Cadmus Group Employee Reviews about "project management"

Updated Mar 4, 2021

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3.9
92%
Recommend to a Friend
94%
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Cadmus Group President & CEO Ian Kline (no image)
Ian Kline
75 Ratings
Pros
  • "Cadmus offered remote work and kept meetings to a minimum(in 29 reviews)

  • "Great People, meaningful work, good office locations, flexible work from home policies(in 13 reviews)

  • Cons
  • "From talking to others who have left, this is the biggest bone most people have to pick with Cadmus(in 25 reviews)

  • "Poor work-life balance; tedious work; poor quality work computers(in 14 reviews)

  • More Pros and Cons
    Pros & Cons are excerpts from user reviews. They are not authored by Glassdoor.

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    Reviews about "project management"

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    1. 4.0
      Former Employee, more than 1 year

      Great company if you work with the right teams

      Mar 4, 2021 - Analyst 
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      I really liked the teams I worked with. If you work hard and work creatively, managers will invest their time in you and you can learn new skills. Some of the projects were interesting, and exact work schedules are flexible as long as you’re putting in a full week. Overall really positive experience, and a great place to work right out of undergrad, especially if you want exposure to lots of different kinds of projects and work. I find my colleagues are very supportive of each other, not just in work but outside of that too, and they’re largely very smart, kind people. The company is also doing well, and is expanding into all sorts of new exciting fields.

      Cons

      1. When you first start in a entry-level position , you spend a few (~2-5) months doing a lot of scut work, like budgets, editing documents, etc. Not that bad if you know it’ll get better, but it leads a lot of new staff to start looking for a new position almost as soon as they start. 2. Some project managers are just not that great to work with, but they’ve been around forever. This is more advice than a specific con about the company. If you work here, figure out who is good to work for. I got really lucky, but I worked briefly at the beginning with some pretty bad managers. 3. The upper level executive management creates a corporate culture that clashes some with the mission and drive of the project teams. There’s a heavy handed focus on billability, bonuses are entirely driven by how much “overtime” you work/how little PTO you take instead of based on performance, and people are generally underpaid. From talking to others who have left, this is the biggest bone most people have to pick with Cadmus.

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      1 person found this review helpful
    2. 1.0
      Former Employee, more than 1 year

      Serious Issues

      Aug 30, 2019 - Analyst - Homeland Security in Arlington, VA
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      - Echoing others on here, Cadmus has some of the smartest people I've met. There is a marked difference in workplace styles and cultures between teams, and a few teams are quite down to earth and fun people to be around. - Smaller nature compared to other consulting firms in the area should be an opportunity, but see below.

      Cons

      To say that Cadmus was a disappointment would be an understatement. The October 2nd, 2018 review on here mirrors many of my thoughts, however harsh. I should be clear that my thoughts relate specifically to the seemingly struggling Homeland Security and Emergency Management sector of Cadmus. I’m not qualified to comment on the organization as a whole. Basic project management skills are lacking throughout the organization as most of the project managers and supervisors are internal promotions who have never worked outside of Cadmus/Obsidian after college. They don’t appear to have had strong training or experience in managing either projects or people. Work is not transparently or equitably distributed. Sadly, it pays to establish an uncritical, ingratiating relationship with key individuals in the organization early on or you will find yourself struggling to find work or advancement. On that front, attempts to be proactive and seek out work is met with lukewarm reception at best. A colleague of mine had to write a memo to the now departed division director just to finally get put on a proposal after having a long period of no work – a proposal which, of course, would not even count to his billable hour requirements for the month. Analysts at our yearly check-in this past year complained that we were being asked to bill hours to projects we hadn’t worked on, were consistently not given work, and were consistently being given taskings on par with intern-level work. Worse, we had brought up all these issues last year and nothing had changed. The senior individuals in the room seemed completely unaware of the practices being cited. It’s clear that the Associate level is a bottleneck in the transparency and effective management of the Homeland Security sector. Lackluster pay is justified as a reflection of Cadmus’ business model differing from those of other contracting firms in the area. This is more legitimate than others will admit and I do understand Cadmus’ frustration over constantly being compared to Booz Allen. However, over my time there I would see benefits cut back, PTO cut back, and the DC office shuttered. All of us would have understood these decisions, but they were often presented in intellectually dishonest ways that ended up being explicitly called out in some of our staff meetings. Dour CEO presentations highlighted that the company clearly prizes billability and utilization rates over either the quality of its output, or building its analyst base or staff development. As legitimate as the business model argument is, it also reflects a tacit recognition that Cadmus’ business model is low-level, low complexity work that can be done by undergraduates who leave every summer for grad school or for a job whose business model does allow them to pay their employees at a level commensurate with the hours and responsibility demanded by Cadmus. The CEO has admitted that the “shape” of the organization is not correct, but seems to think this means we need less Associate-level staff, as opposed to recognizing that our analyst base is not realistically right-sized or efficiently utilized.

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      7 people found this review helpful
    3. 1.0
      Former Employee, more than 5 years

      No Career Growth Whatsoever

      Aug 26, 2018 - Associate in Boston, MA
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Government Clients in Environmental Group focused on Quality Very data and science based analysis Not Partisan

      Cons

      No career growth whatsoever Laughable raises that you can't negotiate Bland, empty offices Pressure to work unbilled hours Poor management, little to no management training No real project management strategy/system Terrible timekeeping requirements HR a joke; unable to keep track of basics such as how long employees have worked at company.

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      5 people found this review helpful
    4. 2.0
      Former Employee, more than 1 year

      Accept DC Position with Caution

      Jan 29, 2018 - Analyst in Washington, DC
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      The opportunity exists, theoretically, that you can work with senior-level FEMA executives and gain valuable experience of emergency management from a federal (strategic policy) perspective. However, it is just as likely you will spend your days formatting tables or text in Excel, Word, or PowerPoint. You can almost bet this will happen if you are not a “favorite” of the managerial staff. These skills are valuable in their own right, and have helped me at my current job, but should not be the primary duties of an employee.

      Cons

      Too many managers; very little leadership. Simple project management is nonexistent. Forget about kickoff meetings or identifying who should be put on a project according to their experience and skills. Project leads and advancement are based upon favoritism. High level of insecurity among management staff which can be attributed to the fact that most have no concrete knowledge or skills in homeland security and emergency management despite what their resume accolades may say about them. Most were thrust in the position after high rate of turnover due to mismanagement of projects and staff. Creativity is not encouraged and stifled by management again because of insecurity that you might be recognized for doing a good job. Often the people that know EM are thrown on a project last minute and expected to fix the problem that the “favored” and unknowledgeable staff created. After a Herculean effort, the few “good ones” fix the problem only to have the “favorites” receive all the credit and praise and promotions. I can only speak for the DC office, but, honestly, this office is a sinking ship and if you take the job expect to receive little to no guidance, be treated poorly, be unbillable for long periods of time, and not be frustrated daily with your work environment. Use this job only as a stepping stone, but, again, use with caution as this stepping stone may crumble while you’re standing on it. Also beware as they will promise you the world in your interview and follow through on very little.

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      7 people found this review helpful
    5. 1.0
      Former Employee

      Beware the Consulting Culture

      Feb 13, 2018 -  
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Everyone I met at Cadmus are very capable people. I really enjoyed being able to talk with some of my coworkers about complex issues.

      Cons

      Work/Life balance is terrible. There were times where I was working 12-hour days every week and it was exhausting. Cadmus does not offer many opportunities for growth. It felt like a sink or swim environment. Cadmus does a poor job at matching tasks with people's skill sets. While working at Cadmus, I felt like my skill set was not effectively utilized. It seems that Cadmus does not value their employees. Cadmus has poor project management that leads to some people working absurd hours while others have no work. It's clear that Cadmus wants to be the next Booz Allen, but they can't pay their employees what their worth in comparison to how much they work.

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      5 people found this review helpful
    6. 3.0
      Former Employee

      Great staff, disjointed management styles

      Jan 5, 2018 - Anonymous Employee 
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      The flexibility is great. You can mostly choose which projects you want to work on and who you work with. The staff there are smart and dedicated, and the work is interesting.

      Cons

      Onboarding barely exists. Project managers vary in experience, making some projects a pleasure to work on, others a nightmare. This can be stressful when you're working on numerous projects.

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      3 people found this review helpful
    7. 3.0
      Former Employee, more than 3 years

      Free to choose own path - Expect to leave Cadmus within 3 years

      Jan 17, 2017 - Associate in Denver, CO
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      One can choose what you work on as long as you have the skill and have networked within the company sufficiently. Cadmus hires bright people.

      Cons

      No regular project management training. Cadmus promotes project managers instead of hiring them. Encouraged to hide hours to meet administrative goals. Cadmus incentives inefficiency. The longer one spends wasting time on something, the better for Cadmus. Billability baseline assumes 0 days off a year, leading to essentially no PTO.

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      1 person found this review helpful

      Cadmus Group Response

      Thank you for providing feedback. Cadmus offers a competitive, comprehensive benefits package, including a range of vacation, sick, and personal days in addition to holidays. We also offer a flexible work environment, health insurance (including dental and vision), and employee stock ownership, as well as other bonus and personal development opportunities to compensate our employees and help them achieve a positive work/life balance. We regularly review the elements of our compensation package to ensure that they are competitive while still supporting the sustainable growth of Cadmus. Regarding project management, we continuously enhance project and staff management training and regularly implement new tools and resources for employees to nurture a wide base of in-house project management professionals. This includes partnering with an outside consultant and university to deliver onsite project manager training to all our major offices. And, in accordance with our corporate policy, we provide charge codes for all company-sponsored billable and non-billable activities. Please email us at HR.comms@cadmusgroup.com to share more details about your experience.

    8. 4.0
      Current Employee, more than 8 years

      Great learning environment

      Aug 30, 2015 - Anonymous Employee 
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Interesting project work and opportunities to hone current skills and develop new ones for motivated go getters. Great benefits and smart, caring colleagues.

      Cons

      Salaries are low compared to other industries. Poor project management has led to project overruns that affect all employees unfairly and results in executive teams putting significant emphasis on revenue growth and billability above all else including personal growth and work/life balance. This, along with terrible communications from upper management, has led to widespread low moral.

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      3 people found this review helpful
    9. 2.0
      Former Employee, more than 1 year

      Launch Pad for Better Opportunities

      Jun 4, 2015 -  in Washington, DC
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Amazing benefits! HR staff was pleasant.

      Cons

      The company culture is lacking...a lot. It seemed as if no one actually knew how to do their job, especially the project managers who had been there for years. They prey on young, eager graduates. Offer them a decent salary and benefits, then suck all the life and passion out of them. There needs to be more structure and oversight.

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      9 people found this review helpful
    10. 2.0
      Former Employee, more than 1 year

      It helped my resume, but I don't think I'd go back.

      Jul 26, 2014 - Associate in Washington, DC
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      They accept your experience and expect you to step up from day 1. They have flex time and a flexible work schedule. Anyone Associate-level and below is great to work with and all highly motivated. If you can play the game, are self-motivated, and your are a favorite of the clients and Cadmus staff, you can learn a lot and really build your resume, but even as one of those people, I still left quickly to get out of the environment.

      Cons

      There are tons of politics at Cadmus. Key management were out for themselves and quite vindictive, causing complete distrust among the staff. Many of the upper-level folks were poor mentors and did not actually have strong skills themselves, besides general project management. This gave opportunities to younger staff, but also caused severe stress to junior staff because they weren't given helpful direction. Cadmus did have some great mentors, but they tended to be Associates who were blocked from moving up, and consequently, didn't hang around long. Compensation was moderate to low. Senior Associates expected everyone under them to turnover every 2 years -- they were very honest about this and their management style fueled the cycle. Favorites were played regularly. Clients were babied; the clients tended to be highly dramatic and the Cadmus staff would jump to please them constantly instead of having grownup, honest conversations. This caused a lot of yo-yoing to the work and pigeonholing of both "favorite" Cadmus consultants and disliked team members (favorite folks often got stuck in a niche that the client liked and disliked folks got sidelined to work where they also didn't have growth potential. Either way, you had to play the politics game hard for a balanced, interesting workload). As someone who's been in consulting for years, I was regularly shocked and frustrated by this pattern.

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      6 people found this review helpful
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