Environmental Science Associates

  www.esassoc.com
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Environmental Science Associates Reviews

Updated July 17, 2014
Updated July 17, 2014
6 Reviews

2.8
6 Reviews
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Gary Oates
1 Rating

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Good for Upper Management

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

    I have been working at Environmental Science Associates full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Good group of people. Employees are technically sound. They do good work that matters. You can work on some interesting projects at the Associate level if you land in the right group with the right type of projects. For certain groups with good project managers there can be opportunities for you to sharpen your technical skills. For others, not so good. If a group has limited projects and managers that won't delegate it can be a fight club style environment to meet your targets.

    Cons

    It is an employee owned company. We're told we have a voice in how it is run by picking the board. The system is flawed. The board nominees are appointed by a committee made up of board members. There are 9 board slots and 9 nominees. Of course they all got nominated. We were also told no raises this year, but a couple of months later there is an announcement about promotions. The same people keep getting rewarded. They claim it is because they are worried these favored employees will leave. What about the rest of us who are towing the line? Zip. And, when we bring it up it is used against us. And when some good people do leave they are trashed to others.Upper management calls the shots and don't let the managers on the ground run things. There is a rampant amount of favoritism starting at upper management.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Start rewarding the people who have been patient and stuck by when times were tough. Stop catering to those superficial upper management stars. Stop rewarding people who threaten to leave or cry that they are over worked. Let them go. Most should have left years ago, but couldn't in a bad economy. Why should they? Upper management keeps tossing money at them and promoting them for doing mediocre work. Stop giving the wrong people promotions and raises. Stop the favoritism. Keep upper management out of the equation. Listen to your rank and file employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2.  

    No room for advancement

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Project Manager  in  Sacramento, CA
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Sacramento, CA

    I have been working at Environmental Science Associates full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Good benefits, ESOP program is like an added bonus every year, great people to work with for the most part.

    Cons

    Lack of opportunities to advance. Overworked staff. There seems to be a priority of Sr. Staff to hire old friends and ex-colleagues. This has resulted in a very top heavy structure. Because i have very Sr. Staff working on my projects and our already high billing rates, its hard to stay on budget for projects.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pay attention to Jr staff and middle project managers. We are very unhappy. Hire some Jr. staff to help with the work so project managers arent stuck trying to do everything.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    Lots of good, but also lots of bad

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Managing Associate
    Former Employee - Managing Associate

    I worked at Environmental Science Associates full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    interesting work, very competent coworkers. Competitive salary and benefits. Family atmosphere. Lots of opportunity to go after work that interests you and if you can bring in work, you can basically become pretty self sufficient. Good work life balance.

    Cons

    The Family Atmosphere is both good and bad as its the source of much of the BS. Staff is oftentimes rated more on personality than work competence. Getting along, or the perception of getting along seems more important than really being good at your job. Senior managers treat mid to junior level staff like children.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Do not allow program managers and directors to have favorites. Value staff for their professional contributions.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Lauded as the new model of consulting but mired in the corporate business model.

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

    I have been working at Environmental Science Associates full-time

    Pros

    Competitive pay and benefits. Employee owned company.

    Cons

    The business model is founded on the tiered structure- highly paid directors followed by a wide base of underpaid junior staff. Not the place for midlevel project managers to come to- unless you go back into being an associate level you are in for turbulence.

    Current strategum is to pick off disaffected staff from large consulting firms as a means of 'making over' their street image as a mediocre firm. This might work for the short term but there is a reason why this company has not grown into a national/international entity: the high achievers are either let go or they realize they cant build their vision of a career which at that point they move on. The offices function as completely separate business entities that is worse than the corporate structures I have seen.

    It might be fine for some people but once you go big its all but impossible to go back. Make sure you like what you're getting into.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Make some sense of where the company is s

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Good opportunities for entry level and senior staff

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

    I have been working at Environmental Science Associates full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Competitive salary. Benefits that are at or slightly better than industry average. A diverse client base and good support staff. ESA proves the opportunity for entry level and junior staff to learn a lot both about the technical and managerial side of consulting. If you are a self starter and take initiative, it will be rewarded. Similarly, if you are senior staff and primarily self supporting in terms of bringing in work and generating revenue, you have a lot of flexibility and good support to help you make the most of your career.

    Cons

    The opportunity at both the more junior and more senior levels is hard to find for journeymen-level employees. They are slow to promote in the middle ranks and if you are introverted or not a self starter it is easy to become mired in terms of career advancement; however, this is the case for many of these firms and it is often necessary to make a lateral move to advance.

    Corporate policies and management decisions can be frustratingly self defeating.

    They have a tenancy to treat staff, particularly junior staff like children.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You need to develop a more balanced staff mix, try not to put people in so many boxes. Do a comprehensive top to bottom reviews of your policies and procedures and have the courage to make the changes you know you need to make.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  7.  

    Good company, must pave your own way

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

    I have been working at Environmental Science Associates full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Small knit firm, very knowledgeable staff, pay is relatively well compared to other comparable firms, longevity with minimal turnover, ESOP program for employees

    Cons

    limited training and unstable project management, difficult to determine company direction at times, workload can be monotonous, high cost of benefits, growing presence of more corporate ladders

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Need for more training for junior-level staff, more transparency between staff and corporate, need to improve professional development and learn to grow the company from within, as opposed to hiring more top-heavy staff

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

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