Abt Associates Reviews in Washington, DC | Glassdoor

Abt Associates Washington DC Reviews

Updated April 16, 2017
56 reviews

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Washington, DC Area

3.3
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Abt Associates President and CEO Kathleen L. Flanagan
Kathleen L. Flanagan
30 Ratings

56 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Mission-driven company; great people to work with; work-life balance (in 45 reviews)

  • Interesting work, colleagues were not overly competitive with one another (in 15 reviews)

Cons
  • Pay for Masters-level Senior Analysts is low compared to other companies, some senior staff need serious training in interpersonal skills (in 10 reviews)

  • All the junior staff consistently has to work well past 6 pm in order to meet expected billable hours (in 9 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (4)

    "Great people, great research, difficult system for junior staff"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Analyst in Bethesda, MD
    Current Employee - Analyst in Bethesda, MD
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Research can be really interesting. Lots of opportunity to build new skills. People are fantastic!

    Cons

    Because projects are almost always underfunded, junior staff have to work 45-55 hours to get 40 billable hours per week. This can be a great thing if you're young, single and have the time. It can be difficult if you're in a relationship and have things you value outside of work.

    Focus on profits from the top is unhealthy and is often in conflict with Abt's founding values.

    Advice to Management

    Wind back on the focus on profits as it often is in conflict with Abt's mission.


  2. "Good place to start working but not to stay"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Finance and Contracts Analyst in Bethesda, MD
    Current Employee - Finance and Contracts Analyst in Bethesda, MD
    Doesn't Recommend

    I have been working at Abt Associates full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    I have been with a company for over 7 years. Good place to start working but not staying.Very flexible work environment and laid back atmosphere (feels academic).

    Cons

    Very hard to get promoted, hard work is not appreciated, very low pay especially for Finance and Contract Analysts in comparison with other companies. Too many managers too few employees to do the work. Pay raise is horrid. Very competitive among employees. Limited opportunities for advancement within the company in certain divisions. Hard to get salary bump/raise, promotion/annual review process unclear/political. I personally do not feel valued in this company.

    Advice to Management

    There's too much focus on reputation all capital for the wrong reasons, namely just to win more work. Pay better at lower ranks.


  3. "Summer Internship"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Intern - Social and Behavior Change Communications in Bethesda, MD
    Current Intern - Social and Behavior Change Communications in Bethesda, MD
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Abt Associates as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    PAID!
    Flexible hours, mentorship, professional development, and engaging work. They treat you like an actual employee. The best internship experience I've had so far.

    Cons

    Employees here are very busy which makes for a high-pressure and fast-paced environment. Might not suit well for people who are easily overwhelmed.

    Advice to Management

    Keep it up!


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  5. Helpful (1)

    "Senior Analyst / Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist in Bethesda, MD
    Current Employee - Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist in Bethesda, MD
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Abt Associates full-time

    Pros

    High levels of autonomy and opportunities for taking leadership

    Cons

    Slow promotion structure and sometimes non-competitive salaries

    Advice to Management

    Focus more on building the lower level cadre of employees so as to not be so top heavy.


  6. "Great Company & Mission"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Contracts Administrator in Alexandria, VA
    Current Employee - Senior Contracts Administrator in Alexandria, VA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Abt Associates (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great work/life balance, benefits, and challenging opportunities.

    Cons

    For me the location makes for a long commute but remote working as option balances this out.


  7. "Great Company, Even Better Mission"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Subcontracts Administrator in Bethesda, MD
    Former Employee - Subcontracts Administrator in Bethesda, MD
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Abt Associates full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Abt Associates is involved in some of the most gratifying work around the world. Their mission is to "Improve the quality of lives and economic well-being of people around the world". They support the people who need it the most and have an impact that is hard to not get behind. Employee owned. Huge promoter of work-life balance and telecommuting.

    Cons

    This company is pretty frugal when it comes to spending money on equipment like laptops, and holiday events (no open bar, just one drink ticket and no guests). Any happy hours or events are mostly imitated and paid for by the employees who make the decision to socialize outside of work.

    Advice to Management

    Invest more in your employees. Abt has stripped more and more away from employees, I would like to see a return to where Abt was years ago when company perks included more than just a paycheck and general benefits.


  8. Helpful (1)

    "Senior Analyst"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Analyst in Bethesda, MD
    Current Employee - Senior Analyst in Bethesda, MD
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Abt Associates (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Interesting work, smart and dedicated people, teaches high-quality research skills and methodologies

    Cons

    Pay for Masters-level Senior Analysts is low compared to other companies, some senior staff need serious training in interpersonal skills

    Advice to Management

    Value interpersonal skills! Pay Masters-level staff more! Client and people management keep the company running. Technical skills alone do not make use strong or useful.


  9. Helpful (9)

    "Associate"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate in Bethesda, MD
    Current Employee - Associate in Bethesda, MD
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Abt Associates full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Collegial and smart people (for the most part), mission-driven organization. Flexible working arrangements. Total package of benefits are good.

    Cons

    Too much bureaucracy, absolutely horrid IT support, little opportunity for advancement, outside hires paid more than internal promotions. Too many senior managers that don't seem to have a good grasp of what technical staff actually do. Anemic salary increases. Disconnect between long-term goals and concrete ability to reach them. Not enough pushback on client demands that are (frequently) unreasonable. CTO is incompetent. Training is insufficient to ensure all staff remain up-to-date with policies and ensures unified methods.

    Advice to Management

    Fire the entire IT department, and hire a small business to serve our IT needs. Easier to make demands when long-running issues are not met. Generate more profit to meet long-term unmet logistical needs - additional revenue on international projects don't help improve deficiencies company-wide.


  10. "Interesting work, but relationship with clients tricky"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Analyst in Bethesda, MD
    Former Employee - Senior Analyst in Bethesda, MD
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Abt Associates full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Has strong mission to improve health, education, environmental outcomes. Good support from supervisors (generally). Varied and interesting assignments

    Cons

    Endless quest for charge-time, people often in positions outside of their expertise

    Advice to Management

    Focus more on science and real solutions, less on just looking to please clients


  11. Helpful (3)

    "Great mission and interesting work but not well managed"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Silver Spring, MD
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Silver Spring, MD
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Abt Associates full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Abt provides interesting and challenging work. Overall the staff within each of the divisions are dedicated and smart researchers.

    Cons

    Work/life balance is a myth that is not consistently respected. Recent management selections for certain leadership roles have not been very sound. A good company needs more than leaders who can quote the most recent industry buzz-words. Lots of high quality, capable leaders have left the firm in the past year.

    Advice to Management

    Improve your hiring decisions. Pay attention.


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