IES Abroad Reviews | Glassdoor

IES Abroad Reviews

Updated February 22, 2017
20 reviews

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20 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Great people, great company"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at IES Abroad full-time

    Pros

    The people who work at IES Abroad are all very passionate about study abroad and intercultural communication. The mission of the company actually means something to them, which is obvious anytime you talk to an employee. Most people who have worked there for a long time say that they stay because of the other employees.

    Cons

    There was very little room for growth within the company, since it isn't in a growing industry. For most positions, you could only move one step up, into a manager's role. If you want to stay at the company for a long period of time, there are just limited opportunities.

    Advice to Management

    If you want to keep good employees, find additional opportunities for them so that they stay at the company, whether that's more benefits, education, or training.


  2. Helpful (4)

    "Management is out of touch & out of control"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at IES Abroad full-time

    Pros

    Great people at the worker level. Committed. Smart.

    Cons

    Management is a white old boys club that cares more about money then students. "Transparency" means believe everything even if it doesn't make sense. Upper management has no idea what people really do. Everyone is suspect. Something goes wrong, look for a scapegoat, and it won't be one of the chosen few working close to those at the top.

    Advice to Management

    Why bother. They won't listen.


  3. Helpful (4)

    "American micromanagement"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous in Vienna, VA
    Current Employee - Anonymous in Vienna, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at IES Abroad part-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    There are many good employees

    Cons

    The Chicago office controls everything. I saw my colleagues fight to do what they had to do for local laws. The Chicago office didn't seem to understand that laws are different outside the US. We wasted a lot of time and energy.

    Advice to Management

    You are not working in the US everywhere


  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. Helpful (5)

    "Prepare for frequent and sometimes puzzling strategy shifts"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at IES Abroad full-time

    Pros

    Employees are dedicated and most work collaboratively. The employee lunch room is well used to make for great camaraderie. People clear out of the office at 4:30.

    Cons

    Salaries are on the low end of the market and the organization tends to exploit new college graduates in particular. As their strategy shifts, as it does frequently, job security is a big issue. Their habit of laying people off has dragged down morale. People tend to move on after they obtain some experience because of the unstable environment. Their business model of high-end study abroad is being eroded by universities establishing their own, more cost effective, programs.

    Advice to Management

    Be more open and transparent with employees.

    IES Abroad Response

    Oct 4, 2016 – Assistant Director of Human Resources

    IES is a stable environment with a 66 years success as a top provider of Study Abroad programs. We strongly value our employees and provide industry competitive salaries across the board with no ... More


  6. Helpful (5)

    "meh"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Former Employee - IT Client Services Technician in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - IT Client Services Technician in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at IES Abroad (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great holiday party, good location, easy to get to from L or Metra

    Cons

    upper management just didn't care about anyone


  7. Helpful (13)

    "Entry Level - No Growth Opportunities"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Program Advisor
    Current Employee - Program Advisor
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at IES Abroad full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great colleagues, good opportunity to gain entry-level study abroad experience. Nice location and work hours. People are passionate and IES Abroad has a bit of name recognition in the full service provider landscape.

    Cons

    There are very limited opportunities for growth. It's a super flat organization with some top-down business decisions that do not fully align with the mission (from CEO, Board and Senior Executives). They have a number of entry-level positions like Program Advisors (Recruiting and Advising), Enrollment Management Specialists (Admissionsl) and Program Associates (Academics Department). These are the employees that generate value and revenue ($80+ million annually), they manage applicants and students (5,000+ annually), carry the IES Abroad brand, face the public and interact with candidates. With no place to grow, they are forced out and the organization loses historical information, relationships built and a qualified workforce. With the high turnover, everyone suffers. I can't even count on my hands and toes how many people have left and the training is not adequate so progress is hard because there are some weak links. The next step up are Director, Dean and AVP positions. Well, there are College Relations Manager positions (account manager/outside sales) but hiring decisions are based on maintaining business relationships with member institutions so a Master's degree, position at a hot target university and a higher ed referral is essential. They used to promote from within more when it was smaller but now ain't nobody got time for that (coaching).

    Advice to Management

    Compensate your workforce better and invest in talent management. As an educational organization, invest in the professional development and continuous learning goals of your employees. The top-down approach to business decisions needs to be re-evaluated because times are changing and if you keep with your traditional approaches, you will always be trying to catch up with others in the field (more than you try to now).


  8. Helpful (1)

    "Good Place To Work"

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

    I worked at IES Abroad part-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The pay was not bad and there was almost always something to do. There are always office parties throughout the year for holidays, baby showers, etc. The coworkers are kind. They also hire from within the company, which is also a good thing. Raises every year depending on your performance. Medical, Dental, Vision, Vacation, and all that good stuff.

    Cons

    Honestly, I couldn't think of anything wrong with working here.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work


  9. "Great environment for Intern"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Marketing Intern in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Marketing Intern in Chicago, IL
    Recommends

    Pros

    Flexible schedule, welcoming office culture, perfect for anyone interested in multiculturalism and diversity

    Cons

    Sometimes lacked work to do


  10. "Intern to part-time staff"

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

    I worked at IES Abroad part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    I first joined IES as an intern during graduate school. I enjoyed it so much that I personally asked if there was an opening for a part-time staff position (I was still in graduate school). Luckily, there was and very much enjoyed my time. The people working there are welcoming and friendly. I found mentors in a few people and as a grad student, that's really valuable because this is the field I want to join. Very flexible with my class and other internship schedule.

    Cons

    It can get tedious, but someone as to process applications!


  11. Helpful (1)

    "Excellent work environment and great work-life balance"

    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
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at IES Abroad full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    The people are the best reason to work at IES Abroad. Overall, employees are positive, friendly, and very committed to the mission of serving students. Most employees have studied abroad themselves, and there is a wonderful community atmosphere. Employees respect each other and work as a team to help improve student services. Some of my best friendships have been formed at IES.

    Of course it depends on your department, but in general you'll enjoy a healthy work-life balance at IES. Employees tend to have type-A personalities, and are smart, driven people. You'll definitely work hard at IES, but generally you won't have to stay late often (if you're in an entry level position).

    IES is very well respected in the field, and it's one of the nation's oldest and largest study abroad providers. It's great to work for a non-profit study abroad provider that is actually reputable (many are not). If you want to work in international education - this is a great place to work.

    Cons

    As other reviewers have mentioned, it can be difficult for entry-level employees to grow at IES. There are some management jobs that can be attained after a few years at an entry-level position, but those are few and far between. There's a gap between low-paying entry-level jobs and very high paying senior management jobs that require advanced degrees and many years of experience.

    In general there are wonderful people working at IES, but the president and a few members of senior management aren't well respected by employees.



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