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RAND Washington Reviews

13 reviews

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Washington, DC

4.6
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RAND CEO Michael Rich
Michael Rich
5 Ratings

13 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • The location is fantastic but the cost of living in Santa Monica is quite high (in 5 reviews)

  • Support staff are obviously not as respected as researchers and are sometimes ignored or thought of as "getting in the way" (in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Summer Associate"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Summer Associate in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Summer Associate in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great summer job. Treated as a colleague and equal to everyone else. Interesting projects and lots of flexibility (teleworking, etc.). Very friendly and smart people who are always doing creative and challenging work. Solid pay and perks. One of the best jobs I've had.

    Cons

    A little tough to navigate the organization and its structure at first. People stay in their office and keep to themselves generally so it can feel unwelcoming, but if you stop anyone to talk to them that feeling will go away quickly.

    Advice to Management

    Build a bigger RAND Summer Associate alumni network/presence. It seems like SA's have to try and find opportunities to stay connected.


  2. "Great Experience"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Facilities in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Facilities in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great people
    Opportunity to learn and gain experience
    Leaders and mentors galore

    Cons

    Resistant to change
    Upward mobility depends upon openings

    Advice to Management

    Keep supporting your staff and encouraging retention

  3. "Think Tank Life"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Recommends

    I worked at RAND part-time

    Pros

    Smart people doing interesting work in a collegial atmosphere. I really enjoyed the opportunity to do high-end analysis with a talented team tasked to model and assess Defense Department human capital challenges.

    Cons

    The academic atmosphere is a happy one, but sometimes that means the analysis gets disconnected from the real-world and the progress is slow.


  4. "Interesting work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    Really smart co-workers, with emphasis on analytical rigor. Challenging client projects. Good benefits package, including generous leave.

    Cons

    Limited opportunities for upward mobility.


  5. "Always something interesting to work on"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Political Scientist in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Associate Political Scientist in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    At RAND, researchers get to work on a breadth of projects. Unlike most of academia, at RAND your research has a good chance of being seen by government decisionmakers.

    Cons

    The internal labor market does not efficiently match capabilities to requirements, and the need to pursue future work while doing your regular work can be an unpleasant distraction. There isn't a clear career path for most project associates or research assistants, and consequently RAND-caliber talent sometimes is not retained.


  6. "Graduate Research Fellow (Summer) at the International Policy Center"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - Graduate Research Fellow in Washington, DC
    Former Intern - Graduate Research Fellow in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at RAND as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Interesting work on policy related issues; could work on multiple projects at once; projects only last about a few months typically so you can move on to something new fairly quickly; free to work on my own time- in and outside of the office; intelligent colleagues;

    Cons

    Pay is contract based-- so if you're not billing to a contract you're not getting paid at all. In practice this usually means that you're working on projects you're not as interested in, but in theory it concerned me that I could go without pay at times with out much of a safety net.


  7. "A smart, well-connected place where you can make a difference"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Professional in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Senior Professional in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at RAND full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Constant intellectual buzz. Huge array of public policy topics. Collaborative environment. Good pay. Great benefits (like getting paid 50% extra when you go on vacation).

    Cons

    Because most revenues come from government contracts, some researchers spend more of their time than they should chasing new business or trying to get attached to well-funded projects.

    Advice to Management

    Provide more flexibility to cover researchers for time pursuing crazy ideas or promoting completed work.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Learning but also struggling"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Policy Analyst in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Policy Analyst in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Strong network capabilities both from internal and external sources. Research methods are down to earth, and frequently adopted by stakeholders.

    Cons

    A lot of financial stress. High turnover rate. No spaces for promotion.


  9. "All day interview"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Interviewee Research Assistant in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Interviewee Research Assistant in Washington, DC
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Paid trip to DC. Interesting researching their research.

    Cons

    If you want to get hired show that your a salesman.


  10. Helpful (4)

    "Great place, but not ideal for non-PhDs"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Great place to work, fascinating and intellectually challenging work with high visibility, brilliant colleagues, tremendous flexibility to work from home, and option to use Mac instead of PC in the office.

    Cons

    Nearly impossible to advance without PhD, time-keeping system is frustrating, not the most socially cohesive work environment, and some less-than-ideal project leadership.


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