Environmental Resources Management

  www.erm.com
  www.erm.com

Environmental Resources Management Reviews

Updated 29 September, 2014
Updated 29 September, 2014
126 Reviews
2.9
126 Reviews
Rating Trends

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Environmental Resources Management CEO and Director John Alexander
John Alexander
58 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Good working environment, opportunity to work with big company and interesting projects (in 12 reviews)

  • Great People, Get to learn a lot of things from very experienced people (in 7 reviews)


Cons
  • Work-life balance is hampered by project deadlines and stoked by over-worked partner-level ERMers (in 9 reviews)

  • Low awareness of local environmental laws, labor laws and standards of health and safety (in 6 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 4 people found this helpful  

    Good place to learn, but not to stay - top heavy.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Environmental Resources Management full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    The company is involved in a lot of global projects with some noteworthy clients, so there is work with professionals with different backgrounds from all over the world. The project scopes and clients vary, and you are able to learn a lot of different things in different sectors. For the most part, there are a lot of smart people who are willing to provide guidance, feedback and insight on your work. It is safe to say, that the majority of the people you work with make your work day.

    Cons

    There does not seem to be a succession plan or a development path, as it appears that all junior level employees are easily replaceable. There's no room to grow as a junior level employee; it seems like only senior level consultants and partners are hired in order to drum up business with new clients - this leads to a logjam at the top, and nobody moves up. The ultimate focus is on being billable, but with the bill rates being so high, it is difficult to spend time to learn your craft, which causes very high stress situations. As sr. managements focuses on retaining clients, it seems project managers are placed on projects where they have no technical expertise in, causing for confusion and panic.

    When it gets busy, the office becomes hectic and stressful, with unrealistic timelines due to the high bill rates and low budget provided (done to stay competitive with the rest of the industry). However, when business is slow, there is a fight for precious billable hours, and menial work is assigned. In both scenarios, the goal is to be as billable as possible, which leads to a tense work environment and low employee morale.

    It appears that the salary is not competitive with industry standard, but the promise of "raises and bonuses" make them competitive - not exactly true as voiced by other reviews here.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Develop junior staff and from within, and invest in the futures with the company - it may seem like hiring from the outside is quicker an d better, but in the long run, this may prove to be a negative. Provide them with opportunities to learn their craft and hone their skills. Provide opportunities for staff to grow, instead of just typecasting them to one specific type of work.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 2 people found this helpful  

    The Life of a Consultant Isn't For Everyone

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Partner
    Current Employee - Partner

    I have been working at Environmental Resources Management full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    ERM is very people-centric and invests heavily in training. It conducts annual engagement surveys on which it achieves high scores compared to other companies. There is a clear (albeit not an easy) path to partnership for those associates wishing to put in the time and effort to be promoted. ERM has a substantial effort to fund and support environmental and sustainability causes, and tracks its carbon footprint so that it can set targets for reducing it. ERM attracts some of the most intelligent, highly accomplished people in the industry and affords its people the opportunity to work on challenging and interesting (sometimes even fun) projects. While it has over 140 offices in 41 countries there is a strong sense of community between locations. Employees are encouraged to work remotely and are provided the tools and resources they need to do so effectively.

    Cons

    Working as a consultant involves long hours and extensive travel and that life can be difficult for some. ERM's history of growth by acquisition has created some disgruntled legacy employees who can be difficult to get along with ("life was perfect before ERM bought out Joe's Consulting Shack). The lack of direction and feedback from leadership and frustrating because your boss may be located in another State or constantly on the road. As others have mentioned, billability is a primary concern and as consultants are typically overtime exempt employees, those who choose this life and expect extra compensation for working long hours are likely to be disappointed.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There should be more of an effort to connect associates to peers. ERM works hard, but needs to play hard too. Weed out the legacy employees who constantly whine that things were better before ERM. Greater collaboration across offices and business units should be encouraged.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 8 people found this helpful  

    Undue Pressure on the Consultants, Office atmosphere can be political.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Associate Engineer
    Former Employee - Associate Engineer

    I worked at Environmental Resources Management full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    I've worked on some very cool projects and learned a lot in my experience. ERM has big clients that need assistance with big projects. It can be very cool to participate. There are still a few very smart people left in the ranks that are willing to take a junior consultant under their wing. I owe my current position (at another company) to the great project experience I got at ERM.

    Compensation is so-so, raises are based on annual inflation +/- a fraction of a percent depending on annual reviews (how billable you were the past year).

    Cons

    The company is run by investors whose primary goal is for the company to be as profitable as possible. This puts stress on all the employees there to be a billable as possible. Billability goals of 95% or 100% are typical for ERM consultants (you have to be working on something that ERM can charge for at least 38 hours per week). If you consistently work 60 hours per week, don't expect to get much more than a "thanks for helping our office's billability numbers". The burden is on each employee to meet the goal, otherwise you attract negative attention and predictable conversations with management. This is BS especially for the entry-level workers who have little to no control over what is handed to them. It is expected that you work over your 40 hours to meet these goals. Workers get stressed and it affects their personal lives if they're not billable enough. Project Managers get stressed out over this too. A lot of stress in general.
    Office atmosphere can be cold and political; I attribute this atmosphere to the stresses listed above
    As others have said, development of junior employees can be better. Opportunities for classes and training are available, but that may take away from your billability, which can be problematic

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Great Work Environment

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Environmental Resources Management full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Great People, Get to learn a lot of things from very experienced people. Awesome team-one of the best in the field
    Super perks for employees. Can learn a lot. Helpful friends and peers

    Cons

    Salary is really low. Lot of travel. Not challenging. Work requires very little technical skill. Sometime monotonous nature of work.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Need to understand the needs of the employees. The employer.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    ERM good reputation company is ending

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Tech Lead in São Paulo, São Paulo (Brazil)
    Former Employee - Tech Lead in São Paulo, São Paulo (Brazil)

    I worked at Environmental Resources Management full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    opportunity to meet good senior consultants despite the most untalented

    Cons

    Lack of technical skills of partners and directors, many of them without real knowledge of environmental issues

    Low awareness of local environmental laws, labor laws and standards of health and safety

    Administrative and support areas hinder the technical work than help

    High rate of replacement of senior consultants

    lack of independence of technical environmental assessments. partners negotiate assessments with customers

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Weak leadership, "Weed out the legacy employees who Constantly whine que Were things better before ERM" defended by a partner is a sign of ERM professionalism.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 3 people found this helpful  

    A good company falling apart

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Geo Consultant in São Paulo, São Paulo (Brazil)
    Former Employee - Senior Geo Consultant in São Paulo, São Paulo (Brazil)

    I worked at Environmental Resources Management full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    The old company´s reputation attracts interesting clients and projects to work with. A good place to learn with good senior consultants before goes to develop your career in another company.

    Cons

    Awful work environment leading to moral and professional harassment. Despite the claim for ethical policies, it is not seriously addressed in this office.
    Technical expertise is not the key driver but sales and profitability.
    Career progression is not clear and it seems you must be match to a partner or group of to be promoted.
    High turnover rates for junior and senior staff.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Please eat humble pie.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 5 people found this helpful  

    Global vision of the company is good, Atlanta office not so good

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Environmental Resources Management

    Pros

    As a global firm, this is a good place to get experience working on a variety of projects. They are very safety conscious and encourage employees to be aware of surroundings when working offsite. They give money to help environmental programs overseas. I definitely was impressed by the leadership outside of the Atlanta office. They really seemed to want to get junior staff plugged into cutting edge projects.

    Cons

    Leadership in Atlanta would refuse to communicate with staff, local HR representative told me very blatantly that I was "a trouble maker" for asking for constructive criticism and bringing up gender/salary questions. Many people left the same year I did because local leadership performed unethically and made allowances for behaviors by staff which was offensive and against corporate policies. They expect you to be "100%" billable which means working in excess of 50 hours or more. In December I worked two 80 hour weeks and was not given a day off or compensated financially afterwards.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Your Atlanta office has received negative reviews during private surveys. However, when people offer suggestions to make things better, we have been punished. That is not the way to retain employees nor does it bring out the best in staff. Stop covering up for office managers and HR staff who you know have performed badly.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Best Environmental Consultancy

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Consultant in Mumbai (India)
    Current Employee - Consultant in Mumbai (India)

    I have been working at Environmental Resources Management full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great Technical Exposure, Amazing working environment, Flexible Work Life balance

    Cons

    Work Life Balance & Compensation

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  10.  

    Great place to work in with challenging and interesting projects

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Intern in Singapore (Singapore)
    Former Employee - Intern in Singapore (Singapore)

    I worked at Environmental Resources Management as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    There are a variety of projects to work on which will allows you grow your knowledge, skills and experience. Great colleagues and mentors made the whole experience a positive one.

    Cons

    I did not come across any cons in the time I worked there. On the whole, I thought that the management was approachable and receptive to feedback.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    As aforementioned, I have a generally good opinion of the management.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11. 9 people found this helpful  

    Sweatshop with Disfunctional Management and Culture

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Project Manager in Irvine, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Senior Project Manager in Irvine, CA (US)

    I have been working at Environmental Resources Management full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Interesting projects that provide technical challenges, decent benefits consistent with other large public companies, decent work environment, support staff that wants to be helpful.

    Cons

    Ineffectual management with unrealistic demands and expectations, poor quality work product, very risk-adverse company perspective, management greed is at the expense of the workers, burdensome policies and procedures, unrealistic company growth metrics, high staff turnover (> 17%), several (but not all) management in western division exhibit questionable ethics and will lie to you and others to meet their personal objectives, no continuity with project teams and staffing due to high attrition and pressure to be billable, performance metrics used to deny and punish rather than reward and motivate. Worst place I have ever worked; management cannot be trusted.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pressure on individuals to meet sales goals creates competitive atmosphere among coworkers leading to staff doing what is best for them, and not what is in the best interest of clients or the company.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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