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SEIU Reviews

Updated June 24, 2017
163 reviews

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3.1
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SEIU President Mary Kay Henry
Mary Kay Henry
63 Ratings

163 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • There is ZERO work-life balance (in 21 reviews)

  • There is NO work-life balance and little time to de-stress from an extremely stressful line of work (in 9 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Project Coordinator"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Benefits Administrative Assistant/Project Coordinator in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Benefits Administrative Assistant/Project Coordinator in Los Angeles, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at SEIU full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Great support, staff worked collectively together and effortless always busy, fun respected and work ethics were remarkable.

    Cons

    During election times we were under staffed

    Advice to Management

    Hire more people well before phone banking election time


  2. "Great training but tough in the middle years"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Research Analyst in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Research Analyst in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Smart driven colleagues who are dedicated to the cause of social justice and rights at work. Learn a lot right away as a researcher.

    Cons

    Barbell effect where there's a lot of management and a lot of junior staff. It's difficult to be in the middle so a lot of people leave after a few years.

    Advice to Management

    It's important to keep staff 5-7 years in so there needs to be more opportunities for advancement or for tenured staff to develop their own ideas.

  3. "Some Good, Some Bad- Local 2015"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Excellent benefits, important and meaningful work, dedicated staff.

    Cons

    Executives can be clueless and don't seem to care much about lower level staff. Experience working here varies widely from position to position. Not much room for raises unless you're in the "inner circle."

    Advice to Management

    Treat your employees with the same values that the organization pushes for in our members' workplace.


  4. "The Wal-Mart of labor unions."

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

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

    Pros

    They will take anybody. They have an excellent training program. Living in hotels and driving company cars can be a fun life when you're 28. Vested in the pension in only five years!

    Cons

    Living in hotels and driving company cars stops being fun when you're in your 30s. I know far more thrice divorced organizers than happily married organizers. SEIU is a lifestyle, not a career. There is ZERO work-life balance. I had a director scold me once, "We work until the work is done," when I told him I had to leave before the 9pm meeting to care for my 4 year old.

    The compensation is okay when you work for the international, but after a few years they want you to settle into a local where you usually earn less. The international national money is great because you live in company paid housing, but the money is woefully insufficient when you get dumped into a local and suddenly have to afford housing on top of running your own office out of your own car. When I worked for the local at the end of my SEIU time, I was regularly forced to take payday loans so I could put gas in my car and buy a sandwich tray for the next union meeting.

    If you're in this to change the world, you're working for the wrong team. Every workplace malfeasance SEIU claims to stand against they inflict on their own employees. I watched a lot of good organizers get fired because they lost unwinnable elections and I watched a lot of son's of EBoard members win the easy cherry elections. I was routinely instructed to break the law as a course of my work, from trespassing to property destruction. They say you can't become a director until you've been arrested. I have this giant 5 year hole in my resume I have to fill with lies because no one will ever hire a union organizer in the private sector.

    I came into SEIU early in the California Civil War. Over the next five years across half a dozen states I discovered that every accusation NUHW leveled at SEIU was absolutely true. I helped negotiate dozens of contracts. Never once did I see SEIU take seriously the opinions of the membership. Sure, we would send around surveys, but real decisions were always made at the highest level and handed down without input from the people effected by the decisions. SEIU will always have 1 person working grievances and 10 people working dues collections.

    Go to SEIU for the training and get out and go work for someone more worthy of your time.

    Advice to Management

    Every morning before you leave for work you need to look in the mirror and remember why you got into this in the first place.


  5. "Organizer"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Organizer in Saint Louis, MO
    Former Employee - Organizer in Saint Louis, MO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at SEIU full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Making a difference in workers lives. Fighting for inequality in the work place. Building stronger relationships in your community.

    Cons

    Upper management not supportive or appreciative of the work that staff and members do. Too much politics played against staff. No work life balance.

    Advice to Management

    Break the cliques that develop within the union staff and management. Listen to the needs of your staff to sharpen their skill for development. Hold management accountable for their lack of leadership


  6. "Tons of opportunities to grow and move up. Pros and cons to management. Development can be hit or miss."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Organizer In Training in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Organizer In Training in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Having the opportunity to grow the labor movement. Working with other people who share the same values as you do. Great benefits. Health insurance is a dream. Path for retirement. Members really appreciate the resources we provide.

    Cons

    Management can be one sided. Some managers shouldn't be in charge of anyone. Staff development can sometimes be hit or miss. Middle management has too much control. Lack of respect.

    Advice to Management

    Don't punish people for speaking up.
    Be more flexible folks need a work/life balance.
    Cut back hours so reasonable times unless absolutely needed.
    Give everyone the same opportunity to succeed.


  7. "Great place to work."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Organizer in Portland, OR
    Former Employee - Organizer in Portland, OR
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at SEIU full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great benefits, transparent salary schedule, good management and easy communication. Self-managed schedule.

    Cons

    Lots of hours. Job requires lots of overtime- definitely not a 9 to 5. Also feels a little corporate.

    Advice to Management

    More time off to make up for the long hours and weekends.

  8. "Great employer, not always a great culture"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Data/Dues Processor in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Data/Dues Processor in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at SEIU full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great mission, really great benefits. I never had any complaints about my job or SEIU as an employer. Although my job was pretty basic, I appreciated that my office job played a part in supporting SEIU's members.

    Cons

    The office culture was not great. Working in Operations, our department was often treated like we didn't understand the organization's mission, because we didn't work in the field. My coworkers and I often felt like that was a real morale-buster. There was work to promote department cohesion/teamwork, but not to promote inter-departmental fraternization at our Local. Promotions sometimes seemed based more on commitment to the leaders of the union/local, rather than commitment to the job or work output. Flextime was very difficult to get approved.

    Advice to Management

    Promote people because they work hard and do the best work, not because they've been there the longest or have proven their loyalty.


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Intense place to work, really smart people"

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

    I worked at SEIU full-time

    Pros

    exposure to some of the most strategic people in the progressive movement
    hard, intense work ethic is the norm
    sometimes feels like a family

    Cons

    long hours at times
    always a big campaign or union-wide effort

    Advice to Management

    pay better attention to diversity, particularly of minorities
    more staff activities together


  10. "Organizer in Training Program"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Labor Organizer in Oakland, CA
    Former Employee - Labor Organizer in Oakland, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at SEIU full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    +You do get to build workers rights
    +you will meet amazing people
    + feels meaningful and productive
    +excellent benefits package
    +get to be around lots of radical politics and be on the front lines of the labor movement

    Cons

    - You will be exploited for your work, which if you shed light on, you will be painted as someone who is not a team player
    - Long hours that are fluid and unclear
    - Certain locals have a culture of bullying OITs especially
    - They have all but done away with the Organizer 1 position which means to advance your career you MUST find outside work

    Advice to Management

    Listen to your Organizers.


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