Argonne National Laboratory
3.9 of 5 106 reviews
www.anl.gov Lemont, IL

Argonne National Laboratory Reviews

Updated Jul 8, 2014
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3.9 106 reviews

                             

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Argonne National Laboratory Director Peter B. Littlewood

Peter B. Littlewood


90% of employees recommend this company to a friend
106 Employee Reviews
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Review Highlights

Pros:
  • "Great work life balance and great salary for a post doc"
    in 7 reviews
  • "access to the latest national energy policies and cutting-edge technology"
    in 8 reviews
Cons:
  • "Funding situation is a high pressure"
    in 3 reviews
  • "lack of promotions and appreciation for support staff, Paperwork is out of control and growing"
    in 3 reviews
  • Show more review highlights

Reviews

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    Great people, great environment!

    Research Aide (Current Employee)
    Lemont, IL

    ProsSmart, polite, and friendly people.
    Laid-back environment.
    You are treated like an ADULT.

    ConsExpensive food in the cafeteria!

    Advice to Senior ManagementMake more regular meetings.

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

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    great place

    Research Aide (Former Employee)
    Lemont, IL

    Prosloads of diverse experience people who are ready to share the knowledge.

    Consgetting to the lab can be time consuming.

    Advice to Senior Managementnone.

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    Great Place to Grow as a researcher

    Postdoctoral Appointee (Current Employee)
    Chicago, IL

    ProsVery diverse, good compensation, Awesome staff

    ConsCertain departments are always on soft money.

    Advice to Senior ManagementSoft money people often looking for a free help. So do something.

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

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    Contract employee, then hired on part time

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsFlexible work environment, great people

    ConsWork load is tied to federal funding so if project managers aren't aggressively acquiring new work, things can stagnate

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    Good place, but can be tough to do science

    Scientific Associate (Former Employee)

    ProsThe collegial culture makes working at ANL great as a scientist, as there's no lobster-tank type competition. For the most part everyone just wants to do quality work.

    ConsThe extreme over-emphasis on the appearance of safety is a major hinderance to getting work done. Also there is not nearly enough support staff to address their work load.

    Advice to Senior ManagementAdopt reasonable safety rules that have actual benefits, and replace the huge excess of safety workers with some more support staff.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    Good place for postdoc to learn things. Not a place for ambitious researchers.

    Anonymous (Current Employee)

    ProsLots of resources for the younger scientists to learn stuff. Work schedule is routine, no unpaid overtime as in university labs. Good benefits.

    ConsToo much politics in the management which many times impede the progress of your work. The kind of research you can do here is heavily regulated by overly strict safety rules.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    I learned a lot

    Custodian (Former Employee)
    Lemont, IL

    ProsWhen I was there the benefits were affordable even for those making the least amount of money there are a treat I read in vacation package

    ConsPlayed the politics being too much in order to move up in the company the matter how much schooling had someone else already had the job

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    Could not get much better!

    Summer Research (Former Employee)
    Lemont, IL

    ProsI enjoyed learning cutting edge research at ANL! The staff was very supportive and provided me with material and advice when I asked.

    ConsAs an intern findings good housing was a little bit difficult. However, once I was living with other interns I had a blast!

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

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    Always challenging and never boring.

    Research Aide (Current Employee)
    Lemont, IL

    ProsArgonne is a great place to work if your are an engineer/scientist. There is a very wide range of research areas that will interest just about anyone.

    ConsInterns often get piles and piles of brainless work to do. Supervisors don't often allow their interns to perform any of the hands on research.

    Advice to Senior ManagementInteract with your subordinates more often. It makes us feel like you are interested in how we are doing, even if you aren't.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    Grad student's perspective -- Nuclear Physics division -- Might not apply to other divn's

    Lab Graduate Fellow (Current Employee)
    Lemont, IL

    ProsArgonne is focused on science and is a great place to pursue it. The Nuclear Physics division in particular is very strong, and the ATLAS accelerator remains a world-leading facility in many ways. The culture in the division is one of friendly and open collaboration. It is hard to imagine a community of such accomplished scientists that is more collegial!

    As a grad student, you are sheltered from the frustrating red tape that more senior scientists have to deal with.

    The division offers a stipend equal to that of your home university, and you have access to the lab's subsidized health and dental insurance.

    ConsYou may find that you in more of a disciplinary silo at a national lab than you would be at your university.

    The mentorship efforts of both Argonne and the Nuclear Physics division are focused on postdocs. As a grad student you are very much at the mercy of your supervisor(s).

    Scientific research in general is a field in which the up-and-comers are expected to "pay their dues" by spending years of their life in an apprenticeship, earning a fraction of a salary and no benefits, in return for the privilege of being admitted into the PhD club. That's what your boss did, and your boss almost certainly thinks it's what you should do too. These assumptions, which I think are becoming untenable, are very much in place at Argonne. I saw no evidence that scientists above me felt any responsibility for my well-being or helping me make good career decisions.

    Advice to Senior ManagementYou are producing scientists far faster than you are producing good science jobs, and therefore the career opportunities for a trained scientist are far better outside their field than within it. Unsustainable may be too strong a word for this, but it certainly is not conducive to advancing science.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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