World Vision Reviews

Updated July 13, 2015
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3.6
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Richard Stearns
19 Ratings

Pros
  • They are making a difference in the lives of families in many countries by delivering results on their promises and commitments (in 7 reviews)

  • Work life balance is fairly good (in 6 reviews)

Cons
  • Below market salaries for similar jobs in the for-profit world, but better than average for a non-profit (in 6 reviews)

  • Very few opportunities to advance past the call center (in 3 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

30 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    Fund Raiser

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Federal Way, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Federal Way, WA

    I have been working at World Vision full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Great mission and the organization has decades of experience they have built on and continue to learn the best ways to benefit the poor throughout the world.

    Cons

    It is a Christian organization, and at first I liked that it was a job where I could also practice spiritual growth. But as time has gone by, I do not appreciate it as much because I feel there should be more respect for the different ways people express their faith. It is a multi-denominational organization, but sometimes people of certain denominations (such as Catholics) may feel disrespected. Though WV started as an Evangelical organization, it is now multi-denominational, but it seems like many employees did not get that memo.

    Advice to Management

    It is not so much the organization itself that disrespects non-Evangelical Christians, it is the more outspoken conservative Evangelical employees that have that attitude, but it is up to leadership to maintain respect for everyone's views and that is a tough thing for leadership to do. It needs to be emphasized by leadership that different views need to be respected.


  2. Great work, people and mission

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Federal Way, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Federal Way, WA

    I have been working at World Vision full-time (More than 3 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Pay is good, especially considering this is a non-profit. Hard to find more meaningful work than helping children in poverty around the world.

    Cons

    The company is trying to find the best way forward as its core product gets stale.


  3. Helpful (4)

    Great global mission; US leadership challenging

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Marketing in Federal Way, WA
    Current Employee - Marketing in Federal Way, WA

    I have been working at World Vision full-time (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Best in class community development work in 97 countries; a mission you can be proud of working to support and advance. Very supportive of appropriate work/life balance.

    Cons

    Leadership in the US office has lost their mojo; little culture of innovation, little investment in staff development, declining revenues have created a "bunker mentality" causing many of the most talented staff to depart.

    Advice to Management

    Need to restore a grand vision to attract talented people, trust the staff to innovate, provide clear, compelling and focused strategic objectives for everyone to rally behind.


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  5. Helpful (1)

    Marketing Project Manager

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Federal Way, WA
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Federal Way, WA

    I have been working at World Vision full-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Amazing humanitarian org. Helping save live

    Cons

    Nonprofit and not keeping up with salary trends


  6. Helpful (6)

    In a bubble

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manager in Federal Way, WA
    Former Employee - Manager in Federal Way, WA

    I worked at World Vision full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The notion that you just might be doing Kingdom work. It was great to be able to get up each day and say "God, thank you for the chance to work here. Guide my work. Help me to do your will, not mine." Starting meetings with prayer was nice. Very few curse words were heard outside of certain departments (the internet had some sailors). Free parking!

    Cons

    But then you get into the office and the politics and backstabbing and committee process ground everything to a halt. It is not a place for innovation, growth or forward thinking. It is a bunch of small warring fiefdoms trying to protect their own donor base against competing goals by grown-ups who act like children, many who have no real world business experience or who have failed so miserably in the business world that they've sought the comfort of a place where any mistake can be covered over with a plea for "grace" and an unkind word dismissed as "not being Christian" - unless you're line management or below, then expect all kinds of abuse from your supervisors. This is not a positive working environment and everything is cut so far to the bone that the challenge to "do more with less" is really impossible. Work-life balance existed, but there was talk of expectation by supervisors higher up that if people weren't working 50, 60 hours that they weren't really putting in a diligent effort. Sponsorships fell off a cliff since March Madness, they lost several big artists and churches who worked towards their goal, their retail partners have massively under-delivered and they were hit again at the end of the year when all of that single-gift revenue from non-Christians who previously supported WV didn't show up. Oh, and they accidentally left a bunch of donor information in a file in an insecure directory on their website and who knows if that was stolen (and blamed it on a contractor). So, yes, that's what that confusing email a month or two ago was about, informing you without you realizing what was going on. Run, run away from World Vision. It's a sinking ship.

    Advice to Management

    "March Madness" as the mistake is known internally, was a colossal failure that proved no one in management at the organization has any clue about modern business, culture or marketing. The decision was made in secret and then only shared with select employees above a certain level on the org chart (line managers and rank and file learned like everyone else on that fateful morning). The problem wasn't the decision, the problem was the arrogance that said they didn't need to involve their staff, partners or supporters - if not in the decision, then at least in understanding the decision. Regardless of what you think about the decision (or the decision to retreat), this was a marketing failure, not a business decision failure. They did not understand the power of media, they did not own the story, they weren't prepared to defend the story. And in the end, they let everyone else dictate the story and a lot of people spoke with their wallets, to the detriment of innocent children. The fact that the same leadership is still in place just proves crazy people are running the asylum. The fact that Rich Stearns is still at the helm is clearly a matter of stubborn pride, or perhaps the captain stoicly going down with the ship. It's a tragedy that will be discussed in business classes, which is ironic considering Rich Stearns regularly and proudly proclaimed to have never read a business book.


  7. Grateful for my job, my great friends, and my awesome bosses.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Federal Way, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Federal Way, WA

    I have been working at World Vision full-time (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    I have made some incredible friends at work. They care deeply about me and my family. They are funny. They are kind. You will not find a group of nicer people. Middle management is smart and works hard. My boss genuinely looks after me, as well as the other managers in my department. We are like a big family.

    Cons

    It's a large organization, and so the usual challenges come along with that: slow to move, but powerful when moving. Like a heavyweight boxer.


  8. Great people, transparent organization

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - Intern in Federal Way, WA
    Former Intern - Intern in Federal Way, WA

    I worked at World Vision as an intern (Less than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Tight community bonds with co-workers, widespread belief in the organization's mission a unifying theme, transparent and accessible leadership, beautiful campus, opportunities to volunteer in the community, lots of social opportunities for employees.

    Cons

    A bit far away from the city (Seattle) and lots of traffic, very large organization so hard to meet everyone, very few offices (expect to work in a cubicle).


  9. Helpful (2)

    It's great to feel like your work is doing something more useful than improving shareholder value!

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

    I worked at World Vision full-time (More than 3 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    People you work with are really good people and everyone that is there is really committed to making a difference in the world. It's a great environment to be in.

    Cons

    It is a religious organization and so only Christians are hired and basically only devout, church going Christian's are marketed to. This invades the overall culture, where everyday, conversational language is infused with religiosity, people gather every day for devotions or chapel and meetings typically begin with prayer. It can be a little overwhelming if your religion isn't such a dominant part of your life.

    Advice to Management

    Encourage more inclusive language. Even though Catholics do work there, Protestants dominate and derisive comments about Catholics (or people of other religions in general) are not that uncommon. A more ecumenical environment is needed.


  10. Helpful (3)

    Dysfunctional management ruining potential

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Federal Way, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Federal Way, WA

    I have been working at World Vision full-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great mission, great field operations, many strong, dedicated employees

    Cons

    Other reviews have done a great job of pointing out some of the weaknesses which largely have to do with the marketing department. It's lead by a long-time employee with no grasp of marketing or strategy, key VPs lack basic management skills, and one VP has accurately been called "toxic" in other reviews. They are a big part of the problem but have no self-awareness to change. Instead, it's a gossip driven, finger pointing place with a very deserved reputation for being passive aggressive. Morale is very low as the rank and file have lost confidence in the marketing team's leadership. Hopefully significant change will come soon, or the best employees will continue to leave. Until a COO and CMO are in place and big changes in management happen, I just can't recommend it as a place to work.

    Advice to Management

    It's time for sweeping change in marketing leadership and organization. There are many really strong employees who could be given a chance to provide leadership and a much healthier environment. World Vision's marketing leadership is not living up to the Christian values that the organization is based on and needs to be revamped.


  11. Helpful (6)

    Fear and mediocrity holding us back

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director, Marketing in Federal Way, WA
    Current Employee - Director, Marketing in Federal Way, WA

    I have been working at World Vision full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    The work that World Vision does around the world is pretty amazing. There is a very smart, experienced approach to fighting poverty and oppression. It is aimed at the roots of the problems we face, and World Vision is dedicated for the long haul in the areas where it works. For those of us who work in the support (fundraising) office, which is what the HQ in Federal Way is, this makes us feel that we're working for an organization we believe in. If you are a marketer, you have a brand that you would be proud to represent. But....

    Cons

    Our fundraising office has failed to grow revenue for years. There appears to be a dedication to remaining unremarkable. The following problems are well known within the company, discussed every day by employees, and are not addressed by leadership at all. This is demoralizing: - The marketing department (called Mobilization) is run by a homegrown 25+ year employee who is not a marketer. As a result, the direct marketing approach the company has taken for, well, 25+ years hasn't changed with the times. This person is simply not equipped to lead a change. - A system of SMART goals perpetuates silos and inefficiency with people working at cross-purposes. - The culture is also a thing of the past, hierarchical and overly deferential on the basis of rank, even when leadership is lost or incompetent. - There is little to no career path for bright young stars, so they leave. This perpetuates mediocrity. Underperforming, or "pretty good" employees are rewarded for playing the game. They can stay as long as they like. The following problems are not recognized by management and therefore are not addressed by leadership either. Also demoralizing: - They are a big part of the problem. - Forays into new marketing practices or new markets are withdrawn too quickly if initially unsuccessful. Fear is at the heart of this. - The brand is stuck in the way back machine, and the stewards of the brand are tired. Any true creativity was sucked out of them long ago.

    Advice to Management

    Embrace change, grow a pair, or retire. Make way for leadership with a braver, more current approach to the market. Realize that the current course is NOT the safe course. We are dying a slow death! Don't try to dress up poor management with "Christian values". Putting up with poor performing employees is poor stewardship. Firing them would be more "Christian" then trying to nurture them to perform. At best they'll become mediocre. We CAN do more with less. Addition by subtraction. Good COO, CMO are vital. PS - identify your best people and let them do the interviews and hiring.



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