Charles River Laboratories

  www.criver.com
Work in HR? Unlock Free Profile

Charles River Laboratories Reviews

Updated August 5, 2014
Updated August 5, 2014
91 Reviews

2.7
91 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Charles River Laboratories Chairman, President, Director and CEO James C. Foster
James C. Foster
55 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Really good benefits- medical/dental, 401k (in 6 reviews)

  • Great work-life balance, ability to grow within the company if you don't mind moving to other locations based on job availability (in 3 reviews)


Cons
  • Meetings were fraught with bad-mouthing corporate and shooting sarcasm at upper management (in 7 reviews)

  • Lack of communication between upper management and lower employees (in 4 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Great People in the Corporate Office

    • 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

    Pros

    The health coverage plans at Charles River are well ahead of other companies. Excellent BC/BS of Mass options, good dental, vision and lots of other options. Flexible hours (ad hoc) are a nice perq for those who have to juggle family responsibilities and/or a long commute. Nice corporate campus with on-site cafeteria. Really nice people. No bullies in the bunch.

    Cons

    Could use some more training/development classes and opportunities, especially for new managers. IT help is sorely in need of an upgrade -- they are not very responsive and often ineffective at helping.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Let those on your management teams shoulder more of the load. You don't need to do everything yourself!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Get in, get reimbursed education, transfer internally a lot to build skills/knowledge, then go to Pharma/Biotech company

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

    Pros

    A good place to learn some of the basics of nonclinical testing. A good place to start building career network if you are just out of college.

    Cons

    If you stick with one position or one group for a long time, your knowledge will quickly plateau. Career development is very limited. If you want to progress in your career, you need to actively transfer within the company yourself (or leave).

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    In my experience, fear-based management tactics were used. This is not a sustainable model. Also, if you want employees to stick around for a long time, open up sites in rural areas.

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    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)

    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
  4. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
  5.  

    Focused on Business. Not so much on it's employees and departments

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

    Pros

    Work Schedule- very relaxed
    co-workers- are great.Many great employees have come, gone and remain with the company. More leave than stay
    Benefits- average and has consistently increased in costs every year

    Cons

    too many senior management rolls and not enough workers.
    low pay compared to local companies
    inconsistent in yearly evaluations and promotions.
    management worries about every other department except it's own

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Reno Site - Laid back culture but heavy workloads

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Quality Assurance Auditor II  in  Reno, NV
    Current Employee - Quality Assurance Auditor II in Reno, NV

    Pros

    It is nice working in a professional environment that still maintains a casual, laid-back culture. Employees are dedicated to the mission of the company, which is aiding and accelerating drug development through preclinical research. I enjoy having a great deal of autonomy in my position... NEVER micromanaged.

    Cons

    Workloads within some departments were overwhelming at times. In general, salaries are not commensurate with other CROs and certainly not with large pharm/biotech companies. CRL- Nevada benefits from being the only gig in town for those with a biology/life sciences background. A lot of employees stay because the area is rich in quality outdoor activity, not to mention lower cost of living than the West Coast science hubs. That said, CRL seems to even be falling behind on salaries compared to other companies in the small Reno market.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Suggest periodic research/adjustment to ensure that salaries ranges are current and competitive.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Unnecessarily high stress for a job that shouldn't be this hard.

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    For the kind of things that we are responsible for, the salary is good. Also, coworkers are great. The vet techs and most PI's are friendly and easy to talk to.

    Cons

    Management is TERRIBLE. You are stuck between a rock and a hard place constently. People are in constant fear of losing their job or they stop caring for the job. For the work that is done, they hire people that are over qualified to make up for the lack of training provided. They promise that things will get better. However, they are really slow on their promises. Also, there is no opportunity to grow, unless you don't mind moving to different locations. This is a new contract. Therefore, I'm really hoping things will improve.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Just because it is a contract, does not mean your employees should be pushed a side to meet the demands of the client. Also, before blaming other people for the mistakes they might have made due to said person feeling overwhelmed, look internally to figure out why all employees are feel this way. Do not just take the clients word for it. Discuss the situation with the employee to make a well rounded informed decision.

  8.  

    Good company with good people working there!

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

    Pros

    Great work/life experience with people who value their work at the company. Great to be with groups who have been at the company for many years.

    Cons

    Can be a little slow in growth but if you're willing to take the initiative, the company will definitely help put you on the right path.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Opportunities for career growth was nonexistent

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    Flexibility, ability to work from home

    Cons

    Management has become increasingly lean with very little mentoring

  10.  

    One Company who is still figuring things out

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Research Technician III  in  Morrisville, NC
    Former Employee - Research Technician III in Morrisville, NC

    Pros

    Great work-life balance, ability to grow within the company if you don't mind moving to other locations based on job availability.

    Cons

    The leaders in the company have little experience and could take a step back and listen and appreciate the technical staff.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take a step back to evaluate your technical staff. Get rid of the dead weight and show appreciation to those employees who bend over backwards.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    Hard Work Honest Pay

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

    Pros

    Excellent Benefits, You know what the work you have to do is, no tricks with this company.

    Cons

    long periods of time bending over and lifting things can eventually hurt your back and I have seen it happen to people.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

Worked for Charles River Laboratories? Contribute to the Community!

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.