The Humane Society of the United States Reviews | Glassdoor

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The Humane Society of the United States Reviews

Updated February 18, 2018
97 reviews

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3.3
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The Humane Society of the United States Acting President and CEO Kitty Block
Kitty Block
1 Rating

97 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • You help animals, more than what meets the public eye-- more than 150 THOUSAND a year; it's impressive and awe-inspiring (in 8 reviews)

  • Respected organization within the animal protection movement (in 7 reviews)

Cons
  • If you wanted, you could work seven days a week and would likely be rewarded for it, which creates some work/life balance issues (in 6 reviews)

  • If you come from a "for-profit" background I would suggest avoiding this "non-profit," your methods of ensuring a solid ROI etc (in 8 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Most Rewarding Job & Wonderful Co-Workers"

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

    I have been working at The Humane Society of the United States full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    The place to work if you want to create positive change for animals
    Hard work is rewarded and the organization is great about promoting from within
    Dedicated to work/life balance and always looking for new ways to improve employee well being
    Both men and women in leadership roles
    Kind, hardworking co-workers across the globe

    Cons

    Headquarters in Gaithersburg, which isn't the most accessible to DC metroplex, but it is more affordable to live


  2. Helpful (7)

    "The best place I've ever worked"

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

    I have been working at The Humane Society of the United States full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Some of the most kind, hardworking, talented, thoughtful people I've ever met work here. Almost everyone here lives and breathes animal welfare, applying the principles of a humane society to their personal lives as well as their work lives, from eating thoughtfully to adopting animals to sharing the mission on social media to volunteering at local shelters on the weekends! Everyone works hard, but we benefit from a flex schedule, generous vacation time and dogs in the workplace. The organization practices what it preaches, applying the principles of humane gardening and humane pest management to the property, recycling, offering vegan food and coffee that benefits animal nonprofits, etc. In recent months, there has been a significant push to increase transparency, provide management training and improve employee morale. A wellness program allows staff to obtain good healthcare at a lesser cost.

    Cons

    Opportunities for advancement and pay increases are minimal. Job titles don't match duties and HR makes it very difficult to update job descriptions or obtain raises despite recent lip service regarding reassessments of job titles and salaries. Openly incompetent managers are shuffled around rather than being terminated, overshadowing the good work of everyone else. Maternity and paternity leave are not in line with otherwise progressive employee benefits. Most senior staff is fantastic, but C-suite and the board are obtuse, opaque, and incapable of appropriately handling a crisis.

    Advice to Management

    Clean house and raise salaries. Making us live like church mice isn't going to stop our opposition from claiming we're overpaid. When it comes to crisis management, listen to your senior staff.

  3. Helpful (13)

    "Boys Club Atmosphere Drove So Many Away"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Gaithersburg, MD
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Gaithersburg, MD
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at The Humane Society of the United States full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    I loved working here and relocated across the country for the opportunity. They do amazing work for the animals and it was wonderful to be part of something so positive.

    Cons

    Unless you were in a certain clique there was little chance for promotion or for your issues/projects to be taken seriously.
    The women who promoted most/fastest and given the largest raises were those who admittedly had slept with the CEO or other senior staff (or both), which lowered morale for the rest of us who achieved success only through hard work.
    Managers frequently took credit fir their subordinates’ work and little credit was given.

    Advice to Management

    Take inappropriate sexual relationships seriously. The first thing I was warned about as an intern was to not be alone in the same room as the CEO - I shoukd have known there would be a major problem then.


  4. Helpful (11)

    "Culture has major problems - it all depends on your supervisor"

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

    I worked at The Humane Society of the United States full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    It can be incredibly rewarding work. You get to work alongside some wonderful, inspiring people. If you have a good supervisor, you're in a good place.

    Cons

    The culture is problematic, to say the least. There are many managers who should not be supervising employees and no one does anything about it. I know of a supervisor who drove away nearly every single employee she hired or supervised. My own supervisor constantly micromanaged, bullied, gaslit, and discriminated against me. When she admitted it to HR, the response was that it was my problem and we needed to move forward.

    Other common issues: constantly changing goals, very little support or guidance, put in positions where it's very difficult to define metrics or success, often branded as a problem if you asked questions about the party line.

    Very little career advancement; most people are overworked while others don't have enough to do.

    Advice to Management

    Acknowledge when a supervisor is a problem and handle it. When all of the supervisors employees have issues with their supervisor, it's a clear sign that something is wrong.


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Grateful to work for HSUS"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Culture & Values
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Gaithersburg, MD
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Gaithersburg, MD
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at The Humane Society of the United States full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    I've worked for HSUS for 20 years and I consider it a blessing of my life to be part of something so transformative and meaningful for animals. I am especially grateful to work under the leadership of Wayne Pacelle. HSUS is literally changing the world for animals and I am so thankful to be a journeywoman in this critical mission.

    Cons

    There are some people at HSUS who are very negative. I am confident its not unique to our organization.


  6. Helpful (16)

    "An Incredibly Disappointing & Telling Look Into Non-Profits"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Gaithersburg, MD
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Gaithersburg, MD
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at The Humane Society of the United States full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    I love the Pets in the Workplace program, its a major stress relief to be able to pet a dog if you're having a particularly stressful day. There are some incredibly dedicated people who work here that will work tirelessly for all animals.
    My immediate supervisor has been one of the most supportive people I have ever reported to, a mentor I'm sure I will have for years to come.

    Cons

    Where to begin...
    There is an influx of under-qualified people that are in management/senior management positions and most often, these people ended up in those positions as a result of "connections" they have with leadership (whether that be sexual, nepotism etc)
    There is a gross amount of money that gets wasted each year on ineffective fundraising tactics but no one seems to take notice of this. If you come from a "for-profit" background I would suggest avoiding this "non-profit," your methods of ensuring a solid ROI etc. will fall on deaf ears (which is largely due to the complete lack of knowledge of the under qualified managers) There is a toxic idea here that "it works, that's why we do it this way" which makes it incredibly difficult to affect any sort of innovation or change to the way things are done.
    It you enjoy working as a team towards a common goal, this is not the place for it. There is a serious problem with teams being siloed despite being from the same department. The silos are a recipe for disaster when attempting to get things done.
    I personally felt mislead in my interview, I was told I would be handling many tasks and using my skills daily, the reality? My job is a lot of dealing with 3rd parties that are doing the work that could very easily be done in-house and for a better price.
    There is so much more that could be said but voicing concerns here or even within the organization has proven to be worthless. The employees that are doing the work daily are the least of the concern of HSUS, especially in light of the investigation of our CEO...I'll just sit back and watch hoping someone will finally do something positive in this organization so we can get back to the mission of fighting for all animals.

    Advice to Management

    This org needs an overhaul. Ensure you are doing performance evaluations of management often and take them seriously. Don't be so resistant to data, there is so much work that can be done to improve the day to day and more important maximize the budgets that are set in place. Listen to your employees, there are a lot of intelligent people that aren't in management positions that are more better fit and better qualified to affect positive change.
    Also, be more transparent, its shameful to read about your CEO's sexual harassment history in the Washington Post vs. being given a heads up.


  7. Helpful (23)

    "Amazing Cause with Lots of Inappropriate Behavior and Low Advancement"

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

    I worked at The Humane Society of the United States full-time

    Pros

    Saving animals!
    Shedding a light on animal cruelty.
    A lot of dedicated people.
    Bringing your dog into the workplace.
    Great advocacy, investigation and legislative work.

    Cons

    The organization has a long history of sexual harassment, starting from the top. It is truly a boy's club atmosphere. Many people have complained to HR, managers, and others, and no one is listening. It is a serious problem! Stop pretending that it doesn't exist and hope it goes away. Really take a serious look into the sexual harassment claims. A lot of people are overworked and undercompensated. Many people are doing the work of multiple people and making the same salary as before. HR is a nightmare to work with and does not take the needs and wants of the employee's into any consideration. They low ball new hires.
    There are lot of inexperienced managers in place and little opportunity for experienced people to move up.

    Advice to Management

    Please listen to your loyal employees and act on complaints or suggestions. Take the HR complaints seriously and stop sweeping them under the rug. Actually take a look at the organization from the top and make some major changes. Take sexual harassment claims seriously, fire people, don't just move them around. Pay people their worth. Stop overlooking those who are the heartbeat of the organization. It's such a great cause and there a lot of great people who have made it their life's mission to work there and help animals. That's why it's such a shame that there are so many problems not being properly addressed and handled.

  8. Helpful (2)

    "Wonderful team atmosphere, respected by colleagues"

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

    I have been working at The Humane Society of the United States full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    I have the opportunity to work with kind, inspirational, and highly motivated colleagues who are all working on transformational campaigns for animals. I feel like this is the place to make the biggest difference for animals.

    Cons

    Like all NGOs, fundraising is vital to keep thing moving and that can be stressful.

    Advice to Management

    I think things are going strong.


  9. Helpful (2)

    "Making the world better every day"

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

    I have been working at The Humane Society of the United States full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    This non-profit treats its donor funds with respect, laser focuses on transformational change and rings up weekly victories most charities would be happy with annually. It’s an inspiring place to earn a living.

    Cons

    It’s a fast-paced no-nonsense environment. You need to be there to do the job. If you’re looking for a social life, it’s probably not a good fit.

    Advice to Management

    Putting a bit of fun in the day won’t hurt the animals. It will motivate the human ones working for you!


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Great place to work"

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

    I have been working at The Humane Society of the United States full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    You get to do meaningful work to prevent the abuse of animals in our society. There's no better feeling than ending a day knowing that you've made a difference for dogs, cats, wildlife, farm animals, and more.

    Most of the management is very mission-driven and devoted to creating a positive work environment for everyone. There's a Women in the Workplace task force that exists to ensure gender equity and a collaborative work environment. The vast majority of managers and VPs are women, and while several executives are male, they work hard to ensure everyone's voice is heard.

    Overall, it's just a really great organization.

    Cons

    It's not a "normal" job, in that there's always more to do. If you wanted, you could work seven days a week and would likely be rewarded for it, which creates some work/life balance issues. But such conditions vary by department. Some managers expect more than others.

    Advice to Management

    While gender issues are handled appropriately, the organization has some ways to go when it comes to having a racially diverse workforce, especially in the leadership, which is nearly all white. I'd focus on making it more inclusive in this respect.


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