Towers Perrin Reviews | Glassdoor

Towers Perrin Reviews

Updated June 13, 2017
15 reviews

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Towers Perrin CEO John Haley
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15 Employee Reviews

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  1. "At least it's a job"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Consultant in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Consultant in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The people can be excellent

    Cons

    Upper management seems totally checked out at all times and it trickles down to every level of work. The merger has been especially poorly handled.

    Advice to Management

    Stop just collecting a paycheck and engage in your job.


  2. "Intelligent employees, lack of work/life balance"

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

    Pros

    Extremely motivated and intelligent employees

    Cons

    Lack of work/life balance, often long, inflexible hours

    Advice to Management

    If Towers Perrin has a desire to reduce turnover, especially at lower professional levels, consider work/life balance and other benefits that would help them compete with other companies in today's market

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Interesting work, terrible lifestyle"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Associate in Arlington, VA
    Former Employee - Associate in Arlington, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    I was an Executive Compensation & Rewards Consultant, so my experience relates to that.
    PROS:
    - Work can be interesting at first
    - Some of the people you meet can be very nice
    - Pressure and time constraints force you to develop some great work skills
    - Exposure to clients or client interaction early on is great for people who have not experienced that
    - Some interesting training events
    - Decent healthcare
    - Pay was also decent

    Cons

    - Ridiculous work/life balance. You will be told upfront that it is not a "9 to 5 job", but there is little talk given to how ferocious the work can be. During winter, I entered work when it was dark, left when it was dark. 12 hour days are not uncommon, and neither are weekends. Expect to work a ton of hours if you plan on getting ahead.
    - Work becomes highly repetitive and frustrating as the months go by. Be prepared to do the same thing day after day, with increasing workloads and decreasing timeframes.
    - Billable hour model is a joke. A lot of your hours will be taken away if the client is new and the project was underbid and if managers have billable goals to meet. This impacts you negatively during your performance review.
    - Managers are more than ready to throw you under the bus if you mess up, and promotions seem heavily based on what they have to say about you. Treatment becomes wackier and wackier the more senior a person is; be expected to deal with certain personalities.
    - The client comes first, regardless of their ridiculous and often changing demands. This results in often wasted labor and labor well beyond the scope of work. Additionally, Towers Perrin never pushes back, so be expected to do the impossible on a normal basis.
    - Associates are pretty much tossed into the wild and told to sink or swim; if you are having problems, you are expected to fix them, regardless of what the client is asking.
    - Pay was decent, but not fluid enough. Promotions come late and almost as appeasements to lure you to stay in.
    - Initial bonus scheme was a joke: associates could make more money being paid time-and-a-half then receiving an end of the year bonus.
    - Vacations have to be scheduled way in advance, and be prepared to cancel them late notice or take some phone calls.
    - Inter-office politics requires you to either fit the Towers Perrin mold or fail to progress.

    Advice to Management

    Actually focus on work/life balance instead of just paying lip service.
    Be dedicated, not enslaved to your job.
    Push for reasonable timeframes so Associates are happier and more driven to do your work.
    Be upfront about lifestyle.
    Raise pay to be commensurate with the amount of work.


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Towers Perrin has good people, but needs to free them to become more entrepreneurial."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Towers Perrin gives people clear line of sight between their individual goals and those of the organization. Towers Perrin does a good job of recruiting and hiring talented people. Towers Perrin also has some good intellectual capital.

    Cons

    Towers Perrin's senior management operate in a very parochial style. They don't give transparent information to even their senior consultants and they make major decisions without properly checking with the people that these decisions will most affect.

    Towers Perrin places great emphasis on compliance and timekeeping, and its consultants end up spending far more time than necessary on administrative tasks that keep them from their clients. People working here spend time feeding the system much more than the system supports them in their work.

    The reason for the emphasis on administrative tasks is because the top management feels that it "needs" to roll up financial information on a weekly basis because it doesn't trust its people to run their offices at the ground level as entrepreneurs would. Instead, all the information is funnelled to the top, where all major decisions trickle down in a highly filtered manner.

    Because justifications for major decisions appear so watered down, the firm feels to employees as if it has no strategy or underlying decision principles, which in turn causes major alignment issues.

    Advice to Management

    Cut out the administrative load and free your people to focus on the market and their clients' needs. State a true strategy based on the firm's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, not just a pithy statement about what we do. Focus people's actions on broad strategic goals, then get out of peoples' way and let them accomplish their goals. Develop an organization that facilitates people getting their work done rather than burdening your people to feed top management's needs. If the organization let people operate more as entrepreneurs and less as minions, then you would free a lot of productive energy for people to succeed.


  5. "Good for traditional HR lines of business and those joining from college/MBA or other consulting firms."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in New York, NY
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Well-known, reputable firm within its field. Well-established practice in traditional HR fields - executive compensation, health and welfare, retirement. Great support for mid-level consultants to balance work and life - especially at the age when people start to get married and have kids.

    Cons

    The firm is great for people hired from traditional routes - college, MBA - as well as lateral transfers from other consulting firms. Lateral hires from non-consulting backgrounds will have tough time navigating the bureacracies and the established networks - especially in this economy. Its non-traditional line of business faces difficulties during economic downturns as they are luxuries of clients' HR departments.

    Advice to Management

    Staffing on assignments needs to be improved so that associates and consultants are better balanced.


  6. "IT Manager"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Towers Perrin full-time

    Pros

    A Paycheck is always good.

    Cons

    Lots and lots of cons.


  7. "Feel more like a salesperson than a consultant"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    There are some really smart qualified consultants working here. If you're lucky you can surround yourself with people you trust.

    Cons

    For the last year, I feel like I just push "products" on our clients rather than provide them with quality consulting. I understand Towers is in the business to make money, but ever since the upcoming merger with Wyatt was announced in the summer, it seems to be the only driving force.

    Advice to Management

    FInd a way to make people want to work together as a team. The current sales goals and billable hour quota just encourages backstabbing.

  8. "It's ok, but work life balance is hard with TW"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Actuarial Associate
    Current Employee - Actuarial Associate
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Pay Competitive, benefits are ok.
    Solid consulting experience.
    BIg company and lots of travel and learning experience.
    Towers Watson !

    Cons

    Upcoming streamlining due to merger.
    poor work/life balance
    obsolete computer system.
    Pay freeze for a whole 1.5-2 years.
    Towers Watson !

    Advice to Management

    The senior management needs to be more transparent. The associates has no idea what is going on with the management and they don't seem to convey their message or care enough for their associates


  9. "Who you work with makes the biggest difference. Good boss = great job. Bad boss = hell job."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Consultant
    Former Employee - Consultant
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Working with bright and competent people who break new ground in their field.

    Cons

    Sweatshop of the industry. More work and more hours than the competition for same or less pay.

    Advice to Management

    Need more realistic guidelines for handling and assigning work. And also for deciding who is capable of being a unit leader or leading and managing groups. I had a fabulous boss who retired. My new boss was neurotic and hypocritical and singlehandedly decimated our unit. Others in our unit were hired at a higher rate of pay than I started with, and consequently received higher wages for years while I was playing catch-up, for doing the same work.


  10. "No Projects to Work on"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Former Employee - Application Developer in Makati City (Philippines)
    Former Employee - Application Developer in Makati City (Philippines)

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

    Pros

    Above average pay, mid-year and performance bonuses

    Cons

    Uptight management with malicious intentions towards subordinates, creating illusions of non-existing pressure


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