Duke Clinical Research Institute Reviews | Glassdoor.co.in

Duke Clinical Research Institute Reviews

Updated 25 Oct 2019

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2.5
28%
Recommend to a Friend
47%
Approve of CEO
Duke Clinical Research Institute CEO Lesley Curtis, PhD
Lesley Curtis, PhD
8 Ratings
Pros
  • "9 to 5 job with great work life balance(in 32 reviews)

  • "DCRI is a great company to work for(in 30 reviews)

Cons
  • "What you end up with are the people who are complacent and less interested in change and the big ideas DCRI has for its future(in 25 reviews)

  • "Upper management had this bright idea to build a new building in downtown Durham(in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons
  1. "Hard Fulfilling Work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Durham, NC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Duke Clinical Research Institute full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Leadership, work/ home life balance, benefits

    Cons

    Systems are a little outdated

    Advice to Management

    Continue to listen to employee feedback.

    Duke Clinical Research Institute2019-10-25
  2. Helpful (4)

    "Work culture is detrimental to mental health"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Executive Assistant in Durham, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Duke Clinical Research Institute full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Some staff became like family

    Cons

    When people leave management will pile additional work on you. You never receive praise and are made to feel that you are the lucky one to be working there.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to employees and quit sugar coating your yearly surveys to make yourselves look good. Entire process is broken. Appreciate the employees.

    Duke Clinical Research Institute2019-10-10
  3. Helpful (7)

    "Terrible place to work — more layoffs!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Duke Clinical Research Institute full-time

    Pros

    Compensation and work/life balance are acceptable

    Cons

    In-fighting amongst senior leadership; bullying culture created by physicians; senior leadership lacking in leadership skills; lack of commitment to any real change

    Advice to Management

    With the most recent layoffs you’d think that it would be obvious - start by getting rid of senior leadership because the rot starts at the top.

    Duke Clinical Research Institute2019-08-06
  4. Helpful (6)

    "Invest in your remaining staff"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Clinical Trial Coordinator in Durham, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Duke Clinical Research Institute full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    I enjoyed my first year at DCRI working with some very bright individuals with great ideas. Able to work remotely to some extent. Educational opportunities, however it needs to be very specific to position. Having said that, it has been more difficult to get approval for trainings due to DCRIs current financial situation.

    Cons

    Over the last several months, my opinion of DCRI has completely changed. While I have enjoyed the idea of working at a place attempting to be 'innovative', I think DCRI has a long way to go before they can claim this label. The projects seem chaotic in an industry where planning and execution are critical. Most Project Leaders I have work with do not lead, they manage by intimidation or they are simply not present... with their project team. I suppose it may be a lack of training, tools, resources, etc, but in my experience this is one of the worst places I have experienced for project leadership. There seems to be a lot of distrust between staff and management in general right now, likely due to the recent RIF. That may be challenging for DCRI to get past, given how long that process took place, and how the working environment was allowed to spiral downward for so long.

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    Advice to Management

    Invest in the staff that remains. Listen to them, provide trainings, allow for new ideas that come from those 'in the trenches'. We hear a lot of talk about all of the great changes coming to DCRI moving forward, but until anything is presented and put in place, great employees will continue to move elsewhere.

    Duke Clinical Research Institute2019-07-10
  5. Helpful (7)

    "So much untapped potential! DCRI could be THE company...But"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Clinical Research Associate in Durham, NC
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Duke Clinical Research Institute full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Overall DCRI is a great place to work - the benefits are fantastic, the work/life balance and schedule flexibility is great, usually good job security/stability (aside from upcoming RIF/Layoff), numerous discounts for products and services in the Raleigh-Durham area, lots of training and development opportunities via programs and conferences offered by Duke University and the Hospital, will pay for you to attend... local conferences in your field/educational reimbursement, gives you access to a lot of educational programs and entertainment and the overall company culture is supportive/friendly with lots of employee recognition- as an ARO they don't engage in a lot of the overly metric driven cut throat non-sense I have seen at CROs that lead to burn out and well paid, but demoralized and jaded staff. I give DCRI a lot of credit for doing more than most companies to foster diversity, inclusion and cohesion among staff and for encouraging fun and engagement in the work place.

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    Cons

    The problem (and this is said with love) is that there is so much potential for this company to be exceptional on so many fronts, but they consistently fail to fully tap into that potential. whether it is forgetting to fully leverage the skills of their staff, taking on too many poorly organized/poorly funded and poorly written study protocols, being slow to improve and modernize work processes so that they are... more efficient/less redundant and less error ridden or offering enough opportunities for EVERYONE to grow and move up the career ladder. So, many people have left simply because they hit a wall in terms of career advancement/mobility and financial compensation. I can't tell you how many times people have said "I love my co-workers, I love the company and it's mission, I don't want to leave, but they aren't utilizing me properly and I have to move on and find something where I can have an impact and grow". In the end, this leads to mostly younger people leaving, the people with advanced degrees/certifications and the people with a generally higher subset of skills and or investment in the quality of the work - and as a company, if they want innovative, new and energized staff who are going to push for and achieve bold things in the world of research (as they say), they can't continue to be OK with all of their entry level and mid-level staff who are aching for a chance to be heard and utilized leaving or staying, but languishing. The people under 35 stay for a few years (1-3), get experience or connections and then they move on because they feel like they can't implement their ideas, contribute in novel ways and or expand in their therapeutic areas of interest. What you have left over are the people who are OK with being in the same role, doing the same things for below market/ below industry pay for 30 years (which in turn suppresses the pay of everyone else when you have someone who has been in a role for 20 years and only makes $50,000/yr) and who are literally just waiting on their retirement check and the benefits duke offers for college tuition to pay for their kid's education. What you end up with are the people who are complacent and less interested in change and the big ideas DCRI has for its future. Until DCRI decides that it can do more and be more, and is willing to expand its roster of clinical research positions, expand the types of studies they take on, asks for and bids for what they are actually worth, expands its roster of therapeutic areas and works to keep the employees that are still bright eyed enough to care about the quality and direction of their work, they will continue to be a company that gets high marks for what they try to do and what they claim they to want to be, but will keep hemorrhaging the people who could be helping them make it a reality. Lastly, DCRI is unique in that they have "thought leaders" - these are doctors and other high-level professionals who are actively involved either as PIs or advisers on the trials we have. Although they are really great resources in many ways, I have also heard/seen a number of people in management and leadership positions, who's job it is to make sure that the operational/logistical aspects of the trials and the resourcing are in order, regularly find their hands tied and can't do their jobs in the most effective manner because everyone cow-tows to the thought leaders. So, to avoid office politics and fall-out, management gives into requests or wants of the thought leaders that aren't always feasible or that don't always make sense for a given trial or task...as one can imagine, this doesn't always bode well for the staff working on said trial or for management who at some point has to answer for the progress, mistakes, planning or timelines of a given trial. In the end, DCRI could have it all - they could be THE company. And I honestly hope that one day, they find a way to do just that. But at present, they seem to be OK with trying to convince people that the status quo is acceptable - that mediocre pay, decent benefits, the Duke nomenclature and the company culture outweighs being challenged, outweighs progression and outweighs making enough money to actually use all of that fabulous vacation time you've accrued...to actually take a vacation. Other "con" is paying for parking - can range from $15.00 -$200.00 per month depending on where you park/what is available/proximity to work location etc.

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    Advice to Management

    Despite the unfortunate round of layoffs, please don't lose sight of one of your biggest assets and what sets this company apart from a lot of the CROs (aside from the thought leaders and connection to academia) and that is the culture. Although the company is restructuring (or whatever HR buzzword is cool right now), the vibe we used to have that encouraged learning, recognition of employees, training/support..., engagement with social issues/local community, fun and connection should continue to be a focal point. These things will be more important than ever for morale and productivity post-RIF. "Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough, so they don't want to"

    Show More
    Duke Clinical Research Institute2019-05-29
  6. Helpful (2)

    "Going through a rough patch"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Statistician 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Duke Clinical Research Institute full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    The people are awesome and the academic mission is admirable. I used to love working here.

    Cons

    There is uncertainty following the recent reduction in force. Many of the best employees are resigning due to a poorly executed RIF and lack of strategic vision for the future (despite leadership having the advice from a consulting agency and over 6 months to prior to the RIF to figure it out!) There is a lack of clear leadership and it is negatively impacting morale and productivity. Base pay is considerably lower... than industry and there are no bonuses.

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    Duke Clinical Research Institute2019-06-22
  7. Helpful (5)

    "Strategy is Non existent, but they constantly talk about it"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Clinical Operations Manager in Raleigh, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Duke Clinical Research Institute full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    DCRI permanent Full time employees receive Duke University pay & benefits. Which are great in many ways (403B plan, Insurance options), BAD in many others.. Work life balance is good for some, horrible for others.

    Cons

    Duke Health has become too big for any strategy to work for most departments, Duke School of Medicine, (SOM) of which DCRI is a part, is in debt and failing to retain the best professors or residents. Not to mention the huge negative press for many research fraud cases and just general mismanagement. DCRI has lost their magic pitches and pipeline of studies. SOM Faculty members at DCRI who run studies have a huge... proclivity for picking favorites, and totally ignoring the careers of some who work longest hours. High level and expensive degrees MATTER here, so if you have one, apply and stay for a few years to get Duke on your resume--then leave for high dollars and great career future. Duke is SLOW to promote and very stingy with salaries, unless you are someone's son, daughter or other family member.

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    Advice to Management

    Cut your losses, since you just made that HUGE layoff last week, over 20% of your full time workforce~ WOW ! hope you all make it better, because CROs are killing you in the biz world !! Stop the nepotism ! makes you look bad and old fashioned to say the least. and No Lesley, no need to respond to this message. Bye.

    Duke Clinical Research Institute2019-06-04
  8. "Not so great anymore"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Duke Clinical Research Institute full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Benefits from Duke are above average

    Cons

    Recent layoff has left company in turmoil with some employees absorbing the work of several people. A lot of good people were affected by the reduction. That is not sustainable as even more will leave in the future if not resolved.

    Duke Clinical Research Institute2019-06-07
  9. Helpful (2)

    "Avoid for now"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Durham, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Duke Clinical Research Institute full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    The research mission is valid and projects are stimulating. Historically this was a wonderful and vibrant employer. There is a ton of untapped potential.

    Cons

    Organization is financially compromised, upper level leadership is interim and/or are Duke faculty lacking adequate managerial experience to address the treacherous problems , and useful operations decionmakers are leaving or have been forced out. There has just been a lay-off and in addition many good staff resigned beforehand. Better wait and see if it survives, and if a coherent strategy emerges for the future.

    Advice to Management

    Retain and value operational partners to the faculty. Learn from what worked well in the past.

    Duke Clinical Research Institute2019-06-01
  10. Helpful (4)

    "Horrible few years"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Clinical Trials Specialist in Durham, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Duke Clinical Research Institute full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    great resume builder for starting out career

    Cons

    Outdated technology, unhappy employees, horrible pay. Way too many instances of people who have worked here 20+ years and get away with whatever they want. Employees who produce quality work are not valued. No real opportunity for career growth. Management takes advantage of employees. RIF was announced in Januery 2019- people were not let go until June 2019 - 5 months of stressed out employees is a very bad thing... and a slap in the face to those who have worked hard for this company for years. DCRI has gone way downhill in the past 5 years. No real leadership.

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    Advice to Management

    Focus on innovation- management HATES new ideas... even though DCRI claims innovation as one of their "5 values". LISTEN to your employees and make actual changes. The "way it's always been done" is no longer a valid excuse for sub-par work.

    Duke Clinical Research Institute2019-06-04
Found 156 reviews