Occidental Petroleum

  www.oxy.com
  www.oxy.com

Occidental Petroleum Reviews

Updated November 20, 2014
Updated November 20, 2014
163 Reviews
3.2
163 Reviews
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Occidental Petroleum President & CEO Stephen I. Chazen
Stephen I. Chazen
84 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • 9/80 work schedule is great and they are good at rewarding their employees with time off and company get togethers (in 15 reviews)

  • 9/80 work schedule, no excessive corporate paternalism like some of the other majors (in 25 reviews)


Cons
  • Conservative work environment where only upper management have a say regarding policy (in 13 reviews)

  • Extremely low pay compared to other oil and gas companies (in 6 reviews)

More Highlights

27 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1. 3 people found this helpful  

    Great salary and benefits but terrible culture filled with "mafias" which make it impossible to succeed on merit

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

    I have been working at Occidental Petroleum full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Salary and benefits are wonderful and the 9/80 schedule is great if you work in a department that allows you to actually take the day off.

    Cons

    Facetime required and 9/80 schedule ignored in most offices. The company is filled with "mafias" and failing to recognize the interconnections can be fatal for your career.

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

    Good starter job in the oil & gas industry

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

    I worked at Occidental Petroleum full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Flexible work hours, decent supervisors, company vehicle, somewhat family oriented

    Cons

    Little to no opportunity to advance in career, no clear ethics in West Texas

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen and develop your employees rather than cramming the "shareholder" view down our throats.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 5 people found this helpful  

    Long term commitment to get anywhere with this company.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - IT Consultant in Houston, TX
    Former Employee - IT Consultant in Houston, TX

    I worked at Occidental Petroleum full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    6% matching 401k. Separate retirement account that amounts to about $2500 a year. Higher than average bonus (10-15%; higher if you are one of the "chosen" ones).

    Cons

    Don't let them fool you with their slightly better than average benefits package. They are WAY low on base salary. I know this because I left and got over a 20% raise. It would have taken me between 4 and 5 years more at Oxy to get that type of raise. I'm not the only one. I know of many people who feel the same way. Average raises, year by year, are around 3%. When you start at 50 or 60k, it will take you a very long time to catch up to where you should be.

    The politicking here is crazy. Employees WILL stab you in the back - it happened to me by more than one person. Not only that, but to get anywhere you MUST "do what you're told". If you don't brown nose it's very hard to get anywhere. Managers have their favorites. Oh, and don't get on the "blacklist." If you do you're virtually out of the running to be manager or basically anything other than "IT drone." I can't tell you how many people got their MBA's paid for by Oxy then had to leave because they would not promote them.

    One last thing I want to mention. There is little explanation on why some people get certain benefits and others don't. This includes "project bonuses" as well as extra Stock incentive. They never fully explain, if they even mention these things to you which they probably won't, how you get them. If you don't know about these things then the don't have to give them to you, right?

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I hope the ITIL initiative works out. You're employees moral is very low.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5. 2 people found this helpful  

    Head hits ceiling quick

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Landman in Houston, TX
    Former Employee - Landman in Houston, TX

    I worked at Occidental Petroleum full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good name recognition for future employers, allows for further education

    Cons

    Does not allow you to grow beyond scope of responsibilities. Very negative work environment. Every department I met people were unsatisfied. Low pay

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Don't tell employees that want to grow within the company, that they don't have enough experience when the company is hiring interns above individuals with 3-5 years experience with college degrees. Management from Land Administration would not approve promotions and therefore put a limit on earning potential.

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

    Excellent Company for New Engineers to Gain Experience, Difficult Environment for Experienced Professionals

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

    I have been working at Occidental Petroleum

    Pros

    A lot of opportunities for promotion for young engineers who show drive and leadership skills early on in their career; great benefits and decent compensation; great co-workers.

    Cons

    Too much micro-managing and lack of trust by top management that makes middle-management ineffective; company seems to have difficultly retaining professionals with 10-20 years of experience. Leads to a lot of turnover and instability.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 3 people found this helpful  

    Stressful

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

    I have been working at Occidental Petroleum full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Oxy offers good pay and good benifits. Plus they offer yearly bonuses.

    Cons

    Upper management underminds employees and treats lower level emplyees like red headed step children. HR plays the part but does not have any intrest in helping employess and caters to upper management. With the uncertainty in the upcoming spin off its time to move on to a more stable career oriented company. Get the feeling oxy is playing a smoke and mirrors game.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Quit, go manage a mcdonalds. Im sure your degree will make you feel much more superior.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 3 people found this helpful  

    Unorganized, lack of leadership and growth opportunities

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Lease Records Landman in Houston, TX
    Former Employee - Lease Records Landman in Houston, TX

    I worked at Occidental Petroleum full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    9/80 work schedule, no excessive corporate paternalism like some of the other majors.

    Cons

    Annual bonus is based on corporate performance and not individual effectiveness. Uneven distribution of workload and no clear path for promotion leads to unhappy employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Quit playing favorites; pay competitive salaries and promote based on merit. The best and brightest have left or are leaving because of these issues.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9. 7 people found this helpful  

    The political minefield they call Occidental Petroleum, where it's not about what you know, but who and saying yes.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Professional in Houston, TX
    Current Employee - Professional in Houston, TX

    I have been working at Occidental Petroleum full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Some good people, decent benefits, flexible work schedule as long as you're working 60 hours per week, there aren't any 980's where I live. They have some good folks but are hemorrhaging them right now to others willing to offer more money, better work life balance and who actually pay for performance.

    Cons

    Politics rule promotions, it's not what you know, it's who. Despite their assertion people are not their primary resource, with all of the reorganization and becoming a smaller company means less people, therefore they overwork the people that are there, use the performance review system to beat people down, are obsessed with head count and would rather pay 3 times as much using consultants to get rid of a direct employee. I can't see how spending 3x more money for the convenience of being able to get rid of someone without having to fabricate a case in the performance review system is a benefit to the company. Low morale in most people who have been there a while and are honest. There is no pay for performance, and anyone that says there is just happens to be on the sunny side of the field for now or is a sacrificial anode. Oxy pays for blind obedience, inner circles are filled with yes men asking what's in it for them, you are expected to push the ethics envelope, not visibly of course and if you don't you become a liability or at best someone on the way out.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Do the shareholders know how much money is being wasted on consultants? No. Do you surround yourself with yes men? Yes. Are people really your greatest asset? No. Do you pay for performance? No. You have a number of positional managers, not leaders, but those that rule and sometimes terrorize by position alone. You do not reward leadership or value diversity which includes differing ideas. Ethics are desired but get in the way of the big fish getting what they want, so you stretch the rules a bit to create a double standard that if a regular employee was involved in would get slapped down; enter the yes man, the sacrificial anode, plausible deniability; exit the better employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 8 people found this helpful  

    Actually tell my friends not to even apply to come here

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

    I have been working at Occidental Petroleum full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    If you get to be an expat ( not very easy) your benefits are great

    Cons

    - Currently the perception is that management has no clue what to do with the company, they cut a rig, then two months later ask how much money we need to add a rig, constant business plan changes, never-ending pointless re-orgs !

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Tell us what you want to do and we can do it, but define a path for the employees to follow

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 4 people found this helpful  

    I was told that I wasn't needed anymore, so I started looking elsewhere for a job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - GeoTech in Houston, TX
    Former Employee - GeoTech in Houston, TX

    I worked at Occidental Petroleum full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    -9/80 schedule
    -health benefits seem to be par with industry
    -early career development program (except it seems to be meant only for certain employees, not all early career employees)

    Cons

    -high turnover-I saw more people come and go rather than come and stay in a similar position to mine
    -below average salary
    -selling off assets (or trying to) will further limit career opportunities
    -disconnect between upper and lower level management

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I had been quite unhappy for awhile, but wasn't looking to leave until the company started selling off assets and I was told I was not needed anymore. Be prepared for more employees leaving because of this.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

Occidental Petroleum Photos

Street view of the Occidental Petroleum headquarter office located in Westwood, Los Angeles, CA (Photo by Coolcaesar - available under CC-BY-NC-SA 3.0 & GFDL, v1.118)
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