Charles River Laboratories

  www.criver.com
  www.criver.com

Charles River Laboratories Reviews

Updated December 1, 2014
Updated December 1, 2014
100 Reviews
2.8
100 Reviews
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Charles River Laboratories Chairman, President, Director and CEO James C. Foster
James C. Foster
61 Ratings

Review Highlights

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 Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Unprofessional place to work, no respect for employees, worst job I've ever had!

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

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

    Pros

    Charles River has many great employees - many of the low to mid-level managers are great and the staff is very knowledgeable. Good place to learn.

    Cons

    The upper management of Charles River made this place a nightmare as an employee! The organization functions as an amalgamation of many different companies and divisions and, as such, there is a large gap in harmonization and standardization across the organization. More importantly, upper management has little to no respect for it's employees. I witnessed behavior that ranged from extreme unprofessionalism to outright abuse - it was shocking. Promotion is based on nepotism instead of merit, and challenging the status quo with new ideas or fresh perspectives is discouraged. Salaries are lower than industry standard, and incentives are spotty - in cases, incentives may not even be paid (or only paid after a long lag) even when they're earned. This is by far the worst place I've worked in my career - I would strongly recommend against working for Charles RIver!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The human resource at Charles River is its greatest asset - it would be in the company's best interest to treat people with respect and compensate them fairly.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    Management doesn't care

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Process Development Associate in Wilmington, MA
    Former Employee - Process Development Associate in Wilmington, MA

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

    Pros

    While members of the senior management team are busy strategizing over the direction to take the business, the lack of empathy for the manual labor pool in the laboratories caring for rats, mice, and dogs is disgusting.

    Cons

    Most jobs in animal care consist of mindless work and a large amount of injuries are incurred.
    Internal politics get in the way of the company being successful.
    Policies are so strict that employees are constantly fired. There is no compassion.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire a stronger management team that has a balance of business savvy and compassion for people.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Run Away As Fast As You Can!!!

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

    I worked at Charles River Laboratories full-time

    Pros

    Company has a mission to succeed.

    Cons

    CRL is doing everything it can to maintain validity within the pharmeceutical testing industry...but at the expense of its employees. If you are interested in working in anything other than testing on rodents, run!! There is not an adequate onboarding process, no training on systems, very little interaction with HR or management. If you trying to have a career here...you are only kidding yourself.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Use your employees to their best qualities and skill set. Encourage and expand the knowledge of your resources (your employees)!!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Sinking ship

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Montreal, QC (Canada)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Montreal, QC (Canada)

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

    Pros

    For people new to the industry you will get a lot of experience in a short time. Montreal site still carries some respect from CTBR times but that will not last for much longer.

    Cons

    Very poor management.
    Nepotism
    Poor organization.
    Scientific quality is secondary to costs.
    Short termism

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Employ some real managers with track records, not just friends and yes men.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    poor culture loaded with bad politics and conniving management

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Manager in Senneville, QC (Canada)
    Current Employee - Manager in Senneville, QC (Canada)

    I have been working at Charles River Laboratories full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Benefits are decent and health benefits are particularly better than other companies.

    Cons

    Toxic work environment, poor leaders on the IT leadership team that create a wall between employees and CIO, promote and reward inexperienced, but favorite people that are aligned with them and proliferate a culture of intolerance, poor work ethic, extreme politics and low productivity. The morale is very low, and people are afraid to speak up because those that try to make improvements are quickly terminated. The leaders appear to be generally threatened by talented individuals and work fast to eliminate them, leaving only the bottom of the pile behind.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Clean out your IT and senior leadership team that have a god-complex. It starts at the top in this company.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7.  

    Long-time current employee

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Montreal, QC (Canada)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Montreal, QC (Canada)

    I have been working at Charles River Laboratories

    Pros

    Great place to gain experience, but best to move on to somewhere that will treat you better in the long run

    Cons

    Not a great place to work if you have a life outside of work. Be aware that you can consistently go above and beyond what is required but never get so much a a thank you for your hard work. You can do a thousand things right and make one mistake. Trust me, the one mistake is what you will hear about and you will be punished for it.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat your employees like human beings. They are not machines. Acknowledge all the positives your employees do for the company. Do not focus solely on the negative. Yes, we all make mistakes. Because we are human, because we are overworked and tired. It might be more productive to try and boost employees morale instead of making them feel that they are not good enough.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 3 people found this helpful  

    A frustrating place to work (BPS division)

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

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

    Pros

    Ex-employee of the BPS division. Comments pertain to this division of CRL only.

    1. Many of my co-workers were nice
    2. Adequate to good benefits

    Cons

    1. Low base salary
    2. Limited advancement opportunities
    3. High employee turnover rate, and senior/corporate management indifference to this problem.
    4. A corporate culture which tends to ignore large, systematic problems, while getting bogged down with minutiae
    5. A corporate culture which does not recognize the need for process improvements or R&D, instead focusing almost solely on short-term revenue goals
    6. General miserliness and penny-pinching, to the point of perhaps being pennywise but pound foolish, related to #5.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    To corporate management: GMP QC/release testing facilities are not animal breeding facilities, and should be managed differently.

    To local, senior management: Find some way, any way, to entice employees to stick around.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9.  

    Poor management

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Analyst in Montreal, QC (Canada)
    Current Employee - Analyst in Montreal, QC (Canada)

    I have been working at Charles River Laboratories full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    The only pro is good benefits.

    Cons

    Poor IT leadership team that fosters a very poor culture. The team is detached and operate like a clique of high school cheerleaders. Anyone that does not fit with the arrogant, superior attitude, is quickly disciplined or laid off.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change the culture starting with your executive leadership team.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Poor vision for employees and low morale

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

    I worked at Charles River Laboratories full-time

    Pros

    Good relations with my direct line manager

    Cons

    No one seemed to know what the company goals were. Meetings were fraught with bad-mouthing corporate and shooting sarcasm at upper management. People actually spent time on company hours looking for other job options and were not shy about it. Whenever someone got a new job, people lined up their cubby to ask for inside recommendations on the new job.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop bashing corporate for your mediocrity. The people that work for you will respect you more if you owned your mistakes more pften

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

    Don't work for internal audit at this company.

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

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

    Pros

    There is nothing good about this company's internal audit department unless you enjoy dealing with juvenile behavior from those in charge.

    Cons

    Horrible work environment in the internal audit department. The entire department quit in 2008; no one has stayed there long after that. There are always job openings now. The guy who replaced me walked off the job after four weeks since he couldn't stand those in charge of internal audit. Nothing anyone did was any good for these guys. Mistakes were on you, but they were sure to take credit for anything that went well. They would stab you in the back for a nickel.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get rid of your present heads of internal audit and replace them with people who actually care about employees and not just themselves.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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