A123 Systems

www.a123systems.com

A123 Systems Reviews

Updated January 5, 2015
Updated January 5, 2015
59 Reviews
2.1
59 Reviews
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Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Jason Forcier
8 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Get paid while you are not doing that mich work, good benefits (in 5 reviews)

  • a lot of nice and smart people, at least used to be (in 5 reviews)


Cons
  • The top management team is interested in Wall street and their golden parachute only (in 4 reviews)

  • lots of bad decisions by management that led to lots of wasted time/money; lack of communication; no sense of direction or plansfor improve (in 3 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 3 people found this helpful  

    Dying Business with Unethical Management

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Electrical Engineer in Livonia, MI
    Former Employee - Electrical Engineer in Livonia, MI

    I worked at A123 Systems (more than a year)

    Pros

    A123 will hire anyone, as they are desperate - they will pay good, just to have warm bodies in the place. Only real requirement is that you have to be willing to train your replacement (who is more than likely Chinese).

    Cons

    A123 will hire anyone, as they are desperate - they will pay good, just to have warm bodies in the place. Only real requirement is that you have to be willing to train your replacement (who is more than likely Chinese). Working here is more of a short-term job, as everything seems to be moving over to China . The management team seems to be clueless and morally bankrupt. Management team does not yet understand the importance of a competent, loyal workforce.

    This place has one of the worst management to employee ratio i have ever seen. Also there are a lot of contract workers with no clue after massive amounts of attrition. Most of the qualified rank and file has already left, and the ones remaining are packing it up. Frustration with CEO, and top management has been bad for awhile and continues to worsen with bad decisions and no true leadership, just BS.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Step aside. The only ones to blame are the ones who are making all the bad business decisions. Let Wanxiang know, that they had been fooled. Let a new team with better understanding of the product and better appreciation of the company's take things to the next level.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 2 people found this helpful  

    Un-enriching Experience

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

    I have been working at A123 Systems full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Challenging work environment. You will learn a lot because you'll be doing 5 people's jobs at once.

    Cons

    Not what I had hoped for. Very poor benefits as of September 2013. Employees that are left are just "skating" by doing minimal work. Extremely poor attitudes all around. No incentives for current employees to stay and no incentives for new employees to come to A123.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3. 2 people found this helpful  

    Failed management team that lacks ethics, direction and ability to lead. Continue to lose customers and employees.

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

    I have been working at A123 Systems full-time

    Pros

    Technology is new and interesting. Some good employees left, but they are all looking working on exit strategy. Lack of management allows employees to work on resumes during work hours during ultra-flex hours.

    Cons

    Company is in process of transferring technology and manufacturing oversees to China. Attrition has been ongoing before and since bankruptcy with no active plan for retainment. Poor management has accelerated this bleed out, and has produced zero new business, while losing customers in the process. Reduced benefits, zero perks, deteriorating office culture will not attract good employees, if any. This is painfully apparent, as completing projects are increasing more difficult to complete, due to lack of support from other departments.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You have failed in all aspects in your role, despite however you try to spin it. Own up to it, acknowledge your failure and look to the employees to truly support a renewed effort to turn the ship. Alternatively, step aside and allow another team to make something of the company.

    But if you are planning on gutting out the company to transfer IP, technology, manufacturing, profit and jobs to China, by all means, carry on and keep the course steady!

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

    A company that is bleeding money after the government gift grants ran out.

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

    I worked at A123 Systems as a contractor (less than a year)

    Pros

    There are not many things good going on at this company. I cannot think of any positives here other than.........Nope, not a thing.

    Cons

    This place is horribly managed and bleeding money. They only hire new employees on contract with false promises to hire directly. Then proceed to treat the contractors with zero respect like they are a lower life form. Then they get rid of the employee before the 6 months are up. It is a revolving door of employees. They removed most employee perks, coffee, filtered water, including taking out every other light from the office to save money, Then completely shut down the 3rd floor to save on heating in both locations. The local Livonia IT desk-side department is a nightmare. They are the nastiest, meanest help desks techs I've ever worked with in my life. They use the F word describing a user to their face. Lies and backstabbing is what this department is about. They come and go as they please, I've also never seen a helpdesk that requires a user to drive their 50 pound desktop from one location to where the desk-side techs sit in order to get service. Most IT departments, go to the user, this department will not leave their seats. These people are very hypocritical, dishonest and delusional. The department budgets are non existent and most hardware is old out of warranty junk.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Consider getting rid of the people who have been there throughout the bankruptcy, they continue to bring the negative moral around to new employees. I can see this company going under totally within the next year or so.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    Employee Experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Quality in Livonia, MI
    Former Employee - Quality in Livonia, MI

    I worked at A123 Systems full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Flexible hours weekly helped quality of life outside of work allowed me to schedule around activities.
    Very nice place to work ...everyone worked well together

    Cons

    The company had to downsize which resulted in layoffs

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Always remember to incorporate all different levels of employees when decision making

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    Poorly Manage Company

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

    I worked at A123 Systems full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Most of the people there were easy to work with.

    Cons

    This company was poorly manage.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    None

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    This company could be a great place to work when/if it becomes profitable.

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

    I have been working at A123 Systems full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    The interesting technology at A123, from both the product perspective and the manufacturing perspective, draws many talented people to work there. It has a physically pleasant working environment, as far as manufacturing plants go. There is no union, and most of the staff is easy to work with.

    Cons

    The Li-ion battery cell business has not yet reached it's projected profitability levels. (thus the recent bankruptcy) This has led to substantial employee turn-over over the past year.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    A123 Systems

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

    I worked at A123 Systems

    Pros

    Extremely intelligent people with cutting edge technology that had the potential to change the electric car industry in the United States.

    Cons

    The company failed to execute at the operational level. The company became too fragmented between the operations in Michigan and the R&D in Massaschusetts.

  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    One of the worst to work for

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

    I have been working at A123 Systems full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good Technology !!! but technologist adamant and not receptive to ideas

    Cons

    Nothing else. Directors and above treat engineers as peons. Total lack of appreciation.
    Always put people on defense while presenting work. Get bogged down minute details to prove superiority. No team spirit always on the computer attending meetings with the same group of people. No communication to the team . Directors act as jerks

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Open up. Encourage employees. Give freedom and appreciate

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great technology, screwed up management

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Engineer in Westborough, MA
    Former Employee - Engineer in Westborough, MA

    I worked at A123 Systems full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Fantastic cell technology, cutting edge applications, can be very exciting work. Good pay.

    Cons

    Bloated management structure - way too many chiefs and far too few Indians. Benefits going downhill. Egos rule, and extremely political climate there. Your ideas and work are entirely judged on how much the managers like you rather than their merits (it wasn't always that way there). Turning into a "culture of blame" as things spiral downhill

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Step aside, you can find good work elsewhere, let others in who will give this technology a chance. Stop blaming the worker bees because after years of failures where you ignored their advice, and had great talent leave, the only remaining conclusion is that the problem is with you.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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