Chemonics International Reviews | Glassdoor

Chemonics International Reviews

Updated July 15, 2017
197 reviews

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3.7
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Susanna Mudge
92 Ratings

197 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Very high expectations which rarely lead to a work/life balance (in 41 reviews)

  • Long hours, demanding new business involvement (in 20 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Chemonics is a great place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Interesting work, great people, progressive, solid company

    Cons

    there seems to be dissatisfaction with middle management and a lack of communication upwards

    Advice to Management

    be more fair in recognizing support divisions


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Great place to work hard and learn a lot."

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

    I have been working at Chemonics International full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    The people are smart and dedicated to international development. The projects have tremendous impact and provide countless professional development opportunities for motivated employees. You will learn everything there is to know about bidding on and managing USAID contracts. With the ISO certification, there are clear processes outlined for all core business functions, making learning new things much easier. Also lots of internal training on technical and management topics. Being 100% employee owned means they are not likely to be bought out by another firm, and employees can make money when the company succeeds.

    Cons

    A lot of your experience will depend on your supervisor, though that is true anywhere. To really succeed, you have to be motivated. A sit-and-wait attitude won't get you very far here. If you don't like the business side of development, this isn't the place for you--there is a constant focus on winning new bids, and everyone in the company is expected to contribute.

    Advice to Management

    Stay focused on the mission and keep investing in employees.

  3. Helpful (2)

    "Incredible opportunities and exposure"

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

    I have been working at Chemonics International full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Chemonics employs an "everybody does everything" mentality, which I absolutely love (but realize that not everyone thrives in this environment). If you would rather do a few tasks over and over, then Chemonics might not be for you. Since joining, I have become a much better professional writer, budget preparer (including Excel skills), manager, and strategic thinker. I also have had exposure to lots of different technical areas. The company is extremely transparent and has lots of talented individuals. Entry level salaries are relatively low, but high performing employees are promoted quickly and compensated accordingly. Chemonics also provides training stipends for language courses and other professional development opportunities (such as grad school, which I do at night).

    Cons

    Some of the cons flow from the pros. Chemonics is geographically organized. So, if you want to focus on one technical area, you will not be able to focus exclusively on that topic (although the company does try to align your interests with the projects/proposals you work on). New employees are often thrown into challenging roles -- somewhat of a "sink or swim" approach. However, the company does have great training resources and mentors to help you succeed in that role. All employees are expected to contribute to proposal development efforts. As a result, the hours can be long and unpredictable.

    Advice to Management

    Diversify clients to reduce risk/exposure


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Steep learning curve, but personally rewarding and amazing colleagues"

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

    I have been working at Chemonics International full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    My colleagues are some of my best friends and the project/proposal work is rewarding, every day is enjoyable. I have grown as a project manager and proposal developer, and see a growth potential for myself still.

    Cons

    The hours CAN be long, but it varies from team to team and there is some flexibility to turn down new tasks when you are being given too much. Currently it is difficult to jump from Associate to Manager or from Manager to Director, but during times of growth for the company those opportunities come more quickly.

    Advice to Management

    Be careful with change, the restructuring and backtracking on many of the changes made in the past year damaged the executive office's credibility. If lower level staff's opinions had been considered at the time, I don't think many of those changes would have happened.


  5. Helpful (2)

    "Grow professionally while doing good in the world"

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

    I have been working at Chemonics International full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Chemonics offers the chance to do mission-driven work in a business environment. Opportunities for professional growth, training, and travel are outstanding. The organization is large enough to offer many different paths according to your interests, and really encourages people to push themselves and try new things. Leadership really cares about international development and takes integrity and doing things the right way seriously. A few years ago, the company became 100% owned by the ESOP, so all company profits are distributed to employee retirement accounts. Vacation time is fairly generous, and the health insurance plan is quite good and very inexpensive. Everyone works really hard, but you go home knowing you helped make the world a little bit better.

    Cons

    There's no getting around it, people work really hard which seems to be epidemic in DC. A great deal of the work in headquarters is about complying with US government regulations, so it is highly administrative especially in your first few years. In order to advance to senior level positions you need to be willing to move overseas to developing countries for several years which is a tremendous experience but can be a sacrifice for family and personal life.

    Advice to Management

    The company's culture and values are what makes it special, don't lose that. Remember that it takes everyone throughout the organization, in DC and abroad, regions and support units to keep the company successful and making a difference.


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Hardworking creates great potential for growth"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    great learning environment, infectious passion, people really believe in work they are doing

    Cons

    long hours, more consideration of work/life balance


  7. Helpful (3)

    "Passionate People, Great Learning Platform"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Chemonics International full-time

    Pros

    A company dedicated to developing professional skills needed in development. Large company with many divisions that support each other, yet teams are small enough to receive meaningful feedback from supervisors. It's a great place where learning is encourages alongside hands-on experience.

    Cons

    No obvious "cons" to report Workloads are heavy for all employees, but recognition is given fairly and regularly.

  8. Helpful (3)

    "Great place"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - New Business Manager in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - New Business Manager in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great place to grow and learn. They will teach you to become Business development and USAID masters. Great place to get into the sector!

    Cons

    Very demanding hours and work life balance completely out of whack. If you have a family it can be difficult to manage the work load and expectations of working on projects and proposals.


  9. Helpful (1)

    "great company"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    lots of young people, company actually cares about its employees and makes an effort to implement good policies.

    Cons

    workload is very heavy, salaries are on the lower side and could be higher.


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Terrific company"

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

    Pros

    The company has bounced back very well from some not insignificant challenges a few years ago. The new CEO has really embraced a collaborate leadership style and has fostered a very trusting and transparent environment. The company has a wide variety of new, interesting and challenging projects creating nearly unlimited opportunities for staff to work in the field. Staff should take advantage of these opportunities to work in new sectors and new countries.

    Cons

    Workload is a perennial challenge with no real easy solutions. There are various attempts being made to try and address this but it's a culture issue that will take time.

    Advice to Management

    As the company continues to grow it will need to be thoughtful of how its size is managed with respect to company culture and the mission. It will need to continue providing support and resources to its Managers and Directors so they have the skills to foster the professional development of their teams.


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