There are newer employer reviews for MIT Lincoln Laboratory

Very smart people, great name to have on resume

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
Former Intern - Software Engineer in Lexington, MA
Former Intern - Software Engineer in Lexington, MA

I worked at MIT Lincoln Laboratory as an intern (less than a year)

Pros

Good group of interns every summer, ~150 interns. Very smart people, get to see different divisions and attend interesting seminars. Prospect for hiring back is very good if you are interested in starting a career there.

Cons

Long bus ride if you accept the housing at MIT (45 minutes each way), office space is rather drab. Pay is not as good as large software engineering companies like Microsoft, Google, Facebook, etc.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Make lunches free.

Recommends
Neutral Outlook
Approves of CEO

MIT Lincoln Laboratory Response

Oct 16, 2013Recruiting Manager

We are pleased that you had a good intern experience. Our intern program continues to grow. The breadth of opportunities that we can provide is unique. Formal programs for interns include ... More

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  1. 6 people found this helpful

    Divisions are like different industries and groups are like different companies--choose wisely!

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

    I have been working at MIT Lincoln Laboratory full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    * Fantastic technical library
    * Support you (financially) whenever you get a paper accepted to a conference
    * MIT benefits
    * Lots of smart people (good logic is essential when working with others)
    * Lots of cool-sounding projects (at least 90% of them sound really cool)
    * Management recognizes above and beyond performance with recognition (e.g., bonus)
    * Multiple high-performers to learn from
    * If you ask someone a question, he/she is generally quite helpful

    Cons

    * Part of what being a "flat" organization means is that people simply take on more roles and responsibilities to make the whole organization work. This often leads to technical people being pushed into managerial roles against their will. So despite the title "Technical Staff," you're usually not doing something technical, and probably spending a lot of time creating PowerPoint (aka, Slideware).
    * The pay is low, even when compared to peer organizations (e.g., MITRE). Also, the workload is always such that you are underpaid for the work that you do.
    * The lab's mission is to "apply advanced technology to problems of national security;" however, we don't solve many of said problems and thus have questionable impact when you consider parts of the the lab that are less mature than say, radar. This fulfillment aspect is a huge problem. What exacerbates this is that Staff and Management don't truly seem all that interested in solving real problems. We seem principally interested in getting money and doing interesting-sounding work.
    * There's an expectation for Tech Staff to become "expert" at some new thing without any allocation of projects/resources to that end. You're frequently split between many different projects that have you at varying percentages that the project leads generally do not respect. Some Tech Staff get lucky enough to be on a singly-themed effort for an extended period of time. They generally develop true expertise. However, this is the exception not the rule.
    * Projects are frequently taken with too little money which strains staff and resources because we generally end up having to pull people from other projects to help complete the projects.
    * Of all of the cool-sounding projects, maybe half of them are *actually* cool. When you dig down into what people are actually doing, you're frequently disappointed.
    * If you decide you want to leave Lincoln Lab & the government work world, you will find this attempt to transition difficult, because what you do at the lab is so unique, there aren't very many suitors out there for you (unless, you're lucky enough to spend the vast majority of your time doing technical work).

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Develop real relationships with your Technical Staff. This is the best way to get the truth about what's really going on in your groups and divisions. Part of good management is mapping people to the right projects. When this doesn't happen right, it's a disaster.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    MIT Lincoln Laboratory Response

    Oct 9, 2013Recruiting Manager

    Thanks for your insights. Clearly you have given this a lot of thought. Certainly the pros that you reference are aspects of Lincoln Laboratory that we emphasize: really smart people;helpful staff ... More

  2. 2 people found this helpful

    Great Technical Environment, BUT involves defense and weapons systems

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Systems Engineer in Lexington, MA
    Former Employee - Systems Engineer in Lexington, MA

    I worked at MIT Lincoln Laboratory full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    great technical environment. Lots of opportunities to work with advanced technology. lots of smart people who will be your co workers

    Cons

    work requires you to put aside any concerns you might have for people. work involves defense systems, weapons systems and support for nsa surveillance are amongst the concerns you will have to deal with

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    watch out for employees who's entire value is derived on the backs of subordinates

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    MIT Lincoln Laboratory Response

    Oct 9, 2013Recruiting Manager

    We are pleased that you were impressed with the technical environment and the high quality of technical talent at Lincoln Laboratory. We are fortunate to be able to attract and retain top talent to ... More

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