HRL Reviews

Updated February 13, 2015
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3.6
17 Reviews
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William Jeffrey
7 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    In the 80's excellent, in the 2000's hired in too early to integrate project.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Serior Engineer Specialist in Malibu, CA
    Former Employee - Serior Engineer Specialist in Malibu, CA

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

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    HRL has all the resources to do almost any type of research

    Cons

    HRL has 2 techs for over 350 people

  2. Amazing diversity of research at the expense of support functions.

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at HRL

    Pros

    HRL has a great legacy in many very diverse areas of research. May be a dream company for PhD scientists interested in research. Beautiful campus with unbeatable views.

    Cons

    Research is fostered at the expense of support functions like Finance, Accounting, Information Technology and Human Resources.

    Advice to Management

    Manage pursued contracts to provide for balanced support (figuratively and financially) of all departments.

  3. Helpful (5)

    A good company in need of a serious overhaul

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

    I have been working at HRL full-time

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

    Pros

    A number of really good people in the research and engineering staff and a beautiful ocean view. A chance to work on diverse and interesting technical challenges. A lot of outflux due to retirements are making room for some badly needed fresh blood. Good bonuses for IP contributions, profit-sharing, and annual awards.

    Cons

    Useless human resources director, well below market-rate pay, idiotic hierarchy perpetuated by administrators stuck in the 1960's, terrible collaborators at GM and Boeing who prefer to treat HRL like a supplier, a lot of burden for paying for old researchers that are no longer productive (if they ever were), shaky federal research funding environment, disintegrating facilities, nearly useless support staff who are both dumb and work at a glacial speed.

    Advice to Management

    Fire all of the dismal under-performers and dead weight, promote those who do perform and pay them better, revise compensation policy, replace the HR director, don't make people wait 3 months to see what the outcome of their performance review is, develop a less dysfunctional relationship with GM and Boeing or stop working with them, get rid of the vendor, Development Engineer, MTS hierarchy crap all together.

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  5. Helpful (4)

    HRL, the epitome of great endings.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Development Engineer in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Development Engineer in Los Angeles, CA

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

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The facilities are nice, overall. Laboratories seem adequate for the layman.

    Cons

    Location is very remote, granted the terrain & views are a perk.

    Advice to Management

    HR Management is exceptional, however, they are not consistent with internal practices.

  6. Helpful (1)

    Innovative research environment

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

    I have been working at HRL full-time

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Company interested in innovative ideas and provides employees many responsibilities. Good group of smart people across very diverse research areas. Ideal location overlooking ocean.

    Cons

    Support for various technical areas tends to be pretty cyclical. Educationally it is very top heavy, which is good for research, but can make system implementation more difficult.

  7. Helpful (2)

    Great place for research

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Development Engineer in Malibu, CA
    Current Employee - Development Engineer in Malibu, CA

    I have been working at HRL full-time (more than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    HRL is a great place for doing research, it allows you to be creative. Also, no other lab can beat the scenic location of HRL. The people are great and very helpful.

    Cons

    There isn't too much interest in actually commercializing technology generated in the labs. The labs are very outdated.

    Advice to Management

    Update labs for safer environment. Focus on projects that could potentially become products.

  8. Helpful (3)

    Old aerospace company run like it was still 1965

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - SUBCONTRACTS in Malibu, CA
    Former Employee - SUBCONTRACTS in Malibu, CA

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

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Good location if you like isolation and good pay for this facility

    Cons

    Horrible management with no clue what is going on in the administration. All focus is only on researchers. The facilities are a joke. No improvements of any kind since 1960 . . . where is the cash going?

    Advice to Management

    Spend the funds on facilities upgrade

  9. Helpful (2)

    Definitely a Research Lab

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Development Engineer in Malibu, CA
    Current Employee - Development Engineer in Malibu, CA

    I have been working at HRL full-time (more than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Work is very project based, which allows for great diversity of responsibilities. Plenty of smart and capable people to collaborate with, if you look for them. On site food is amazing, and well priced. Location is picturesque.

    Cons

    Technical infrastructure is poor. Most IT solutions beyond Install Windows and add Software License X must be handled yourself (some people will appreciate this freedom though). People can be dogmatic, leading to duplicated, incompatible solutions in several cases. It seems like things are getting better, but only slowly.

    You cannot afford a commute less than 30 min long; invest in a good driving car.

  10. Helpful (2)

    Excellent place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Development Engineer in Malibu, CA
    Current Employee - Development Engineer in Malibu, CA

    I have been working at HRL full-time (more than 3 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Fantastic location, relaxing environment (just choose carefully where you live and plan for the corresponding drive), working alongside some brilliant minds.

    Cons

    Routine midyear and year-end deadlines create a crunch-time period, but I suppose it's not all that bad.

  11. Helpful (1)

    Great Legacy does not guarantee a great future

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Research Staff Member in Malibu, CA
    Former Employee - Research Staff Member in Malibu, CA

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

    Pros

    HRL is a good place to start his or her career in research. HRL is one of the few commercial labs left in the US where one can conduct both industry and govt, sponsored research. Great legacy in aerospace research, satellite communication and photonics.

    Cons

    HRL has been primarily a aerospace research laboratory. However they are trying to be a defense CRAD facility. Hence HRL is all over the place offering breadth but not breadth as pointed out by other reviewers.

    Advice to Management

    With dismal govt. funding for aerospace and defense R&D not much is possible in the short-term.

HRL Photos

Beautiful views are definitely a perk of HRL

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