US Patent and Trademark Office
3.4 of 5 125 reviews
www.uspto.gov Alexandria, VA 5000+ Employees

US Patent and Trademark Office Reviews in Washington, DC

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3.3 94 reviews

                             

89% Approve of the CEO

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Teresa Stanek Rea

(9 ratings)

59% of employees recommend this company to a friend
16 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews
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2 people found this helpful  

Good experience overall

Patent Examiner (Former Employee)
Alexandria, VA

I worked at US Patent and Trademark Office full-time for less than a year

ProsThe USPTO has a lot of great benefits. The flexible schedules, vacation time, and bonus structure all make it a pretty good place to work in general. The office also gets its funding from fees, so as you could see from the shutdown, people were still able to work.

ConsIf you are a person that thrives in working in groups, this is not the place for you. If you like working on different types of projects, this is not for you. You will spend most of your time on your own, looking at applications and talking with attorneys. It's pretty much what you do 95% of the time.

Advice to Senior ManagementContinue to update the workforce on changes upcoming - with AIA on the horizon a lot is about to change.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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1 person found this helpful  

Tough performance req. for employees to remain outstanding each year, but some say possible if unpaid time is worked.

Attorney-Advisor (Current Employee)
Alexandria, VA

I have been working at US Patent and Trademark Office full-time for more than 10 years

ProsBest telework plan in the government. Best workforce in the government. Best political appointees and upper management in government, except as described below.

ConsGroup directors and law office managers seem at complete odds on practice and procedure and employee relations. For employees, it is like being the child at a dinner table where your parents are arguing about getting divorced. That uneasy feeling? That is how it feels in meetings with Group directors and law office managers.

Advice to Senior ManagementGet along and listen to each other and your employees

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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3 people found this helpful  

Pretty easy, but dull work.

Junior Patent Examiner (Former Employee)
Alexandria, VA

I worked at US Patent and Trademark Office

ProsThe work is pretty easy so if you know how to do it, it is a pretty easy job with regular salary increases as long as you meet production.

ConsThe work is bland, as you pretty much are doing more or less the same thing every day, so that can get boring.

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2 people found this helpful  

it's a bit slow and there's never anyone around the office...kinda boring...slow work

Program Analyst (Current Employee)
Alexandria, VA

I have been working at US Patent and Trademark Office

Prosbenefit of govt employment is good. however, they haven't come through with helping my continuing education and the work is only ok...

Consmost people work at home. that's great for them...but some like to come into the office to others...just isn't the place for that

Advice to Senior Managementthey need to plan better. things need to have a true benefit...don't just put something on the schedule...funding it with millions of dollars...when it really results in minor, if any, improvement.

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5 people found this helpful  

Three words: production, production, production.

Patent Examiner (Current Employee)
Alexandria, VA

I have been working at US Patent and Trademark Office

ProsGreat benefit, very flexible working schedule, high salary

ConsThis is not your typical easy to do government job. It all comes down to production, forget about what your Supervisor say about quality and customer satisfication. I heard many stories from other examiners that the only time people get fired is because people couldn't meet the production. Of course, production varies depending on which art you are examining, some are easy, some are hard, so opinion can vary depending on 2 things: Type of art you are examining and your supervisor.

If you are planning to become patent attorney, it is good to work at PTO for a year or 2, as many legal office love people with PTO experience. However, if you plan to go back to the engineering industry, it is better to leave sooner than later, since the skill you learned from the PTO will most likely not appreciated by the engineering industry.

Advice to Senior ManagementCompare to other patent office around the world, we are working way too hard. It would be great if we move to the european system. Also, abandoned case that gets revived should have a different count system.

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Good to get perspective on IT technologies, but limited career opportunities

IT Specialist (Former Employee)
Alexandria, VA

I worked at US Patent and Trademark Office

ProsFlexible job schedule, modern facilities. Opportunity to be exposed to cutting edge technologies.

ConsLimited career growth unless you start at a higher career track. Significant presence of contractors and consultants. IT projects and programs are process/procedural intensive, limited flexibility for agile development of IT programs and initiatives.

Advice to Senior ManagementProvide opportunities such as detail assignments to encourage, enrich and provide diversified skills to government workforce. Look for areas where it is more cost-effective for government employees to perform tasks instead of contractors.

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Good place to work if you're suited for this type of job

Patent Examiner (Former Employee)
Alexandria, VA

I worked at US Patent and Trademark Office

ProsFleixibile hours and work schedule
Independence, you are the master of your work and success
You know what you need to do to get your job done

ConsRepetitive work
Limited opportunities for advancement

Advice to Senior ManagementMore feedback , training and involvement with Examiners

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Patent Examiner

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Alexandria, VA

I have been working at US Patent and Trademark Office

Pros- Flexible schedule
- Good benefits
- Decent salary

Cons- The work is boring and tedious
- The workload can be unreasonable at times

Advice to Senior ManagementThere is not enough of a focus on the numbers. Management should focus more on production or backlog. Focus less on quality, or morale and retention.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Good place to learn

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
Alexandria, VA

I worked at US Patent and Trademark Office

ProsLayed back, good salary, nice benifits

ConsAlways recognized for the bad and never for the good (a "good job" every once and a while would be encouraging).

Advice to Senior ManagementNotice what people do to make your job easier.

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Good Pay, Bad Work

Patent Examiner (Current Employee)
Alexandria, VA

I have been working at US Patent and Trademark Office

ProsGreat pay with almost automatic non-competitive advancement if goals are met. Flexible hours and the ability to work at home when at higher GS levels. Government benefits always a plus.

ConsThe work is stressful, boring, and inconsistent. You have a certain amount of hours to examine each case regardless of how hard it actually is. If you want to allow an application but your boss disagrees, be prepared to work extra hours and make a bad rejection. Management makes quick decisions on allowability based only on glancing at the claims in a case. The general mindset that training instills is that every case you allow is a failure on your part.

Advice to Senior ManagementStress consistency in supervisor's decisions. Supervisor's also need to suggest calling attorneys and trying to Examiner Amend to get cases allowed. The new changes implemented by Kappos are a step in the right direction, but more is required.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at US Patent and Trademark Office reviews and ratings in Washington, DC — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for US Patent and Trademark Office CEO Teresa Stanek Rea. All 16 reviews posted anonymously by US Patent and Trademark Office employees.