Naval Surface Warfare Center

www.navsea.navy.mil
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Naval Surface Warfare Center Reviews

Updated April 12, 2015
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3.3
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30 Employee Reviews

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  1. Engineer

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

    I have been working at Naval Surface Warfare Center full-time

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Great place to work. Lots of advancement opportunities. Vast array of projects to support.

    Cons

    Located in small city with no major metropolitan areas within 5 hours. Somewhat of good old boys club mentality.

    Advice to Management

    Keep providing opportunities to young engineers. Show them they have a career path. Dont burn out the new guys and drive them away.

  2. Computer Scientist

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Computer Scientist in Dahlgren, VA
    Current Employee - Computer Scientist in Dahlgren, VA

    I have been working at Naval Surface Warfare Center full-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Amazing pay and great benefits (health care - including vision and dental). Coworkers are all generally pleasant people with their technical capability and quality ranging from amazing to bad. Work atmosphere is laid back and only as stressful as you make it.

    Cons

    NSWC Dahlgren is a great place to work at as long as you do not care about 2 things. 1) Maintaining or improving your technical sharpness/capability. 2) Actually producing a good quality, working product. You should not expect any satisfaction from what you are working on. Bureaucracy, red tape, and "government process" remove most (if not all) innovation, efficiency, and quality. You should expect to use 10-20 year old software development practices and 7+ year old tools and technologies. Project management is unbelievably poor and there is very little responsibility and accountability. High grade promotions are equally part seniority, part who you know, and part qualifications/resume based.

    Advice to Management

    The current work situation is very inviting to employees who just want to show up to work for 8 hours a day and not actually do/produce anything. As a result both the quality of the workforce and moral is degrading at a very rapid rate. Set expectations and deadlines and hold employees accountable. Get project managers with better technical leadership that can make good decisions to promote quality products.

  3. Great benefits but mediocre salary with TONS of red tape.

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Naval Surface Warfare Center

    Pros

    education benefits, most coworkers are dedicated to the mission, a LOT of time off.

    Cons

    salary, management, dead weight, all of the usual red tape you run into with big government

  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. Great Job, Crushing Bureaucracy

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

    I have been working at Naval Surface Warfare Center full-time (More than 5 years)

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    -Coworkers are great (we're all in this together)
    -Flexible work schedule is great
    -Federal health benefits are tough to beat
    -Federal Employee Retirement System (FERS) defined benefit plan
    -Opportunities for paid overtime abound
    -Most branch heads (bosses) are very easy-going and focused on maintaining work/life balance for all employees
    -Management is very accommodating to keep hard working performers happy by moving them to projects and assignments they are more interested in
    -Merit based pay system allows hard work to be rewarded with raises (continuing points) or incentive pay (bonus points)
    -Coming wave of retirement eligible baby-boomers will likely create many openings all around the organization

    Cons

    -Impossible to know how to advance in organization
    -Limited number of high grade positions limits possibility of advancing
    -On-the-spot awards have dried up with government budget issues
    -Pay freezes have stopped cost of living adjustments for last 5 years
    -New requirements, processes and paperwork have made purchasing ANYTHING an unholy nightmare
    -Whenever a deficiency is discovered in a process, the solution is ANOTHER process
    -Announcements for high grade positions are written with a specific person in mind
    -At times the day to day activities focus more on compliance with procedures and processes than with accomplishing the Mission of the Navy
    -Federal workers seem to be in the crosshairs for budget cuts

  6. Good but it could be better

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

    I have been working at Naval Surface Warfare Center full-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Great benefits, work/life balance. The commute is easy.

    Cons

    Underpaid for amount of work/responsibilities. Too much bureaucracy. Limited promotional potential. Big old boy culture/mentality.

    Advice to Management

    Start promoting energetic employees with the experience/desire to fulfill high value positions.

  7. Helpful (1)

    Mechanical Engineer

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

    I have been working at Naval Surface Warfare Center full-time (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Recommends

    Pros

    Flex time, vacation/sick time based on seniority - 6 weeks vacation after 3 yrs. Good pay. Interesting work. Get to help the Navy. Stable employment. There are a lot of good people working there, who care about getting things right and helping the Navy succeed. Can learn a lot from the folks who have been working there, if you take the initiative and seek out mentors.

    Cons

    Limited advancement if you don't want to be in management. Bureaucracy. Takes forever to get things approved/implemented. Dependent on Congress/Federal Gov't to get their act together on the budget. Cost of living increases dependent on Congress/politics. Weak "formal" mentoring program.

    Advice to Management

    Need strong mentoring program. Love the flex time.

  8. Great Internship opportunity for patent lawyers.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Intern - Patent Extern
    Current Intern - Patent Extern

    I have been working at Naval Surface Warfare Center as an intern (Less than a year)

    Recommends
    Recommends

    Pros

    Outstanding work experience. Hands on patent prosecution experience of highly technical and innovative patents. Staff is great to work with and very eager to teach and mentor.

    Cons

    A lot of teleconferencing and not much face to face time with your immediate supervisors.

  9. Stable workplace

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

    I have been working at Naval Surface Warfare Center full-time

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Stable, with few layoffs. Good work-life balance.

    Cons

    Difficult to stand out. Little knowledge of work impact.

    Advice to Management

    Design decisions should come from bottom-level people, less from management.

  10. Not bad, but there is better out there...

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

    I have been working at Naval Surface Warfare Center full-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Great Benefits & Job Stability

    Cons

    Stagnant, poor leadership .....

  11. Contract Specialist

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Contract Specialist in Panama City, FL
    Current Employee - Contract Specialist in Panama City, FL

    I have been working at Naval Surface Warfare Center full-time (More than 5 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    The job provides a good salary.

    Cons

    The job is working for the government.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to your employees

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