Grant Thornton Reviews | Glassdoor

Grant Thornton Reviews

Updated September 12, 2017
37 reviews

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Grant Thornton CEO Mike McGuire
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37 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Work/life balance is of course difficult during the busy times/season (in 92 reviews)

  • Long hours however flexible time off is helpful (in 93 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Don't work here!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - Editor in Chicago, IL
    Former Contractor - Editor in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Grant Thornton as a contractor

    Pros

    The company allows a flexible schedule. The downtown office is new. Hard to think of any pros.

    Cons

    The marketing department is horrible. They have no budget and offer low pay. Everyone is stressed out all the time over content that people never read. The training and on-boarding process is poor. There are better companies to work for. Avoid!


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Terrible"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Audit Associate in Cleveland, OH
    Former Employee - Audit Associate in Cleveland, OH
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Grant Thornton (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Looks good for future jobs

    Cons

    Bad management from Arthur Anderson
    Terrible seniors who do no help you
    Very political
    People are very selfish and will stab you in the back at any chance

    Advice to Management

    Improve culture

  3. Helpful (2)

    "Racist Bunch of People"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Audit Associate in McLean, VA
    Former Employee - Audit Associate in McLean, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Grant Thornton full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Other than unlimited FTO and occasional travel, nothing worth mentioning.

    Cons

    Systemic racism abounds. Ask how many black partners they have. If you are not Caucasian or Asian, you can forget about keeping your job for very long. The slightest misstep and you are gone. They want to be like the Big 4, but can never reach that plateau. Grant Thornton is where knowledge goes to die. Notice, how the firm performs the worst audits of any public accounting firm. It's not surprising since GT is where the Big 4 rejects go to. I have never met a phonier bunch of deplorables than I've met at this firm. They are infamous for over-hiring and then firing.

    Advice to Management

    Welcome diversity to include all minority groups other than just Asians. Invest more in your employees learning and not the mediocre training your firm provides.

    Grant Thornton Response

    Jul 31, 2017 – People & Culture

    We are truly disappointed to hear that this was your experience at Grant Thornton. Grant Thornton embraces people of all backgrounds, regardless of gender, race, national origin, age, sex, sexual... More


  4. Helpful (1)

    "New Employee"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Associate in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Grant Thornton full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great reputation, a great resume booster.

    Cons

    Incredibly flawed business model, zero direction, no room for growth. Senior leadership lacking in every which way.

    Grant Thornton Response

    Jun 12, 2017 – People & Culture

    Thank you for sharing your feedback, we are disappointed to hear this has been your experience. Our culture and career initiatives focus on offering our employees the resources to grow personally and... More


  5. Helpful (2)

    "Wannabe Big 4 Firm Loosing its way"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Audit Senior in Philadelphia, PA
    Current Employee - Audit Senior in Philadelphia, PA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Grant Thornton full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Pay is within industry norms, Becker CPA is paid for, people [for the most part] are very nice.

    Cons

    FTO [flexible time off AKA unlimited vacation] is NOT flexible. GT implemented this to remove their PTO liability from their books. Everyone else at every other firm [Big 4, RSM, BDO even H&R Block!] will have some kind of PTO payout when the leave the firm.

    401K match is minuscule compared to other firms. I believe its 1/4 of the first 6% of pay.

    Firm partners have a hard time obtaining/retaining clients. Associate 1s pay the price via layoffs.

    There is high turnover in the levels above senior. This creates a vicious cycle of having non-reoccurring people on jobs. Clients hate it, seniors hate it and partners hate it. A true lose-lose-lose.

    Culture is only skin deep. Nobody lives by the culture. You just hear about it during training and everyone goes back to working you to the bone. Culture isn't going to stick in a pimp/hoe type business model environment.

    Honestly, out of college I didn't get an offer from any of the Big4 so I went with GT. If that's your situation too GT's probably the best you are going to get but if you get an offer from the any of the Big 4 GO FOR IT. Public accounting is all about learning as much as you can, as fast as you can, name-dropping your firm and getting out!

    Advice to Management

    Novel idea; try to increase your bottom line by retaining existing clients and obtaining new clients rather then taking money out of the pockets of your employees. Be more picky when entering new PPMDs. Some of them obviously are disconnected from their own jobs. Lastly, eating time is a huge problem. Please stop telling us to stop eating time and fix the root cause. Improperly staffed jobs and high turnover at the senior level cause time eating. Time eating causes people to leave. A never ending cycle.

    Grant Thornton Response

    May 8, 2017 – People & Culture

    We are disappointed to hear that this was your experience at Grant Thornton. We focus on offering our employees an environment to communicate openly, while enacting opportunities for our employees to... More


  6. "Contract Administrator"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Oak Brook, IL
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor in Oak Brook, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Grant Thornton as a contractor

    Pros

    You get a paycheck and they have some free beverages. Other than that expect to be frustrated by the lack of intelligence of the people who work here.

    Cons

    I have been told that the Director did not have a high school diploma or a GED. My manager had no management experience. I have 16 years of management experience. At first I thought she was giving me misinformation on purpose. I later found out that she was just not bright, but in the meantime the blame fell on me. Dumb your self down and you will do well here. Oh and expect that your manager will bad mouth you once you leave even though you gave her a list and status of everything that you were working on before you left. She sat on it and in her typical fashion passed the blame.

    Advice to Management

    Do not allow a department to be full of someone's friends. Make sure that promotions are based upon experience and not because someone likes you.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Toxic culture"

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

    I worked at Grant Thornton full-time

    Pros

    There are many great people who work at Grant Thornton. The first year pay is moderately better than Big 4. Colleagues in other market territories are phenomenal.

    Cons

    Despite the incredible people that work at GT, the horrible people absolutely ruin the firm. During my tenure at the firm partners were trashing other partners, engagement teams were trashing clients and colleagues. I was disturbed when people in the Atlantic Coast Market Territory in particular would attend national trainings and air out the dirty laundry of former employees (much of it based on half truths and innuendo).

    As for the pay, it's a trap. The strategy they use is to offer high pay in order to get people on board- but they consider it as receiving your raise in the first year instead of in year 2. By the time you become an S1 or S2, the Big 4 has shot past GT employees in pay.

    Unlimited PTO is a scam. GT intimidates people away from taking a typical 3 weeks PTO because they do not want people to abuse time off. People end up taking less PTO than they otherwise would have because they do not want to be seen as abusing the system. In addition, when PTO is capped, you would receive a payout. In this case, it's completely "use it, or lose it".

    GT markets itself as values oriented. It is not. They are just really good at giving the impression that they are.

    The market territory doesn't directly encourage eating time, but there are certainly consequences when associates do not eat time. Associates are left to fend for themselves. They provide decent training for Voyager (the audit software) however the training for audit procedures is often "look at the previous year's file". This is inadequate.

    GT holds monthly "culture meetings" but these are meaningless. They are not focused on building better people. It's self-deception. They keep telling themselves and everyone else how great they are, but fail to live up to the "CLEARR" standards. This should be focused on identifying areas of improvement- instead of talking about respect- try not calling clients vulgar names in the audit room when you think no one is paying attention.

    The other market territories seemed to live GT's values. However, the Atlantic Coast (which includes the McLean/Arlington office) is not living up to the standard that GT claims to have.

    Advice to Management

    If GT truly wants to change then they should actually listen to feedback they receive. Even from disgruntled former employees. If you only listen to people you are currently paying, you are less likely to hear negative things that can be fixed. They can show all of the accolades from magazines they want. This review is certainly one perspective, but it is true. The AC territory can fix these things, but they will never if they continually write-off true criticism.

    Grant Thornton Response

    Dec 8, 2016 – People & Culture

    Over the past three years, we have embraced significant efforts to launch and advance the culture of our firm. We pride ourselves on providing our employees an environment where they can bring their... More

  8. Helpful (4)

    "I came back only to find out the company hasn't changed much.."

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

    I have been working at Grant Thornton full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    You meet great people, access to interesting projects and plenty of opportunities for continued education.

    Cons

    To many layers of managerment... hires these directors and senior managers with no experience that don't do the work and find themselves "managing" others.

    Advice to Management

    Get rid of all these layers.. you don't need partner, director, sr. manager, manager, sr. associate, associate for one little project

    Also, stop using senior personnel resume to get projects and then place the juniors in the positions you bid for with sr. resumes. Everyone in the industry knows you are doing this.


  9. Helpful (1)

    "This organization lacks opportunity and camaraderie"

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

    Pros

    Salaries and benefits are compatible with most competitors.

    Cons

    Associate (Former Employee), Alexandria, VA – October 6, 2016
    Grant Thornton lacks in opportunity and camaraderie. Most recently, Human Resources has hired a great number of recent college graduates, but not enough projects to place them on. These individuals are provided leadership roles without much work experience. They also provide inadequate direction, which is also apparent at the leadership level as well. Experienced hires a often placed on opportunities that are not compatible with their skill set, and has resulted in a high turn over of knowledgeable professionals.

    The disparity of between experience and inexperience creates an environment that lacks genuine camaraderie, and more often seen as a threatening situation, even observed at the management level. Grant Thornton's CLEARRLY slogan does not come close to being adapted on the job, in particular the aspect of mutual Respect.

    Advice to Management

    Management should work to provide balanced opportunities for experienced and inexperienced employees. I would also stress that diversity training be mandated for all employees.


  10. Helpful (5)

    "Such a toxic and fear-based work environment."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Manager in Seattle, WA
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Grant Thornton full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    There are some great people in Chicago on the national team.

    Cons

    Such a toxic and fear-based work environment. Absolute boys club. Office management is disorganized, unreliable, and is a huge part of the toxic culture. Partner leadership is acquiescent, lazy, and dismissive of issues. Would rather turn a blind eye than address the problem. There are major HR and recruiting violations in this office. If you are considering working here, I would say work hard, keep your head down, and use it as a stepping stone

    Advice to Management

    Have some integrity. Listen to your people. Respect every employee. Maybe do some research on how to boost moral and run an office efficiently. Finally, a band-aid will never solve the root of any problem; only addressing it will.


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