Smithsonian Institution Employee Reviews

Showing all 74 reviews
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Nice and fun place to work
Lead Security Officer (Current Employee) –  4120 suitland RdApril 17, 2017
I'm work for Smithsonian for the last 14 years it is a beautiful place to work we conduct crowd control we help visitors protect everyone we monitor all areas we have all kind of training that Smithsonian provides for us Smithsonian is a very professional place to work.
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Good place to work
Electrician (Former Employee) –  Washington, DCApril 11, 2017
good working hours, benefits, commute was challenging
Typical day at work - electrical work, all of my electrical skills were valuable to them, management was cooperative and appreciative. Hardest part of the job was the commute. Most enjoyable part was my accomplishments were recognized with bonuses.
Pros
see above
Cons
only complaint was the commute into DC
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Great place to work with great benefits.
Area Manager (Current Employee) –  Washington, DCApril 8, 2017
I have worked at Smithsonian for 20 years and I've always been proud to be apart of such a great company. I feel like I've been apart of something special.
Pros
Benefits and educational
Cons
Schedule
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Professional but could be boring at times
Photo Editor (Current Employee) –  Washington, DCApril 6, 2017
Smithsonian prides itself in being professional but work culture becomes boring and redundant very fast. This is probably due to its old fashion way of going about certain things.
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Cultured and broad workplace
office of protective services (Current Employee) –  Washington, DCMarch 14, 2017
Great and diverse place to work, pay and benefits could be better. Management and room for advancement could be better.I feel workplace advancement could be more of a priority.
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My review about my job
Engineer Technician (Current Employee) –  Suitland, MDMarch 8, 2017
A great place to work with benefit and life time career to invest in I have eighteen years invested as of now and ten more years to go until I retire along with gaining great knowledge on all ac system on the industry side on ac this a great government job I have.
Pros
Study and learn all you can
Cons
None
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Excellent Employer
Program Manager (Former Employee) –  Washington, DCFebruary 25, 2017
Excellent workplace culture. Very generous benefits. Extremely dedicated colleagues. Work within the museums and overseas were very rewarding, allowing staff to touch and improve the lives of many.
Pros
Highly cultural and intellectual environment
Cons
None
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One of Best Places to Work in the Federal Government
Director (Current Employee) –  Washington City, DCFebruary 20, 2017
Ranks 7 out of 27 mid-sized agencies (75.3 out of 100). The Best Places to Work in the Federal Government® rankings are produced by the Partnership for Public Service—a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization committed to improving the effectiveness of government. As part of our strategy for change, we work with numerous agencies, many of which are represented in our Best Places to Work profiles and rankings, on everything from improving employee engagement to leadership development.
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A great place to volunteer at.
Volunteer Work (Former Employee) –  Washington, DCDecember 26, 2016
The Smithsonian institution is a great place to volunteer at. I volunteered at the Orkin Insect Zoo and butterfly pavilion where I worked with presenting information about insects. Management was great and the other volunteers were really nice.
Pros
Flexible hours, required to volunteer for 8 hours a month
Cons
No cons really
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Busy and Educational
Administrative Assistant (Former Employee) –  Washington, DCDecember 21, 2016
Working behind the scenes in one of the world's leading museums was a truly eye-opening experience. There was some new to learn every day from a wide field of truly unique and exceptional individuals.
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A pleasant place to work.
Police Officer (Former Employee) –  Washington, DCDecember 8, 2016
I love working in the museums and inner acting with the visitor's that visit the museums. My co-workers and I worked side by side with each other to make the galleries safe for the visitors.
Pros
None
Cons
None
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Productive work place
Human Resources/Management Support Assistant (Current Employee) –  Washington City, DCNovember 29, 2016
Its a very free spirited place to work. I enjoying coming to work because there is such a wealth of knowledge and people from all across the globe that i come in contact with and to learn about every day...
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Accounts Payable Accountant
Accounts Payable Accountant (Former Employee) –  Crystal City, VANovember 7, 2016
Worked in the Comptroller's office, the people were fine; higher management was not good. Lot of turnover. job was easy, would recommend working there, keep to yourself. Manager always provided training opportunities & new assignments
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Office of Facilities, Maintenance & Reliability [OFMR]
Facilities Maintenance Technician (Former Employee) –  National Zoological Park, DCSeptember 30, 2016
Loved working around the animals with the keepers.
Safety and employee relations are VERY poor, managers are all afraid of their jobs and refuse to discipline anyone no matter how egregious the infraction.
Incompetence and stupidity abound at all levels and departments at the Smithsonian. The level of incompetence in upper management GS-11, 12, 13 and department heads are all poor examples of managers.
If this were a private business it would go broke in a week.
No accountability by management for multi-thousands of dollars mismanaged, squandered and wasted on stupid projects with no repercussions.
Complaint to Office of Inspector General [Internal Office] is "investigated" and no basis is found for wasting money. These people are a joke and nothing but a shill.
This is how these people spend our tax dollars.
Zoo director believes he walks on water, is arrogant and does not know how to talk to staff.
Zone manager is incompetent and a friend to the OFMR director and was promoted because of his boot licking and brown nosing making a 6 figure salary.
If you want a job and a paycheck this is about it unless of course you join the "in crowd".
I could retire very comfortably if I could have all the money these people waste in one year.
When it snows they expect you to sleep on cots in the shop area with no privacy. They expect you to leave your family to shovel snow so they can say they are "open to the public". If you manage to get there it is up to you how you get home in a snow storm.
Pros
Some Training, A Job That Pays Regularly
Cons
Furloughs Due to Funding, Poor Management, No Concern For Employee's Opinion
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A very positive team staff.
RETAIL SALES ASSOCIATE (Former Employee) –  Washington, DCJanuary 5, 2016
Overall a pretty good job. The people you meet are very sociable and are very helpful with training and extra tips on doing a better job at the position.
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Fun and interesting place to work
Management Support Specialist (Former Employee) –  Washington, DCNovember 16, 2015
The most interesting place to work. The Smithsonian has a diverse culture. I interacted on a daily basis with people of all nationalities.
Pros
Fun and interesting place to work
Cons
No cons.
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Patrolling The Natioal Zoo and interacting with the visitors from all over the globe.
Police Officer (Current Employee) –  Washington, DCNovember 8, 2015
Due to lack of funding and knowledge the Smithsonian Institution Park Police have a very high turn around rate for police officers.
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This is a reflection of my experience at this particular museum.
Purchasing Agent (Current Employee) –  Washington, DCOctober 27, 2015
Training is a big deal to me. I started this position with hopes of working with a supervisor that advocates training and advancement for their employees. This was not the case. I never had the chance to work with that manager because they ended up leaving the institution. So 7 years later and at least 5 supervisors later, here we are. Same place, no growth.
Pros
Employee picnic, beautiful garden, learned new program systems
Cons
High turnover, no growth, no work/life balance.
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Description of Work Place
Contract Specialist (Former Employee) –  Washington, DCOctober 25, 2015
Smithsonian, office was renovated. The work was constant.Management was not employee friendly. There were little or no chance for promotions.
Pros
Close to home
Cons
unpaid parking
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Summer Internship
Intern (Former Employee) –  Washington, DCOctober 11, 2015
Working at The Smithsonian was a great experience, if even in only the many things I learned I like and dislike. The culture at the Smithsonian and the push to learn is incredible. I like most of the people I worked with, as people work together towards the Smithsonian's goals as a whole. There was a lot of bureaucracy and people stuck doing things certain ways but as a whole, people wanted to propel the institution towards improvement.
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Overall rating

4.1
Based on 74 reviews
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Ratings by category

Work/Life Balance
4.0
Compensation/Benefits
3.9
Job Security/Advancement
3.6
Management
3.5
Culture
4.0