Vera Institute Of Justice
3.7 of 5 12 reviews
www.vera.org New York, NY 50 to 149 Employees

Vera Institute Of Justice Reviews

Updated Apr 13, 2014

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3.7 12 reviews

                             

0% Approve of the CEO

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Michael Jacobson

(3 ratings)

50% of employees recommend this company to a friend
12 Employee Reviews
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Public Policy Intern

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Vera Institute Of Justice

ProsAmazing organization doing very important work, very professional and fun perks to the internship like going to the Hill on Vera's behlaf

ConsNot always a lot of work for the interns, and not very well structured internship opportunities

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Good people, frustrating environment

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
New York, NY (US)

I worked at Vera Institute Of Justice full-time

ProsCompensation is fair and benefits are good. HR works hard to help employees balance health and life outside of work. My immediate co-workers were very pleasant, interesting people and easy to get along with.

ConsProtocols and various procedures are cumbersome. This leads to a lot of tedious administrative work that feels like it could be streamlined if things were updated. The opportunities for advancement are limited and many people are overworked, again because there is an old-fashioned way of operating. Departments /programs are silos.

Advice to Senior ManagementInvest in updating and streamlining basic procedures, create more casual interactions between departments and programs.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Revolving door for junior level staff

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

I worked at Vera Institute Of Justice full-time for more than a year

ProsGreat peers. Collegial environment. Laid back with the hours. Less non-profit and more non-profit consulting culture/ environment.

ConsExtremely low pay for entry-level, junior-level employees. Senior level people get it so good they never want to leave, so it is pretty much a revolving door for anyone who does not direct a program.

Advice to Senior ManagementHere's a thought: Promote within. Invest in your employees. Keep them engaged.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Great

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Vera Institute Of Justice

ProsSmart people who are passionate about the work.

ConsSilos between centers, but they are working on that.

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Great internship that not only provided useful connections, but also job opportunities.

Intern (Former Employee)
Washington, DC (US)

I worked at Vera Institute Of Justice as an intern for less than a year

ProsGiven real work and real projects to work on
Friendly staff
Attentive to your needs and career goals

ConsUnpaid, but that's what happens with non profits

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Okay place to work, but there are a lot of limits to working there

Senior Program Associate (Former Employee)
New York, NY (US)

I worked at Vera Institute Of Justice full-time for more than 3 years

ProsLots of smart and talented people are drawn to Vera. It also hosts lots of interesting programs and projects. Salaries for the nonprofit world tend to be high.

ConsLots of limits to career advancement. You basically learn what you have to after 1-2 years and then can't move up because it would mean taking your supervisor's job. Since they are well paid and it's a flexible work place they never really leave. My supervisor had less education and like 2 years more experience but had a supervisory title and made like 20 k more than I did. This is pretty common at Vera and people tend to leave when they realize this.

Advice to Senior ManagementI think you need to think about why so many people leave so quickly. You should also look at how much current supervisors are adding to the team. Are they in that position just because or are they actually contributing something? Also, for being so innovative, most of the upper management is white.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Passionate Mission, few ops for growth

Research Analyst (Former Employee)
New York, NY (US)

I worked at Vera Institute Of Justice full-time for more than a year

ProsWonderful, smart and passionate colleagues, a good push for evidence based solutions.
Good benefits including paid leave.
Good balance with work and life.

ConsFew opportunities for growth,
Even though we are under the same mission we tend to work on silos

– I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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great mission, disappointing leadership

Research Associate (Former Employee)
New York, NY (US)

I worked at Vera Institute Of Justice full-time for more than a year

ProsVera is a progressive organization with a lot of smart and committed staff. Staff are exposed to different researchers, speakers, and leaders in the criminal justice field through different talks hosted by the Institute.

ConsPoor management. Limited growth potential. Unnecessarily hierarchical. Vera's centers and programs operate in silos and could benefit from greater collaboration and cross-pollination. Certain senior research staff do not know what they are doing and there is no research director (and hasn't been one for years) or any qualified researcher with whom the staff can raise research concerns. Even when concerns are raised, they not addressed.

Advice to Senior ManagementMy best advice to management is to respect your staff. You hire a lot of smart, ambitious, and dedicated professionals but are not honest about the lack of potential for growth. If you don't mind having an incredibly high turnover then why not tell staff before they are hired that there is limited growth potential and that they shouldn't expect to stay more than two years or less? For an "innovative" organization you would be surprised by how bored most of your over qualified staff are on a day-to-day basis. Mid-level staff are punished for trying to do more to further the cause or mission of their program rather than encouraged and valued for their work. With better leadership you could be doing A LOT more with the money you receive.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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1 person found this helpful  

Good place to develop experience in social justice

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Vera Institute Of Justice

Pros- Excellent opportunities to work in both program development and research

Cons- Employee morale is low at times due to perceived inadequate opportunities for career advancement especially for mid career professionals

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Vera is a casual working environment where smart people often collaborate to tackle policy issues big and small.

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
Washington, DC (US)

I worked at Vera Institute Of Justice

Proseffectively blends academic research with technical assistant projects
coworkers are personally and professionally interested in seeing you succeed

Conscan have a lack of direction from overworked management

Advice to Senior Managementestablish a balance between the administrative aspects of management with ensuring that employees recognize and help to achieve bigger picture

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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