Arup Reviews

Updated July 5, 2015
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3.6
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Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Arup Chairman Greg Hodkinson
Greg Hodkinson
34 Ratings

Pros
  • Good work life balance for employees (in 13 reviews)

  • High profile projects, a diverse range of work and people, relaxed atmosphere (in 8 reviews)

Cons
  • There is fake sense of work life balance (in 5 reviews)

  • Lack of support from upper management (in 6 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

219 Employee Reviews

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  1. Great intern experience

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

    I worked at Arup

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Able to contribute to top-quality projects immediately, and was treated as any other full-time employee. The expectations were large, but so we're the opportunities to learn and grow professionally.

    Cons

    I have interned here twice and have spoken to other interns who feel the same about the fact that experience is very dependent on your direct supervisor. While I had a great experience in one office, others had negative experiences in the very same office. I also found that although I was treated as if a full-time employee, there was very little formal structure to the internship so sometimes managers wouldn't have anything for me to do and learning is something you have to take upon yourself.

    Advice to Management

    Standardize the internship process more and potentially have weekly check-ins with a lower-to-mid-level engineer for training/learning


  2. shape a better world

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - BIM/Visual Leader in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - BIM/Visual Leader in Los Angeles, CA

    I worked at Arup (More than 3 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Very Interesting Projects. International & Friendly Environment. Great Learning Opportunity

    Cons

    Big Company with buit in a lot of inefficiency, Many Layers of Internal Politics, Corporate Ju-Jutsu

    Advice to Management

    Focus more an Engineering, leave Politics for Politicians.


  3. Helpful (2)

    Drinking too much of their own Kool-aid

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

    I worked at Arup full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    world-class learning organization. social responsibility at the core - not window dressing. Good compensation and benefits.

    Cons

    arrogance gets in the way and hurts this organization when it comes to motivating and retaining staff. technical excellence living alongside organizational dysfunction and really horrific people skills on the part of some senior management. organizations tend to stop improving when they become convinced that they are already at the top of their form. sometimes uncomfortable workplace due to political and environmental group-think.

    Advice to Management

    perform 180 degree evaluations of senior staff - and take action. provide cultural sensitivity training to staff that are not citizens of the countries they are located in.


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  5. Helpful (4)

    Not Applicable

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Not Applicable in Cambridge, MA
    Former Employee - Not Applicable in Cambridge, MA

    I worked at Arup

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Very employee focused firm. Believes in inclusion for all. Best employee benefits I have ever seen. Heavy commitment to technology...they have all the latest gadgets.

    Cons

    Least technically accomplished firm (or at least branch office) I have worked for in my 20 year career regarding HVAC design. Lacks skilled management and leadership. Lacks ability to be nimble...is bogged down with heavy bureaucratic procedures, forms and review processes that offer little to no value to the firm or to projects. Does not actively engage in the release of under performing employees. No one owns stock, no one has to 'buy-into' the company, so no one has 'flesh in the game' to make the company better...profits are distributed across the entire company, evenly, regardless of branch office profitability or performance. This arrangement breeds indifference to being the best!

    Advice to Management

    I offer no advice to the company leadership. If you do not already know what I am saying (because most of the USA industry has the same view of Arup MEP) I do not believe you want to change or improve. So please stay the same, for that will equate to more work for the rest of the industry, and we can continue to use the name Arup as a punchline.


  6. Good people and projects

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

    I have been working at Arup full-time (More than 5 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Good people to work with. Good projects to work on. Offices have central urban locations.

    Cons

    Can get lost in the shuffle as it is a big company and some people do have personal agendas that may not include advancement of others.

    Advice to Management

    Make sure to pay attention to needs of junior staff.


  7. Helpful (1)

    HR

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

    I worked at Arup full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Cool projects and a solid reputation in their industry

    Cons

    Poor attitudes
    Snobby sr. leadership
    no compassion for employees
    politics galore, if you are not in the upper tier of their political machine you will never succeed
    COO is a pompous arrogant person
    HR is clueless

    Advice to Management

    Bring in some leaders for the US everyone in the upper management is either from the UK or other parts of Europe


  8. Helpful (1)

    Benefits of working for a corporation without most disadvantages of it.

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

    I have been working at Arup full-time (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Arup's specific ownership structure (no profit reported to outside shareholders) makes it a naturally employee oriented firm, with a developed sense of community, broad employee benefits and career development opportunities, including international assignments and other lateral move options.

    Cons

    Personal and career growth opportunities may be limited for non-technical staff. There may also be a general perception for non-project staff to be second-category citizens, regardless of their experience, education and value, just because they are not engineers.
    The salaries are below competitive compared to similar positions in similar firms, although for many it is balanced out by benefits and friendly work environment.

    Advice to Management

    The company might be missing an opportunity to grow its business by having brightest people running its business management side, i.e. legal, marketing, HR, knowledge management, process improvement etc., by underestimating the role of talent in those areas. The competitive pay, training and career development opportunities are key here. Assuming that only engineers can run the world has not been bringing impressive results lately.


  9. Structural Engineering

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

    I have been working at Arup

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The projects are the reason to work there.

    Cons

    There is no understand of how the management works
    Conniving People

    Advice to Management

    Learn how to manage


  10. Helpful (2)

    9 years of my life wasted

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Structural Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Senior Structural Engineer in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Arup (More than 8 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Great Projects (after the fact)
    some smart people (who are abused)
    Some really hard workers (who are also abused)
    A great place to build up your résumé get your PE and move on with your life!!!

    Cons

    Some managers are horrible and have no idea what they are doing. They sugar coat everything. They are all full of BS. Arup is dysfunctional to say the least

    Advice to Management

    You guys are horrible wastes of life. Think about the employees lives. Not about getting a bigger profit share.


  11. Helpful (1)

    Great People but Slow Progression and Low Job Satisfaction

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

    I worked at Arup full-time (More than 3 years)

    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The office culture is great. You are pretty much guaranteed to make friends there if you are a social person. This is the best part of working at Arup. The relationships you gain here, both professional and personal, are very valuable. They are very talented people working at this company, globally.

    Internships are paid very well, and usually turn into full-time positions.

    Learning and growing is encouraged. The benefits are generous and the career development is clearly defined. Paid overtime until you reach a certain grade is nice bonus.

    Cons

    You will work hard, and you will mostly not be thanked. While my personal boss was a lovely person, the final say is in the hands of more senior staff. There are some really awful people in high positions who are ungrateful, unprofessional, and unapproachable—the type who people unanimously hate working for or with.

    The pay is not competitive with others in the industry. Arup takes advantage of the decision between working for a big name or working for higher pay. Many young staff choose Arup because of opportunity, and then leave to make more money. Sometimes they return later on in their careers when they can make more. The progression is very slow and strategic, which seems to be their idea of "fair" (not an American company).

    Work/life balance is not great. Lots of overtime that is not worth your sanity. The engineers really slave away for many many hours. Unless you're in non-marketing central services, you are pretty much expected to work as many hours as it takes.

    Advice to Management

    Start saying thank you. Start recognizing those who are working the hardest and those who are simply taking the credit.



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