Raytheon

  www.raytheon.com
  www.raytheon.com
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3 people found this helpful  

Good job, but not for the ambitious

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Career Opportunities
Current Employee - Senior Systems Engineer I (E03) in Woburn, MA
Current Employee - Senior Systems Engineer I (E03) in Woburn, MA

I have been working at Raytheon

Pros

* Very high compensation per unit of effort ratio, mainly because the denominator is very small.
* Because Raytheon is a government contractor, full time employees work exactly 40 hours a week. If you are asked to work more, you will get paid overtime (at 1x pay).
* Very flexible work hours. Some people regularly go to work at noon.
* If you want a pretty high paying job, but you don't want to work too hard, you are not very ambitious, or you are not the brightest person in the world, then this is a great job. You will get paid well and you cannot get fired unless you commit a crime, perform sexual harassment, look at porno at work, commit security violations, etc.

Cons

* Very dependent on the defense cycle. After 9/11, the defense industry was booming. Lots of hiring, lots of money for interesting work. With all the budget issues lately (2010-2011), the first place to get cut is in defense R&D and in new projects. It makes sense: the government will pay for bullets and body armor for soldiers in Iraq, but they won't research new radar systems.
* Raytheon mainly does systems testing and integration. A lot of smart people get frustrated because the difficult, innovative work isn't respected. The genius who finds solutions to everything might not get compensated as well as the dummy that leads the test. If you like the research side, go work at MIT Lincoln Laboratory instead (although the pay will be about 25% less than Raytheon).
* Diminishing returns on compensation. Moving up in the company is mainly a function of age, not skill. Many talented engineers that start at Raytheon leave after 3-5 years because the raises are promotions are big and fast, but hits diminishing returns quickly. Those that choose to stay longer tend to be known as "lifers" because they are very unlikely to ever leave the company.
* Non-transferable skills. Programming is done on ancient language (military follows the rule of "if it ain't broke, don't if it"). All the processes and knowledge is very contained to the defense industry. Another big reason why people who stay more than 3-5 years become "lifers".
* Security clearance can be a pain, especially for people not born in the U.S. or people with immediate foreign relatives.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Make employees feel better. I can understand why the company is run the way it is run. The government pays by "man hours" for many of Raytheon's contracts. And Raytheon runs up hours very well, the smart engineers would say it is because they hire a bunch of dummies who can barely get work done. At least try to make it seem like the smart guys are appreciated, even if there is no financial reason to do so.

Recommends
No opinion of CEO

1546 Other Employee Reviews for Raytheon (View Most Recent)

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Good Place to Start, Difficult to Stay

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Fort Wayne, IN
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Fort Wayne, IN

    I worked at Raytheon

    Pros

    - Mgmt encouraged 9/80 work cycle. Most times, walked the talk in work/family balance.
    - Really pushed diversity.
    - Good pay and benefits, 401(k) is super generous.
    - If you get support of management, O/T is paid.

    Cons

    - Company is real big on loyalty to the old timers, not unusual to have 15~20 people a month get their 25 or 30 year service pin. OTOH, very, very few new hires make it to 5 years. In about 10 years, this site will collapse as all the old heads either retire or die.
    - Employment rides the DoD budget roller coaster. When programs are numerous, company hires up fast and furious. When programs get cut, company downsizes just as fast and furiously. Since Iraq and Libya have ended, look for more lay-offs as programs get cut.
    - Since it is a DoD contractor, all tech is DoD; i.e. old or unique to defense industry. Most of what you would learn here is only good here. Non-transferable (to the commercial world) skills and experiences.
    - Company is self important. They have their way of doing things and that's the way it is. New ideas not wanted here. (If we wanted you to have a brain, we would have issued you one!)
    - Real big on siloizing projects. Lots of waste as each program duplicates efforts and resources.

    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Not terrible, but no incentive to excel

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in McKinney, TX
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in McKinney, TX

    I have been working at Raytheon

    Pros

    Great benefits, occasionally interesting work, 3% profit sharing most years, good location with minimal traffic, pay is a bit above average

    Cons

    Engineers don't get the tools they need, instability of work load, poor communications from management, engineering work frequently consists of doing the same thing repeatedly for years at a time. Raises and bonuses are only tied to company performance, not individual performance.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get some input from engineers about the tools they need instead of having an IT org decide for them. Provide more incentive to overachieve, instead of the same raises for good and bad performance.

    Disapproves of CEO
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