The World Bank Reviews | Glassdoor

The World Bank Reviews

Updated June 23, 2017
597 reviews

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3.6
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The World Bank President Jim Yong Kim
Jim Yong Kim
209 Ratings

597 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Be ready to travel a lot, which can take a toll on your work life balance (in 19 reviews)

  • Lot of restrictions on Short Term Consultants like how many days they can work and no benefits (in 40 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "World Bank - You ain't going to make a difference in the world."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great benefits and compensation for employees high up the corporate ladder.

    Cons

    The Bank does not want to appear too "progressive, recognizing real world issues" - A quote from my boss. Yes It is true that political issues, concerns are at the foreground of all work. Anyone thinking that he/she will make a difference in the world while working at the World Bank has a lot to learn about bureaucracy.

    Advice to Management

    WB Senior Management needs to take a proactive stance and truly evaluate staff. Many become complacent, ineffective and self serving. Senior Management needs to stop scratching each others' back and realize that they could do good work if they stop all the "b.s."


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Not for long run"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Consultant in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Consultant in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    international experience, good exposure to poverty issues and also an understanding of why the world bank system does not work...

    Cons

    Many of the professionals are low quality but too proud to see that....

    Advice to Management

    you can never reform the developing world without reforming yourself first...
    too much delay in project formulation and project implementation
    lack understanding of ground realities....the operational work for the world bank is policy tables in country capital...the real world is far far below in villages, about which the staff, sadly, lack understanding...


  3. Helpful (3)

    "terrible culture, no meritocracy, poor management"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - *** Specialist, Africa in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - *** Specialist, Africa in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    travel opportunities, interesting work, important mission

    Cons

    horrific and outdated management practices, poor pay and no benefits for consultants, no HR strategy, rampant abuse (esp of women in the workplace - the World Bank is immune in US courts)


  4. Helpful (5)

    "The Bank is stuck in the 1990s when it comes to technology."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - IT Contractor in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - IT Contractor in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Flexible and family friendly.
    Great location.
    The cafeteria is out of this world. The gym is brand new.
    A great place to work at if you are an economist or social scientist. Otherwise, stay clear.

    Cons

    If you are in IT, please do not join the bank. The pay is subpar, job security is nil. If you stay, prepare for a trip to the 1990s and lose all relevancy in the job market. You will be stuck at the World Bank, because nobody else will hire you with your irrelevant skills.
    An extremely political environment, very resistant to change. A lot of arrogance. Prepare to be shouted at and ostracized, if you dare to speak up.


  5. Helpful (4)

    "Dog eat dog world bank"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Operations Officer in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Operations Officer in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at The World Bank full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Good salary, good vacation and benefits

    Cons

    Competitive, workaholic culture, perverse incentives for performance and un-transparent decision-making.


  6. Helpful (5)

    "Wish I had not wasted all these years..."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Executive Assistant in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Executive Assistant in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at The World Bank full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Good experience to place on resume

    Cons

    Expected to work very long hours, permanent staff rely on consultants and temps to do their work and then will take credit for it, a lot of very unprofessional and arrogant staff at all levels, hard to trust your colleagues, fearful and passive/aggressive work environment

    Advice to Management

    Downsize the Bank drastically -- it is long overdue. I hope Dr. Kim has what it takes to dismantle this corrupt and dangerous institution that only serves to benefit its staff and not the disadvantaged.


  7. "WB"

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

    I have been working at The World Bank full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The pay is good and so are the benefits.

    Cons

    It can be a stressful bureaucratic place.


  8. Helpful (6)

    "hypocritical, hierarchical and feudal. An awful place to work!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at The World Bank full-time

    Pros

    Big salary! Huge perks, and the lightest workload I have had in my whole career.

    Cons

    A management system that often resembles feudal Europe. An organization completely devoid of creativity and imagination. A lot of staff who have no business working on development and often seem exclusively interested in self-promotion and large salaries. A work environment based on conflict rather than cooperation.

    Advice to Management

    Retire some of the staff that have been there for too long. Hire based on merit and not just from a narrow pool of US schools that teach people to think the same way.


  9. "Stay away"

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

    Pros

    European-length vacation and great benefits

    Cons

    Filled with snotty internationals whose only reason for wanting to be a the Bank is so they can get a visa and their families can live in the US

    Advice to Management

    Give up. Close the place down and start over.


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Great organization to work for but staff are very unprofessional. Not the best place for career advancement."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Counsel in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Counsel in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at The World Bank full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Staff have access to all the resources needed to have the job done.

    Cons

    Poor working environment with lot of gossiping and insecure staff members.

    Advice to Management

    The hiring process has to be centralized and HR personnel should be held accountable for poor hiring.


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