Federal Reserve Board Reviews | Glassdoor

Federal Reserve Board Reviews

Updated April 5, 2017
143 reviews

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Full-time Part-time

143 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Work-life balance is great, everyone goes home after 8 hours unless there is an urgent problem present (in 22 reviews)

  • Flexible work schedule along with great benefits (in 19 reviews)

Cons
  • In terms of IT you may not get as valuable experience here as you might in the private sector (in 8 reviews)

  • Slow work environment, frustrating red tape, limited opportunities for non-PhD economists (in 4 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (13)

    "Great place to start & end worklife! Not for mid-career."

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

    I have been working at Federal Reserve Board full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - Greatest pension plan in all of US government: Approximately 1.8% * # of Years Worked * Average of Top 3 Salaries.
    - Phenominal work like balance with flexible schedules that allow you to work 9 hr/day for 9 days and take 10th day off. Every other Friday or whatever day you chose is off. (All Federal agencies offer this)
    - Tuition reimbursement of $12,200 out of which $5,500 is not taxed. You are responsible for income tax on the remaining $6700. (Several other agencies have student loan assistance of upto $60,000 over 10 years)
    - $70 biweekly contribution towards health insurance brings down insurance cost to approximately $70/pay period for a family. (Few other agencies offer this too)
    - World class dental insurance that covers 90% of virtually anything.

    Cons

    - Very difficult to move between departments. Management does not promote growth.
    - Very slow & arbitrary promotions. If you get promoted to the next grade, your salary is increased by 10%. If you don't get promoted, then annual raises are 2-3%.
    - Bonuses are designed to make rich, richer; and poor, poorer. Higher pay grades get higher bonuses (8% - 10%). Lower pay grades get lower bonuses (3% - 8%).


  2. Helpful (5)

    "Phenominal pay and benefits, lacking good leadership and antiquated IT support"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Technology Analyst in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Technology Analyst in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Federal Reserve Board full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    First I gave it 2 stars because you probably won't find better benefits (healthcare/healthcare stipend, low dental/vision cost for premium plans, long/short-term disability at no cost, cheap legal benefits, telework opportunities, separate pension and a bit better Thrift Plan and match up to 7%) as well as the usual gov't benefits, else I just couldn't find it in myself to give it 3 stars for other reasons (see Cons), else I might have stayed just for those reasons solely and that's why many probably do.

    So while this all sounds great, this is probably the main reason why they give the best benefits to retain talent, yet it's not for everyone, as many do leave, some leave well before their 5 years vested and some leave right after they are vested, just to have a mini-pension from the Federal Reserve.

    Cons

    I've found that most of the leadership doesn't seem qualified enough or have a clear understanding of project management. If you're working on higher priority projects assigned, you'll be spending most of your time spinning wheels with much of leadership stuck in a rut, most of them spending too much time in multiple meetings, usually resulting in multiple low-priority band-aid requests that come down the pipeline, meanwhile making it difficult to accomplish the larger-scale higher priority projects because no one can make a final decision or due to lack of attention to review/feedback and don't seem to champion the success project phases and deadlines. Instead it takes extraneous efforts and constant reminders before if you are ever lucky enough to see a finished product or accomplish major milestones. Many deadlines get pushed 6 months later or even more and sometimes without ever seeing the promised final product accomplished by then. It's worse than the usual "hurry up and wait" process that you would find in a normal setting from my previous experience with other government agencies.

    I've also acknowledged the lack of cohesion between specific departments when needing to work with or persuade others of solutions to get everyone on the same page working together. Leadership would rather appease to every request, without questioning if it makes sense, or where it should be in the workload queue, meanwhile detracting from higher priority projects, and never having a clear sense of prioritization. I also do believe that leadership needs to be fair but firm and push the low hanging fruit to pick up their slack from doing the bare minimum and should know how to communicate with executive leadership and higher-ups on the needs of their departments in order to prioritize projects and make realistic objectives, that will set up departments for better success in accomplishing major milestones.

    The worst experience is when dealing with IT hardware/software/network/server requests, the support definitely seems antiquated, unorganized, and they pretty much say "NO" to every suggestion or a request for a new feature/solution, even if you know about new and better solutions and can either prove and/or try to educate them to try and help make it easy for them to implement. Typically they respond with why they can't do something due to a 'security' reason (even if it isn't) and if you try to schedule a meeting to educate, they usually sweep it under the rug with no response and/or don't want to be bothered so they don't follow up even after a few requests for discussion/meeting for alternative solutions from their end. Even something as simple as a helpdesk request usually ends up with a typical response that 'everything is fine' on their end even if you send in evidence and screens to show the issue and you either end up resolving it yourself (if you can), or just trying to deal with it as is because the support is not very savvy and personal computers always seem to have issues or network-related issues across multiple users/workstations. I know that a few departments have their own IT specialists to maintain their own workstations, etc. because of these experiences but there are the very few departments that can afford it or have it approved in their budget to do so. I think it would be better for each department to have their own software/hardware/network experts on hand to meet these demands and to resolve many of the above mentioned issues.

    HR does try to help by having us all take personality tests, emotional intelligence training, and having us fill out "Safe to Speak" surveys but I'm not sure if that's really helping find any solutions to the root cause of fixing some defunct departments or burned out employees. I think some of this training is OK however it has made people be even more aware of others feelings, almost to the point of paralysis when facing a challenge in a project or when dealing with a difficult situation or roadblock. I think some colleagues are usually too afraid to speak or challenge adversity or even afraid of change or to voice an opinion/suggestion compared to other agencies I've worked for.

    Advice to Management

    Leadership needs to change for the reason mentioned above in the cons, IT as well. Maybe too many layers of leadership since that seems to be the culprit of communication issues and accomplishing tasks.


  3. "Information Technologies Specialist"

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

    Pros

    Job stability, opportunities for career growth, great work environment, trending technologies, security

    Cons

    None that I can think of.


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  5. Helpful (1)

    "Data Center Technician"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Data Center Analyst I in Ridgefield, NJ
    Former Employee - Data Center Analyst I in Ridgefield, NJ
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Federal Reserve Board full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great salary, great benefits, great people.

    Cons

    One strike and your out


  6. Helpful (1)

    "eLearning Developer"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL

    I worked at Federal Reserve Board (Less than a year)

    Pros

    It was a good, solid business to work for.

    Cons

    The communication could have been better.


  7. Helpful (4)

    "Great place to work."

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

    I have been working at Federal Reserve Board full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The benefits are outstanding. We have a nice 7% + 1% 401k match, pensions plan, excellent medical (they subsidize it too), dental, and vision. We also get a generous amount of vacation time, sick time, and all federal holidays. Hours are flexible, telecommute one day a week, and alternating work week schedules are possible. They also pay up to $130 of your metro each month. The work life balance here is very good

    Cons

    You won't get to work on anything truly cutting edge. In terms of IT you may not get as valuable experience here as you might in the private sector.

    Advice to Management

    I believe Management does a fairly good job. However many managers are not as technical as their employees. It would be nice if they took this into consideration more.


  8. "Good pay and benifts"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Federal Reserve Board full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    The pay is very good and so are the benefits such as the education benefits and the metro subsidy.

    Cons

    The work can be very mind numbing and the chances for upwards movement are only available when someone retires.


  9. Helpful (3)

    "Great first job out of college"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Research Assistant in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Research Assistant in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Federal Reserve Board full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great work-life balance. Brilliant and friendly co-workers. Lots of opportunities for research and exploring what your interests are as well as career development. People are very helpful. Great network of RAs for a social group after college. Excellent transition from college to working 9-5 M-F. Economists are great resources.

    Cons

    It's a two-year position, so after two years you need to figure out your plans. It's a great first job, but it's meant more of a transition to analyst positions or graduate school. The programs are old, but that depends on the section since some are slower to change. Situations are different for RAs section to section.

    Advice to Management

    Sometimes the transitions are slow, but that might just be what it's like with such a big organization. Some people are over-worked and slow to receive appreciation (IT in particular from people I've talked to).


  10. Helpful (3)

    "Interesting work but culture issues"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Quality Assurance Analyst in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Quality Assurance Analyst in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Federal Reserve Board full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    working on new regulations and iterations with industry make the work itself very interesting.

    Cons

    hierarchy and culture are slow to change and management prefers nice people over qualified people. Each division has a different culture and different tools.

    Advice to Management

    create one culture across the organization.


  11. Helpful (1)

    "Federal Reserve Board"

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

    I have been working at Federal Reserve Board full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    The Federal Reserve Board is an amazing work environment. Staff members at every level are extremely engaged in their work and want to contribute to the best of their abilities. The Board employs a broad range of job families - from painters to Law Enforcement Officers to Economists. Each employee is valued and cares about our organization.

    Cons

    Parking is very limited at the Board and that can be inconvenient, if you do not live near a metro line or bus route.


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