Alcoa Reviews

Updated March 28, 2015
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3.4
240 Reviews
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Alcoa Chairman and CEO Klaus Kleinfeld
Klaus Kleinfeld
122 Ratings

Pros
  • Great lifestyle - one of the few corporates that truly value work-life balance (in 12 reviews)

  • Good benefits, although they were better at one time (changed to be more "competitive") (in 14 reviews)

Cons
  • No work/life balance, no idea of what it takes to advance (everything is secretive) (in 12 reviews)

  • Senior management talks a good talk, but regularly policies don't reconcile with the values they claim to promote (in 8 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

Employee Reviews

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  1. High turn over rate

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - General Laborer in Cleveland, OH
    Former Employee - General Laborer in Cleveland, OH

    I worked at Alcoa full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    It is a union shop, at least the union employees on the floor can and will help you when your upper management who has little or no experience can't.

    Cons

    Extreme turn-over rate in HR, and management. We have seen a minimum of at lease 10-20 new HR reps / specialist. A huge turn over rate of every 2-3 years managers are hired and fired. Very very poor management!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You should not lie to your prospective new managers. Tell them up front it's every weekend and 12 hours are mandatory! Tell them they might last 2 - 3 years if that. management has turned over so many times, I've personally seen at least 5 new plant managers within a 10 year period.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  2. Worst salary management

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Lead Operator in Sheet, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Lead Operator in Sheet, England (UK)

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

    Pros

    The union people that work hard and treat each other like family. Also potlucks.

    Cons

    The ahift in management, in 4 months i had 3 different group leads. 10 years for 3 weeks of vacation. No paid sick days. The "new, improved" ideas by management that lasts less then a month and then its on to the "new and improved " idea, because the last guy got moved or fired.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stay in your office. We get more done.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful

    They absolutely suck to work for.

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

    I worked at Alcoa

    Pros

    There are no reasons to work here.

    Cons

    There is no future working here there goal is to eliminate the 55 and up crowd

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Jump Ship you have no future with this company.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 2 people found this helpful

    Counting down

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Salary Position in La Porte, IN
    Current Employee - Salary Position in La Porte, IN

    I have been working at Alcoa

    Pros

    Retirement nearing, counting down the time.

    Cons

    So many to list another book needs to be written. Hence, if you choose to read from "Good to Great" and know that it was written about this plant and you decide to visit and benchmark, think twice because you won't find the answers here. You'll need to read something written about Hitler or something with Chauvinism, Harassment and Bullying in the title because it all goes on under this roof. The pay is good here so most people put up with it and stay, others get set-up and terminated, terminated or leave before this happens to them. Those in "the club" are safe. Most are afraid to say anything for fear of losing their job as they need their job to provide for their families. Some just can't take the stress and want to live longer and enjoy their life. If only someone would do something but most everyone (outside of senior management, this includes HR; God help you if you go there) has given up on anyone coming to the rescue. It's this level that needs to be checked and cleaned up. If only Klaus Kleinfeld really knew what was going on at this location. Maybe they do and don't care. You ask "use your handbook and help chain", that was a chuckle because in our world it's only "their" rules and "they" change them as needed when needed. Thank God for retirement because that is what I have to look forward to, just keep doing my job to the best of my ability until then. Then I can only pray for those still left behind to fend for themselves. Maybe a large group of us will be brave enough to sell the movie or book rights one day?

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Klaus Kleinfeld or someone outside of the Power and Propulsion group: SOS

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. Looking for another job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - TCC in Malaga, WA
    Current Employee - TCC in Malaga, WA

    I have been working at Alcoa

    Pros

    None unless you like being treated like crap!

    Cons

    Treat there new hires like crap ...little to no training...Little time off ! Don't work here you will regret it! Malaga Alcoa Wa

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop lying to your employees ...People are not slaves

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 3 people found this helpful

    Current, but looking

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Alcoa

    Pros

    Provides decent pay & benefits for union members. Not much more than that, although threats of shutting down plants keep their status of a great corporate environment out their for the investors.

    Cons

    Get everything in writing. Management has no problem lying, playing games, making promises, & then using their performance management tools to destroy you if you complain. Nowhere near the company it used to be. Benefits look great until you try to use them. I would never encourage anyone to take a salary position.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Although you preach integrity, look up the word. Stand by your word, do what's right, quit screwing over good employees to take care of buddies.

  8. Contractor of Alcoa

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Contractor - Senior Technician in New Kensington, PA
    Current Contractor - Senior Technician in New Kensington, PA

    I have been working at Alcoa as a contractor (less than a year)

    Pros

    Free Gatorade and sometimes free food

    Cons

    If u do not match up to your team leader exsperience you are going to be good enough and 12 hr shifts suck , favoritism

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Learn to be far to employees and contractors

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 1 person found this helpful

    All about profits

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

    I worked at Alcoa full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Good pay, decent health benefits.

    Cons

    Really poor work/life balance, pressure to put profits over quality, poor safety on the shop floor, managers don't listen to the people performing the actual jobs, bullying by management, loss of holiday/vacation time, not enough sick time to compensate for being overworked (and therefore, getting sick more often), management lies a lot.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You don't have to bully to get people to do their jobs correctly.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10. 4 people found this helpful

    Work seven days a week with only one weekend off a month

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

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

    Pros

    Pros: Alcoa is a long standing leader in it's field with potentially global positions for salaried workers. Hourly is stuck at location.

    Alcoa is good at training new people for different positions and job tasks.

    The pay is good, not great or exceptional, but good.

    Cons

    Cons: Work schedule is horrible. Be prepared to surrender your life and soul. Work seven days straight and then they'll give you Tuesday and Wednesday off as your "weekend". Then wor another seven days straight. You can and will be forced to work 16 hour days. You will only get twelve real weekends off each year.

    They treat their lower management like slaves. They are encouraged to work twelve hour days and weekends, fired when they don't for "not having enough Alcoa spirit". Or just fired for nothing. I saw one guy fired for caring too much about an injured worker. Upper management dog-beats the frontline supervisors and that permeating despair rubs off on the hourly workers. You can't trust a company that eats it's own.

    Alcoa does not keep to it's promises. Company profits were up 30%, performance pay bonuses for the workers who broke production records dropped from 8% to 0.16%. Not encouraging at all.

    The tuition reimbursement they sell young people on? It's only available to ONLY the currently enlisted (no new people can be added to the program) and the budget is always "unknown". You will never get tuition money from Alcoa, they use it as a recruitment tactic, a bait, but it doesn't actually exist.

    Everyone is tired. I haven't seen my family in a long time. Vacation time is tiny. You'll be here for at least three years before you get two weeks off.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Can I have my weekends back? As a human decency thing that would be nice. You're causing massive burn out and killing the morale.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful

    Stay away!! very toxic, very demanding, intimidating, hostile, stressful, want to learn bad habits this is the place.

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

    I have been working at Alcoa full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Lot of good programs with good intentions but terrible execution. The company likes to shoot themselves in the head due to capricious and illogical requirements.

    Cons

    Management lives in a bubble, reactive, no planning, no support, it is like working with hands tied to your back and wearing blindfolds. No support for line managers and if you say right management will say left and blame you. You survive by finding scapegoats and shifting blame on others. You are always in a constant state of fear so nobody is willing to co-operate or share information.

    Management style is to threaten employees by finding fault, not by looking for solutions or working co-operatively. Constantly understaffed to control costs and expected to meet unrealistic goals with the consequence of being blamed if goals not met and quick to write employees for lack of performance. No regard for talent, abilities or work knowledge. No growth opportunity. It is amazing how a Fortune 500 company with so much talent can operate a plant like this.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Open your eyes and stop lying to yourselves. You are killing talented employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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