Fermilab

  www.fnal.gov
  www.fnal.gov

Fermilab Reviews in Batavia, IL

Updated October 15, 2014
Updated October 15, 2014
55 Reviews
4.0
55 Reviews
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Fermilab Laboratory Director Nigel Lockyer
Nigel Lockyer
0 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • I have become very interested and begun reading on my own about particle physics (in 4 reviews)

  • They don't pay very well for scientists but the work environment is very good (in 4 reviews)


Cons
  • Despite being employed by Fermi Research Alliance, the purse strings are held by the US Department of Energy Office of Science (thus DoE (in 2 reviews)

  • Since Fermi falls under the Dept of Energy, their hiring/ staffing needs are very political causing them to suffer a cutback in staffing lately (in 2 reviews)

More Highlights

31 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    Best job ever.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Batavia, IL
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Batavia, IL

    I worked at Fermilab as a contractor (more than an year)

    Pros

    You get to work with some of the funniest, most down-to-earth and intelligent people on the planet.
    The work is interesting and challenging.
    There are a lot of resources (hardware).
    Make your own hours.

    Cons

    Some employees aren't so down to earth.
    If you aren't driven, you can get stuck in a rut of boring work.
    From what I've heard, funding seems to be drying up.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    beware to retirees

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Technical Specialist in Batavia, IL
    Former Employee - Technical Specialist in Batavia, IL

    I worked at Fermilab full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great place to work if your a self starter and capable. Also earned several college degress while working there.

    Cons

    Lower managment resent you working outside the " box" regardless of your abilities which do affect your pay raises.
    If too many engineers, or physicists ask for you personally on their projects this is considered working outside the box too. After Graduating Summa C Laude with a Business Management Degree it was made plain that I would be going nowhere

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Your lab was built in a large part by the boomer generation but no appreciation is shown when it come to retirement.
    You find it easy to sell off your retirees insurance coverage tom to an insurance exchange like Towers Watson who by the way has a lifetime limit which was not mentioned in your presentation as well as a 30% increase in Rx cost coverage for those of us who get Rx's for 90 days. Many of us have had the same Doctors fo 30 years and now you put us out to pasture like a bunch of simpletons who needs someone to tell us what kind of insurance we need You've shown your true colors. I truely hope those of youi that participated in this scam will reap what hardship you sowed. For me the day I must go to Towers Watson I'll ask to go on hospice. It may be painful but it'll be quick. Hopefully quicker than it took TIAA/CREF to lose over a quarter million dollers of my retirement. BTW if you think TW's One Exchange is good for us read their SEC filings and observe the profits they make and the risks they may be subject to.. All those profits come out of funds that would be paying our insurance.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  3.  

    Invaluable research experience.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Graduate Student Researcher in Batavia, IL
    Current Employee - Graduate Student Researcher in Batavia, IL

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

    Pros

    Get hands on, personal experience with the best in the industry.

    Cons

    Batavia is a small and rural place with not much to see.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    No complaints.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Feigning Corporate in an Academic World.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Systems Administrator III in Batavia, IL
    Current Employee - Systems Administrator III in Batavia, IL

    I have been working at Fermilab full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Vacation and Medical Leave are separate and accrue at equal rates.
    Laid-back, academic atmosphere. People enjoy sharing what they are working on.
    Vast melting pot of cultures from around the world.
    Cool tech on the frontier of physics.

    Cons

    Communication between Sectors, Departments and Groups can be rather problematic. Too many islands.
    Too much budget tension from year to year. Despite being employed by Fermi Research Alliance, the purse strings are held by the US Department of Energy Office of Science (thus DoE...thus Congress)
    Salary freezes and furloughs do occur when Congress refuses to function.
    It seems that Cronyism runs rampant in the (shallow) ranks of Management. There is a lot of dead wood which should purged.
    There are MANY working groups which tends to make the Management structure more broad than deep. The problem is that a non-physicist has a difficult time moving up the rather short ladder.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Take responsibility. Make as many decisions as possible outside of a committee. Understand that results (controllable) are more important than public perception (not controllable). Be flexible enough to bring in a helpful technology, or ideology, without needing to "Fermi-ize" it into something ungainly and unusable.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Working hard during difficult budget times

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Batavia, IL
    Former Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Batavia, IL

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

    Pros

    The benefits and time off are great. It is also really fun to be around so many smart people. It is still the center of the particle physics community in the United States.

    Cons

    The lab as been a bit scattered in its approach for a couple of years and is only now finding its footing with the new P5 report and director.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Always maintain a high, but achievable goals. I think in the past scientists have had lots of really wild ideas that have received far too much consideration. It is okay that they have wild ideas and that they discuss them, but at some point those ideas to be critically evaluated with and eye to reality.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7.  

    Fermi is like a family.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Financial Analyst in Batavia, IL
    Former Employee - Financial Analyst in Batavia, IL

    I worked at Fermilab full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Everyone is more than respectful.

    Cons

    The great cafe options are too convenient!

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Intern

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Intern in Batavia, IL
    Former Employee - Intern in Batavia, IL

    I worked at Fermilab full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Great interesting laboratory
    Does great work in particle physics

    Cons

    Didn't experience any negatives
    Was there for 10 weeks as an intern, very accomodating

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Very nice family

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Financial Analyst in Batavia, IL
    Former Employee - Financial Analyst in Batavia, IL

    I worked at Fermilab as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    Diversity is a wonderful thing.

    Cons

    Parking can sometimes be full.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the good work.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Inspiring

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Intern in Batavia, IL
    Former Employee - Intern in Batavia, IL

    I worked at Fermilab as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Smart people, good location, great support, you will learn a lot weather you like it or not, Bisons.

    Cons

    can be intimidating, long hours, funding can be difficult.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    The diversity of employees is amazing and they are all treated with dignity and respect.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Financial Analyst in Batavia, IL
    Former Employee - Financial Analyst in Batavia, IL

    I worked at Fermilab as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    Everyone works together as one team.

    Cons

    The only downside is that there may be government shutdowns.

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