Eastman Chemical Reviews

Updated October 28, 2014
Updated October 28, 2014
790 Reviews
4.6
790 Reviews
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Eastman Chemical Chief Executive Officer Mark J. Costa
Mark J. Costa
259 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Many roles/supervisors are supportive of maintaining a good work-life balance (in 80 reviews)

  • The compensation is competitive, especially considering the low cost of living in Eastern Tennessee (in 24 reviews)


Cons
  • Eastman is a company that is headquartered in a small town and has an aging employment base (in 31 reviews)

  • Work/Life balance is frequently just lip service when it comes to direct management (in 15 reviews)

More Highlights

11 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    Not a good place. Positive reviews are mostly due to internal campaign by management.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Electrical Engineer, Entry Level II in Kingsport, TN
    Current Employee - Electrical Engineer, Entry Level II in Kingsport, TN

    I have been working at Eastman Chemical full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Good starting salary, friendly coworkers, low cost of living in the area, good experience for your resume

    Cons

    Do not trust the positive reviews of this company on Glassdoor. Eastman's mangement has launched an internal campaign to encourage everyone to leave positive reviews.

    In some groups, 35 hours of work per week is expected and rewarded. In some, 60+ hours per week are the norm. The career rewards are the same, so choose your group wisely.

    Advancement and raises are very slow unless you are one of a select few. Chemical engineers are valued more than any other engineering discipline, others are treated as "second class" with limited advancement opportunities, slower raises, and your input is not valued.

    Strong focus on personal safety (wear your safety glasses and hard hat!) but little to no focus on process safety.

    Management does not support their employees and there is a great deal of favoritism / cronyism. Budgets for raises and bonuses continue to be cut even though the company has been making record profits each quarter for the last several years. Benefits get slightly worse each year.

    Poor project management, with most project management functions being passed down to the project engineers. No engineering standards for most disciplines.

    Culture has shifted from one of helpful people trying to do their best for the company to one of competitive backstabbing. Engineers are rewarded for what they can communicate to management instead of what they have actually accomplished. Management has little to no idea of what their employees do day-to-day or what their actual accomplishments and contributions are.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat your people well or the good ones will go elsewhere.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 2 people found this helpful  

    Eastman likes to dictate to its employees what their career path shall be and has no true leadership.

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

    I worked at Eastman Chemical full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Some people are truly a joy and privilege to work with. There are also some very smart people who've solved very difficult problems.

    Cons

    Some people do not have the necessary qualifications for their position. There is a lack of communication between business units. Those in leadership roles are weak and the company generally does not accept best practices from outside sources such as professional organizations.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    This company was established in the 1920's and still behaves as a company of that time. The company needs to make a gigantic leap forward to the present with its practices. They don't even conduct exit interviews demonstrating they have no interest in improving or changing. It's also very hard to watch train carload after train carload of coal coming into the plant and knowing what that means to the environment.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3. 2 people found this helpful  

    Why are you wanting to work here? Seriously??

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

    I worked at Eastman Chemical as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Eastman has some perks. Not a lot though since the mantra is "Cut cost at all cost". Budgets have been frozen for the next 3 years and although they are scheduled to hire 300 in the next 3 years, no one has the ability to hire unless they weed out those that are there. Sounds like a double edge sword to me.

    However, it's the only game in town. People are wanting to get into these doors so badly it's unbelievable. Just a note people: there is life outside of Kingsport. Go experience the world.

    Cons

    HR sucks. Comp and benefits need help. Eastman is so busy doing their weeding, they are losing great talent. The acquisition of Solutia has caused changes that won't be healthy in the long run. Those that are either leaving on their own, or have been let go through the numerous reduction in force projects (they have several each year - some voluntary, but most not. Even if voluntary, you're encouraged to leave), are talented people. And you will find that within months, they realize their error, but it's too late. These folks have moved on.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Mr. CEO, do you really know what's going on at the lower levels? HR is being ruined and Finance is losing talent. And Treasury?? I guess the good part is that the businesses are still doing well.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5.  

    Ok

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

    I have been working at Eastman Chemical full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Pays bills, what else do u need?

    Cons

    Not too much to do

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen carefully

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    A company not very open in its culture

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Auditor in Kingsport, TN
    Former Employee - Auditor in Kingsport, TN

    I worked at Eastman Chemical full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    It was lucky to profit from the natural gas boom. Also as a global company, it may provide a lot of opportunities globally.

    Cons

    Close culture. Plenty of politics. Location of its global headquarter. Benefit packages not competitive or motivating.
    One year, due to bad performance, the company had a -3% merit increase for everyone, instead of having the gut to make tough decision and make the business leaner and more competitive.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Move your global headquarter and hire talents according to their strengths.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    A very frustrating place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Middle Management in Kingsport, TN
    Current Employee - Middle Management in Kingsport, TN

    I have been working at Eastman Chemical full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Pay and job security is pretty good in this day and age. The headquarters, and most of the employees reside in a beautiful part of east Tennessee, which is a wonderful place to live. Most employees are very ethical, competent and enjoyable to work with.

    Cons

    If you are not willing to brown nose management, don't expect to ever get promoted.
    Management does not want to hear the truth, they only want to hear what they believe to be true.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Need to treat people right and allow people to have a reasonable work/life balance. There are too many veiled threats and direct threats by management indicating that anyone who disagrees with something or is not willing to work all the time, including vacations, just needs to get out of the way and go somewhere else.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Happy Place

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

    I have been working at Eastman Chemical full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Adjectives that apply: friendly, happy, positive and old fashioned. Confrontation and dissent are discouraged. Processes are king, results are an expectation from following the process. If the results are short of expectations and the process was followed, all is well.

    Cons

    Think 1984's NewSpeak. The entire organization is expected to use the same script. Compliance with expectations and achieving targeted results are not enough, employees are expected to be fully "committed". Problems and failures are not to be discussed - if the process was followed, all is well in spite of the results. Reports to the contrary are suppressed and the dissenter reprimanded as behaving too negatively. One must remember to be friendly at all times. Location in East TN is completely removed from real world.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Eastman has locations around the world, de-emphasize Kingsport; bring in new ideas and fresh blood. Change the culture from indecisive group-think to results orientation and encourage out of the box thinking and dissent.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9.  

    Gone downhill after leaving kodak.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Chemical Plant Operator in Kingsport, TN
    Current Employee - Chemical Plant Operator in Kingsport, TN

    I have been working at Eastman Chemical full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    salary is ok and coworkers are good people.

    Cons

    Benefit package has went downhill for years but will be awful in 2015. Insurance will be ridiculous.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Moral is at an all time low because they only think about themselves and the stockholders. they forget about the employees that make the products. it keeps getting worse for us. they say they appreciate us but their actions show otherwise. its time to start taking better care of the people that are this companys backbone.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10.  

    I had one bad review and I was fired. Prior to that I was perfect.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Operator in Longview, TX
    Former Employee - Operator in Longview, TX

    I worked at Eastman Chemical

    Pros

    Stable company with lots of capital

    Cons

    Management could turn on you in a heart beat.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Not deserving

    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Eastman Chemical Company- Employer from Hell

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Technician in Kingsport, TN
    Former Employee - Technician in Kingsport, TN

    I worked at Eastman Chemical

    Pros

    Eastman Chemical is, unfortunately, the only game in town in Kingsport TN. They are one of the best (and only) large employers in the area, which isn't saying much.

    Cons

    Horrendously inhumane management (they know they have a captive workforce) and poor working conditions make this a company, if at all possible, to avoid. There is a tremendous sense that you are a meaningless pawn if you aren't either management or have a PhD (from the management's chosen schools). The politics of the place are at least as bad as anything on Wall Street, but with a southern flare.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Resign. If not that, you might try listening to your employees, and at the very least, try not to screw your employees first when your profits go down like you generally do.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

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