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Union Pacific Photos
Doesn't RecommendNegative Outlook
- Work/Life Balance
- Culture & Values
- Career Opportunities
- Comp & Benefits
- Senior Management
I have been working at Union Pacific full-time (More than 3 years)
Money is decent when the company has you working. The safety equipment they provide is pretty nice.
I read all the negative reviews before hiring out with UP for the "Train Crew" position, I wish I would have taken them seriously instead of thinking to myself, "well I'm a good employee, that won't happen to me, all I heard during the initial hiring session was 100K a year, they said there's no way I'll get furloughed, you get a lot of vacation, the retirement is amazing, the union is strong"... All lies. The insanely hectic schedule is worth 100K a year, but I've never made more that 40K in a year. You are 24/7/365 on - call, you never know your days off.... good luck scheduling anything. You can call out sick to schedule stuff, but do it too much and you're fired. That type of horrible schedule is worth 100K a year, but you won't be making that. You're not going to start off making a lot of money, It takes like 15 years to get to the 100K mark even though they'll tell you differently. Everyone you know will say that it's a great job and you should take it, but none of them have ever worked for the railroad. I was furloughed (no pay or benefits) four times my first year, I barely made 15K. Most people get a side job to keep them afloat during a furlough, but when the railroad calls you back, you need to start working for them within 30 days or you're fired. Hopefully you can get a decent side gig that won't mind you coming and going as you please, because you'll need it. There are guys with 10 years of seniority that are on the verge of being furloughed, so expect it for a third of your career. The union keeps selling out the new guys so the old guys continue getting hooked up, I seriously doubt it will even be possible to break 100K in the future with how much the union bends over for the company. I got two vacation days for my first year and a half, one week after that. You don't get to choose when you take your vacation, the union decides for you. I think the job is going to get reduced a lot in the future with the implementation of automated equipment. The retirement is okay, but they take out ~15 percent of every pay check, if you put that into an IRA for 30 years you're going to have a good retirement regardless of where you work. If the retirement was so awesome, the old guys would retire, but they don't. The company doesn't match a 401K. Do not make any major purchases for at least 10 years. I know so many guys that lost a house, had their commuter cars (civic, corolla, etc.) repossessed, and were out of health insurance when they needed it most. Basically I would only recommend this job for desperate individuals, train enthusiasts, and people that don't need a consistent pay check or health insurance. The company wants to own your entire life when they need you, and toss you to the curb when they don't. Remember that last statement, because you will be saying that a lot if you accept a job offer for them.
Advice to Management
If you want motivated employees, pay them all year round. Every time I get furloughed and called back to work, I'm less and less motivated to provide any type of quality work. I'm almost inclined to get caught breaking rules so I can collect job insurance instead of being furloughed where I can' t provide for my family. You're going to lose all the new guys you just hired and trained.