Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Employee Reviews

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allows opportunity to learn and apply expertise
Programme Manager for Inclusive Cities Project (Former Employee) –  PhilippinesNovember 25, 2017
working with different cultures and different people especially women and vulnerable groups means self-fulfillment for me. Wished I can be a full time permanent employee of the Foundation. Also getting more grants for more projects for communities in the rural areas and where there are pockets of poverty
Cons
contract basis
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A Managed Services Company, not effectively Managed
Audio Video Operations Engineer (Current Employee) –  Seattle, WAOctober 3, 2017
A challenging IT environment from a Managed Services perspective. Little direction, integration, and collaboration from the full time staff, and lots of bureaucracy from an employer standpoint.

Could be so much better.
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amazing and a long way to go
Officer, Grants and Contracts Management (Former Employee) –  Seattle, WAAugust 17, 2017
During the previous five years I have worked at Gates I have met the most amazing game changes in the field. Beauitful building, robust benefits, unmatched mission AND the resorces and connections to make an impact. The culture is fast paced which is great to get stuff done but often lacks the reflective time to fully gain lessons learned leading to repeating approaches. Show up ready to give your all!
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Great Mission. Needs to improve internal workings
Employee (Former Employee) –  Seattle, WAJuly 21, 2017
Great Mission.
Outstanding Benefits.
Needs to improve internal workings, leadership, management, shifting priorities, internal systems.
Too much micromanagement of strategy and grantees, with as much funds as the foundation has it is far too cautious and always thinking they are right or know the right way to do things.
Pros
Benefits and Mission
Cons
Internal Management
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Working for the boss, but in a very political environment
Senior Program Assistant (Former Employee) –  Seattle, WAJuly 10, 2017
No matter how stressful your day, you turn to loo at "the boss" and you know you're doing your job for the right reasons. The boss is a young African child bathing/sitting in a blue bucket and SHE is who we work for. She is the exact person we are working to provide a healthy and productive life to.
The foundation unfortunately is extremely political and difficult to get things with such a process oriented internal system. Some ideas and projects take weeks just to get approved because so many people have to touch the work before it's ok'ed. That can be very difficult when you just want to help the girl in the blue bucket.
Pros
Amazing benefits and everyone is there because they want to make the world a better place
Cons
Lack of professional development opportunities, managers aren't trained to be managers - they just are managers
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Great place
Economist (Current Employee) –  Seattle, WADecember 2, 2016
Smart people. Everybody is invested in their roles, and the organization is uniquely positioned to have a global impact on diseases and eradication. I'm grateful to be a part of BMGF.
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Interesting and challenging
HR (Former Employee) –  Seattle, WAJuly 27, 2016
I worked at the foundation for several years and found it interesting and challenging. They tend to reorg on a regular basis which can oftentimes cause confusion and frustration. It would help if they slow down, think it through and then execute in a more thoughtful and mindful manner. Perhaps they'll learn to do this at some point in the future.
Pros
-Interesting initiatives, great benefits, smart and dedicated colleagues
Cons
-Bureaucratic and political, unnecessary reorgs, lack of career progression and professional development
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Amazing cause, consultant culture
Project Manager (Former Employee) –  Seattle, WAMay 27, 2016
Outstanding mission, benefits, campus and experiences. No career path and difficult to advance without an stellar resume.
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Great place to work
USP Contracts Business Partner (Former Employee) –  Seattle, WAMarch 16, 2016
I wouldn't have left if I hadn't moved to CA. Great people, good work/life balance, solid culture, and benefits are what you'd expect from an organization that respects individuals (i.e. very good)
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Great work environment and experince
IT Support Specialist (Current Employee) –  Washington, DCNovember 19, 2015
Great people, culture, and office space. The work the foundation does is an added benefit to working here. Free snacks and lunches. The building has a free gym at the building site as well.
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Working with the customers
IT Support Services Technician Intern (Current Employee) –  Washington, DCMay 27, 2015
Working at Bill and Melinda gates foundation was a great experience,
I wish to get another opportunity to work with this foundation and learn more about the foundation culture.
Pros
Occasion
Cons
health care
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Great in a lot of ways, not so great in some important ways
Program Manager, Global Development Division (Current Employee) –  Seattle, WAMarch 14, 2015
The foundation provides an amazing opportunity to work for an organization that is truly dedicated to improving the lives of others. In general, my colleagues are exceptionally smart, talented and motivated. The compensation and benefits are very good and make it a hard place to leave, even when you find the job challenging. The main issues with the foundation are the lack of work/life balance and the variability of job satisfaction depending on your specific team.
Pros
Opportunity to work for an organization that is dedicated to improving the lives of others, environment where everyone feels passion for the mission, continual learning opportunities, amazingly talented and motivated colleagues, participating in conversations with great thinkers and subject-matter experts, very good compensation and benefits
Cons
Culture of perfectionism, lots of fire-drills and seemingly unnecessary churn, tools and systems are not as sophisticated as needed to support programs/operations, continual change and tendency towards complexity, extremely challenging to find work/life balance, limited opportunities for career progression
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Friendly well organized environment
IT Support Specialist Intern (Current Employee) –  Washington, DCDecember 4, 2014
A typical day at the foundation as IT Support would start with a nice cup of coffee followed up with a check of the ticket queue. Maintaining the queue and making sure tickets are resolved and closed is the main priority. Interacting with customers to ensure everything is working properly and also informing them on statuses of your work with their equipment is important. Mondays and Thursday a mandatory Video Teleconference Room sweep is conducted to assure no interference or problems occur in the event of a meeting or audio/visual conference. Free snacks and drinks are provided to you daily and the best part is after there is a big meeting with food provided the leftovers are then brought to the kitchen for anyone to eat. I love the foundation and my time here will always be remembered.
Pros
Free food, Great environment
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Very fun and productive
Program Ambassador (Volunteer) (Current Employee) –  Atlanta, GAJuly 21, 2014
Being ambassador has taught me how to understand and deal with various personalities
No set hours
Pros
Great opportunities to impact the youth
Cons
No set hours
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Not just a job, an experience
Senior Program Assistant Global Development (Current Employee) –  Seattle, WAMay 15, 2014
Working at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will likely be one of the greatest experiences of my life. To be part of such an amazing mission and to contribute to the belief that “All lives have equal value,” has been life changing for me. I have grown both personally and professionally through my work at the foundation and look forward to taking the knowledge and experiences forward in my life and my career.
Pros
Interesting, brilliant and dynamic co-workers, constant opportunities to learn, incredibly rewarding.
Cons
Limited opportunities for advancement.
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X
Grantee & Partner Communications (Current Employee) –  Seattle, WAApril 22, 2014
The foundation is very fast-paced. It can sometimes be hard to get things done. The people are great, however they need to work on management skills.
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A non-profit that's more business than family-oriented
Shipping/Receiving Associate (Former Employee) –  Seattle, WAMarch 18, 2014
The mission you're a part of is excellent as are the benefits. The compensation's a little lower than normally would be expected, but that's normal considering it's a non-profit albeit the world's largest private one.
The culture was once family-oriented, but as the organization's grown, its employees are the ones who feel the growing pains - not management. The worst part is that most don't see the negative effects coming until it's too late.
Management doesn't really tend to support underlings much except for using lip service as a placebo despite a constant theme of asking for feedback - that gets nothing positive done. If the wrong buttons are pushed, the right ones are enacted to punish you for doing your job.
Pros
The organization's mission, its benefits, and working with some great people.
Cons
Locked into your role, no advancement, poor management, lack of transparency.
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Productive and Great Working Environment
Applications Technician (Current Employee) –  Seattle, WASeptember 9, 2013
The Foundation is a great place to work overall. The people are friendly and very understanding. It allows you a place to grow your career and learn new things.
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Great mission. This is an organization that still needs to grow into itself.
Senior Program Officer (Former Employee) –  Seattle, WAAugust 15, 2013
The foundation is a wonderful organization in many many ways: inspiring mission, rigorous focus, creative, and many many strong people. In some ways it may be too ambitious. The foundation needs to sharpen HR processes, invest in management, and strengthen internal connections.
Pros
Wonderful mission and excellent benefits
Cons
HR processes need work. The managerial strength of the staff is uneven.
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The Gates Foundation nis a wonderful organization. I would love working another educational research project for them again
Project Coordinator (Former Employee) –  Dallas, TXJanuary 9, 2013
A typical day may include webcast with other programs around the US and employees with the Gates Foundation, communications with DISD campus administrators involved in the MET Project,statictical reports, communication with DISD central administrative staff, report intrepretation, presenting workshops to Area Directors, Campus Administrators and teachers, constant written communications to all involved, travel to the East/West Coast offices of the Gates Foundation.
Pros
just being involved in the project, helping to make a difference, work environment
Cons
that the project didn't last longer
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Overall rating

3.8
Based on 34 reviews
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Work/Life Balance
3.8
Compensation/Benefits
4.3
Job Security/Advancement
3.0
Management
3.1
Culture
3.4

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