US Department of Defense Reviews

Updated July 8, 2015
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US Department of Defense Secretary of Defense Ash Carter
Ash Carter
0 Ratings

Pros
  • work life balance is exceptional (in 27 reviews)

  • you will have great job security (in 48 reviews)

Cons
  • Very long hours and work never changes (in 29 reviews)

  • Salary is lower than private sector, system can be very rigid at times, but usually ok (in 17 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

45 Employee Reviews

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  1. Horrible

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

    I have been working at US Department of Defense full-time

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

    Pros

    Great time off, it is easy to accrue sick leave and vacation time. All of federal holidays off. Set shift with flexibility

    Cons

    Your a number and that is it. They don't care about your personal well being or anything else. You just have to show no accountability at all.

    Advice to Management

    Stop micro-managing, let your employees work and promote the good ones. Make your employees feel like they are worth somehting


  2. Helpful (2)

    Retention Problems

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Applied Research Mathematician in Baltimore, MD
    Current Employee - Applied Research Mathematician in Baltimore, MD

    I have been working at US Department of Defense full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Work/Life balance: the flexibility to work whenever is great (minus the fact that the parking situation at my specific organization effectively prevents us from actually taking advantage of this flexibility). Also, 40 hour work weeks are fantastic.

    Cons

    Some of the claimed "benefits" of working for the government end up not being very beneficial. The education program in my organization has inconsistent acceptances, is extremely slow to process payments, and ends up costing the employee about 35% in taxes out of pure laziness on the government's side. The travel situation is bad- not only is it difficult to get approved to travel for training and skill enrichment (necessary in the STEM skill field), but getting reimbursed for that approved travel usually feels like pulling teeth. The organization as a whole is too big. This means there is very little actual change and what there is takes place very slowly. This also means that while the mission is very important, people get in the way and there are organizations that are too far from that mission to impact it, leading to low morale amongst some people in those offices. Promotions and Bonuses are a joke- enjoy waiting six months after submitting your paperwork to find out that you haven't "been in grade" long enough, when that isn't even a criteria. The technology sucks, the food and IT service contracts are ridiculous, the so-called stability of a government job was blown out of the water with furlough, and Congress is slowly taking away what small benefits remain for government workers. There are plenty of other things that grind my gears (and those of my coworkers) on a daily, if not hourly, basis, but they basically boil down to there being many opportunities for change, but nothing big enough to move the monolith that is the government to do anything about it.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to your employees. Stop surveying and start doing. Slim down your organizations and start focusing on what needs to be done. Don't just follow policy because it is there- fight the policy that is stupid and prevents you from really taking care of your workforce. Quit with the "no" mindset.


  3. NATO Advisor

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

    I worked at US Department of Defense full-time

    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    A lot of clout to accomplish goals of engagement and unfluence coalition and NATO forces. Usually with good intention.

    Cons

    Good intention is often misguided by Politicians and officials who have no clear understanding of the idiocyncracies of local culture and cultural standards and acceptability.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to the advice of the boots you have on the ground.


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  5. A lot of people hired that are not qualified.

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at US Department of Defense full-time

    Pros

    Good leave package. There are very good health benefit options.

    Cons

    Little to no room for advancement. Managers seem as though they could care less about the little guys.

    Advice to Management

    Appreciate the people at the bottom that make people at the top look good.


  6. Limited movement, unless one is a minority or veteran.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Education Counselor in Tacoma, WA
    Former Employee - Education Counselor in Tacoma, WA

    I worked at US Department of Defense

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Good benefits and competitive pay

    Cons

    Limited mobility. Unable to maintain a job, even if well qualified, unless person has veteran status. I was unable to serve in the military due to vision, but I was unable to compete for a job I had for four years because I did not have veteran status. A veteran with minimum qualifications will beat a current employee, who is not a vet, with maximum qualifications

    Advice to Management

    It would be best to hire the best person for the job and not simply hire a veteran. I understand the push for employing veterans, but sending a productive employee with four years of excellent reviews to unemployment to replace them with a veteran who has not had any experience in the field may not be best for the office environment.


  7. It can better after major organizational cleanup.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Administrative Technician in San Antonio, TX
    Current Employee - Administrative Technician in San Antonio, TX

    I have been working at US Department of Defense full-time (More than 10 years)

    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Depends on the mission & the vision of the DOD organization. Some organizations are not about tanks & guns; though do have a meaningful purpose such as helping others when disaster occurs and educating others.

    Cons

    Not what it used to be. It's all about who you know now days.

    Advice to Management

    It's not all about priority placement employees. It's also about tenure & educated employees that given many years of loyalty too.


  8. Decreasing benefits and poor management

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

    I have been working at US Department of Defense

    Neutral Outlook
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    job stability - Other than a few govt shut downs it's a steady job. Decent pay for some locations Wide selection of health insurance plans to pick from

    Cons

    -Old pay structure from the 60's means STEM fields lack pay. -Really bad good old boy system. Count on some military officer retiring and taking the next spot on the career ladder above you. -red tape is thick.

    Advice to Management

    revamp the paytables, change travel and conference policies.


  9. Ok, not bad

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Analyst in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Analyst in Washington, DC

    I have been working at US Department of Defense

    Pros

    Salary is good, lots of travel opportunites

    Cons

    Micromanagement is bad and sever from management

    Advice to Management

    Stop micromanaging and let employees be profesionals


  10. Helpful (1)

    Defense Media Activity

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Section Manager in Fort Meade, MD
    Former Employee - Section Manager in Fort Meade, MD

    I worked at US Department of Defense full-time (More than 3 years)

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

    Pros

    -Comprehensive benefits for federal employees, -Flex schedule offers one day off every other week, -Located between DC and Baltimore, -New building Defense Media Activity is a media organization that produces audio, audiovisual, print, photography and graphics products for an internal DOD audience. DMA employs military personnel, federal employees and federal contractors.

    Cons

    -Everything moves at a turtle's pace, -Politics and territoriality thwart progress and innovation, -Shaky future with shrinking budget, -Lack of cohesive vision and teamwork

    Advice to Management

    -Enable, promote, sustain and reward innovation, -Shake it up, things are clogged in the middle, -Workforce is bored; create big projects, -Turn off the lights! The whole building is lit 24/7


  11. Dead end, overrated

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

    I have been working at US Department of Defense full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Steady income, decent benefits, consistent

    Cons

    No room for growth, stagnant work envirnment

    Advice to Management

    Recognize hard work



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