Cambridge Associates, LLC Reviews | Glassdoor

Cambridge Associates, LLC Reviews

Updated July 14, 2017
150 reviews

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3.3
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David Druley
14 Ratings

150 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Work-life balance is a positive (in 51 reviews)

  • The opportunity to learn is there (in 15 reviews)

Cons
  • Long hours (depending on staffing, 60 hours a week can be the norm) (in 20 reviews)

  • Manual data entry can be tiresome (in 15 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (9)

    "This is a true in-depth review of the associate job."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Associate in Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Associate in Arlington, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    - Cambridge offers those with no finance background the opportunity to say they work in "finance."
    - We literally have all types of majors in our Performance Reporting department and you need absolutely no experience or knowledge to excel at the job.
    - It is a great opportunity for those with low expectations, who are waiting to go back to school. or who wish to take the CFA for free. The firm pays for all three levels of CFA testing along with reimbursement for tutorials and such.
    - The work is also very easy and you often work 9 to 5. The culture of the reporting department is also fun because everyone is under 28 years old and it is very collegial ie happy hours and lots of joking around.
    - You also get 3 weeks of paid vacation along with many holidays to start (please see cons section also!)

    Cons

    - Absolutely no incentive to go above and beyond ie no bonuses.
    - You basically work for people who are about a year or two older than you which can create an odd hierarchy.

    - Here is what you will actually be doing:
    you will have 10-15 clients
    you will collect all 10-50 statements from each client's hedge fund/mutual fund/etf investments
    you will enter the market value, transaction, and return data into their proprietary software system
    once your "analyst" (the 2 year older guy) checks your homework, he will say "run the report"
    you will press a button and churn out the report
    you will check the report, your team leader will check it, the analyst will check it, then the consulting associate will check it.
    you will get edits and be asked to change certain things or rerun the whole thing
    you will send it back up the lines
    it will be sent to the client
    you will do this every month for almost every client or every 3 months for ones that get only quarter reports

    - How do you get promoted? Every "analyst" you gave a report to has to say "I think he's ready for the promotion." Then, if there is a spot open, you will move up.
    - And what does moving up mean? A couple thousand dollars more and you get to ask associates to do all the minutia grunt work on you reports. But, you still answer to the consulting associate and largely do the same thing ie checking reports.

    - Recruited for the job as if associates would be active in the consulting process which turned out to be misleading.

    Advice to Management

    - Give bonuses to drive hard work. Gift cards don't work that well for young professionals.
    - Stop recruiting from top undergrad b-schools! These kids are often overqualified and this work turns their brains to mush.
    - Hire kids out of smaller schools and community college, pay them less, and save the firm a ton.
    - Organize some interaction with the consultants to let people with real industry experience mentor these young folks (that's most likely the reason they came to Cambridge in the first place).
    - Make consultants, local professors, or somebody lead continuing ed sessions.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "It has been comprised of long hours, very low pay, high demands, and little respect."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Consulting Associate in Dallas, TX
    Current Employee - Consulting Associate in Dallas, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    If you want to go straight from undergrad to business school they have a great connection with top universities. Harvard, Yale, Wharton, etc consistently recruit from Cambridge.

    Cons

    Dont ever EVER work in the Dallas office.

    Advice to Management

    none

  3. Helpful (2)

    "Treated like a HS Student"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Investment Associate in Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Investment Associate in Arlington, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Cambridge Associates, LLC full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Free coffee and nice location I suppose

    Cons

    Micro managed to the max, managers record what you do by the minute. They stress diversity but 90% of the workers are white and either belong to the same fraternity or sorority. Culturally diverse workers are treated less favorably. Also you get to work 70+ hours on busy months

    Advice to Management

    I still don't know what our core values are


  4. Helpful (3)

    "MIG- Seriously Think Twice"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Cambridge Associates, LLC full-time

    Pros

    Good exposure to investment world. Could be worth the major systemic issues in the department to gain exposure. Some people move on to other parts of the company which seem like much better opportunities. Some people are able to get their foot in the door in really great investment firms after some experience in MIG. Coworkers generally supportive, hardworking, nice people.

    Cons

    Management is inexperienced and the department never hits goals. In spite of unrealistic expectations, lack of success is always blamed on employees. Well-meaning middle management, but lack of experience causes whole department to suffer. Exceptionally outdated technology. Micro management to the extreme. You'll have the worst combination of boredom at doing repetitive tasks and stress at the amount you're expected to hit. As previous reviewers have mentioned, management takes no effort to actually implement changes. Exceptionally poor commitment/ care for workplace diversity.

    Advice to Management

    Dismantle management structure and entirely rebuild.


  5. Helpful (4)

    "Pick this job if your idea of finance is data entry."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Associate in Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Associate in Arlington, VA
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    -Great company.
    -Excellent name, especially with Grad schools.
    -You can make the job sound better than it is.
    -The knowledge that other departments do really cool work.
    -Department is great if you love data entry.
    -Company pays for CFA exam and most of the cost for materials (if you pass)

    Cons

    -Extraordinarily boring work, and it never really gets a lot more interesting: As an associate you enter data. As a senior associate you oversee four people entering data and perform lots of admin tasks. As an analyst you proof associates' data entry.
    -Investment Performance reporting group is a pariah department in the company.
    -Internal transfers technically require 13 months, but in reality you'll need 24-30 months to be -looked at.
    -Poor department management.
    -Excessive busywork, lots of admin.
    -Young, inexperienced managers.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work with the company as a whole. Give the Investment Performance Reporting department some more love, even if it isn't a profit center.


  6. "Great work/life balance but boring day to day"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Associate in Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Associate in Arlington, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Absolutely the work life balance is the best part. Coming right out of college you make pretty good money (50K) for the number of hrs worked (45 hrs per wk). Great if you only have to support yourself, particularly because of benefits.

    Cons

    there isn't enough responsibility given in order to think analytically. It's almost all data entry despite what they say on interview day. It is difficult to take what you do here and apply it to a next job. You would almost assuredly have to go to business school.

    Advice to Management

    My advice would be to be more honest during the interview process. A lot of people leave because they don't know what they are getting themselves into. Almost everyone from the 2008 class has already left.


  7. "IPA"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Associate in Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Associate in Arlington, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Relatively good pay for an entry level job. Good benefits. Cambridge is well known and respected by many in the investment community. Young coworkers. Ability to advance within department. Will pay up to $2500 in tuition assistance and encourages employees to take CFA exams by paying for them (if you fail, you have to pay back).

    Cons

    Boring job. Rote data entry and publishing are better descriptors of the job than anything financial related. Even so, requires long hours and sometimes an overload of work. Sometimes you work 60+ hrs and are extremely stressed, while other times you have literally no work to do all week but are still required to be in office for 40 hrs.

    Advice to Management

    No advice.

  8. "Cambridge Associates Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Manager in Arlington, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Good intiaial experience for young college graduates. Looks good on resume. Ability to work on multiple projects / asset classes. Most employee leave for business school after three to five years.

    Cons

    Pay is sub standard for finance industry. Limited upward mobitlity. Corporate philosophy is very backwards looking, and firm management is afraid to be bold in taking new direction.

    Advice to Management

    The future is not going to look like the past so stop looking in the rear view mirror. Founders' philosophy worked 20 years ago; time to re-assess.


  9. "Monotonous work, smart colleagues, not much room for advancement."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Analyst in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Investment Performance Analyst in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Cambridge Associates, LLC full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Smart, hard-working co-workers. Plenty of internal company resources within the financial services industry that allow analysts to learn easily if interested. Sponsorship for the CFA and CAIA are also a nice perk.

    Cons

    Only a decent salary with not much room for growth. Job is highly cyclical, involves doing the same thing quarter after quarter. A lot of micro-managing within the firm.

    Advice to Management

    Need to find a way to give entry-level employees more room for growth within the firm so that they will want to stay for longer.


  10. "Mixed feelings about PRG/MIG experiences thus far."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Analyst in Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Analyst in Arlington, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Cambridge Associates, LLC full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - The consultants are smart, hard working, and dedicated to C|A's cause.
    - The firm is well respected; a thought leader within the pension/endowment space.
    - Strong work ethic exhibited throughout the firm.
    - Generous earned time off.
    - Fellow analysts are pretty cool.

    Cons

    - Management in PRG/MIG is extreme in their views.
    - Limited internal mobility both within the department and at the firm.
    - Monotonous work and underpaid for extreme work hours.
    - Little to no recognition for work being done.

    Advice to Management

    Advice to firm wide management: take a second look at how the Wilson office employees are managed.
    Open internal opportunities to all employees.
    Focus more on development and less on keeping the norm.


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