American Council on Education Reviews | Glassdoor

American Council on Education Reviews

Updated January 14, 2017
25 reviews

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2.7
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25 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Associate Director"

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

    I worked at American Council on Education full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Powerful position to create lasting policy changes, great location in DC, excellent benefits including tuition reimbursement, health insurance, PTO.

    Cons

    Can be bureaucratic at times


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Managers don't receive proper training"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at American Council on Education full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great retirement benefits and work flexibility

    Cons

    Managers get away with treating employees horribly. I have experienced it in my own department and observed verbal and mental abuse in other departments. They continue to get rewarded and feedback from employees is not welcomed.

    Advice to Management

    Please consider extensive management training and anonymous surveys to gain insight into how employees are being treated so that change can happen before you get hit with a major class action lawsuit.


  3. Helpful (1)

    "Good as a salary stepping stone"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Program Specialist in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Senior Program Specialist in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Great benefits, vacation package and salaries.

    Cons

    Very hierarchical, leadership doesn't always appear to care for its employees.

    Advice to Management

    Improve communication with employees


  4. "Amazing benefits, smart employees"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at American Council on Education full-time

    Pros

    The benefits of this association are excellent. From respectable pay to great retirement contributions, and a set 35-hour work week, it's a good place to work. They help with professional development if you ask for it, which is nice. Not much overtime is required.

    Cons

    Inequality among departments as far as resource allocation, attention, etc. - some departments are the "star pupils." Senior management are set in their ways, so expect change to be slow here. Parking is expensive. Some overtime required.

    Advice to Management

    Let the lower-level experts you hired do their jobs - allow change!


  5. Helpful (2)

    "Toxic-Unfriendly Environment"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    This organization has good benefits and a great 403b match.

    Cons

    Hands down the most toxic environment I have ever encountered especially to minorities. If you are not in facilities, IT or in a support role, you will be targeted. I have seen managers lie to push people out of the door to protect their jobs. Favoritism is rampant. If you put your head down and be abused you will thrive here. If you are talented you will be forced out.

    The treatment of minorities in some departments is from the 1920s. The culture of the organization is stagnant and awkward and someone said this before. People are afraid to talk to each other and bond on different floors. People collect a paycheck because the benefits are great but they are dying inside. I have seen person after person pushed out the door until they couldn't take it anymore and nothing is done.

    If you are good at what you do avoid this place. The president doesn't talk to her staff and the leaders of the organization are in fact the good old boys club where no one matters, no matter how good you do. It's sad. This is a nonprofit but the focus is purely on MONEY and salaries and the soon to be retirees having enough pension to retire comfortably. I would be surprised to see this company lasting into the future with the focus not being on education. All the new people leave because it's a shock to walk into this environment and be constantly mistreated. Someone said how do they sleep at night and I wonder the same.

    Advice to Management

    HR needs to look at trends and take action. Investigate why the same groups of people are leaving. Something is going on. Managers who lie on their staff and target them are bad for the company. Learn more about your staff. See why people run for the hills. There's a reason. Provide diversity and sensitivity training. Teach managers how to lead and treat everyone fairly.


  6. Helpful (6)

    "Once a great institution"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manager in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Manager in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    There are some wonderful people, prime location, inexpensive parking, good benefits

    Cons

    In the past decade ACE's golden reputation as the overarching higher education association has been slashed to smithereens. The once-collegial, quality-focused, progressive leadership has mostly run screaming from the building, a few stalwart good eggs cling on hoping for the days when the steely cutthroat President finally departs and they can help rebuild what is left.

    Advice to Management

    While it is true that a nonprofit must turn a profit to stay afloat, it is not true that you have to wear people to a nub or tell them to work on Christmas to make it happen.


  7. Helpful (5)

    "Run by "old boys' club," not friendly to minorities, women, young people"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Specialist in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Specialist in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at American Council on Education part-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    High retirement contribution from employer
    federal holidays off
    time off between Xmas and New Year's

    Cons

    Female president, but a small group of older white men runs the most important depts and makes all the important decisions in finance, PR, lobbying, research.
    Mirrors higher ed in general with very high salaries for those few at the top, and barely average/below average salaries for everyone else.
    Employees under 40 tend to leave for better opps, older employees and managers dig in and stay no matter what, and HR protects poor performers.
    Entire department of women and minority employees eliminated with no notice.
    No raises, or small 2% cost of living increase each year, sold to employees as a "raise."
    Mediocre work and culture that encourages it.
    Mediocre/bad HR department.
    Bad communication.
    Managed from the top.
    Outdated office culture out of the 1960s-1980s.
    Not friendly to teleworking.
    Not a good place for younger employees--no mentors, no promotions available unless a supervisor creates new position.
    Very high turnover. Low morale.
    Departments, jobs can be cut at any time. Employee fear for their jobs being axed with no notice.

    Advice to Management

    Increase diversity for women and minorities. Communicate with employees. Stop turnover, cuts for employees under 40, millennials, minorities, women.


  8. "Director"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at American Council on Education full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    It is a national higher education association with national and international programs and membership. Working here, you get a good idea of the important issues in higher education and how they are being addressed at the top level of leaderships (members of ACE are presidents of higher education institutions, so the advocacy and programs are geared to their needs). Benefits are very, very good compared to other NGOs; salary scales are transparent and fair.

    Cons

    It is difficult to rise past the entry level (or mid-level) if you do not have at least a Master's degree, and preferably a PhD. There is not much internal communication between units, so lateral mobility is also challenging. you have to be a very proficient net worker and top performer to be considered for a lateral move.

    Advice to Management

    Change (seen from the upper mid level of the staff hierarchy) seems to be poorly managed. Advice would be for Executive managemet to communicate more... and make opportunities to listen as well.


  9. Helpful (2)

    "Limited scope for growth."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Program Manager in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Senior Program Manager in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at American Council on Education (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    easy going work atmosphere.

    Cons

    severe staff politics is on, due to ongoing restrcutuing and down sizing.


  10. Helpful (7)

    "Can be a great place to work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Director in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Director in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at American Council on Education full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Benefits are great, pay is good, front line staff are nice to work with

    Cons

    One misstep and you are done. Fear rules the day.


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