Avantor Performance Materials (formerly Mallinckrodt Baker)

  www.avantormaterials.com
  www.avantormaterials.com

Avantor Performance Materials (formerly Mallinckrodt Baker) Reviews

Updated December 18, 2014
Updated December 18, 2014
21 Reviews
2.1
21 Reviews
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Richard White
10 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Well Run Organization

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Manager in Somerset, NJ
    Former Employee - Manager in Somerset, NJ

    I worked at Avantor Performance Materials (formerly Mallinckrodt Baker) full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Total atmosphere was exceptional. People were excellent to work with and very poractive

    Cons

    None that I can think of. Was perhaps under paid, but the work made up for that

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep the ship steady

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Avantor at a glance

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

    I worked at Avantor Performance Materials (formerly Mallinckrodt Baker) full-time

    Pros

    The dedication and work ethics of the middle management down to the operators on the shop floor are Avantor's greatest asset. Sadly these will be lost through attrition as people will look elsewhere for an employer with more stability and vision of the future.

    Cons

    Being owned by a private equity company is damaging to the long term vision of this company. The revolving door of CEO's and level of unreasonable demands on middle management to set things right, is not a good model for growth or profitability. Working here is being in a High pressure environment with near zero job satisfaction.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop making so many high level management changes and allow people to bring changes to completion. The churn is counterproductive.

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

    Inside story

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Avantor Performance Materials (formerly Mallinckrodt Baker)

    Pros

    I am a former exec who did very well financially at Avantor. However, I am sickened by what I saw and was a party to. I could have made different decisions and chose not to. Every current employee at Avantor needs to make their own decisions, But I do want to provide some insight about how decisions are made so that you have a full set of facts.

    When NMC identifies a potential candidate for an EVP spot they send us through an expensive evaluation process. Once they decide on you they convince you that you are more talented then you are and that you are exactly what the company needs and make an offer that is significantly more than you made before. By playing to your ego and over compensating you they get you to believe their propaganda.

    Once you arrive at Avantor you realize that you are not going to be nearly as effective as you were led to believe. But by this point you have accepted your $xxx,xxx sign on bonus and told your family and friends how wonderful this opportunity was and how you were going to be a strategic leader of the company. The dollar and ego cost is too much to walk away from.

    All of this is set against NMC trying to justify a purchase that they did not understand which was based on assumptions that were not realistic. This put the execs in difficult position. We needed to do everything we could to keep up the sense that we were talented enough to make the kind of dramatic improvements that the owners demanded in order to buy time and sustain the generous compensation as long as possible. We knew that success as the owners defined it was not possible but only wanted to survive as long as possible, This reality forced us to take money from the group that had no voice in the discussion making process. We started by skipping the bonus for the employees one year, then two, etc (although may of us had guaranteed bonuses that we collected). Then benefits, then profit sharing,,, We knew it did not take any managerial talent to just take from our fellow coworkers but it was either prop up earnings that way or admit failure and walkaway from our personal compensation packages.

    As I said, I could have done more but it would not have swayed anything. I always thought that HR should shoulder more of the ethical responsibility to prevent many of these practices but they were some of the biggest advocates for many of these changes.

    If you are happy with your role at Avantor and think your base pay is fair then by all means stay. But if you are staying because you expect the tide against the employee to recede then you may want to reconsider. The current group of execs are as unable to change the company direction as I was. Their egos are equally large and their desire to hang on just as strong.

    Cons

    pros and cons discussed above

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  5. 3 people found this helpful  

    Unstable

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

    I have been working at Avantor Performance Materials (formerly Mallinckrodt Baker) full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    The people here are generally excellent, especially out on the factory floor and up to middle management. The plant continues to operate safely and efficiently because of that, and little else.

    Cons

    No strategic vision. No planning other than "get stuff out the door really fast." Management claims things like safety are a priority, then turns around and cuts funding or pushes out safety-critical projects. Constantly worrying about if your job is going to suffer the "lean" ax. Capital goes to projects based purely on favoritism. Management is done by fad and crisis, resulting in a high-stress environment where you wonder why you bother working on anything.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Just sell the company to a real chemical company so we can have competent management. Or don't. I'm not sticking around long enough to care.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 3 people found this helpful  

    Only work here if you can't get a job any place else

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

    I worked at Avantor Performance Materials (formerly Mallinckrodt Baker) full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Work-Life balance can be good for some positions – mostly those at the plants. Beyond that there isn’t much, unless you are a poor performer in which case they will likely just ignore you and give your responsibilities to one of the few people left that accomplish things.

    Cons

    There are too many negatives to list.

    The only reason to work here is that no one else will hire you. This company epitomizes what happens when private equity investors purchase a company with the sole purpose of reselling it. Too bad for the former Mallinckrodt Baker that they were purchased by incompetent amateurs. They did a poor job investigating what they were purchasing, and then failed horrible with their attempts at improvements. Their SAP implementation went belly-up and they made poor overseas investments. Since they can't improve the value of the company, they can now only make cuts to help increase profits.

    Working here, you will be underpaid and you will pay much more for benefits than you will at other companies. They reduced tuition reimbursement and are going to cut 401k contributions from 6% to 3%. The cost of benefits constantly goes up significantly, and the raises are pitiful. They removed bonuses for salary employees. Turnover here has to be astronomical.

    There are no training opportunities because they won’t pay for it, and there are no career growth prospects here.
    There is no stability here. The CEO’s leave constantly, which should tell you everything. Due to the poor financial performance of the company, almost no positions are refilled once someone resigns.

    The HR department is deplorable. They can’t even get interviews setup properly, and everyone in the company seems to have disdain for them. Most of them appear completely disinterested in the company. The HR rep didn’t even show up for my exit interview and sent her admin instead. My guess is they don’t want to be in a position where they would have to defend the company. It would have been funny to ask her what she thought the reason for such high turnover was. This group sent out an announcement that they were reducing severance packages from 2 weeks/yr service to one week/yr service...then the following week started doing lay offs. The previous year they did layoffs just before Christmas.

    This is a place that wants to be thought of as a high tech chemical company, but has no innovation, worthless IP, dilapidated assets, and no significant science or engineering work occurring. People with backgrounds in sales and marketing will be in charge of science and engineering related programs/departments.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Sell, take your losses, and move to screwing up something else. This company was doing better before you came along.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    Not sure things can get much worse...

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

    I have been working at Avantor Performance Materials (formerly Mallinckrodt Baker) full-time

    Pros

    There are a lot of great people working here that you wouldn’t mind being friends with during off-work hours. Mostly everyone that I have encountered here has been passionate about they do and willing to teach and learn new things.

    Nice office building at company HQ in Pennsylvania but other locations around the world tend to be in need of some refurnishing from what I have seen.

    Benefits are fairly competitive with companies in the Lehigh Valley area but they go up every year and things have been taken away from us too… more on that in the negatives.

    Cons

    Most positives are completely clouded by the overwhelming lack of direction. Morale is down the tubes and it has been an endless decline since being acquired by a private equity firm in 2010 and a bad implementation of SAP in 2012. Currently a bad situation overall.

    Turnover at the top level of management has been to the tune of 3-4 CEOs in the past few years. And that is just the CEO level... doesn't include any of the other top level managers that have been in and out which is hard to keep track of at this point. What's worse is that customers have openly commented about how dysfunctional we are. Sad.

    Everyone is fearing being next on our list of layoffs. Sad situation when nobody feels comfortable asking questions of management about the direction of the company and even sadder when nobody cares to ask anymore because they are tired of hearing the same line of nothing.

    There are no paths for career development for any of the good people that we do have left working here after the revolving door stops spinning for a little bit.

    There are few incentives to hold out hope for something good to come especially with big cuts made to our 401k recently and severance as others have noted. These are decisions that the company is making with few tangible reasons for making them because again we are being told a whole lot of nothing lately. In the case of the change to the severance policy, our HR department sent this out along with a lot of other hard to understand information all attached in one email. This was no less than two weeks before laying people off over this past summer and before that we had a layoff at Christmas. Hope someone is smart to realize that the decisions we are making along these lines are not helping morale in the least bit which as noted by others is at an all-time low. Not sure we can get much lower.

    Agree with previous statements that we are on the edge of something happening to the company but nobody is saying what. Upper management is stuck in an endless loop of planning. So... doesn’t anyone know our direction by now? The only people getting rich are the consultants that are in and out like a revolving door.

    All of this makes up a very sad work environment that I am not sure can get much worse. Nobody knows what is going to happen in the next few months to a year from now but it can't go on much longer as is. All signs from what we see point in the direction of a short term outlook. Really discouraging.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Something's gotta give! Not many are optimistic about the outlook of this company but knowing anything at this point would be welcomed versus telling us the usual whole lot of nothing as is the norm lately.

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

    7 acting or permanent CEO's in 4 years.

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

    I worked at Avantor Performance Materials (formerly Mallinckrodt Baker) full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Relationships with peers. People are hanging in trying to make the best of a bad situation. Most employees care about their work and try to do their best.

    Cons

    Changes in leadership(?) has resulted in 180 degree changes in direction. The folks implementing the changes are getting whiplash. Hard to do any career planning when positions keep getting eliminated. Former Mallinkrodt Baker employees are devastated that a formerly good company is being destroyed.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be consistent. The constant changes are destroying morale. You can't cut your way to prosperity, you need to grow the business.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 2 people found this helpful  

    Ready to implode.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Product Manager in Center Valley, PA
    Current Employee - Product Manager in Center Valley, PA

    I have been working at Avantor Performance Materials (formerly Mallinckrodt Baker) full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Avantor has a lot of great people who really care and want to do their best. Compensation is fair for the geography.

    Cons

    On their 5th or 6th CEO in last 4 years. Lost count along the way. No strategic direction and path for growth. Financials have been plummeting since a horrific SAP implementation 2 years ago. Morale is at an all-time low.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Open your eyes to what is going on around you. Company and product brands have been damaged in the marketplace.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 3 people found this helpful  

    What are they not telling us

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

    I have been working at Avantor Performance Materials (formerly Mallinckrodt Baker) (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Not really any that I can think of the company is in constant change at the top

    Cons

    This is more of a question. We have seen the entire finance leadership team quit in the last 9 months. I am on the commercial side of the business so don't know much about finance but I do know it is fishy when 4 director and up people quit from your corporate finance group.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Tell us what is going on without the company talking points, It does not count as communication if what you tell us is either made up or half truths.

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

    Good company going the wrong way

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

    I have been working at Avantor Performance Materials (formerly Mallinckrodt Baker) full-time

    Pros

    There are some great people working here, but we are working with threat of constant layoffs and extreme stress.

    Cons

    Management does not have a clue what they are doing. The company seems to be on a downward spiral.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Do not trust what middle management is telling you. They are trying to keep their jobs. Things are much, much worse than they are telling you.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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