There are newer employer reviews for Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

 

25 Years at LLNL

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Current Employee - Technical Staff Member (Engineer)
Current Employee - Technical Staff Member (Engineer)

I have been working at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory full-time (more than 10 years)

Pros

- Salary.
- Flexibility in work schedule.
- Good basic benefits.
- College campus like working environment.

Cons

- Sometimes oppressive and silly security/safety rules.
- Employee services not on par with other high tech companies in the Bay Area – the Lab use to have a large swimming pool, softball fields and Lab sponsored clubs.
- Move to “for-profit” contract structure with federal government for operating the Lab, and loss of University of California academic “not-for-profit” culture and replacement with industrial business culture.
- Little of the profit made by the new company running the Lab is put back into the Lab facilities or passed on to employees.
- Many new senior and middle managers brought in by the new company are from socially/politically “conservative” regions of the country and do not like the progressive/liberal values held by many of their employees.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Get out of your offices and talk to employees.

Recommends
Neutral Outlook
Approves of CEO

165 Other Employee Reviews for Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (View Most Recent)

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  1.  

    Big Science

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

    I have been working at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

    Pros

    LLNL allows a scientist to accomplish big science surrounded by resources and incredibly knowledgeable and committed people. The lab gives you a lot of room to grow and explore new ideas, and the support structure (in most cases) is very strong.

    Cons

    You're working for the government, so all the benefits that may come from working for a private company (frequent bonuses, team building, etc) are nonexistent.
    Bureaucracy and politics abound (e.g., if you want a promotion, you're more likely to get it by threatening to leave b/c you have an offer from somewhere else than from the merit of your work).

    Recommends
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    It's a job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Computer Scientist
    Current Employee - Computer Scientist

    I have been working at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

    Pros

    Livermore lab is an excellent place to work on challenging technical problems across many fields. The environment can be very academic. In the aggregate, the work environment can be very laid back and there is good job security (some exceptions, see cons). The management typically has a good technical background. The management as a whole acknowledge the need for a good work-life balance. Pay and benefits are quite good, possibly better than average if you take into account relatively low Livermore cost of living.

    Cons

    Many managers are promoted on technical merits, leading to some managers acting like technical team leads rather than managers. It can be frustrating when you need a manager to deal with a organizational issue, but they are working on technical work instead. While having a technical manager has its upsides, I sometimes think having the MBA without any technical knowledge would be better to have as a manager.

    Although it depends on the area you work in, most science/engineering jobs at LLNL are classified in some manner. A number of the amenities you consider normal you may no longer have. For example, access to many websites such as gmail and facebook are blocked for security reasons. You can't bring your cellphone or ipod to work. Sometimes you can feel cut off from the rest of the world. If you interview at LLNL, ask a lot of detailed questions to determine what you can and cannot do in your position to determine if you will be able to handle it.

    As I said under the pros, it's a laid back environment with good job security in the aggregate. However, some department's funding can be sketchy. Finding funding or being on projects with funding can frustrating. If you interview at LLNL, try to ascertain budgeting, liklihood of future complications, and weigh risk/reward appropriately. Due to budgets changing, there have been several layoffs in the last 5-6 years. In the aggregate, job security is better than industry, but it's not super safe.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Managers should be managers, not anything else. If they are doing technical work, they shouldn't be managers.

    Disapproves of CEO
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