Kaiser Permanente

www.kaiserpermanente.org
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5 people found this helpful  

Kaiser - The Handcuffs are Golden

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Career Opportunities
Current Employee - Psychiatric Social Worker in Anaheim, CA (US)
Current Employee - Psychiatric Social Worker in Anaheim, CA (US)

I have been working at Kaiser Permanente

Pros

I work in Mental Health. The salary is one of the best in the social services, behavioral health industry. Benefits are good and our jobs are protected by SEIU-UHW West union membership, which isn't too common in mental health. Kaiser employees have strong job security, the average employee at Kaiser stays for more than 20 years. In my field we are also supported by Kaiser and the union to continue our education through paid education days and free classes sponsored by the union and Kaiser, which helps for those who are licensed. Vacation benefits start out at 24 days a year, our entire family is covered by Kaiser medical insurance at no cost to the employee, we have a good 401K that Kaiser contributes to after two years of employment - 1.25% of our annual compensation, as well as a retirement pension. Part-time employees also receive benefits and they are flexible with work hours in mental health - 4/10 work weeks or other configurations. If you want to work in mental health, learn more, grow as a professional, Kaiser presents a great opportunity for this.

Cons

The work load at Kaiser can be overwhelming at times, their desire is that every hour of the day be filled with a patient, which can be very draining in mental health. Communication between departments isn't efficient and frequently, although we can be interdependent, we don't really know what the other department does specifically, or how they function, and vice versa. Also, much of the job satisfaction for staff in behavioral health is connected to the style of management in their clinic, which varies from caring and supportive to indifferent and neglectful. This is a problem across the board within Kaiser. My experience of Kaiser management, senior and line, is that they are generally polite and respectful. Nevertheless, it is easy to get typed at Kaiser which will determine future opportunities or lack thereof.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Be more authentic in your dealings with the at-times-overworked staff, work jointly to improve job satisfaction with real compromise and consideration of new ideas.

Recommends

1935 Other Employee Reviews for Kaiser Permanente (View Most Recent)

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  1. 3 people found this helpful  

    An excellent, stable non-profit Health care employer seeks passionate, knowledgeable professionals for mutual benefit

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - IT Manager in Pasadena, CA (US)
    Current Employee - IT Manager in Pasadena, CA (US)

    I have been working at Kaiser Permanente

    Pros

    Company has an excellent corporate mission, is fair to employees and has an ambitious IT agenda. Not-for-profit status means that decisions are made for reasons other than strictly shareholder value. Company does a good job in promoting a satisfactory work life balance. Facilities are very good. Fellow employees are respectful and knowledgeable. Organization invests in training its employees. Salaries are competitive and benefit package is excellent.

    Cons

    Significant turnover at upper management. Consensus-driven organization means that it often takes a long time for ideas to be vetted, accepted and implemented. Very geographically distributed organization makes cross-departmental project management somewhat complex. Financial processes (e.g. budgeting) are immature. Performance Management system in IT is in need of serious improvement.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Institute a more effective charge-back model for IT services that encourages, incents and rewards proper behaviors.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  2. 3 people found this helpful  

    Great place to work hard, if you don't mind large bureaucracy that is centered around physicians.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Mid-Level Manager in Oakland, CA (US)
    Current Employee - Mid-Level Manager in Oakland, CA (US)

    I have been working at Kaiser Permanente

    Pros

    The care providers, both physicians and non-physicians, really care about their patients and the quality of care they provide. In general, they are smart, well-trained, and keep up with new developments in their field. The medical care providers are often doing some of the best research in their field, helping to keep the quality of services very high. Not the cutting (sometimes bleeding!) edge that you might find at major academic medical centers (eg, the UC's or Stanford), but in the top 10% of what you'll find anywhere (including those major medical centers). And just like the old advertisements used to say, there really are good people at KP. It's been great for my professional development.Compared to some corporate environments, and other medical settings, that I'm familiar with, it's my choice for employment by far.

    Cons

    There is a weird "entitlement" factor associated with the Kaiser culture, both among certain employees and a lot of members. Maybe it's just part of the American culture at large. Some employees seem not to understand that KP is a business, not a social service organization, and don't take personal responsibility for making it a good place to work and a good place to get health care services. They talk about "Kaiser" as though it was the Great and Powerful Oz (the wizard), some nameless, faceless, uncaring entity trying to exploit them and which, in turn, should be exploited. They don't understand that it's a highly competitive world, and to continue to get good pay and great benefits, they and the company they work for have to succeed in that competitive environment. Likewise, some members have similar misconceptions, and want the latest, most costly drugs, tests, and other services, even when there is no evidence those are any better than what has been established, and they want these things at below cost. They don't see a relationship between their premiums (mine too) and the cost of these services. That's one problem with prepaid healthcare.
    The other big thing for me personally is the discrepancy between the pay and benefits for the MDs vs other providers and people who work alongside them. In fairness, those physicians usually work extremely hard, especially in primary care, but sometimes it seems outrageous what they get that others don't. And the culture is very physician-centric. Some argue that is a strength of KP, as compared to healthcare systems that are run by business people, but that physician-centeredness is often exclusive, just a different version of an 'old boys network' that can cause undercurrents of resentment among others in the organization. And the bureaucracy - yikes! A lot of it has to do with the incredible amount of regulation that healthcare organizations have to deal with, but still, it is slow and cumbersome.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Continue to work on internal communication about the vision, the methods, and the goals of the organization. Don't sugar coat things, so that communication loses credibility and just sounds like cheer-leading. Find ways to walk around and visit the non-MDs at the medical centers. (I am commenting about the TPMG leadership in northern California, more than the national organization of which Mr. Halvorson is CEO.)

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
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