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Hanover Research

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Hanover Research

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Hanover Research Employee Reviews about "researcher"

Updated Nov 30, 2021

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Found 26 of over 246 reviews

3.9
72%
Recommend to a Friend
56%
Approve of CEO
Hanover Research CEO Wes Givens
Wes Givens
104 Ratings

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McKinsey & Company

Consultants of Fishbowl, I'm 31 and have ~$2m. No kids, student loans, etc... I'm also getting CTL'd. If you were in my position, would you scramble to get a new position or retire early?

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Top Review Highlights by Sentiment

Pros
  • "Most of the people are great(in 26 reviews)
  • "Engaging, smart colleagues(in 16 reviews)
  • "We all have tons of work to do, but smart, interesting coworkers mean plenty of social breaks from the daily grind.(in 14 reviews)
  • "1. Company culture(in 13 reviews)
  • "Many opportunities to provide feedback on CDs/MCDs, regular check(in 8 reviews)
Cons
  • "I left because the low pay wasn’t worth the high amount of stress that I experienced while there.(in 15 reviews)
  • "While Hanover consciously builds a structure of support for its employees through assigning research coaches, personal managers, and keeping lines of communication open between HR and other employees, individuals must take the initiative to ask for help when they need it.(in 12 reviews)
  • "Management is always happy to hear input from the entry level employees, take advantage of this.(in 12 reviews)
  • "making sometimes seems a bit haphazard in upper management, with priorities shifting or lack of follow(in 11 reviews)
  • "Incompetent leadership: This was my biggest pain point.(in 10 reviews)
Pros & Cons are excerpts from user reviews. They are not authored by Glassdoor.

Reviews about "researcher"

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  1. 5.0
    Current Employee, more than 1 year

    Great culture, great opportunities, great process

    Feb 16, 2018 - Researcher in Arlington, VA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Hanover is a real meritocracy. If you excel, you will get raises and promotions quickly. Most managers actively help you plan your career. If you want to go to grad school they'll hell you strategies on applications; if you want to stay long term, they'll give you opportunities to build skills and get promoted. Which leads to another point. On the research side, you will gain hard skills that are easily transferred to grad school or other companies. Hanover makes a point of training researchers well, and excels in this area. As a researcher, you learn a ton. The random and interesting topics you become an expert in are legitimately valuable, professionally and even socially. The work requires you to focus and learn, and it's really intellectually rewarding. Finally, Hanover does a fantastic job of building strong processes to train, deliver feedback, and streamline production. This helps keep things running smoothly, helps you to know where you stand, and overall makes the hiring, orientation, and day-to-day pleasant and efficient.

    Cons

    On the research side, it's really fast-paced. You need to be OK with ambiguity, best guesses, and trusting your gut. If you want to get the perfect answer or spend weeks on a topic, this is not a good place to work. They provide daily free snacks, and frequent free breakfasts and lunches and happy hours. It's easy to gain weight, because the work is sedentary. The 401k match is mediocre.

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    4 people found this review helpful
  2. 4.0
    Current Employee, more than 5 years

    Good place to work, some improvements needed

    Apr 2, 2021 - Senior Director 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Management, benefits, opportunities for growth

    Cons

    Staffing tends to lag behind growth/recovery, creating strains in researcher and client manager workloads.

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    Hanover Research Response

    Manager, Talent Acquisition and Retention

    Thank you for taking the time to leave a thoughtful review. We are finding talent and filling roles as quickly as we can with the resources we currently have. We are always open to feedback and would like to hear more about your experience. Please email us at peoplesupport@hanoverresearch.com with any additional information. -The People Team

  3. 2.0
    Current Employee, more than 1 year

    Unless you really need the job, look elsewhere for better options

    Jun 17, 2020 - Research Associate in Arlington, VA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    - Extremely educated and engaged colleagues (networking opportunity, especially if interested in academia seeing how many people have MAs, PHDs, etc.) - Good PTO policy - Free snacks, coffee, happy hours/Christmas party

    Cons

    - "Research" often consists of googling open source information in the attempt to find obscure statistics or the inputs to create obscure statistics to meet the short term need of clients (lack of long term/strategic research opportunities) - Researchers are paid under the market rate (please check other glass door salaries to confirm this yourself) and receive no bonus/commission unlike the much of the non-researcher workforce - Heavy and repetitive workload consisting of googling and summarizing things you have googled into power point format (over, and over, and over again) - Lack of true growth opportunities (you may switch departments, but unless you come in with certain qualifications there is little opportunity for growth) - Expected unpaid overtime in order to keep clients/managers happy

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    1 person found this review helpful

    Hanover Research Response

    Chief Content Officer

    Thank you for your feedback. We are very proud of our reputation and capability for high-quality, cost-effective research; we are able to deliver prescriptive insight (using a breadth of methodologies) to our Education and Corporate clients where other firms struggle. Having said that, we are dedicated to continuing to make Hanover a better place to work and would like to understand more about your experience and how we can improve. Please email us at peoplesupport@hanoverresearch.com with any additional information.

  4. 4.0
    Current Employee, more than 8 years

    Mystified by negative reviews

    Aug 1, 2020 - Research Consultant 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    From a researcher's perspective: * Hanover has more opportunities for advancement (promotion/raises) than any place I've ever worked at or even heard of * You're encouraged to think of new processes and improvements, and you're then given support to implement them * Interesting, varied work once you get past the entry-level position * Many opportunities to provide feedback on CDs/MCDs, regular check-ins where I can mention any issues as they arise * The ability to join client calls as a more experienced researcher, which adds another layer to the work * I literally get 36 days of PTO per year (12 paid holidays, 4 'team' holidays when we make goals, and 20 days of regular PTO), which is . . . crazy

    Cons

    Again, researcher's perspective: * Certain project types can get somewhat repetitive . . . but then I've never had a job that had zero repetitiveness. * Timelines can be tight in certain cases . . . but I'm almost always given extra time if I need it. * Salary beyond entry-level is competitive, but I wish there was a higher 401k match and slightly better health benefits. Also I feel the need to address the negative reviews from the past couple years: * I'm currently in my eighth year of working for Hanover (in research) and have been following Glassdoor reviews for a while . . . it's not a perfect company but it's way way better than the negative reviews suggest. (Also I can only speak to the research side of things, as I haven't spent time in sales.) * The vast majority of Hanover employees that I've interacted with over the past few years have been happy with the company (beyond the usual mild grumbling that you'll have in any workplace). The only people who seemed miserable were inevitably entry-level researchers in their first year who just didn't like the work or couldn't handle the work, and they usually quit after a few months (and then, apparently, all go straight to this website to complain) -- in short, I'm guessing that, in most cases, the negative reviews are from 22-year-olds who hadn't experienced a real workplace before (Hanover is my third multi-year consulting/research job, and easily my favorite), realized that an actual job is harder than coasting through college, and couldn't handle the (easy) workload. * Projects are relatively simple and repetitive when you first start at Hanover because management are trying to ease you into project work; if you're having to work 12-hour days to complete simple secondary research then you're the problem, rather than Hanover. Once you get past the introductory entry-level position, projects are varied, in-depth, and interesting (for the most part); Hanover reports are not "Googling keywords." * Entry-level salaries are a bit lower than usual, for sure, but all of the complaining reviewers clearly never managed to get promoted (or to get a merit raise), as promotions and raises are very generous; I'm currently making close to 2x my starting salary. * C-suite / MCDs / CDs are open and transparent and are constantly sending surveys, having 'coffee hours' where anyone can send questions or ask questions, etc. I've never worked at a company with more openness in that sense, so I'm just mystified by the complaints here.

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    9 people found this review helpful
  5. 3.0
    Former Employee, more than 1 year

    Experience for a Better Future

    Jul 20, 2020 - Senior Research Associate in Washington, DC
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    You will be surrounded by absolutely brilliant analysts and low level managers who are friendly and want to help you learn and succeed. If you are a researcher/analyst you will gain exposure to and experience numerous industries and methodologies that should prepare you for a high paying job in management consulting.

    Cons

    Low salary Poor culture - Hanover wants you to think it's a fun "start-up" like place with corn-hole, ping pong, and happy hours but the reality is that tight deadlines and a never ending workflow sucks the fun out of everyone and creates a toxic workaholic culture for below-market pay. Although deadlines and workflow can create a poor culture, low level managers frequently encourage analysts to take a break or stop for the day if they see that an analyst is working really late. This helps create a good work/balance in a no-fun workplace. C-suite managers are cowardly, dodge questions, and poor leaders in straining times. Low and mid managers are fantastic.

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    1 person found this review helpful
  6. 2.0
    Former Employee, more than 1 year

    Few opportunities for mid-level researchers

    Apr 20, 2017 - Researcher in Arlington, VA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    -- Good entry-level job. You'll learn a lot, and the practice of giving you "grades" on every project will ease you into the world of professional work. -- Flexibility and remote work opportunitities for researchers. -- Not a micromanaging culture -- Very formalized downward feedback system -- People are generally friendly

    Cons

    -- Professional development is nonexistent at mid-levels. I learned a lot in my first year here, but after that the work became tedious and repetitive. -- Noncompetitive pay. This company spends more money on snacks and happy hours than the average researcher's salary. I got a 20% salary increase and significantly better benefits when I left for what was essentially a lateral move at a similar company, after having been told that my salary at Hanover was on the high end for my level. -- Work is non-collaborative and can be isolating. -- Expectations around research output can be unreasonable. You're expected to deliver a flawless analysis in 5 work days, often involving a company or even sector with which you've had no prior experience. You can uphold strict deadlines or expect perfection, but both is absurd. -- Credential inflation. You don't need an M.A. to be a researcher here, and you definitely don't need a Ph.D. -- Day to day feedback (i.e. project ratings) is largely separate from the performance review process. You can have great project feedback and get slammed with entirely unrelated criticisms in your performance review.

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    10 people found this review helpful

    Hanover Research Response

    CHRO

    Thank you for taking time to share your feedback here. Professional development at the mid-level is a challenge. Generally these employees are looking to expand their skills and prepare for their next role at Hanover (or elsewhere) and the L&D training options are not sufficient to meet those needs. With this in mind, we instituted an in-house "MBA" style business training curriculum taught by our Content Directors and other senior staff. It aims to fill that void and help staff to develop skills outside of their traditional research roles. There seems to be a perception that Hanover is not invested in retaining talent or that we have high turnover. Neither of these perceptions are accurate. Our focus on building skills and expertise on the research floor though formal and informal learning speaks to our desire to engage and retain our staff however we are also aware that some people will naturally transition on to their next role or career or employer after 3 or 4 years. When this happens, we hope that this first job out of college has trained them and upskilled them to enable them to go on to do great things in their second and third jobs after college. We're up front with our candidates about our salaries during the recruiting process. They are also listed on the salaries section of Glassdoor. I do not believe cutting our snack or social budget would have much impact of our overall salaries and while you didn't seem to appreciate the free food, the majority of our employees do enjoy the supply of oatmeal, fruit and snacks. Again, thank you for sharing your experience.

  7. 4.0
    Current Employee

    Great opportunity for talented and driven individuals

    Jun 25, 2012 - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    - Hard work and talent do not go unnoticed. With the fast growth of the company and a meritocratic culture, there is no need to 'wait your turn' before promotion. - A company culture that strikes the right balance between ambition and hard work, and socialization and community service. Happy hours, potlucks, trivia nights, and charity events are encouraged and well-attended.

    Cons

    - As mentioned many times in these reviews, professional development and training programs are sorely needed. Currently, the employees who have been successful are those who haven't needed much help in terms of training. Instituting a new employee training program would help build confidence and satisfaction for many others who might find much of the work (for both Content and Business Development) to be challenging. - As a researcher on the Content side, and it be easy at times to feel like a cog in the machine. More could be done to encourage every employee to understand the 'big picture'.

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    1 person found this review helpful
  8. 2.0
    Current Employee, more than 1 year

    Decent last resort

    Jun 13, 2015 - Anonymous Employee in Arlington, VA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    As a researcher, you're given a lot of autonomy with how you manage your time as long as deadlines are met on time.

    Cons

    Despite being given a lot of autonomy on project and time-management, deadlines are tight and researchers quite often work late, with little to show for their hard work. Many companies give performance bonuses to incentivize employees to perform well; Hanover has just only just started awarding quarterly "star awards" to a select FEW researchers who have to be nominated for it (considering the solitary nature of the research position, I find this to be irrational). This award seems like a stingy alternative to providing performance bonuses and boosting employee morale. Compared to DC standards, employees at Hanover are underpaid, which explains high turnover rates. I think Hanover has potential to be a place where employees love working, but the current business model and poor compensation does not provide employees with much incentive to stay at Hanover.

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    20 people found this review helpful

    Hanover Research Response

    CHRO

    Thank you for your feedback. I am sorry to hear that you are not enjoying your time with Hanover. We are very upfront about our salary ranges during the interview process and are constantly benchmarking our salary bands against other similar business models to ensure parity. We acknowledge that there are companies able to offer higher base salaries because their business model is structured on billable hours or traditional per project client billing however we are continuously looking at various other ways to demonstrate how much we value our employees. Some of these ways includes firmwide events such as Field Day and Day of Service where work days are used for non-work events; we increased annual PTO in the first year of employment by 3 days and have removed the roll-over cap essentially allowing unused PTO to continue to accrue and be used in larger chunks of time and we’ve built in an ‘emergency PTO’ fund to assist employees dealing with serious medical issues so that they are not forced to use their PTO or go on unpaid leave while in hospital or recuperating from a major illness. Our investment in our employees’ professional development remains a key focus as well. We continue to add more training and more opportunities for employees to learn and grow professionally. We continue to promote high achievers on a bi-annual basis during performance reviews. Our Star Awards campaign is a way for individual researchers to be acknowledged for their dedication and teamwork especially when researchers work individually or project teams are siloed. It encourages managers to share the positive feedback with the entire research cohort. The financial reward that accompanies this is a token of appreciation, not intended to serve as a financial incentive. Our researchers have an enormous amount of pride in the work they produce. We want to use the Star Awards to showcase their achievements. Turnover at Hanover remains very low (less than 20%) despite the perception that a high growth company would also have high turnover. I encourage you to bring your concerns to your Personal Manager, your Managing Content Director or directly to me. We rely on honest feedback as we continue to build our organization.

  9. 4.0
    Former Employee, less than 1 year

    A Great Place to Start Off

    Nov 17, 2016 - Research Associate in Arlington, VA
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Many of the negative reviews on this site, particularly from the researcher side, may have something to do with the fact that this is many people's first job out of undergrad or grad school. After leaving Hanover, I have started to see it in a new light. I truly believe that it is a good company. Some specific pros are: - I worked 40 hour weeks, honestly. - I think I opened my laptop over the weekend twice. - We got extra time off for hitting team performance goals. - The people are phenomenal. It's a built in social circle for a young professional - I learned a ton about publicly available data (IPEDS, Census, etc) - There's a team of former researchers whose only job is to provide training. - I got a lot of good writing experience (completed over 30 reports) - My job here provided a nice entree into the higher education sector

    Cons

    Okay, there are a couple of cons. - Communication: The culture does not emphasize the communication necessary to complete high quality projects within given deadlines. Timelines are admittedly short, but setting a reasonable scope and checking in daily about progress would make a world of difference. The current practice of sending daily research updates does not work well, as many managers are too busy to read the whole email, let alone a full draft of a report. I think it would be best to institute an open door policy for management, and to require they check in with their researchers face to face or on the phone once per day. If that's too much, researchers should at least be encouraged to email their CDs any time they have a question that impacts the direction of the research. I recall being told early on that we were hired because we could work independently and didn't need to interact with management. I believe this is a bad idea to propagate. Communication always improves work product. - Pay: Not great compared to some other sectors, but given the 40 hour weeks, it's absolutely fair.

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    21 people found this review helpful

    Hanover Research Response

    CHRO

    Thank you for your feedback. I am glad to read that you saw value in your time at Hanover and developed your skills. Not all first jobs offer new graduates this opportunity. Our timelines are short - it is something we're upfront about at all stages during the interview process and while in seat. Our service model is to provide quality custom research quickly. We are working on finding ways to keep delivering this service more efficiently so that researchers can spend their time working on more complex projects. We will keep pushing forward with efforts to improve internal communication and collaboration.

  10. 4.0
    Current Employee, more than 3 years

    Hanover is a perfectly fine place to work

    Apr 8, 2016 - Senior Content Analyst in Washington, DC
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    So I'm currently in my fourth year of working for Hanover (in research) and have been following Glassdoor reviews for a while ... I've grown so annoyed with the inaccuracies in these reviews that I feel compelled to post a defense of Hanover. It's not a perfect company but it's way way better than the negative reviews suggest. (Also I can only speak to the research side of things, as I haven't spent time in sales.) The only legitimate complaints are: (1) salaries are a bit low (2) there can occasionally be tight deadlines on projects, which can lead to lower quality (3) projects within certain company divisions can be repetitive (4) the executive team is a bit disconnected, too focused on sales, etc. On (1), yes, starting salaries are a bit low, but promotions are plentiful; I make 25% more than when I started, and this is staying within the research track. CDs often have a pay jump of 30%-50% upon promotion, and CD salaries in general (especially in MIC) are very competitive for the DC area. Plus the benefits at Hanover are legitimately impressive; health insurance and 401k are good (though not great), and the PTO is amazing. You start with 18 days of PTO per year and it goes up a day each year, along with 12 paid holidays ... at this point I have 34 workdays off per year, which is seriously at like European levels. (2) The idea that product quality is extremely low is simply absurd. Many of the project types (especially those assigned to new researchers) are very straightforward; a client wants a program demand so we grab the data from IPEDS, and boom, there you go; the client is happy, product quality is literally perfect as long as the Hanover employee was able to correctly use a database. But generally speaking, yes, there's a fair amount of secondary research (using Google is basically required for this). The whole point of Hanover's business model is that it's a relatively low-cost option for custom research, an alternative to the Advisory Board Company or an internal hire; so of course the clients aren't expecting 100-page best practices reports that answer every question perfectly. Yes, not every report is going to be infinitely high quality, but the clients are very well aware, as this is literally Hanover's business model; target middle-market clients and offer them a low-cost custom research option (we're now targeting some higher-end clients, but this was basically the model until recent months). Also, from a researcher perspective, I mean, cry me a river; you have to finish projects on somewhat tight deadlines, sometimes. Welcome to reality. If it's taking you 70 hours a week to finish your entry-level research projects (as one of the reviewers claimed) then honestly I'm worried about your future at any job; the projects they give to new employees are not difficult for any intelligent adult. I don't mean to be insulting, but seriously, it's not rocket science. It makes me wonder if maybe some of the 24-year-olds writing these negative reviews just aren't cut out to do research for a living? Or were shocked to find that actual employment is more difficult than their senior year of college? Maybe! On (3): projects are repetitive when you first start at Hanover because management is trying to help you out by assigning easy, similar projects. After a year or two, you're either a CD or doing varied interesting work (I do different projects all the time). But I guess starting new researchers with simple, repetitive work because they're still learning the ropes makes Hanover the worst company ever. On (4), sure, there was perhaps a slightly excessive sales focus a while; the company is now (quite rightly) focusing on product quality and developing deeper client relationships, so, there you go. Judging from some of these reviews, you would think that Hanover only hires naive 22-year-olds; however, this is not the case. The quant team has plenty of experts in statistical analysis; the consultants on the grants team (average age = 40) have expertise and have written successful grant proposals for billions of dollars combined. I wonder if the people writing these negative reviews just didn't stay at Hanover long enough to work with senior researchers? The average employee has worked at Hanover for 2-3 years, which is pretty normal for a company with a relatively younger workforce (i.e., people in their 20s who switch jobs constantly) based in Washington D.C. (i.e., the home of transient graduate students). Most of the people that I know who have quit Hanover were either going back to get their Ph.D or found another job. Hanover also has more promotions and more opportunities for advancement than any place I've ever worked at or even heard of. Performance reviews and firing/promotion decisions are absurdly transparent; I've never received so much detailed feedback about why I was or was not given a promotion or a raise. In short, Hanover is a perfectly fine place to work, and is easily my favorite workplace out of the 4-5 jobs I've had in the DC area.

    Cons

    [See above for more details]

    20 people found this review helpful