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Heartland Alliance
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36 reviews

Heartland Alliance Employer Reviews

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One of the best agencies to work for
Mental Health Clinical Practioner (Current Employee), Chicago, ILSeptember 5, 2014
Pros: union, pto, tuition reimbursement, cheap benefits, ceu support, loan forgiveness options
Cons: turn over rate, lay offs, biased towards social workers, some staff and managers take harm reduction too far
I feel compelled to review this company given the many negative reviews. I am a both a current and former employee of this agency. I worked under HHCS as an Employment Case Manager while in graduate school. Heartland was great, they were flexible with my school schedule, paid for trainings, and they paid for part of my degree. I obtained a valuable – more... experience with the homeless population and with employment services. I left because it was difficult to obtain a clinical position in the agency. At the time the agency didn't have a separate internal candidate site.
Currently I serve in a clinical position under HHO. I have been able to advocate for certain rights in my program.
Heartland's union definitely cares for their members. As an agency Heartland takes care of their participants. Heartland offers an impressive benefits package, generous time off, CEU support, and tuition reimbursement. They also participate in a loan forgiveness program that will pay 50k for full time employees and 25k for part time employees that worked at the company for 2 years. As a not for profit agency they qualify for a variety of loan forgiveness options. Heartland is very laid back, so the dress code is very casual for non loop staff. The philosophy of care and mission is amazing. The company and staff strive to live up to both.
Heartland does not pay much but it is higher than most not for profits. The high turnover rate is also due to lay offs. If you are laid off you keep your seniority with the company for a year. It is difficult to move around (which is why I left after grad school) but not impossible. I have seen people move around to better positions due to turn over. I have also seen people work up the ranks (after some years). Heartland is biased towards social workers at one point all staff had to follow NASW ethics. However, times have changed and other professions and ethics are embraced. Heartland is a harm reduction agency and at times some staff take that philosophy to the extreme, making the approach seem more like enabling.
Overall, I think it is a great agency with programs known both nationally and internationally like the NIJC. It is a great place to work for both new and seasoned professionals. – less
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Administrative Assistant
Administrative Assistant (Former Employee), Chicago, ILAugust 19, 2014
Assistant to the Pastor secretary, typing, filing, and assisting neighborhood events by providing governmental assistance to low income and elderly residents.
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a productive and fun workplace.
Picker/Packer (Former Employee), Chicago, ILAugust 15, 2014
Pros: i got to roll with the big boys on the loading doc.
Cons: no healthcare, less hours
I learned how to pack a 3000 pound truck with 5000 pounds of food it wasn't easy so I made it fun. I bet 50 dollars I could do this. then the hold factory tried to get in on that one it was a good day.
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Great place to be exposed to what's going on in different countries.
Case Manager (Former Employee), Chicago, ILJuly 29, 2014
Pros: great benefits, a lot of over-time is available. tuition assistance, and great staff.
Cons: hours can be difficult to adjust to, you will often get days off during the week and will work every holiday.
This place is great if you want to work with kids from different parts of the world. It will give you great experience with working with many things. This job is very hands on and you get to monitor the children closely and spend time with them, you essentially become family to these kids. The hardest part of this job is that its a detention facility – more... which means you'll be lucky if you get weekends off. – less
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Nice place to start working
Case Manager (Current Employee), Chicago, ILJuly 16, 2014
I like this place i just dont like that i am night shift. The benefits are great and its a union job so u are protected. If u like working with kids this is the place for you.
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productive environment
Case Manager (Current Employee), Chicago, ILJune 27, 2014
good place work, everyday is different and a learning experience.
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Toxic, Demoralizing, Abusive...
Worker-Former employee (Former Employee), ICRCJune 4, 2014
Pros: the kids, co-workers
Cons: director, management
I came across the following review about ICRC & YRS and because of the absolute truth to what the writer has posted I decided to copy and paste it. I could not have described the working environment any better (I worked there for about a year). I hope that individuals looking for employment hear this writer's message.

ICRC is a HORRIBLE place to work – more... at because of the director and managers. Ask any former employee of ICRC and you will hear the same.

The review posted reads:
"The managers at ICRC and YRS are soul crushingly horrible

Worker (Former Employee), Chicago, IL – March 9, 2014

Pros: the kids, co-workers, you could improve your spanish, job looks decent on a resume, being in the union

Cons: management

I worked at ICRC for over a year. It was, by far, the most negative work environment I had ever worked in. The work that Heartland does is decent but the managers at ICRC do not care about the workers, worker morale or what workers think. They make decisions without talking with workers, there is no participation in decision making, which means that they usually make bad decisions. After a policy is put in place the workers cannot speak their mind because the managers, especially the director there, could care less.

Not only is morale low, not only is the work environment toxic, this information has been brought to the attention of the managers within YRS. The managers simply don't care what is going on at ICRC and work hard to protect the director there. The director is the person most responsible for the work environment there and she clearly has friends above her that protect her. Turnover is very high too because of how it is to work at ICRC. They call themselves a human rights organization but they allow a center within their program to be run in such a horrible and authoritarian way, totally the opposite of the image they try to present. Whatever the work that the organization does on the whole, those that run YRS (in particular ICRC) do not share the spirit or image the organization tries to present.

As crazy as it sounds, I don't think the managers at ICRC have been trained on how to improve worker morale or productivity. You would think otherwise, given that it is a "human rights" organization.

If you work at ICRC you will feel worthless. You will not be heard. You will feel expendable. You will not be complimented on anything you do. You will be micro-managed. If you speak up you will be targeted. If you go to HR they will turn around and tell the managers of YRS what you said and will do nothing. Same with Employee Services. Just expect to feel like dirt and for no one within management to care or do anything about that."

Former employee, thank you for writing about the truth. – less
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Troubled properties with little resources to correct problems
Property Manager (Former Employee), Chicago, ILMarch 10, 2014
Pros: a company that truly cares
Cons: no resources to assist employees to serve clients.
Heartland is a non profit organization,which I admire for what their program intends to provide to the public; but with limited resources available...it made it almost impossible to service tenants and other clients on a daily basis.
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The managers at ICRC and YRS are soul crushingly horrible
Worker (Former Employee), Chicago, ILMarch 9, 2014
Pros: the kids, co-workers, you could improve your spanish, job looks decent on a resume, being in the union
Cons: management
I worked at ICRC for over a year. It was, by far, the most negative work environment I had ever worked in. The work that Heartland does is decent but the managers at ICRC do not care about the workers, worker morale or what workers think. They make decisions without talking with workers, there is no participation in decision making, which means that – more... they usually make bad decisions. After a policy is put in place the workers cannot speak their mind because the managers, especially the director there, could care less.

Not only is morale low, not only is the work environment toxic, this information has been brought to the attention of the managers within YRS. The managers simply don't care what is going on at ICRC and work hard to protect the director there. The director is the person most responsible for the work environment there and she clearly has friends above her that protect her. Turnover is very high too because of how it is to work at ICRC. They call themselves a human rights organization but they allow a center within their program to be run in such a horrible and authoritarian way, totally the opposite of the image they try to present. Whatever the work that the organization does on the whole, those that run YRS (in particular ICRC) do not share the spirit or image the organization tries to present.

As crazy as it sounds, I don't think the managers at ICRC have been trained on how to improve worker morale or productivity. You would think otherwise, given that it is a "human rights" organization.

If you work at ICRC you will feel worthless. You will not be heard. You will feel expendable. You will not be complimented on anything you do. You will be micro-managed. If you speak up you will be targeted. If you go to HR they will turn around and tell the managers of YRS what you said and will do nothing. Same with Employee Services. Just expect to feel like dirt and for no one within management to care or do anything about that. – less
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Hectic and busy workplace - highly disorganized
Doesn't matter, you always do Case Management (Current Employee), Chicago, ILMarch 1, 2014
Pros: if you take time to get to know the kids, there's a reward in serving them
Cons: managers are insecure and control freaks
The company's objective and goal is honorable but the work environment is toxic:

Management yells at subordinates as if they are two year olds; they seem to enjoy writing people up for nonsensical reasons. EE rights are disregarded and consideration and concessions based on reason, logic, kindness or good will does not exist.

A fringe benefit of working – more... here is having to hear your co-workers complain throughout the whole shift about the job.

Turn around time is HIGH

EE's are indifferent to the job and call in on a whim or just don't show up.

You're like a postal EE; when it rains, pour, sleets, hails, snows or etc., you gotta be there

Promotions are given to friends

Ideas and comments are interpreted as criticism by management.

Management is snippy and defensive

Expect to work double shifts because they are always understaffed

Don't ask for time off because you won't get it. Once it accumulates and you're ready to lose the time, mgmt will the give it to you in bulk when it's convenient to them.

Case management equals to: taking out garbage, doing laundry, watching kids, cooking, and cleaning. Security job titles equals the same as case management. In fact, all job titles include and impose case management, which takes priority over every other job given. You're always a case manager but if you have any other job your won't get help from case managers.

You will be at risk of catching lice, scabies, tuberculosis, colds or other such illnesses – less
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Good place to work if you want to make a difference
Employee Services Assistant (Former Employee), Chicago, ILOctober 1, 2013
I definitely enjoyed the time I worked at Heartland Alliance. I was sad to leave and felt like I was leaving my family behind. If I were still living in Chicago I would definitely work there. I learned a lot about coordinating services for the most vulnerable among us. The management team was great and truly cared for the people they served and their – more... employees. The hardest part of the job was saying good-bye. – less
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productive
Lead Medical Assistant (Current Employee), Chicago, ILSeptember 14, 2013
Pros: union, 1 hr lunch, paid holidays, pto, vacation and sick time
Cons: management showing favorites, no team work
Sometime I feel as if upper new management team is not fair to the people that's been with the company for a while and bring outside people she knows in for the more advanced positions.
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Enjoyed working here
Director of Corporate Financial Disbursements (Former Employee), Chicago, ILAugust 28, 2013
Pros: good place to work
Cons: no cons to my memory
I started at Heartland many years ago and enjoyed working here for the time that I was there. The environment was great and multi-cultural. Heartland worked with many different populations and had a goal of trying to make the world a better place for those populations. I was laid off due to a restructuring of the department that I worked in at the time.
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Lots of issues which makes it very difficult to want to stay.
Family Reunification Specialist (Current Employee), Chicago, ILAugust 28, 2013
Pros: tons of regular over-time due to extremely high turn over
Cons: everything else
Heartland Alliance is a very good company with a great mission. The Youth Residential Services Dept has its problems, but may be do-able. Within that sub-heading is ICRC (south loop), which is the worse part of the company. I believe management at YRS-ICRC means well, but they, collectively, do not value employees, are very often rude and dismissive, – more... discourage upward mobility, and regularly side with and reward the most cancerous employees at the site. There is always a horrible work vibe among employees, and the teams are rarely ever cohesive. – less
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Good company overall.
Senior Case Manager (Current Employee), Chicago, ILAugust 5, 2013
Pros: that i was employed.
Cons: inability to grow.
Typical work day included checking participants, and ensuring they were supplied with what they needed.
I learned to improve my spanish.
Management is always evolving.
My co-workers are always growing.
Hardest part of the job was to accept that not everyone had the childeren's best interest at heart.
Most enjoyable part of the job was to see the children – more... reunited with their family. – less
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Heartland Alliance
Case Manager (Former Employee), Chicago, ILJuly 2, 2013
Pros: you are doing a good thing!
Cons: no growth
Great company if just want to go to work and never grow. There is zero advancement and they want you to have a Masters degree to make $15 per hour.
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Unhealthy workplace
Case Manager (Current Employee), Chicago, ILJune 28, 2013
Pros: the population you serve is amazing.
Cons: breaks must be taken indoors, low support from management
Most of the day is spent on your feet and they are extremely understaffed. There is high turnover rate so staff members and management change often. The high turnover results in low support from management and staff feeling overworked.
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A great place to get experience in the non-profit field
Housing Resource Specialist (Former Employee), Chicago, ILMay 25, 2013
Pros: friendly staff and management, healthcare, no overtime
Cons: must not work beyond the end of the shift due to union regulations (which is great, except for when the work is piled up)
If you're looking for a position that will challenge you and keep you on your toes, I encourage you to check out Heartland Alliance. This is probably one of the best companies I have worked for. There was no such thing as a "typical" day, and my time was spent between writing case notes and reports, visiting participants in their homes, and talking – more... with landlords and service providers on behalf of the participants. My team of coworkers were great-friendly and always willing to help one another out. – less
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Wish I has listen to people who warned me about this place!
Manager (Former Employee), ICRCMay 23, 2013
Pros: good benefit package
Cons: over program design, unprofessional upper and executive managements, clueless staff, discrematory practices
I was warned before I took the job but I didn't listen. I worked with YRS my first week there I worked a 6 day week about 50+ hours and my director has the nerve to tell me she didn't think I was going to make it cause I didn't seem committed. I continues to work 50+ hour weeks micromanaged by someone who obviously never managed a manger before because – more... she contradicted all of my direction to staff and never consulted me ever on decisions that has to be made concerning our area. My director also had no experience in working with this type of non profit and she micramagwd areas she didn't need to instead of areas like sanitation and making sure our area stayed clean. Upper management was no better they were more worried about there appearance than the safety of the building I can't tell u how many times I was stuck on the elevator or there was a fire drill and me and my staff knew nothing about it because we couldn't hear the alarms in our depaetment. They ate also very dicremamtory against non Hispanic management because the other manager that held the same title and position as me was included in meetings that I wasn't given the tools and technology that I wasn't and he also had the freedom to manage his unit and his staff where I wasn't. Thank god I am now on a position to micromanage there spending because they has no regard for a budget or a plan for proper payroll expenditures or hiring enough staff to accomplish the job properly. But it was my fault because I was warned as to how bad it was at this company. – less
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fun workplace
Residential Manager (Former Employee), Chicago, ILMarch 30, 2013
Pros: being there working with participants and being able to help as needed.
Cons: having to leave when the shift ended.
working at this group home daily was very inspiring. i enjoyed this particular job because it gave me an oppurtunity to help participants. it allow me to be able to reach out in every way. help with medicine, foods, homework, house work daily. last, it allow me to meet different participants and perform different needs. recording their day, monitoring, – more... describing and notating everything they did, good or bad during the shift. – less

About Heartland Alliance

Heartland Alliance—the leading anti-poverty organization in the Midwest— believes that all of us deserve the opportunity – Read more