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Overall a great experience, though it varies by office/division

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Former Employee - Contract Specialist  in  Washington, DC
Former Employee - Contract Specialist in Washington, DC

I worked at FAA full-time for more than 3 years

Pros

I worked within the Office of Acquisition and Business Services as a Contract Specialist. During my 4 years with the agency, I had mixed experiences with management, as I was moved to different branches throughout my tenure. For the first two years, I couldn't have been happier with my management team. They were supportive of my career development; empowered me to make real business decisions on my own; and flexible with my schedule. I could honestly say that my first supervisor (who's still currently at FAA) was the best supervisor I've ever had. My Division Manager (second-level supervisor) was also amazing, although she is no longer with the agency. So, A++ for management during the first 2 years of my time at FAA.

In general, the FAA was very supportive of training and employee development. They paid for numerous training courses and even paid for some of my MBA courses. Work schedules are very flexible, allowing for telework and "regular days off" (i.e., you work 9-hour days throughout the week and then get every other Monday or Friday off).

In general there was a great culture. Co-workers were always willing to help each other and sought advice from one another. There was a strong "teaching" culture - senior employees helped junior ones learn how to excel in their roles. Also, authority was pushed down to the lowest levels possible. Once you gained trust with your management team, they gave you new and challenging assignments and allowed you to handle them the way you saw fit. Within two years, I got a Contracting Officer's warrant, which allowed me to sign contracts on behalf of the FAA. This gave me a lot of satisfaction and pride (and accountability!) in my work. Management always recognized hard workers and praised them publicly and in written emails. They made sure to compensate extra efforts with cash awards and/or time off awards.

Employees who work hard are promoted fairly. They certainly made you feel appreciated when it's warranted.

Cons

My experience was that people were shuffled around to avoid HR issues. When there was a "problem employee" in one branch, they swapped them with a "good" employee from another branch, essentially passing the problem child around rather than dealing with the issue. This was disruptive to the "good" employee, as they had to inherit a new set of contracts; work with a new manager, customers, and co-workers; and drop projects they were working on in their previous branch (projects they'd dedicated themselves to for months/years).

The culture of branches/divisions/offices differs drastically. To a great extent, it basically depends on your first-level supervisor, which in many cases is not the best.

After I left the agency, the office I worked for has had many management changes and many departures. Turnover has increased drastically and I'm not sure why...

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Hire good first-level supervisors. These are the people who keep the "worker bees" motivated and who basically "make or break" the working environment for the majority of employees. If you dislike your supervisor, you typically dislike your job. But a good supervisor can make the world of a difference in the attitude, work quality, and efficiency of employees.

Don't pass "problem children" around to other managers and inconvenience good employees in the process. Deal with the problem. I understand the bureaucracy involved with HR in the federal government, but hire managers who are adept at dealing with these types of issues and who are willing and motivated to go through the appropriate steps to discipline employees who need to be disciplined.

Don't be scared to let your star performers go on details or rotations. They need it for their career development and will go find it elsewhere if you don't allow them to "spread their wings."

Recommends
Approves of CEO

Other Reviews for FAA

  1.  

    I had I wonder experience with the FAA>

    Former Employee - Tele Comm  in  Houston, TX
    Former Employee - Tele Comm in Houston, TX

    I worked at FAA full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    GOOD TRAINING
    Un Managed
    room to Grow
    Travel
    Good Pay

    Cons

    Rotating Shifts
    stressful
    open during disaster
    hours
    government shutdowns
    politics

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    They had good management over there.

  2.  

    Aviation Safety Inspector

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Aviation Safety Inspector  in  Atlanta, GA
    Current Employee - Aviation Safety Inspector in Atlanta, GA

    I have been working at FAA full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    Great Job, requires extensive experience to qualify

    Cons

    Federal government employment /political enfluences

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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