HNTB Companies

www.hntb.com

HNTB Companies Reviews

Updated December 29, 2014
Updated December 29, 2014
172 Reviews
2.9
172 Reviews
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HNTB Companies Executive Chairman, HNTB Holdings Harvey K. Hammond Jr.
Harvey K. Hammond Jr.
87 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Good benefits (Healthcare, 401K plan) and good diversity of work (in 15 reviews)

  • Salary and benefits are excellent, but justify how they treat staff (in 5 reviews)


Cons
  • Upper management on the Board is pretty far removed from project managers who deliver the work (in 17 reviews)

  • The work-life balance doesn't exist (in 6 reviews)

More Highlights

43 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1. 4 people found this helpful  

    HNTB used to be a good, sometimes great, company. Today they are no better, sometimes worse, than their competitors.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Vice President in Kansas City, MO
    Former Employee - Vice President in Kansas City, MO

    I worked at HNTB Companies full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Compensation and office space is better than most competitors. Legacy relationships with clients and senior staff that are holding on keeps the company afloat. Still a strong civil firm if you are a civil engineer. Brand is still strong.

    Cons

    Execs have made several poor strategic decisions over the past 5+ years. Jumped into the Federal market years after competitors made their play - and now that business unit is already gone. Current design / build initiative has no solid leadership. Legacy clients and business are often ignored due to the current 'next big thing' investment mindset. Company micro manages time on job to a level that distracts staff from focusing on projects / clients. HR leadership manages the staff like a minimum wage workforce.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Position the company for a better future on your way out. Look outside your closed ranks for new ideas. Ask the younger leadership and staff for their opinion - and assign value to it. HNTB was built on big dreams - from time to time, really listen to the dreamers in the employee ranks.

    Target new verticals and new opinions, but don't forget what made HNTB - long term client and employee loyalty. Appoint someone to the executive ranks that looks/talks/thinks different than you. Stop laying off the young staff - invest in building a future pipeline.

    Most of the troops would settle for <10% annual returns in exchange for a better quality of life and an opportunity to deliver a project the right way. Salary doesn't guarantee loyalty. Stock returns don't guarantee happiness. Taking pride in one's work and having a reason to go to work everyday does.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 7 people found this helpful  

    Great Company IF YOU'RE A ELDERLY WHITE Guy! Otherwise, forget moving up.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Project Manager in Kansas City, MO
    Current Employee - Senior Project Manager in Kansas City, MO

    I have been working at HNTB Companies

    Pros

    HNTB is fairly close to my home. Parking is pretty good for a company located near downtown KC.
    Oh and the receptionist is very nice.

    Cons

    HNTB is the least diverse employer I have ever had the honor of working for. From Harvey to three levels below him... all employees are elderly white guys. This is not an exaggeration, this is not hyperbole... There is a cast iron ceiling at this company.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Either evolve to reflect the American population or PLEASE FOR THE SAKE OF HNTB'S FUTURE... RETIRE! There is great talent that you look down upon, explore elevating some of this talent to look across from you... or go the way of the dinosaurs.

    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 4 people found this helpful  

    Very good until the last few years

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

    I worked at HNTB Companies

    Pros

    I spent my formative professional years at this company. I got to cut my teeth on some great projects and work with some great people. I left the company with plenty of good take-aways and will always reflect on the excellent peers, devoted staff, and sometimes excellent leadership. Pay was always above average and recognition was high for many years.

    Cons

    This all changed in the past few years. As annual sales were sent over $1B, the taste for continued growth and success outweighed the need to maintain a pleasant work environment. Excessive incentives promoted cronyism and overall bad behaviors. Unfortunately more and more of the bad characters got promoted up the chain. It's too bad because the good ones end up leaving and continue the devaluation of the once prime A/E firm.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Let up a little on TOJ. Some of your greatest leaders have left - feeling the pressure of the need for billable hours - or were let go. Remember that your future leadership needs continued vision, creativity and insight. If you continue to penalize the low-billable, you will be left merely with the mechanics of a sweatshop - commoditizion at it's highest.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 4 people found this helpful  

    Throw the bums out

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Kansas City, MO
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Kansas City, MO

    I have been working at HNTB Companies

    Pros

    My co-workers are some of the brightest and most competent people, and are a pleasure to work with. Low- and middle- managers seem to recognize individual value.

    Cons

    Much of senior and sub-senior "leadership" is a serious threat to company viability. There is an extreme drought of company vision. At the very top, sure there is vision: 'make money'. Execution of that vision is extremely lacking, despite the best efforts of some sub-seniors who have the genuine interests of the company and its employees in mind. And that is the truly sad part - there are some extremely qualified and talented individuals in leadership that are thwarted by either competing political idealogies or an arrogant ignorance and lack of willingness to truly listen. It is terribly frustrating for those of us who are passionate about company success to see our *good* leaders be prevented from making meaningful, long-overdue changes. The only solution that I can see is for those senior leaders who have lost touch to leave. They are truly burying this otherwise excellent company. As an long-time employee, it genuinely depresses me to watch the degredation, and it is hard to imagine trying to outlast those who need to leave in order to enjoy a 'better day' at this company.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Please, please, please get with the program. Learn to differentiate between quality leaders by measuring their performance in terms other than earnings/sales numbers. You will lose excellent people, and worse (for you, not them), they will join your competitors...probably with a passion to bury you in their new company's success.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 2 people found this helpful  

    Level of bureaucracy in this organization rivals the US government

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

    I worked at HNTB Companies

    Pros

    Good benefits, free lunches, specified responsibilities of well-defined roles, job security (in the proposal management role), intelligent (sometimes brilliant) coworkers, comfortable amenities for your workspace

    Cons

    Picture yourself working at a company in the year 1950, and you've got HNTB. Regardless of your department, this is a company that loves rigid processes, multi-level approval structures, and matrixes. The highest levels of this company are old men who are extremely resistant to change, and this filters down through the company.

    This means hundreds of hours every year of wasted time for employees who need to find information, get something done, or make a decision (because you have to get 5 levels of approval to push even a small decision through, leading to pointless meetings that last hours). Processes are rigid, even in special cases that demand flexibility. Requirement to take a Blackberry and a laptop at the start of your employment guarantees that you will be overworked because you never have an excuse for not getting something done. Unless you are in management, there are no bonus incentives for good performance.

    Can't recommend this company for the long term employee who wants to stick around, but if you're in a bind and you have no other place to go in a bad economy, you'll be able to handle about a year and a half before you start to pull apart at the seams.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop buying $1000+ lunches and give the dollar equivalents to your employees in bonuses. Restructure departments to eliminate unnecessary approval processes. Train management to practice positive reinforcement instead of cracking down on people whenever they make small mistakes. Increase your raises to retain employees. Eliminate redundant members of management. Buy established industry software instead of developing crappy internal proprietary software that doesn't work (this will save you money and eliminate hundreds of hours of employees' wasted time).

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    Company has evolved from great place to work to a sweat shop focused on pushing ESOP price.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Civil Engineering in Kansas City, MO
    Current Employee - Civil Engineering in Kansas City, MO

    I have been working at HNTB Companies

    Pros

    Good place to learn ropes and network with clients and other engineering sub-consultants

    Opportunity to work on diverse and large mega trasnportation projects

    Cons

    Company is way conservative in business practices and is extremely averse to risk.

    HNTB tried to play in the federal market sandbox and it did not turn out well since they would not open offices overseas (except for Guam which is not really a true office) and did not understand how to perform work for Federal govt in an efficient manner.

    Board of Directors is only concerned about pushing ESOP stock price higher. Board of Directors is setting up golden parachutes for the senior management and little guys will be left holding the bag.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    HNTB is in danger of becoming a mom & pop engineering shop while the Walmarts, Kmarts, and Targets (Engineering company giants) of the world continue to grow. The Boards inactions and refusal to commit to becoming an international player will in the end doom the company to mediocrity.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    "wild and crazy"

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - SiteManager Data Coordinator in Fort Benning, GA
    Current Employee - SiteManager Data Coordinator in Fort Benning, GA

    I have been working at HNTB Companies

    Pros

    Great pool of YOUNG smart people
    Great short term benefits
    Lots of interesting people
    Great at building bridges
    Great PR

    Cons

    Management listens to who talks the loudest
    Can't get anything done too much red tape
    Decisions based on the politics not performance
    Management refuses to cancel projects that are not promising
    HNTB Federal has to many oxygen thief’s retired military with no skills

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Throw the towel in on HNTB Federal and BASE4D

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

    3

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

    I have been working at HNTB Companies

    Pros

    I loved the team spirit in my technical department but the office management was totally cut of from regular employees.

    Cons

    I new college graduate I was not given the opportunity to grow and learn more. I was given only basic task.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I would recommend them to get more in touch with the employee and also to diversify the project you seek. Going after big project might be lucrative but you are putting all eggs in the same basket.

    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    HNTB Federal was a Terrible Idea

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

    I worked at HNTB Companies

    Pros

    Handpicked Leadership
    New DC Office
    Intern Program
    Marketing and Business Development
    Dedicated Staff

    Cons

    HNTB Federal
    Trusting HNTB Companies
    Lack of C -level leadership @ HNTB Architecture

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Companies are investing heavily just to have a piece of the Federal market. HNTB Architecture had key projects, key contracts, national partners and a relevant nationwide Design Build portfolio. It's all gone. When they created a Federal subsidiary, it was doomed to fail; firing all key staff and losing all client confidence.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  11.  

    HNTB - lacking a serious growth focus

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

    I worked at HNTB Companies

    Pros

    transportation is their only service sector

    Cons

    no interaction between levels of organization

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Sr. Managers seldom interact with employees

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

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