Sandia

  www.sandia.gov
  www.sandia.gov
There are newer employer reviews for Sandia

 

Way better than working for a living!

  • Comp & Benefits
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Senior Management
  • Career Opportunities
Current Employee - Senior Technician in Albuquerque, NM
Current Employee - Senior Technician in Albuquerque, NM

I have been working at Sandia

Pros

The work that you'll find at Sandia is unique in the sense that it usually falls into one or more of several categories: cutting edge research, national security projects, energy-related, and computing research. One could spend a whole career at Sandia, rotating about in various positions and departments, and acquiring new skills and knowledge all the while. For those people who want to work somewhere that is doing meaningful, important work instead of cranking away in a short-sighted, profit-driven corporate environment, Sandia is an ideal place to be.

Cons

Sometimes great work requires great sacrifice; travel is not unusual, long hours (as any engineering job will require) will crop up from time to time, and having to learn something new in a short period is the norm. Overtime is provided for Techs, and flex time (1 for 1) is given for Staff. Work hard, play hard, right?

Advice to ManagementAdvice

There is still some tendency to place people based on job title rather than skill set. This is why employees are required to be learning new things all the time. Not all Staff members are interchangeable, nor are all Techs created equal. Be mindful of the backgrounds of the people being invited to do new work. Most MOW's aren't willing/able to say "I can't do that"; instead, we grab books and go figure it out. Whether or not that's a bad thing depends on your point of view.

Recommends
Approves of CEO

191 Other Employee Reviews for Sandia (View Most Recent)

Sort: Rating Date
  1.  

    For the octogenarian (in reality or spirit) looking to retire on the job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Principal Member of Laboratory Staff in Livermore, CA
    Current Employee - Principal Member of Laboratory Staff in Livermore, CA

    I have been working at Sandia

    Pros

    9/80 work schedule, i.e. every other Friday off. Well compensated for the amount of productivity required. Employee expectations are extremely low and easily met. On-site gym in CA. A week off between Christmas and New Year's, but it's not really extra time off. It's in lieu of other holidays in the year.

    Cons

    Moving up on the technical side means being able to sell programs to sponsors in DC. If you're not willing to find and adhere yourself to a sugar daddy in DC, then you need to find a sugar daddy internally, i.e. someone else who's selling programs in DC, who has a project you can charge. Yah, technical staff selling - some with no aptitude or training, so they give away the store for a dollar. Unless you're admin or a manager, you always need projects to charge to cover your time, so it doesn't create a team environment. One project one day, and maybe moved on to another project next week/month/year. Everyone is a free agent. Endless training: cyber security, information protection, time-charging ethics, insider trading abuse, safety hazards, slips trips and falls, etc. Seriously, about a dozen mandatory online training modules every year that's so boring, I want to slit my throat with a butter knife. Speaking of knives, there's only a small deli, no cafeteria in CA. If you want to go out for lunch, you have to go out and drive somewhere; nothing within walking distance. Security check line every time you enter. CA site is an after-thought, country cousin to Albuquerque. This is most evident in the medical insurance providers that the NM office chooses, which have limited physicians in CA. In general, an insane amount of bureaucracy and paperwork. Many of the administrative staff members are clueless as to how the lab runs, where revenue comes from and have no sense of timeliness or service. You get better service at the DMV than with some of the Purchasing folks.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    This is a technical laboratory, but many of the senior managers are out of touch with technical work. They spend the majority of their time in meetings or traveling for Business/Program Development. However, there are no objective (numerical/quantifiable) metrics for measuring their performance or success. Management is also out of touch with outside industry trends. This is particularly sad in CA, given the vicinity to Silicon Valley.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    Not Your Ordinary Employer

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Member of Laboratory Staff in Livermore, CA
    Current Employee - Member of Laboratory Staff in Livermore, CA

    I have been working at Sandia

    Pros

    Sandia is an employer that is generally flexible, values its employees, and serves a noble purpose in support of the nation's security. There is a great team of people at Sandia and the benefits are pretty good as well. It is probably one of the few companies that still offers a pension. Sandia also offers a robust health/wellness program which is attractive for those interested in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. It is not uncommon for people to spend their entire career at this company; often rotating into various assignments along the way. Unlike many companies in private industry, Sandia can offer a sense of stability which is attractive to many of its employees.

    Cons

    Beauracracy defines Sandia. The policies and procedures, while defined, are often so rigid that they prevent sensible business solutions. Gaining exception to processes is just as redundant. Sandia's culture is very risk adverse and it has deep roots in doing things "the way they have always been done". The downside to having long term employees at this company is that there also seems to be a "pay your dues" mentality, which can be frustrating for those looking to advance quickly. Also, there is a heavy focus on gaining education from top tier schools. This is the only company that I have heard of that focuses on why potential new hires got a "C" in Art History over ten years ago.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be willing to accept more innovative and risky solutions to business issues. Work on improving knowledge transfer among staff.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
There are newer employer reviews for Sandia

Work at Sandia? Share Your Experiences

Sandia

 
Click to Rate
or

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.