A123 Systems

  www.a123systems.com
  www.a123systems.com

A123 Systems Reviews

Updated August 15, 2014
Updated August 15, 2014
58 Reviews
2.1
58 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Jason Forcier
7 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Get paid while you are not doing that mich work, good benefits (in 5 reviews)

  • a lot of nice and smart people, at least used to be (in 5 reviews)


Cons
  • The top management team is interested in Wall street and their golden parachute only (in 4 reviews)

  • lots of bad decisions by management that led to lots of wasted time/money; lack of communication; no sense of direction or plansfor improve (in 3 reviews)

More Highlights

11 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    Uncertain Future

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

    I worked at A123 Systems full-time

    Pros

    Very competitive salary, nice work facility

    Cons

    Very unstable industry, long work hours, lack of funding

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    broken parachute

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Engineer in Livonia, MI
    Current Employee - Engineer in Livonia, MI

    I have been working at A123 Systems full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Surrounded by a lot of smart and open minded people, you can learn everything you want. The technology is excellent. Good pay and health insurance.

    Cons

    Poorly managed. The top management team is interested in Wall street and their golden parachute only. Production lines are not well managed and quality is overlooked.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    This is a business but not a gambling.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Good pay, poor management.

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

    I have been working at A123 Systems full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    They pay well. Benefits are good. They are involved in the community and charitiies. There are people there that are trying to change the mindset and mood. They will be owned by someone else soon and hopefully this means new management.

    Cons

    Poor upper management. Poor planning. Rushed to production without dotting all the "i's" and crossing all the "t's". Departments don't work together to solve problems. Management is resistant to change or new ideas.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    right place -wrong time

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

    I have been working at A123 Systems full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    the work schedule - only work 15 days per month; learning new technology with bright hopes for the future after being jobless for 2 years; the med/dental package and other benefits; the people

    Cons

    lots of bad decisions by management that led to lots of wasted time/money; lack of communication; no sense of direction or plansfor improve

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    should have been more worried about cost and quality before building up huge inventory of cells / batteries that were found to defective causing big costly recall; better people in management making everyday decisions

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    Like my coworkers, management has no clue

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Livonia, MI
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Livonia, MI

    I have been working at A123 Systems

    Pros

    Good benefits. No haggle about time off

    Cons

    Management. The buddy system. No degree no promotion

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Promote more from production floor. HR needs to be looked at throughly. Need to value experience rather than giving jobs to people because of there educational background.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    It was more stressful than it needed to be.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Livonia, MI
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Livonia, MI

    I worked at A123 Systems

    Pros

    I enjoyed the challenge of working in a start up company.
    The benefits were good and didn't cost as much as I have paid elsewhere.
    The pay was competitive and probably a little higher than comparable positions.

    Cons

    The presence of former Chrysler and GM executives in middle management created an ego-fest that was painful to deal with on a regular basis.
    The corporate culture that they brought with them from the automotive companies quickly crushed the morale of the people who worked for them. Bad decisions were never reversed because it might indicate weakness. Plans were implemented without regard or consultation of any department that might be affected and this caused confusion, disarray and delays.
     The people who are working at Director levels are high maintenance and require intense hand holding.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If someone applying for a management position has GM or Chrysler listed on the resume, don't hire them. Why would you bring so many people from these failed companies in to do exactly what they did at GM and Chrysler?

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great product opportunity but morale suffers unnecessarily.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Hopkinton, MA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Hopkinton, MA

    I worked at A123 Systems

    Pros

    Green tech.
    Growth industry.
    Willingness to spend money on equipment and software tools when it made sense to do so.

    Cons

    Supervisory relationships are often spread across the country.
    Management allows too much important information to travel exclusively via the rumor mill instead of through official channels where it could be framed in a more positive light.
    Knowledge sharing between remote sites is undervalued and not well supported, even when both (e.g. automotive and non-automotive) products have similar if not identical issues to solve.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Tell employees what's going on through official channels. Allowing the rumor mill to be the primary conduit of info from Management to non-Management does not serve any stake holder.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Good technology, poor execution

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

    I have been working at A123 Systems full-time

    Pros

    The compensation and benefits are decent, and the underlying core technology is sound.

    Cons

    The organizational is poorly structured and there is little accountability for the key decision makers. The end result is a chaotic development process full of constantly shifting priorities.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Eliminate the matrix structure and replace it with a series of cross-functional teams reporting directly to project managers. Define goals much more clearly and incent employees to achieve those goals.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great potential; poor execution

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

    I worked at A123 Systems

    Pros

    Fast paced. Good product potential.

    Cons

    Haven't been able to turn a good product into a consistent, reliable, quality manufactured product. Pressed too hard to get product out the door, with little care for consistent procedures or quality. Too many changes on the fly. Employees always in fire-fighting mode. With time, they'll figure it out, but will they last that long?

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Instead of focusing on short-term, wall-street targets (which isn't working) and big incentives for only the senior management, how about a balance towards good manufacturing of products? Remember Ford: "Quality is Job #1"?

    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    It was like watching a horrible car pileup in slow motion

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

    I have been working at A123 Systems

    Pros

    You got a lot of days off every week, Overtime was there if you needed it , and the benefits were great.

    Cons

    Management never respected anybody, they never cared if you had a family crisis and needed it to leave you would be fired. The company slowed down production and laid off a bunch of employees

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

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