Great-West Financial Reviews | Glassdoor

Great-West Financial Reviews

Updated August 12, 2017
344 reviews

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3.0
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Great-West Financial President & CEO Robert L. Reynolds
Robert L. Reynolds
104 Ratings

344 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Good benefits, flexibility in schedule (in 33 reviews)

  • Still a lot of good people but a lot have quit or more common these days is the pink slip (in 17 reviews)

Cons
  • Slow process, No work from home option, JP Morgan guys are given more preference for promotion (in 9 reviews)

  • Upper management focus is not where it needs to be (in 13 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    "Community-minded, good benefits, working on innovation"

    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
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Great-West Financial full-time

    Pros

    I'm based in Denver (headquarters) - I enjoy coming to work. It's unique to have a "cause" that we work toward every day--helping people plan for retirement. Definitely feels like a for-profit company but with an important, meaningful mission.

    Lots of perks at the office: cafeteria, company store with snacks and coffee, covered parking, on-site gym (free), onsite health center (free with certain company health plans), convenient location near the highway. Good health insurance. All employees receive 16 paid volunteer hours annually to use at any organization they'd like, and the company matches donations up to $5,000 each year per employee. People here are really nice and generally helpful. Lot of options to get involved with your fellow employees and in the community.

    Like most big companies, work-life balance will depend on who you work for and what your role is. I think generally the company values happy employees. They support "extra-curriculars" like lunch and learns, employee groups, etc.

    Cons

    Tech needs a refresh - we're several years behind with updates. Budgets are tight, and professional development budget is low. You will likely not see a lot of superfluous spending. I came from small orgs and it was definitely an adjustment to the hierarchy and structure. The other side to that coin is that there's a lot of room to grow and learn, and new people to meet every day.

    Advice to Management

    I'd like to see more diversity - like most large companies of this type, it's run by mostly boomer white men, which isn't representative of our employees or customer base.

    Spend to upgrade our tech systems.


  2. "Company review"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Settlements Analyst
    Current Employee - Settlements Analyst
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Great-West Financial full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Very hard working friendly team

    Cons

    Very little work life balance

  3. "13 years and counting"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director in Greenwood Village, CO
    Current Employee - Director in Greenwood Village, CO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Great-West Financial full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    I am continually impressed with how many colleagues that started around the same time as me continue with the firm. Great West does a very nice job of creating a culture people want to be a part of. Access to opportunity also stands out. It is a very exciting time to be at Empower.

    Cons

    The only real downside, if you are a glass half empty person, is the company is undergoing a rapid transformation and the amount of change can be a challenge.


  4. "I love our mission and the people"

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

    I have been working at Great-West Financial full-time

    Pros

    I feel good about working for a company that helps people save money so that they can do what's meaningful to them in retirement. My colleagues are friendly, smart and great to work with. I love that the company has a strong community program. The cafeteria rocks, as does the campus, which also has a gym, doctor's office, bike share program and running trails. Also, I've loved the fact that I've gotten to change jobs three times since joining - it's been challenging, fun and I've learned a lot. I appreciate the flexible work schedule too because I'm a professional and a mom.

    Cons

    I wish it were easier to engage with colleagues in other cities through teleconference and virtual presence. I'd like to see more diversity in leadership.

    Advice to Management

    Be more present - especially our CEO. Continue to remind people of the power of our mission. People work hard here, which is great, but we need to reinforce our gratitude and appreciation for their contributions.


  5. "After 11 Years, I still love what I do!"

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

    I have been working at Great-West Financial full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    In my time here, Great-West and Empower has moved from being a market follower to becoming a market leader. We're doing more in the community and providing more innovative services than ever before. Exciting to be part of a company that's trying to influence the market instead of just tag along. Company truly cares about our clients and is trying to move quickly to meet their needs. Although I've been in the same department for 11 years, my role has evolved and I'm constantly being given new challenges and opportunities. The work I do today is not what I did when I started. That keeps it fresh and enjoyable.

    Cons

    Lots of change. As the company is investing a lot in technology and transformation, departments have to do the same or more with less in some cases. Some locations have more limited career mobility than others. For long-tenured employees, some of the change can be challenging to get on board with. For some departments, longer hours to get everything done. Can't make all the changes as quickly as is needed. Definitely experiencing growing pains.

    Advice to Management

    Stay visible and stick to the mission of the company. Let employees know of opportunities. Find ways to improve morale without spending a ton of money.


  6. "Relationship Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Great-West Financial full-time

    Pros

    Good benefits, flexibility in schedule

    Cons

    Can be on the road a lot


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Company integration saga continues..."

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

    Pros

    Benefits. Still has potential as a company and for some employees depending on business unit and work location.

    Cons

    Still major hurdles and increased complexity of most processes. With rebranding to Empower Retirement, one would think that new ideas and active participation was welcomed, not really. Still tied to old technologies, processes and insurance company thinking. Management: inconsistent decisions, communication and missing in action, except for the numerous meetings telling you what the new job requirements are that day.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to your people and allow active participation of your employees beyond the corporate location. Decision makers need to have a better understanding of what the front line and back office staff actually do, beyond just the metric reporting. Employees are looking to be involved, but many are now settling for keeping these ideas to themselves instead.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Compliance Department in WI: Overall a Good Office Experience"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Compliance in Milwaukee, WI
    Former Employee - Compliance in Milwaukee, WI
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Great-West Financial full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    I would describe my salary as being fair. You could expect annual raises to basically just keep up with (or barely exceed) inflation (2-3%). In today’s age, that’s actually not that bad, so to me, it’s a “pro.”

    Benefits (much better):
    -Company paid about 90% of premiums for healthcare, vision and dental.
    -Company paid a 50% 401(k) match on first 8% of compensation (with immediate vesting).
    -Other standard benefits are available (life ins, FSAs, tuition reimbursement, etc.)
    -PTO is generous: 15 PTO days; 21 PTO days after 3 years. 10 paid holidays.
    -Hours were very flexible, at least for my department. You could arrive between 7-9 am.

    My job was rewarding enough to keep me there for a number of years.

    Large office allowed for lateral movements if one desired.

    Culture in compliance department was average to slightly-above-average. Large department (and company) meant you could socialize with the people you liked and avoid the people you didn’t like. Some people might not have been good at their jobs, but there were no toxic, bad apples present when I was there. Department had around 30 or so people with a wide diversity in age, sex and ethnicity.

    Cons

    As mentioned by several others, it's easy to move around, but not easy to move up.

    You are not incented to work hard because your efforts will not be financially recognized. Everyone gets a standard base raise of 2-3%, regardless of your effort or quantity/quality of work completed. Department uses a database that tracks various work completed, but I believe those resulting statistics had no correlation to your yearly raise computation. I always wished raises were more stratified (0.5% - 4.5%) to reward the better performers and punish the lazy ones. You might be able to earn a slightly higher raise by volunteering for projects that require at least a month or more commitment.

    I suppose there's always going to be dead weight in any organization, but as one of my fellow analysts in Denver noted, "Great West doesn't seem to get rid of dead weight so the lazy employees never have to change." That was exactly my experience as well. I was surprised at how long poor performers lasted, and I believe those people would have been canned much sooner at a comparable financial services company. However, on the other hand, this was a rare event, and in a department of this size (30), I never let a poor performer or two affect me personally.

    My biggest con was the peer review system that we had in place for reviewing work before it was sent to clients. If a coworker made a mistake that was deemed “critical,” you were expected to dish out a “critical error.” Deciding what was a critical error was somewhat arbitrary; some coworkers had unspoken alliances to NOT give each other critical errors; some people who received errors took it way too personally b/c it was viewed as an attack on their pay (via the worthless statistics I mentioned earlier). If you actually did your job and gave out critical errors, you could expect payback. In the end, this led to a lot of unnecessary politicking, which somewhat diminished the culture. In a sense, managers outsourced the portion of their job that revolved around ‘evaluating employee performance’ by requiring everyone in the department to dish out critical errors in such a public manner, which I found to be quite obnoxious. Employee suggestions were solicited in several attempts to reform the system (which was noble of management), but the core problem remained. I actually thought of a way to fix the problem, but I was 1 of 30 people (1 of 90 when you include Denver) and I didn’t feel like embarking on such an uphill climb.

    Advice to Management

    I don’t have any noteworthy advice b/c management did a fairly good job. As my title says, overall it was a good office experience.


  9. "Busy"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Website Support in Milwaukee, WI
    Current Employee - Website Support in Milwaukee, WI
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Great-West Financial full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Faced paced environment day goes by quickly. Benefits and vacation time are nice

    Cons

    Too busy, lack of staff, incomplete training. Raises don't happen as frequent as they are deserved

    Advice to Management

    Less meetings , more staff help.


  10. Helpful (2)

    "RPC/RPA"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - RPC/RPA in Boston, MA
    Former Employee - RPC/RPA in Boston, MA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Great-West Financial full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Top in government retirement
    Exciting Change
    Going for the best

    Cons

    Little room for advancement in the field
    Management overextended with all the new projects
    Field training weak because all professionals on other projects
    Compliance reviews of documents for participants very backed up
    HR weak

    Advice to Management

    Hire more legal to approve training and sale material to keep up with major changes. Hire more professional trainers so can complete the training effectively in a timely manner. Provide support of sales management for management duties.


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