American Institutes for Research Reviews | Glassdoor

American Institutes for Research Reviews

Updated March 23, 2017
82 reviews

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3.0
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American Institutes for Research President, CEO and Director David Myers
David Myers
17 Ratings

82 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Some sections of the organization struggle with work-life balance (in 29 reviews)

  • SVPs are generally hard-charging and unwilling to compromise with their direct reports and the management-level staff actually leading the work (in 11 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Decent job"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Client Service Representative in Columbus, OH
    Current Employee - Client Service Representative in Columbus, OH
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at American Institutes for Research full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Decent starting pay. Flexible hours. Benefits are decent to be for starting employees. The environment is very conducive to making friends. There is a real sense of comradery among your coworkers

    Cons

    Not much upward mobility potential without switching departments. For a company based around research, there doesn't seem to be any incentive based program to go back to school.

    Advice to Management

    Have potential for starting employees in the Call Processing Centers to have a clear path to move up, or move to different areas in the company, to experience true upward mobility in a company


  2. Helpful (7)

    "Great place for researchers, less so for the rest."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Technical Service Specialist in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Technical Service Specialist in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at American Institutes for Research full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Filled with smart talented people across all departments. Competitive salaries and wide range of benefits despite being a non-profit. Flexible work hours, Teleworking encouraged, and no dress code.

    Cons

    Organization preaches work/life balance and embracing diversity, but they fail to do either. Everyone is expected to work long hours with little recognition or reward. Management in my area did more to discourage me than to encourage me. They also were unable to deal with different personality types very well. Specifically when dealing with more introverted people.

    Advice to Management

    Practice what you preach. Embrace teaching opportunities with your staff. Every time I had a genuine learning experience it later turned out that I was penalized for having to be taught or guided through the process.


  3. Helpful (1)

    "Great environment and friendly colleagues"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Technical Project Manager II in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Technical Project Manager II in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at American Institutes for Research full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Family friendly and progressive. Great place to get client exposure experience and working with technical software developers. Flexible working schedule but requires full commitment to quality and schedule of deliverable

    Cons

    Company is growing fast but your own growth is relatively slow. You have to outperform consistently to get promotion. ..... ..... .... ... ....


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  5. Helpful (5)

    "Project Coordinator"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Coordinator in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Project Coordinator in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at American Institutes for Research full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - good people, free coffee, bagel wednesdays - overall there is room for growth and you could potentially move up quickly. The largest group is the assessment team which is basically a software company doing progressive things in educational assessment

    Cons

    there are no boundaries around work - work will spill into every aspect of your life no matter how much you try to avoid this. this is the culture of the assessment group and it is expected that you work this way.


  6. Helpful (4)

    "Engaging work but little recognition for significant contributions or advancement"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Content in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Content in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at American Institutes for Research full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Colleagues, travel, time off, engaging work

    Cons

    Insane turnover, no advancement across department, ambiguous work from home policy

    Advice to Management

    Recognize and reward talent. Follow through on promises of reorganization.


  7. Helpful (5)

    "Good overall, but varies widely from team to team"

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

    I have been working at American Institutes for Research part-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    ~ The company means well, and seems to believe in their mission statements.
    ~ Staff members get systematic annual appraisals, which aren't perfect (although they get overhauled every few years), but which probably make for fairer assessments than less structured appraisals. AIR also gives annual raises for inflation, and has percentage-based merit raises.
    ~ Each staff member is assigned a "staff manager"/mentor; the manager exists to advocate the staff member and to monitor the staff member's performance. The quality & motivation of these varies.

    ~ The benefits are good and maternity leave is generous. Offices often (perhaps always?) include a room that new mothers can use, and the ones I've seen have even included a mini-fridge.
    ~ Although the quality of I.T. support is generally very good. My experiences at 3 smaller offices have been largely very good, and my experiences with the central I.T. help line staff have usually been very good.

    Cons

    ~ Job satisfaction varies widely depending on teams/bosses. Work-life balance varies widely depending on supervisors/bosses and seniority level.
    ~ The apparent quality of HR support dropped off hugely a few years ago (maybe 2012 or 2011?), with the larger offices not having a clearly assigned office liaison. Lower-level staff hired before ~2013 are underpaid, having been hired before AIR offered a competitive entry-level salary.
    ~ Charge codes aren't available for everything (e.g., parties, cross-team work groups, mandatory staff management meetings), which means staff sometimes need to work longer days to offset the time taken for work-related functions.


  8. "Financial Associate"

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

    I have been working at American Institutes for Research full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great Benefits for employee with family.

    Cons

    Culture is a concern going forward.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to work on Human Capital Development


  9. Helpful (9)

    "Employment in Chicago"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Technical Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Senior Technical Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at American Institutes for Research full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Variety of work with education

    Cons

    Not enough; Work requires project codes

    Advice to Management

    Provide ongoing work assignments rather than people being scared they won't have enough "work." Very demoralizing


  10. Helpful (9)

    "Great place to start"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Researcher in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Senior Researcher in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at American Institutes for Research full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    AIR is a great place to begin a career, it has a lot of young people. It's also a good place to learn team work and basic research skills. The benefits and perks are nice. Location of HQ can't be beat.

    Cons

    There's a real lack of transparency when it comes to salaries and promotions, and it's clear that there's favoritism and friendships play a huge role in getting hired and promoted. The company also suffers from serious lack of diversity. The hours can be brutal and high performers are expected to work until they burnout.

    Advice to Management

    Improve transparency in promotions. Also there's a need to think about retention of staff.


  11. Helpful (5)

    "American Institutes for Research (Georgetown)"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at American Institutes for Research full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great benefits (paid-time off, insurance, bagel Wednesdays, company-wide events), working with intelligent people, nice location (Georgetown office).

    Cons

    Projects and tasks are determined by contracts, too much reliance on Lync and email (not enough face-to-face interaction), limited time to meet with supervisors for developmental and growth opportunities.

    Advice to Management

    Provide employees with time to meet with supervisors for developmental and growth opportunities. Specifically, provide a charge code. Invest in your employees.


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