 Reviews
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World Health Organization Director-General Margaret Chan
Margaret Chan
30 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Great benefits (tax-free salary, 6 weeks paid vacation, home leave, diplomatic privileges if you are high enough (in 4 reviews)

  • Interesting salary and benefits (in 3 reviews)


Cons
  • Poor job security for most temporary staff and agency's budget subject to donor countries economic health (in 6 reviews)

  • Living in Geneva could be rather expensive (in 5 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    I worked for the World Health Organization for 2 years

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

    I worked at World Health Organization

    Pros

    Great benefits, opportunities to travel and the opportunity to do some great work for under served populations.

    Cons

    Limited growth and cumbersome processes. Very large bureaucratic culture with little communication between and within groups.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Increase communication between and within groups at WHO without adding additional assigned tasks of creating bulletins to convey information - meetings in the hallways and monthly technical meetings would go much further to increasing communications. Also, trust your employees.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Irrelevant in a changing world (WHO-PAHO)

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

    I worked at World Health Organization full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Amazing benefits if you are fixed staff (tax free salary, pension, health insurance, 6 weeks holiday);
    Great travel opportunities

    Cons

    Politics are more important than global public health;
    Widespread nepotism;
    Bureaucracy and political games when undergoing contract negotiations;
    There are no metrics to measure impact of projects.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop complaining about lack of funding and focus on strategic goals to make the organization relevant again. Also, hire based on merit not politics or friendships. Please fire all the deadwood that travel the world giving the same presentations. And foster a collaborative work environment instead of a "why is this project important to my personal goals" mentality. Finally, update all your administrative processes to reflect the 21st century. You are WHO, please care about global public health--your mission is crucial to saving people.

  3.  

    Good mission; Bureaucratic nightmare

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Consultant in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Consultant in Washington, DC

    I worked at World Health Organization as a contractor (more than an year)

    Pros

    Great place to interact with people from all over the world; be part of a large organization; work towards productive goals

    Cons

    lots of bureaucracy, hard to get things moving, few long term staff positions, very top level, might be becoming obsolete

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    I worked at the PAHO Americas Regional Office

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Planning Budgeting and Resources in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Planning Budgeting and Resources in Washington, DC

    I worked at World Health Organization as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    I was able to learn alot about the WHO standards for each of the regional offices specifically PAHO.

    Cons

    The internship was completely unpaid so there are times where you might feel like you're being used and it may not be beneficial for you.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    It might be feasible to offer paid internships or (consultants) where you could pay them something. This city is expensive so you would get better applicants if it was somehow paid.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Great internship but unpaid

    Former Employee - Intern in Geneva (Switzerland)
    Former Employee - Intern in Geneva (Switzerland)

    I worked at World Health Organization full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    It was a great internship; I learned a lot and worked along side Technical Officers, medical officers and graduate students in public health. I was published while helping on a publication and assisted with international conferences on community health. I think this internship really helped me get into grad school.

    Cons

    Unpaid for 40 hours/week. Absolutely awful in this regard.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    PAY YOUR INTERNS!

  7.  

    The most incredible two years of my entire career

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - M and E Team Leader in Geneva (Switzerland)
    Former Employee - M and E Team Leader in Geneva (Switzerland)

    I worked at World Health Organization full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Great on my CV, the people I worked with were really amazing - the spirit within my immediate team was palpable

    Cons

    petty politics, some very obstructive people, and crumbling support structures. also weak financial foundation

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    give people reliable funding - allow them to work across silos - make alliances across the structure of the organisation.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    As an intern I was given a significant amount of autonomy to complete my work.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Intern in Geneva (Switzerland)
    Current Employee - Intern in Geneva (Switzerland)

    I have been working at World Health Organization as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    My supervisors asked me what I was interested in doing and they sent me on my way to do it. This freedom gave me the opportunity to network within the organization and seek exciting projects.

    Cons

    Highly bureaucratic. Sometimes it feels like the work you produce will never be seen or impactful. This also means that the organization operates at slow pace.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    A cog in an important machine

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Technical Officer in Geneva (Switzerland)
    Former Employee - Technical Officer in Geneva (Switzerland)

    I worked at World Health Organization full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    As an international organization you are surrounding my all parts of the world at all times. Conversations with colleagues are truly extraordinary. Although individual experiences differ greatly I found my time here to be productive and enriching.

    Cons

    As a UN organization the WHO is an extraordinarily bureaucratic experience. At times the slow progress can be exhausting for the impatient. However, as time passes you learn how to maximize the efficiency of the system through experience and connections.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Leverage your staff rather than protect your territory. Remind your team often the greater purpose they serve, the expertise they possess and allow them to practice a high level of autonomy within their domain.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    I was working there part-time, but my time there was rewarding.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Assistant IT Manager in Vilnius (Lithuania)
    Former Employee - Assistant IT Manager in Vilnius (Lithuania)

    I worked at World Health Organization part-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Caring employer. good remuneration, flexible hours.

    Cons

    No career opportunities in small markets.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    Intern at WHO Western Pacific Region

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

    I worked at World Health Organization as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Really good experience. Learned a lot about working in International Health. Learned many skills from inspiring experts.

    Cons

    The team was very cold. You had to push for experiences.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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