Gemological Institute of America Reviews | Glassdoor

Gemological Institute of America Reviews

Updated July 14, 2017
128 reviews

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2.5
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Susan M. Jacques
41 Ratings

128 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • GIA has good benefits (matching 401K, low cost biweekly contribution to insurance health (in 12 reviews)

  • It offers great benefits, job security, free GIA courses in a beautiful work environment (in 11 reviews)

Cons
  • poor management - low pay for the amount of work (in 7 reviews)

  • No room for growth, especially if you are a young professional (in 4 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Not terrible, but can be better"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Diamond Grader in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Diamond Grader in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Gemological Institute of America full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Opportunity to learn varrying skills, Client service, Inventory control, Diamond grading , Gem identification. excellent benefits

    Cons

    some administrative and Managerial drawbacks. some can be overlooked some can be glaring

    Advice to Management

    Celebrate yours Talent and cultivate those traits in all other employees. create a better working culture


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Should be better than it is"

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

    I worked at Gemological Institute of America full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Nice facility, diverse student population, coworkers were great people, 401k, tons of networking opportunities, exciting work environment..at first.

    Cons

    The curriculum is basically a 6 month long PowerPoint presentation and under constant revision, Instructors are discouraged from deviating from the set curriculum, Management lacks creativity and doesn't care to keep up with modern teaching pedagogy, Extreme level of micro-management and thus low morale among staff

    Advice to Management

    Ditch PowerPoint or at least don't base the entire curriculum on it! Give your instructors the freedom to experiment and try new things. Let your instructors talk to one another and have control the curriculum.

    Get to know your students! Maybe try asking them what they desire to come away from GIA with instead of focusing on what you think the industry demands of a potential employee.

    Since leaving GIA, I have heard from more than a few employers that GIA students don't know anything when they have hired them in the past. GIA could be doing much better than they currently are to prepare students for their future careers. Management is in the way of innovation and change for the better. One has to wonder why a non-profit organization only seems to care about making money.

  3. "Good place to work for a while, but don't stay too long if you want to grow"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Gemological Institute of America full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good company benefits on medical, transit, 401k match. Nice office environment
    Gets to see a lot of nice gem and jewelry pieces.
    Large and stable company, so somewhat a secure job if you need to live form paycheck to paycheck
    Most of my co-workers are very friendly and professional.

    Cons

    Too much micromanaging, management paid more attention on your phone usage/clockin-out time/toilet break than improving employees' work skills and this ultimately diminish people's desire to work hard and learn to improve ( but maybe that's what they want to keep some people working 10-20 years in one position, like a machine).
    If you stay too long, you are automatically being categorized as such by the company and they won't give you opportunities to develop and you're expecting to work with minimal advancements in your life.
    Not enough collaboration between departments, each manager treats other departments as their "enemy" to target and penalized on instead of helping each other to grow as a company. Some people in the management are really good at catching other department's fault and reporting them to their bosses to get self satisfaction.

    Advice to Management

    Stop micromanaging and stop watching people's toilet break/cell phone usage/clock in time and focus more on team building, motivate employees to learn, and encourage different opinions to blossom and improving the company's performance as a real 21st century global corporation.


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Terribly unfulfilling work."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Diamond Grader in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Diamond Grader in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Gemological Institute of America full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The location, as the NY GIA building is not far from public transportation and many stores just in case you need to pick up something last minute.
    -Managers cannot always fire you on their own. They must speak to the CEO

    Cons

    -Mediocre pay
    -Gossiping beyond the usual amount expected at a job. The managers are usually behind a lot of it, unfortunately. The managers are very immature.
    -If they don't like you, they try to find ways to get you to quit even when you've done nothing wrong.
    - One manager has made vulgar, racist and sexual comments about other staff
    -You're learning a skill that is useless outside GIA. There is too much pressure put on newly hired people only to work their way up and still have a poor mans pay check and credentials
    -Favoritism
    -"Tribal mentality" might as well be written on the walls.
    -You are being watched all the time. The staff talk about how they watch people like watching tv. I understand the tight security but this is not normal.
    -Very gullible staff
    -The security team monitors your internet usage and once again, talk about peoples lives outside of work as if talking about tv. Once again, not normal.
    - Sexual harassment

    Advice to Management

    You should at least try to act like you enjoy your job. Being attached to a job with the word "Diamond" in it should not be your main reason to stay. It's obvious you are miserable and hate your jobs, that's why you gossip.


  5. Helpful (3)

    "Be smart and just do your job without causing too much commotion and you can get places"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Diamond Grader in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Diamond Grader in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Gemological Institute of America full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Benefits
    Nobody really bothers you as long as you do your job
    Rolling over your vacation days annually
    Most of the people there are really friendly

    Cons

    Pay can be better. They recently made a salary adjustment but it is still somewhat low. The salary difference between entry level and second level is big.
    Management is inconsistent and not dependable. They constantly send mixes messages in regards to expectations. It's clear that there is an extreme lack of communication within as well as between departments. While most people are friendly, there are many questionable colleagues.

    Advice to Management

    Please listen to your staff more. Be more considerate and flexible. Hire hard working and smart people, don't only looks for production robots.


  6. "Client Service Rep"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Client Service Representative in Carlsbad, CA
    Former Employee - Client Service Representative in Carlsbad, CA
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Gemological Institute of America (More than a year)

    Pros

    Worked with great people, saw lots of pretty diamonds, nice benefits.

    Cons

    Client Service Reps were not paid as well as they should have been. Did a lot more work, dealt with demanding clients and realized as much as I loved who I worked along, I should've moved to a different department to make more money.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Dont stay too long"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Diamond Grader in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Diamond Grader in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Gemological Institute of America (More than a year)

    Pros

    Your productivity can easily be measured. Therefore you know exactly what you're contributing to the company.

    Cons

    Lots of favoritism. You're basically a refined lab rat. It is easy to plato, after which you would not be learning anything new.

    Advice to Management

    Show care and appreciation for employees. Be less cut throat.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Smart people leave within a year. Be smart."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Quality Assurance Grader in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Quality Assurance Grader in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Gemological Institute of America full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    You receive health benefits if you work there.

    Cons

    -Management.
    -Ergonomics- they do not care if you leave with a hunchback, but you probably should.
    -Use of data to evaluate performance coming from individuals who never took even a basic statistics class.
    -Clear, blatant and pathetic favoritism and brown-nosing.
    -Culture of calling employees into the "principle's office" as if they are children and as if they are being paid enough to really care about such displays.
    -Forced overtime then months and months of no work; in other words, very unstable market combined with poor planning and hiring. Working here is not a good long term career prospect so don't kid yourself.
    -They will change you schedule whenever they feel like it, even if you work a second job, have school or need to pick up your children. They do not care.
    -Veteran employees are miserable and vocal about it, even the same individuals who will go and "tattle-tale" on the newer, younger people.
    -You are being watched. Yes, while you are at your desk. Yes, your bathroom breaks are timed/counted. Yes, even if you go outside and stand in front of the building. It is creepy.
    -I have seen people fired in the most cruel ways. A single mother fired the week before Christmas. SAD!
    -I have seen certain people fired while really terrible employees remain on the payroll because they have friends in high places.
    -Hiring really new, young people and promoting one or two of them over people who have been here 15+ years. SAD!

    Don't waste your time. If you have to be there, take classes on the side and get out as soon as you can. Not a career, not a good place to waste precious years of your life away. What you learn there is literally a useless skill in the vast majority of profitable areas that you can potentially work in. Choose wisely.

    Advice to Management

    I am long gone and still receive regular texts from people who are there and on the verge of mental breakdown. It is YOU.


  9. Helpful (5)

    "Disfunctional"

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

    I worked at Gemological Institute of America full-time

    Pros

    Stable big company nice facility

    Cons

    Unhealthy culture, Back stabbing, Lots of politics

    Advice to Management

    Fire disfunctonal senior managers now


  10. Helpful (4)

    "Hope this helps"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Diamond Grader in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Diamond Grader in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Gemological Institute of America full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Provides decent Medical, Vision, Dental and other useful benefits. Easy work with a manageable quota. Very good HR department. Located in a beautiful high security building on 47th and 6th avenue. Able to work independently and listen to music while you work.

    Cons

    Managers, with the exception of one, have no prior experience in management and so are very rough around the edges. One makes lewd comments without realizing it and is lacking in basic communication skills. I'm genuinely surprised by word choices and actions taken by this member in particular.

    Advice to Management

    Get outside trainers for managers before releasing them onto your workers. The turnover rate would decrease and the quality of work of other employees would as well.


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