Charles River Associates Reviews

Updated Apr 28, 2021

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4.3
92%
Recommend to a Friend
94%
Approve of CEO
Charles River Associates President Paul Maleh
Paul Maleh
174 Ratings
  1. 4.0
    Former Employee

    Amazing place

    Feb 8, 2021 - Sales Associate 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    None I can think of

    Cons

    Amazing team work and people who care!

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  2. 3.0
    Former Employee, less than 1 year

    Decent place to start out

    Jan 26, 2021 - Human Resources Assistant in Washington, DC
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Smart coworkers, free food, business trips

    Cons

    Not very supportive environment, will throw others under the bus, low salary compared to other similar companies

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  3. 2.0
    Current Employee, more than 5 years

    Average in many ways

    Oct 12, 2020 - Senior Manager in Boston, MA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Many intellectual and passionate colleagues

    Cons

    Corporate employees are underpaid and understaffed. It's a bitter pill when the CEO announces gangbuster quarterly earnings at the exact time that most corporate managers are telling their staff that yet again, they will only be getting a cost of living salary increase. The salary divide between consulting staff and rank and file corporate is breathtaking.

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    6 people found this review helpful
  4. 5.0
    Current Employee, more than 1 year

    Unique practice-specific consulting, great quality of life here

    Sep 25, 2020 - Energy Associate in Boston, MA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Supportive and friendly work environment, exciting and varied types of work, generous benefits package, great location and office, allows one to build clout within an industry, small teams, senior-heavy firm allows for close mentorship, great opportunities for volunteering, leadership, and diversity/inclusion work

    Cons

    Difficult to recruit outside of target schools

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  5. 5.0
    Current Employee

    Good

    Dec 3, 2020 - Consultant in New York, NY
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    good culture, nice people, good work life balance

    Cons

    team structure is limiting for breadth of work

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  6. 5.0
    Current Employee

    Great place to start career

    Dec 2, 2020 - Analyst in Washington, DC
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Great culture and people, interesting work and

    Cons

    Hours, limited upward mobility for non-PhDs

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  7. 5.0
    Current Employee, less than 1 year

    Awesome place to work, this job is everything I was looking for coming out of college in every single aspect.

    Jan 29, 2020 - Analyst (Cyber) in Boston, MA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    The interview and hiring process was extremely thorough and transparent throughout its entirety. Colleen, Talent Acquisition Specialist who recruited, and guided me through the interview process provided me with one of the best interview experiences out of the many interviews I did looking for my first job. She was clear an concise with each phase of the interviewing process, and always made sure to check in with me as I progressed from the initial phone screening, all the way up until I received my offer. As a candidate, she affirmed that CRA was interested in what I could bring to the table as a potential hire, which made the process mutually beneficial for both myself, and CRA. I was able to ask questions as many questions as I could think of, which helped me feel as though I had buying power in making sure the opportunity was a correct fit for all parties involved. Overall, the hiring process, and my first three months at CRA has been nothing short of amazing. I truly feel honored to be a part of such an awesome team.

    Cons

    Although it fits my work style well, the project work is fast-paced, and requires you to juggle many projects as once. This may be a con for someone interested in a more relaxed, binary work flow.

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  8. 1.0
    Former Employee

    Toxic and Stay Away

    Nov 28, 2020 - Associate 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    The company still has some reputation from the past especially among graduate schools, but it's surely fading recently as competing companies doing significantly better jobs in everything

    Cons

    - Training and supporting resources are limited. There's one formal training, which is not helpful at all, and then you're on your own. Your training largely depends on how much your practice and your managers care about you personally and if they don't, you're doomed. You're not expected to learn anything that's outside your daily tasks, which put you at a really bad position at the beginning of a career. If you struggle, the only thing HR could do is serve your a PIP and tell you "good luck", instead of offering any substantial help or advice. - Subpar pay. Competing companies such as Cornerstone and Analysis Group pay significantly better than CRA, which means you're doing the exactly the same job for 2/3 of the pay. Also as a result of this, people who could multiple offers all choose other companies and people who have nowhere else to go come here, which ends up with unhappy employees. - Lack of feedback and performance evaluation. There's no formal feedback structures. You need to be very proactive to get feedbacks, which means that you're constantly struggling not knowing how to improve. Bonus and promotion are also black boxes, sometimes people get promotions or higher bonus because the practice head likes their personality better. - Culture. Management doesn't even bother to pretend they care about you as a person or your professional development. They're more interested in how much bonus they could get. I had a VP who's known among junior staff in the office for being hostile towards women, and the HR doesn't bother doing anything because he could bring in clients. I mean it when I say this place is toxic and please stay away for your own sake. I developed serious depression during my time at CRA, with suicidal thoughts; for a few months, I cried very often in my cubicle, struggling to find a way to please my boss. I looked for feedback and advice but no one seems to bother to give me any. I witnessed my close friends at work getting fired out of blue and the management made up horrible reasons to justify why they got fired. Another coworker of mine left because she had a mental breakdown with the pressure from the management. The general attitude is "if you struggle, professionally or personally, we just fire you and find someone else." They don't care about your physical health or mental health. This company is a fine example of "Chew you up and spit you out". I left the company the second I had the opportunity, and I know many of my friends there did or will do the same.

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    9 people found this review helpful

    Charles River Associates Response

    Thank you for providing us with your feedback. I am sorry you have this impression of CRA and it sounds like your experience was particularly difficult. Our goal is for all colleagues to be able to access our robust training programs, feel supported in their professional growth, and to benefit from the myriad wellbeing initiatives including confidential external counselling, access to online wellness resources, and regular events to promote physical, mental and financial health. Importantly, we are committed to engendering an inclusive environment where we demonstrate decency and integrity toward colleagues. Although you note that you are no longer with CRA, I would be happy to speak with you further if you’d like to contact me directly. -- Jen Kordell, CHRO

  9. 1.0
    Former Employee, more than 3 years

    A poor-diversity consulting firm

    Sep 12, 2020 - Principal in Boston, MA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    1. Good work-life balance 2. Pricing and Market Acess expertise

    Cons

    Multiple and many 1. No diversity and leadership doesn't seem to care. There has been no attempt to hire African Americans, Mexican etc. in the last 3 years even after repeated attempts- VPs just keep hiring their own clan. Out of 30+ principals and above- 0 people of color in last 5 years 2. The work has plummeted atleast 30% month over month. 3. No effort from leadership (Senior Principals, VPs) to help juniors grow- they only care about their own profit sharing 4. Bonus and incentives is decided behind closed curtains- its a joke how they decide your bonus

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    2 people found this review helpful

    Charles River Associates Response

    Thank you for taking time to share your feedback. We are committed to our diversity and inclusion initiatives, our training processes, and providing our colleagues with the tools needed for professional development. We are proud of our firm and our track record, and share information frequently about our growth in the areas of financial performance, people, and culture through our website and our social media platforms (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram). Please reach out to me directly if you’d like to discuss any specific concerns further. -- Jen Kordell, CHRO

  10. 5.0
    Current Employee, more than 1 year

    Awesome Company and Great leaders

    Sep 29, 2020 - Consulting Associate in Chicago, IL
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    I have worked at CRA for 2.5 years and I thoroughly enjoy my job. As a part of the forensics practice, I have a great learning and technical opportunities. High chances of growth for hard workers and fast learners.

    Cons

    Can't think of any, I love working here.

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