Charles River Laboratories Reviews

Updated April 11, 2015
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2.9
115 Reviews
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Recommend to a friend
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Charles River Laboratories Chairman, President, Director and CEO James C. Foster
James C. Foster
68 Ratings

Pros
  • They also have good benefits like vacation time (in 9 reviews)

  • A good place to learn some of the basics of nonclinical testing (in 3 reviews)

Cons
  • Lack of communication between upper management with employees (in 8 reviews)

  • Horrible work environment in the internal audit department (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

Employee Reviews

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  1. A great place to build experience. Very fast paced. Wage growth is sub par.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Assistant Scientist II in Horsham, PA
    Former Employee - Assistant Scientist II in Horsham, PA

    I worked at Charles River Laboratories full-time (more than 5 years)

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

    Pros

    Because it is a small lab you get the chance to wear a lot of hats. I was doing method development, report writing, investigations and working on the instruments. Co-workers were great and was what really made all the chaos of the job worth it.

    Cons

    Pay is well below "major pharma" which is to be expected of a CRO. It is very hard to increase your pay because although they were fair in promotions, the average reward was 4-5% increase which isn't a whole lot if you are already not making a lot. You will be working holidays/weekends.

  2. Gained no work experience

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

    I worked at Charles River Laboratories full-time (more than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Had low work pressure. Managers understood engineering.

    Cons

    Didn't feel like I had any challenging work.

  3. Great company for a foot in the door.

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

    I worked at Charles River Laboratories

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Decent pay. Great benefits. Family environment.

    Cons

    Moving up depends on who you know or who they wantedo to upset I was promoted). If you don't acclimate to the family culture, you are a bit of an outcast. I try to keep my personal and work like seperate. See 1st sentence.

    Advice to Management

    Actually look at people's merits and what they do. I was a hard worker in many facets AND will the qualifications to prove it. I did the most work and had the most responsibility but was the lowest paid person on the team. Sorry if I chose to go to bible study instead of bowling and drinking.

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  5. Helpful (1)

    My experience at the Charleston, SC location was been rewarding, challenging (in a good way), and generally good.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Technical Services Coordinator in Charleston, SC
    Former Employee - Technical Services Coordinator in Charleston, SC

    I worked at Charles River Laboratories full-time (more than 5 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Excellent benefits including insurance, vacation time, PTO, 401K match, Stock Purchase Plans, company outings to local sport events, etc. I feel like the company really takes care of it's employees and tries to retain them. There are many sites as well so often times employees can easily transfer to new jobs at other locations. In general, managers tend to reward good, hard work.

    Cons

    Cost of living in Charleston is lower so in general pay is lower as compared to similar jobs in other areas. Like most other jobs, company politics can play a role in hiring/promotions.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to work to retain employees and maintain employee satisfaction.

  6. A good start up place

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Customer Service in Houston, TX
    Current Employee - Customer Service in Houston, TX

    I have been working at Charles River Laboratories

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

    Pros

    Provides enough experience in the field to get you to the next level.

    Cons

    Work/life balance is not well balanced. Pay is fair but nothing to write home about. Not much opportunity for improvement.

    Advice to Management

    Work on training programs for your employees and ensure they have a career path in the company, so the good ones don't have to leave for a better opportunity elsewhere after investing time and money training them.

  7. Low pay, good for entry level but get out ASAP

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

    I have been working at Charles River Laboratories

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

    Pros

    Good benefits like vacation time and medical insurance

    Cons

    Pay is low, no place to grow financially and technically, no bonus.

    Advice to Management

    Hard work is not recognized by the management. Need atleast good pay for motivation to work.

  8. Great small company to work for with great people and the little extras that boost morale!!

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

    I have been working at Charles River Laboratories

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

    Pros

    Small Company, Revenue Growth, Excellent work-life balance, perks

    Cons

    Not the best for Contracting employees

  9. Helpful (1)

    Love everything about Charles River

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

    I have been working at Charles River Laboratories

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great management team, great training, very long term employees, everyone is willing to help no matter what their job & business group

    Cons

    The company continues to grow, so it is hard to know all of the companies capabilities. I don't think this is a "con" though, just something that requires me to stay on my toes!

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the great work!

  10. Looks promising upfront... Not so much

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Los Angeles, CA

    I have been working at Charles River Laboratories

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

    Pros

    Always changing envirnoment.
    Constant challenge day in and day out.
    HR tried to be mindful of crosstraining, but doesnt mean a promotion.

    Cons

    The politics are really bad at all levels. The Test Facility Management cares about their own jobs more than they care about improving the work place and the job itself. They are never willing to really challenge a customer as long as they pay is there.
    It also feels like you are being used, as they will consistently place you in mny different areas/projects, but refuse to compensate you adequetly due to a set path. One year means one year, regardless of whether you contribute a lot or nothing at all.

    Advice to Management

    A growing company deserves growing support. Let go of what used to be guidelines and were made rules and try to improve the envirnoment for techs, management, and SD's

  11. Great place to get experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Technician Molecular Biology in Malvern, PA
    Former Employee - Senior Technician Molecular Biology in Malvern, PA

    I worked at Charles River Laboratories full-time (more than 3 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Small departments and a lot of opportunity for diversifying your resume. Flexible work schedule and business casual work environment.

    Cons

    Lower than average wages for area and skill set. Can feel to be treated more as a machine than as a human. Very fast paced and will be expected to accomplish multiple tasks in short period of time, without any errors, which can be very difficult in a GMP environment.

    Advice to Management

    Give employees more respect and attempt to listen to the advice that is given from technicians.

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