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6 people found this helpful  

Good benefits and interesting work, but sometimes a bit too "old school".

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

I have been working at Raytheon full-time (more than 8 years)

Pros

1) Benefits and Work/Life Balance. Solid benefits package (though it's been reduced in recent years) and generally good flexibility when it comes to work hours. Among the key niceties, they have a "9/80" schedule available where you can work 9.0 hours each day and take every-other Friday off. They also offer tuition reimbursement for advanced degrees, and there are opportunities on certain projects to get paid for your overtime -- even as a salaried employee. Nobody will make you feel bad for taking time off, even during busy times of the year.

2) The Work. This is a large company that develops a wide array of interesting products for military customers. They handle product development as well as a lot of their own manufacturing, so at many work sites you can simply walk down the hall and see how whatever you're creating fits into the larger picture of a massive defense system.

Cons

I don't mean to stress the cons, but these are the things that are "less than ideal".

1) Performance incentives straight out of communist Russia. Yearly bonuses for anyone below executive level are silly small (2-4%) and aren't based on individual performance, but overall business unit and company performance. Also, don't expect anything but a single-digit percentage raise...that's even if you consistently perform well, get a great performance rating, and get promoted. Then crack open the annual report and see some execs making multimillions that are getting better percentages from year-to-year. Average raises for engineers are 3% or 4%, with max around 8%. This is especially troubling for younger employees that need quicker growth to pay off student loans and start families. I've seen many bright engineers that start after college leave after 3-5 years and get 20%-30% raises to go to commercial companies (or even other defense contractors). As a result, much of the young top talent leaves quickly for greener pastures. That, and the fact that it's difficult to innovate due to points 2 and 3, below.

2) Aging workforce. They sure do know their stuff, but a lot of employees are grumpy old defense personalities from the tail end of the cold war era. They're also 90% men and they will make up the majority of your co-workers. I've heard estimates that as many as 50% of the company's engineers are aged 50 or older. Therefore, if you're 35 or younger, prepare to constantly feel like you're working with your dad...or grand-dad. Holy cynicism, batman. Expect change to happen very slowly.

3) Bureaucracy. The federal government imposes a seriously stifling wet blanket of rules and regulations on defense contractors. Pretty much everything is hugely confusing and difficult to navigate (think of doing your own taxes to the twenty-fifth power). There's redundancy in the government's own product line, and the sea of acronyms, paperwork, and process can make you feel small, inefficient, and like it's impossible to understand anything or get anything done. What you do get done will get done slowly.

Advice to ManagementAdvice

Work harder to retain young talent (yes, this will be more difficult in coming years as the defense budget wanes). This includes creating an environment that better fosters creativity and gives larger raises to high performers who are low on the totem pole.

Recommends
Negative Outlook
Approves of CEO

1490 Other Employee Reviews for Raytheon (View Most Recent)

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  1. 3 people found this helpful  

    Too Corporate

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Systems Engineer II in Tucson, AZ
    Current Employee - Systems Engineer II in Tucson, AZ

    I have been working at Raytheon full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Good salary, especially compared with the low cost of living in Tucson. Good benefits. Lots of technical course offerings (off-the-clock).

    Cons

    The hierarchy is extremely vertical: at any given time, you'll have 6-10 different bosses, all of whom have vastly different goals. The "rank and rate" system (the same as Microsoft's dreaded "stack ranking") determines merit raises and promotions entirely based on the opinion of the "functional" leaders who aren't involved in the work that you actually do. The travel policy is abusive; there's too much forced travel and you can't charge or flex travel hours, so you'll get stuck working 60+ hours every week without even being able to record anything past 40 on your timecard. There's also no charge number for most mandatory meetings and some of the mandatory training. Most young engineers get stuck doing paperwork (like writing requirements or documenting nonconformances) until they cease to have any useful technical skills. As you move up in the company, you'll get stuck constantly providing different cost/schedule statuses to each of your bosses, to the point where you have almost no time to get any actual work done.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You're going to have problem retaining employees as the economy improves, since other options are looking better each day. Try treating employees as humans instead of numbers. Level out the hierarchies, since no one should ever have more than 2 bosses. End the abusive travel policies. Let smart engineers work on interesting challenges.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    Disappointed in the Management

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

    I worked at Raytheon full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Excellent benefits, excellent people, and good corporate resources provide a sense that the overall organization takes care of its people at a time when defense budgets are getting smaller.

    Cons

    Internal systems just don't measure up. Management does not act on employee inputs to improve internal business systems, yet can't produce a configuration managed baseline.

    Organization uses Critical Chain to program detriment. Every IMS task is on critical chain, or so it would seem. CC takes away valuable resources from internal efforts.

    The internal performance evaluation process is truly the worst. Interim and year end reviews border on navel gaze. Program schedule prevent any effective employee development.

    The internal management palpable dislike for each other results in constant churn in personnel from program to program. Expect zero continuity and a reorganization every six months.

    IIS has lost several large programs that have negatively impacted career growth division wide and resulted in the movement of people from program to program in Colorado.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    IIS should use the business systems used in other parts of Raytheon to better mange demand and other aspects of the supply chain.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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