Alberta Health Services Reviews | Glassdoor

Alberta Health Services Reviews

Updated April 25, 2017
230 reviews

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3.5
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Verna Yiu
17 Ratings

230 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Strong emphasis on work-life balance (in 21 reviews)

  • Good benefits, relaxed atmosphere (in 26 reviews)

Cons
  • They keep talking about work/life balance however if you're on call, there is little life to be had (in 5 reviews)

  • Upper management disengaged and removed from frontline staff (in 6 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Top-down mentality, too much "busy work", no support for middle mgmt"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Calgary, AB (Canada)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Alberta Health Services full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    - Excellent benefits for out of scope employees
    - Name looks great on resume
    - Neat initiatives as you get a closer look into what improvements Alberta will get in terms of healthcare
    - Learning more about healthcare

    Cons

    I worked in Health Information Management and my experience was a complete nightmare because of too much "busy work", top-down, passive aggressive leadership,"unsafe" environment for out of scope employees, an unsupportive boss, and little to no transparency or authenticity (though this would be expected in a large organization anyway).

    I highly respect AHS as a whole, but my particular business unit (Health Information Management) left me nothing short of emotionally damaged. I was let go over two years ago shortly after finding out I was pregnant as they "eliminated my position" and I still feel the after-effects of the awful experience.

    I was reprimanded for:

    1. Registering for too many courses on the Learning Management System. My boss literally pulled up a list, printed it out and counted it before reprimanding me about it - I'm not sure what the problem was, but it was worth pulling me into an HR meeting about it.

    2. Booking medical appointments. I had surgery a couple of weeks prior to working at AHS and had post-surgery follow-up appointments. I was trying to get pregnant and needed medical intervention, which required specialists who worked daytime hours. I can say it now that I have a healthy and happy child, but I wasn't comfortable disclosing this the medical reasons to my boss at the time and I didn't appreciate being reprimanded about daytime appointments, especially given that this is a healthcare organization. My boss did request doctor's notes for *each* appointment, which I gladly provided. I asked to work extra hours to bank to make up for medical appointments and that was not only kayboshed, but was an offensive suggestion. This "issue" (?) was also brought up in the HR meeting.

    3. Not completing "busy work" on time despite meeting internal client deadlines. I was apparently hired for my skillset, but was tasked with doing work that wasn't exposed to in the past (and didn't get absolutely any coaching on), and was reprimanded for not making fast progress on it. And when I did complete work for internal clients that did speak to my skillset, it was dismissed because it wasn't a deliverable specifically for my boss. My boss's busy work took priority over internal client work.

    4. Using a tablet to take notes. I have a highly secure device that I've been using to take notes. It is as safe, (if not *more* safe) than a physical notebook since it was password protected. I write slow and can't capture notes as quickly as I type, so it's the #1 tool I use to stay organized. This was taken away from me because it sought to be a security issue. The worst part of it, is that my boss had her assistant investigate the concern with second-hand information instead of me speaking with IT directly. Her assistant asked IT if I can use "my iPad to record meetings", when really, I was just using my Surface to write notes). IT shut it down right away, obviously, because the information given was inaccurate.

    I was given only one week to be come oriented, and within the first week I was tasked with real client work - which was exciting for me, and I completed, but it wasn't good enough because I hadn't started on the busy work yet. I was micromanaged. I was middle management and was expected to be my boss's "puppet" and micromanage the team that reported up to me (who was remote, by the way), which I was not about to do. Leadership was passive-aggressive and absolutely top-down (hence my point #3), and when I wrote a letter to higher leadership about my experience after I was let go, not surprisingly, it didn't go any further.

    It was basically a personality clash that went sideways really fast, and HR was not about to support a new employee (myself) over someone who has worked there for many, many years. HR was present to protect the manager. After the HR meeting about the LMS courses and my medical appointments, I disclosed to HR that I just found out I was pregnant, and for the first time, cried out of frustration and helplessness. I then got let go a few weeks later.

    I am extremely valuable in my field of work and this experience left me feeling feeling undermined, and quite frankly, traumatized. I hope that no one ever experiences anything remotely close to what I did.

    Advice to Management

    Support your middle management and have HR in place to protect both employees and leadership, not just leadership. Enough with the top-down mentality!


  2. "Mixed employer"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Consultant in Edmonton, AB (Canada)
    Current Employee - Consultant in Edmonton, AB (Canada)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Alberta Health Services full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Secure employment as not dependent upon oil and gas

    Cons

    Disfunctional and positive environment dependent on your manager

    Advice to Management

    Quit hiding poor managers and director...note turnover and empower HR to manage issues


  3. "Decent employer. Good benefits"

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

    I have been working at Alberta Health Services (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Good benefits. Unionized. Pension. Great people to work with usually. Fair management. Easy to take temp jobs if you need a change, or want to try something new without losing your position.

    Cons

    Hard to get hired of you are not already an alberta health services employee. Union means nobody ever gets fired, even if they should.


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  5. "Nice"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - BSA
    Current Employee - BSA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Alberta Health Services full-time

    Pros

    Fare salary, good benefit, low stress

    Cons

    Slow business, not challenging,


  6. "Despite quite a few shortcomings related to location I trully enjoy working here."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - ER OPD RN in McLennan, AB (Canada)
    Current Employee - ER OPD RN in McLennan, AB (Canada)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Alberta Health Services part-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Salary is one of the best in the country with outstanding differential. Union is very strong, lots of benefits. Independence, no one overlooking my shoulder while I work. Nice colleagues. Opportunity to bond with the community. Hours are excellent. Excellent work/life balance.

    Cons

    Lack of orientation and formal training. Do not reimburse ACLS despite being a necessity in my department. Increasing needless paperwork. No opportunity for growth. Professional isolation.

    Advice to Management

    Invest in your staff to improve turnover.


  7. "Fantastic Place to Work!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Medical Transcriptionist in Edmonton, AB (Canada)
    Former Employee - Medical Transcriptionist in Edmonton, AB (Canada)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Alberta Health Services full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Awesome management and excellent transparency and accountability. I was treated like a human and paid what I was worth, and the benefits and pension were nothing short of fantastic. My subsequent move to BC has been a slap in the face career-wise; the hospitals here mostly outsource their transcription to a couple of companies in Ontario that pay by the dictated minute (= $3 to $12/hour!). I'm now working long, gruelling hours for sometimes 1/4 of the pay.

    Cons

    There was a lot of movement and restructuring in my department. Things seemed quite disorganized and chaotic at times, but I relocated to another province for my husband's job promotion (not in health care) before it all got finalized, so I can't say whether it ever settled down.

    Advice to Management

    Hang in there! You seemed to be stretched very thin at times but you kept us involved and included even in the face of chaos.


  8. "Mid Mgmt"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Alberta Health Services full-time

    Pros

    Alberta Health Services provides a work environment that supports an excellent balance between work life and home life.
    Intelligent, passionate leaders with progressive ideas to ensure care delivery will be sustainable.

    Cons

    Alberta Health Services is a large organization, with that comes slow-moving change and transformation. Addressing the complex interconnections of this massive system and can lead to the inability to see the whole picture and the challenges of solving a problem or creating change and the effects that has on other parts of the system.

    Advice to Management

    - take action
    - Accept failure and encourage it
    - start small and learn
    - take action
    - start


  9. "Solid Place To Be"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Provincial Manager in Valleyview, AB (Canada)
    Current Employee - Provincial Manager in Valleyview, AB (Canada)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Alberta Health Services full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Strong emphasis on work-life balance. Encouraged to make use of time off to benefit family and other pursuits.

    Cons

    Limited opportunities to move up in the organization unless you are in with the right individuals.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to build on the strengths within the organization and don't hire in too many people if you have people within that can do the job.


  10. "Working environment"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Stable and Flexible working environment, easygoing

    Cons

    No chances to learn latest technology, job duty is not clear


  11. Helpful (1)

    "It's just a job"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Staffing Clerk in Edmonton, AB (Canada)
    Current Employee - Staffing Clerk in Edmonton, AB (Canada)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The best part of working for AHS is the Salary. AHS provides a evening and weekend premium.

    Cons

    -Nepitism and bad management.
    -Hard to get stable hours and schedule.
    -No upward mobility
    - You have to put up with a lot of abuse from other AHS staff and supervisors to do this job.

    Advice to Management

    Take better care of your employees.


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