U.S. Department of State Reviews

Updated Jul 1, 2021

To filter reviews, or .

Found 1,326 of over 1,720 reviews

4.0
86%
Recommend to a Friend
92%
Approve of CEO
U.S. Department of State Secretary of State Antony Blinken
Antony Blinken
33 Ratings
Pros
  • "Interesting opportunity to learn about a career in foreign service(in 63 reviews)

  • "Cultural and travel opportunities(in 58 reviews)

  • Cons
  • "Long work hours, limited work-life balance(in 41 reviews)

  • "Mobility can be difficult in civil service(in 39 reviews)

  • More Pros and Cons
    Pros & Cons are excerpts from user reviews. They are not authored by Glassdoor.
    1. 5.0
      Former Employee
      Featured Review

      One of the best places to work

      Oct 8, 2020 - Data Scientist in Washington, DC
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Most people - helpful + nice + humble + professionals. Work has top level impact.

      Cons

      Bureaucracy can be slow sometimes

      Be the first to find this review helpful
    2. 4.0
      Current Employee, more than 10 years

      Good place to work

      Jul 16, 2015 - Political Officer - Second Secretary 
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Great benefits, feeling of purpose, potential for international travel

      Cons

      Still political, must make the right career choices early, best when living overseas

      Be the first to find this review helpful
    3. 4.0
      Current Employee, more than 10 years

      Great Work, Good Pay, Inconsistent Leadership

      Jul 1, 2021 - Foreign Service Officer in Washington, DC
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      As an FSO you get to do interesting work in foreign countries, usually having been taught the language and being provided housing. You get to stay in one place for long enough to truly understand it. You can make a real difference in the lives of Americans or people abroad. As a federal employee, the benefits are good.

      Cons

      The pay for an FSO is good if you're not paying for housing overseas, but mediocre if you're living in the D.C. area, especially if you have dependents. Housing in the D.C. area is very expensive. The leadership changes in the Department can mean you have to implement politically-motivated agendas which can undermine fact-based research, previous work, and the lives of Americans or people abroad. The Department's senior leadership is 90% white and 70% male, although there are earnest efforts being made at lower levels to increase diversity, usually unsuccessfully.

      Continue reading
      Be the first to find this review helpful
    4. 4.0
      Current Employee, more than 5 years

      12 Hour Days, No Comp Time/Over Time

      Jun 22, 2021 - Country Desk Officer in Washington, DC
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Impactful work, being in the room where decisions are made, truly a long career

      Cons

      If you want to go up in rank in country desks or regional bureaus, be prepared for 12-14 hours days. Fast paced for those 12-14 hours, no lunch break. No one bats an eye at this because it just became the culture. No extra pay for all these hours either. It's enough to make you never want to move up in the ranks. Better to be ambitious elsewhere to avoid burnout.

      Continue reading
      Be the first to find this review helpful
    5. 1.0
      Current Employee, more than 5 years

      State Department is at the Bottom of FEVS every year

      Jun 21, 2021 - Passport Specialist in Philadelphia, PA
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      The federal benefits are good.

      Cons

      Pay raises do not depend on how well employees perform their jobs. Management picks favorites and does not give the same Performance Standards employees. They use the halo technique for their favorites and push down others to make sure they know their place in the pecking order. Senior leaders do not generate high levels of motivation and commitment in the workforce. Steps are not taken to deal with poor performers who cannot or will not improve. Senior Management at Philadelphia does not care that they are at the bottom in the list of passport agencies.

      Continue reading
      Be the first to find this review helpful
    6. 5.0
      Current Employee

      Foreign Service Officer is a Dream job

      Jun 1, 2021 - Foreign Service Officer in Tallahassee, FL
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      The availability to work in cones and different branches of the same job open up new experiences. This is a life-long job as you keep building up rank each year with the several accomplishments you will encounter.

      Cons

      Being put under stress and the constant moving between posts and countries can be a bit much for some people, especially if you get homesick

      1 person found this review helpful
    7. 5.0
      Current Employee, more than 5 years

      Awesome place to work

      Jun 29, 2021 - Grants Administrator in Tijuana, Baja California, Baja California
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Great work / life balance with personal life

      Cons

      I cant think of any.

      Be the first to find this review helpful
    8. 4.0
      Current Employee, more than 5 years

      Fine

      Jun 29, 2021 - Passport Specialist in Los Angeles, CA
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Good stable job, little chance of job loss. Strong union.

      Cons

      Management is disconnected from lower employees

      Be the first to find this review helpful
    9. 4.0
      Current Employee, more than 10 years

      Great Career

      Jun 21, 2021 - Office Director in Washington, DC
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Fascinating work. Opportunity to live internationally. Amazing language training.

      Cons

      Sometimes you have to work for a leader you don't respect or believe in.

      Continue reading
      Be the first to find this review helpful
    10. 4.0
      Current Employee

      Excellent mission

      Jun 25, 2021 - Foreign Service Officer in New York, NY
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Great mission, talented people, worldwide opportunities

      Cons

      Bureaucracy can be quite challenging

      Continue reading
      Be the first to find this review helpful
    Viewing 1 - 10 of 1,326 Reviews

    Popular Careers with U.S. Department of State Job Seekers

    JobsSalariesInterviews

    Work at U.S. Department of State? Share Your Experiences

    U.S. Department of State logo
    or