Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment Reviews | Glassdoor

Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment Reviews

Updated July 12, 2017
22 reviews

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3.5
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Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment Executive Director Larry Wolk
Larry Wolk
2 Ratings

22 Employee Reviews

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  1. "It is what you make of it!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Community Engagement Specialist in Denver, CO
    Current Employee - Community Engagement Specialist in Denver, CO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    CDPHE is a large organization currently with nearly 1,400 employees. Depending what division, branch or program you work in, you may have a very different experience here. Overall, things have been wonderful with my recent supervisor. Prior to him, I actually left CDPHE because my former supervisor didn't have a clue what he was doing. Working at CDPHE can be very rewarding as we are making a difference in the lives of the people of Colorado.

    Cons

    Diversity of staff is certainly lacking. For an agency that provides services across the state, the staff does not reflect the communities served. Executive leadership, comprised of 12 individuals, only have one person of color. However, HR and leadership seem to be attuned to this and 'open to change'. Things happen slowly here though. Being lower in the organization, it is hard to make decisions or have a voice.

    Advice to Management

    As leaders of the organization, you are respected. Your voice gets heard and you are able to make things happen for the department. Don't just say you support endeavors (such as health equity and environmental justice), get around it. Push things forward. Keep challenging the system and looking for approaches to do things better. Do not become stagnant or complacent in this important work, especially because often times our managers/leaders are holding positions that are very valued by others. Keep the energy alive and don't become jaded, as many are at CDPHE.


  2. "Technician."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Denver, CO
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Denver, CO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Interesting work. Retirement benefits have diminished but are still available.

    Cons

    If you are not a caucasian millinial, don't expect to succeed in this agency.
    Poor quality management. The work environment is stifling. Serious lack of diversity. Leadership is not in touch with their team. Culture is dog eat dog. Vicious and mean spirited politics.

    Advice to Management

    Narcissists united. How can you sleep at night?

  3. "Used to be a great place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Denver, CO
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Denver, CO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Passionate people, dedicated to the health of their state. They are friendly, loyal, professional. Some of the best people I have ever known and met.

    Cons

    Terrible leadership. It's gotten extremely politicized in its work and policies in the last few years. There is no commitment to the mission, just the ego of the CEO. All he seems to care about is his standing with the Governor so everything that matters is judged through that filter. The bureaucracy is awful and staffed by some of the worst, least competent people ever. It takes 6 months to order and receive a computer. A month to get supplies. Really, if you can run, run away.

    Advice to Management

    Find another job.


  4. "Bilingual Surveyor"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Denver, CO
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Denver, CO
    Recommends

    I have been working at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment part-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    It is a good steady job. I like working with people in both English and Spanish.

    Cons

    Recent life changes make it necessary to have days, evenings and weekends free.


  5. "Great place to work if you want to positively impact your community"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - General Professional V in Denver, CO
    Current Employee - General Professional V in Denver, CO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    I feel connected to the mission of CDPHE and enjoy working with skilled, similarly driven people. I have been given plenty of job growth opportunities over the years and feel my job is both challenging and rewarding.

    Cons

    Bureaucracy, but it is just part of the job. Like any large organization, there are great and not so great teams


  6. Helpful (4)

    "Great staff but lousy leaders"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Branch Manager in Denver, CO
    Current Employee - Branch Manager in Denver, CO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    The people who work here are smart, passionate, committed people who want to make the world a better place. They work very hard and routinely exceed 40 hours because they are so committed. Most of them are nothing like the stereotype of a bureaucrat. They are fun. The middle managers work very hard to meet their needs and they offer accommodations like flexible work place and flexible work time.

    Cons

    The organization's leadership is terrible. Most of them are political appointees who have a very short term view. The C suite executives are awful, low talented self-promoters. Many of the division directors are not qualified for their positions and care less about the work than their employees. The governor's office meddles in many issues and political expediency too often trumps judgment and expertise. People are also treated quite badly by the leadership. The administrative division is a joke. HR is slow and unhelpful. While departing employees only have to give two weeks, it can take 4 months to replace a position and sometimes more. The budget, accounting, procurement and contracting units operate at a very low level. They are bureaucratic and don't operate with a customer service view. They make lots of mistakes and staff often remark that they operate less like team-mates than adversaries.

    Advice to Management

    Resign! The governor's administration should care more about hiring competent managers who monitor and improve organizational operations than their next promotion.


  7. "Great place to work, opportunities for valuable experience and advancement."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Environmental Protection Specialist in Denver, CO
    Former Employee - Environmental Protection Specialist in Denver, CO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Solid benefits, good job security, professional workforce dedicated to good works

    Cons

    Occasional bureaucratic ritualism. Culture of tenured workers acting above reproach. Little reward for creative innovation at many positions.

    Advice to Management

    Do not get too entrenched in policies meant to show fairness in promotions and opportunities. Reward hardworking and exemplary junior employees with better than typical rewards.

  8. "It could be better"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Denver, CO
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Denver, CO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Good retirement, health care benefits, stability and security. The department does interesting work.

    Cons

    Bureaucracy.
    The only way for most people to get a pay raise is to get a promotion.
    During the recession staff was told there would be no cost of living increases, was forced to take furloughs but some of management did a job title change while essentially continuing to do the same job and gave themselves raises. That didn't sit well with staff. Maybe they thought staff wouldn't find out but staff always finds out.
    Lack of consistent expectations of workers. Some people do as little as possible and skate by and some people working their butts off.

    Advice to Management

    Hold all consistently to the same standards. If staff is not able to get a pay increase of any kind don't secretly give yourselves ones. Quit promoting people who are absolutely clueless in how to manage people. And manage the people that are under your supervision.


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Probably my favorite work situation ever!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - General Professional III in Denver, CO
    Current Employee - General Professional III in Denver, CO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    STABILITY -> Hopefully I'll <never> have to go back to the private sector again(!)
    Great benefits
    Excellent work-life balance
    Understanding management (at least around me)
    Great diversity
    Decent opportunities for advancement

    Cons

    No tele-commuting (yet)
    As my boss says, "It's the government -> things move slowly"
    Bureaucracy (but not nec. as bad as I thought it'd be)
    I've heard from long-timers of how radically things can chance (for the worse) when a new Governor starts ... ?
    Culture can change between divisions, programs, etc. (some people hate it @ CDPHE, but not me!)
    Plenty of "silos & stovepipes" where one division doesn't know what the other is up to (but that's probably true of most large org's)

    Advice to Management

    I truly do like my boss, and like her boss even more. I always encourage work between other programs, divisions, etc. ... as we're all in the same department.


  10. "Great work, unstable environment"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director in Denver, CO
    Current Employee - Director in Denver, CO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Really interesting, valuable work. Many mission-driven people. The work was always interesting.

    Cons

    Consistently changing structure with changing administrations. Good retirement benefits (pension plan). lack of ability to get raises year to year.

    Advice to Management

    modify salary by contribution. Seems to be a "fairness" mentality related to seniority rather than outcomes.


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