Naval Surface Warfare Center

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

Updated January 20, 2015
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Pros
  • A big plus is that work-life balance is excellent, flex-time and teleworking is encouraged (in 4 reviews)

  • This place has very good benefits (in 3 reviews)

Cons
  • Big Navy, big government equals red tape (in 2 reviews)

  • This is a federal government organization (in 2 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

14 Employee Reviews

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  1. 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


  2. Helpful (1)

    Great Job, Crushing Bureaucracy

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    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


  3. Helpful (1)

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

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    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 .....


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  5. Helpful (1)

    Good salary and benefits but declining technically

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

    I worked at Naval Surface Warfare Center full-time

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

    Pros

    The salary is high, esp. if you spend many years here. The benefits are adequate, and some of them are great (e.g., the amount of leave you get). It is a stable job.

    Cons

    This organization has a very extended bureaucracy designed to prevent engineers and scientists from doing their jobs.

    Advice to Management

    Get your organization out from under NAVSEA, and start creating a culture that centers on technical personnel and innovative work.


  6. Helpful (1)

    A Mixed Bag

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

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

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

    Pros

    Used to be a center of innovation
    Good vacation benefits
    Flexible work schedules
    Job security
    Health insurance

    Cons

    Innovation is being stifled
    Too many hurtles created against doing real technical work
    "We want to do that, but there isn't a process for it."
    Technical innovation takes a far back seat to electron pushing
    Bureaucracy has become horrific, especially over the last 5 years
    Local management is impotent
    Corporate management completely detached from needs of workers
    Technical people aren't considered as important as programmatic types
    No real technical career ladder
    Research has been almost been eliminated - farmed out to universities and contractors
    Horrible IT policies and capabilities - practically impossible to install newer software or develop it

    Advice to Management

    Corporate: let local managers manage. Give them authority and let them be responsible.
    Drop all the processes and focus on good people - they will create the necessary processes if needed
    Remind yourself every day that the mission is about the sailors and the marines and giving them superior technology to prevail in their mission - not about having a process and boxes checked in a spread sheet or on a web site


  7. Provides unique opportunities to explore some exciting technologies.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    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
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Ability to serve the fleet and the sailor
    Job stability
    Flexible work hours
    Leave and benefits
    Education Opportunities

    Cons

    Pay
    Advancement based on time not performance
    High performers rarely rewarded and rewards are minimal
    Managers lack training and knowledge
    Lots of dead weight and low performers due to antiquated policies

    Advice to Management

    Hire managers instead of promoting engineers, change policies to get rid of dead weight and reward high performers.


  8. Helpful (2)

    Decent for starting a career but doesn't offer much afterwards

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

    I have been working at Naval Surface Warfare Center full-time (More than 3 years)

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

    Pros

    This place has very good benefits. You have lots of vacation and sick leave available. Also you do get a pension which is becoming a lot less common in industry. Lots of good experience and projects that are available to work on. Job is highly stable and secure. Salary starting to mid-level is pretty decent. Environment tends to be fairly relaxed. Benefit of training under many experience senior engineers. Moving up at this organization is a really good deal if you have the opportunity.

    Cons

    Once you reach a certain level it is very difficult to get promoted into higher level jobs. Most of the time promotions are based on how chummy you are with management and acceleration often has little to do with performance. Even then acceleration is still fairly slow. It is expected that young employees with drive and skill will work here a few years and then look somewhere else. Here there are a higher percentage of people who take advantage of the system and get away with things they are not supposed to do.

    Advice to Management

    Address all items mentioned in the cons. They bring the organization down. Reward employees more for performance by offering more acceleration. Take better care of your employees because we work hard for you.


  9. Helpful (1)

    Internship opened eyes to level of project management vs research.

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Naval Surface Warfare Center

    Pros

    Flex time is available.
    Travel opportunities.
    Campus is really rather nice with cafeteria.
    Usual government benefits.
    Diversity of age of employees.

    Cons

    My eyes were opened during my time here to high level of project management in government positions. I was hired to help solve challenging new problems but most of the people I worked with just managed contractors.


  10. Helpful (1)

    Not good place to start career

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

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

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

    Pros

    Like any Federal Jobs, good benefit...

    Cons

    Not much advancement opportunities, inconsistent management, not enough work.


  11. Okay, but tough to get advancements and awards.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Logistics in Crane, IN
    Former Employee - Logistics in Crane, IN

    I worked at Naval Surface Warfare Center full-time (More than 10 years)

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

    Pros

    Great benefits and decent pay as a starter.

    Cons

    Long drive from any town or city.

    Advice to Management

    Need less politics and more recognition for hard/good work.



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