Citadel Reviews

Updated 5 Jul 2020

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5.0
100%
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Citadel Founder and Chief Executive Officer Ken Griffin
Ken Griffin
3 Ratings
Pros
  • "High salary; great benefits and experiences; many smart people in the firm(in 39 reviews)

  • "Fast-paced company with a huge investment in technology(in 21 reviews)

Cons
More Pros and Cons
  1. Featured Review
    Helpful (2)

    "Great place with brilliant people"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Recruiting Coordinator in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Citadel full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    -Everyone is brilliant -Cutting edge technology

    Cons

    -Turnover -Contractors are not treated the same as full time employees

  2. Helpful (2)

    "Software Engineer"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Citadel full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Fast-paced company with a huge investment in technology. I have had the chance to use a wide variety of open source technology to deliver projects. Very smart and interesting colleagues and an atmosphere that enables you to learn a huge amount very quickly. Big emphasis on technical and financial training, if you're interested in it.

    Cons

    Priorities can change quickly due to the nature of the firm - this can be a challenge but can also provide opportunities.


  3. Helpful (1)

    "Quantitative Researcher"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Quantitative Researcher in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Citadel full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Plenty of opportunities to grow.

    Cons

    Difficult to manage work/life balance.

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  4. Helpful (32)

    "Plenty of smart people but hire and fire"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Analyst in London, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Citadel full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    You will learn lots, everyone is smart and have something to teach you

    Cons

    hire and fire, you can be fired for anything. Performance bad ? fired, PM blew up ? fired. Going to the toilet to do your business too much ? fired, say wrong thing to a wrong guy ? fired. Talk too much ? fired. Talk too little ? fired

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  5. COVID-19
    Helpful (15)

    "Worth the Read - The Grass Is Pretty Brown in Treasury Department"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at Citadel full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    -You get to put Citadel on your resume, which has to be losing some value as time goes on. A simple linkedin search for "non-compete Citadel" will show you the vast number of ex Citadel employees currently sitting out their non-compete's. -As others have mentioned you get "free" breakfast & lunch... if you've studied finance, you've probably heard the phrase "there is no such thing as a free lunch" this absolutely rings true here. -The feeling of freedom after you leave.

    Cons

    -Working at Citadel as an associate is equivalent to being a vice-president (or higher) at a bank while getting paid as if you are an analyst. Have also heard the joke that Citadel's biggest arbitrage is actually underpaying employees for the level of responsibility/work. -As others have mentioned, the culture over the past five months has deteriorated at a shocking pace with the exit of the prior treasurer and entrance of the new treasurer. Departures have been rampant and many that have been here for some time are currently just waiting for an opportune time to exit. -Witnessed the new treasurer state: "if you are infected with coronavirus and give it to someone else at the firm you will be fired." -The firm has done a great job at attracting talent by fooling the public with a deteriorating brand name and a false meritocracy. Unfortunately, it doesn't take long for this sad reality to set in once you are in the door and have most likely signed a 6-18 month non-compete. It's not unheard-of to see employment tenor's less than 5 months. Multiple big name hires have started during the past 3 years and left the firm in less than 7 months. If you google search this phrase: "executive leaves citadel months" you can find plenty of examples. -Looking for work life balance? Stay away, multiple teams are now down to skeleton crews where they are barely keeping above water, some are now fully underwater and are holding massive amounts of key man risk. Operations teams average 15-16 hour days plus weekends with counterparts constantly escalating to managers due to the excessive number of issues. Currently, there are numerous teams where individuals are unable to take one single day of vacation until more hires are made. One team specifically needed an individual to work everyday while he had coronavirus due to the abysmal amount of coverage. -One of the ops teams specifically has turned over almost 300% in the last 3.5 years. An already abnormally lean team consisting of eight full time, experienced, employees is now running at three full time employees plus a couple interns. -Politics have approached that of working at a bank, especially since every single new hire now comes from Goldman. It's surprising that the firm hasn't been sued yet for the egregious amount of people that have come in directly from GS. Working in treasury under these conditions now provides you with the opportunity to participate in most, if not all, of the firms downside and little to none of the firms upside. Additionally, this situation has created a "too many chiefs and not enough indians" scenario and has created a culture of passing blame and work around to any other team except your own. -The number of driven and highly skilled individuals that have left in the past 6 months and more specifically, during coronavirus with no role lined up should tell you everything you need to know about working here see linkedin comment above ^. -The firm has figured out the exact minimum compensation formula to keep most from quitting immediately after bonuses are released. Furthermore, bonuses are strategically paid out later than almost all other firms on the street. This delay, advantageously places you behind the other finance professionals looking to leave at competing firms that have been interviewing since Nov, Dec, Jan, & Feb. By the time you start looking elsewhere and get serious on exiting, the recruiting market is saturated, and months have passed. After enough time you begin to have a glimmer of hope that maybe, just maybe, next year's bonus they will truly take care of you for your efforts and that you should just stick it out another 6 months or so to find out. Unfortunately, this cycle will continue year after year until you give up all hope and realized you've been underpaid the whole time. -For a firm that prides itself on being a front runner when it comes to IT, this idea seems to have been lost some years ago. As others have mentioned just getting through the day requires significant levels of manual effort on simple tasks that should've been automated long ago but have not due to lack of resources. IT resources for valuable projects are highly strained and are often passed over to be applied to wasteful projects that are applicable to banks, not hedge funds.

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  6. COVID-19
    Helpful (19)

    "Avoid Treasury Department At All Costs"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Treasury Associate in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Citadel full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    -Free lunch (to keep you at your desk) -The ability to say that you work at Citadel which doesn't hold a ton of value if you aren't compensated for it.

    Cons

    -Department culture has declined remarkably over the past year with departure of the prior treasurer. -New treasurer has stated publicly: "if individuals are infected with coronavirus and pass this onto another individual at the firm whether knowingly or unknowingly they will be fired." -For most teams work/life balance is non existent. (Ops teams are regularly working from 6:30AM-10/11PM plus weekends due to the extreme levels of turnover) -New management by and large has a lack of understanding of basic treasury functions and you will be asked constantly to jam square pegs into round holes, at best, due to this lack of understanding. -The comp is actually not great vs peers if you consider the amount of hours employees are expected to work and responsibility they are expected to own. ---Have heard jokes that Citadel's largest arbitrage is actually underpaying employees vs market rate, have seen multiple individuals leave the firm to do similar roles for more comp with a better work life balance. -There is little upward movement within the firm, however, you will consistently be told otherwise. ---Most individuals come into the department, work for 0.5-2.5 years (yes you read that right 0.5 years) and leave once they come to the realization that what they were promised simply isn't true. There is a large number of smart, incredibly hard working people at Citadel it would be naive to think you are the exception here. Sadly the opportunity to move upward does not exist. -There have been high levels of departures the past 6 months by individuals with no alternative role lined up due to the deterioration of the culture. -IT systems have fallen behind and simple tasks now take large amounts of manual effort just to get through the day, teams have consistently asked for IT resources and they are rarely given.

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  7. Helpful (10)

    "Difficult mgmt culture"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Treasury Manager in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend

    I worked at Citadel full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Free lunch, very smart people, peers are typically great to work with

    Cons

    The pressure from up top is intense to say politely. You will never get a thank you for doing stellar work.

  8. "Financial Analyst"

    4.0
    Current Employee - Financial Analyst in New York, NY

    I have been working at Citadel full-time

    Pros

    I liked that job most of the time

    Cons

    It was pretty stressful sometimes

  9. COVID-19
    Helpful (3)

    "Good place to work"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineer in New York, NY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Citadel full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Smart and helpful colleagues. Management with vision and determination. Fast-paced environment that allows you to see the impact of work very quickly and being recognized and rewarded for it. Lots of learning opportunities and responsibilities, even at the junior levels. Catered food. Company has been more engaging with both employees and the community over the years through regular town halls and after-hour events. The responses to COVID-19, both in the US and abroad, have been swift and supportive. Lots of testing, planning and provision of resources made WFH much easier and more productive.

    Cons

    A few things that are more of a culture issue in the finance industry that can turn software engineers off: somewhat long hours, a bit hard to raise a family (company policy has improved but still lagging behind some competitors), opaque and unbalanced compensation scheme.

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  10. Helpful (13)

    "Soul crushing"

    1.0
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Business Development in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Citadel full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Good technology. Some great investors.

    Cons

    Awful culture. Little diversity. Very high turnover.

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Found 159 reviews