Los Alamos National Laboratory Reviews

Updated September 1, 2015
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3.7
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Los Alamos National Laboratory Director & President Charles McMillan
Charles McMillan
61 Ratings

Pros
  • Multidisciplinary environment, good work-life balance and great benefits (in 11 reviews)

  • Good pay and benefits, however culture has shifted over the years (in 11 reviews)

Cons
  • I've seen that the small-town mentality can diminish some goals and passion of employees (in 9 reviews)

  • The amount of red tape is incredible (in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

138 Employee Reviews

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  1. Scientist

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Scientist in Los Alamos, NM
    Current Employee - Scientist in Los Alamos, NM
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Los Alamos National Laboratory (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The laboratory can be a very interesting and stimulating place to work at. There are plenty of very smart and motivated people.

    Cons

    Unfortunately, most exciting projects have little to no funding and one is left to pursue those projects on one's spare time, which can get frustrating. Unfortunately, funded projects are typically less demanding and exciting from a technical point of view.

    Advice to Management

    A more active role in securing new funding and/or finding new funding sources would go a long way.


  2. Great company; wish there were more permanent positions

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Los Alamos, NM
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Los Alamos, NM
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Work with some of the best in the field. Very good salary. Flexible schedule is possible.

    Cons

    Its difficult to get a staff/permanent possition. Bad or old infrastructure (although there are a few newer buildings so it depends on where you work.

    Advice to Management

    Although a safety culture is important, it sometimes paralizes or hinder the ability to perform work.


  3. Student Intern for 3 summers

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Student Intern in Los Alamos, NM
    Former Employee - Student Intern in Los Alamos, NM
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Awesome people to work with and great opportunities to learn and network.

    Cons

    Some testing that seems unnecessary and slow to process.

    Advice to Management

    Smooth out process for getting started at the lab.


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  5. Graduate Research Assistant

    Current Employee - Intern in Los Alamos, NM
    Current Employee - Intern in Los Alamos, NM

    I have been working at Los Alamos National Laboratory (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Excellent facilities, friendly co-workers, can expand your knowledge unlike anywhere

    Cons

    Remote location, but not a big problem


  6. QA Specialist

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior QA Specialist in Los Alamos, NM
    Current Employee - Senior QA Specialist in Los Alamos, NM
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Los Alamos National Laboratory full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Independent thinking, regional outdoor activities, easy travel to nearby metropolis (Albuquerque, New Mexico, Denver, Colorado and Santa Fe New Mexico).

    Cons

    Micro Management, Controversial Environmental Impact, Lack of Managerial Support, Lack of Accountability, High levels of Stress due to lack of leadership

    Advice to Management

    Start walking around and see what is going on outside of your office and meeting schedule. Learn what your people are doing.


  7. Unorganized, Uninspired

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Research Technologist I in Los Alamos, NM
    Former Employee - Research Technologist I in Los Alamos, NM
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    days off, flexible daily schedule

    Cons

    no funding stability, inter-company competing for funding and projects, everyone back-stabbing to get ahead

    Advice to Management

    no bidding for projects or funding, just assign based on group capability (personnel, skills, equipment)


  8. Really enjoy my work

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Developer in Los Alamos, NM
    Current Employee - Software Developer in Los Alamos, NM
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Los Alamos National Laboratory full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    I really enjoy the work I do and the team I work with. The work is challenging and typically fulfilling. There is good communication and decent management support. I have good support when needing to take time for my family/personal life and the benefits are excellent.

    Cons

    Much of the workforce are in their late careers and many are retiring. There is a large corporate knowledge gap that is forming, which is tragic. There is also a lot of red tape to get through in order to accomplish what should be routine tasks.

    Advice to Management

    Start making policy to require that staff document their knowledge. Having a concrete policy on knowledge and records management will ensure the viability of the Lab. Recruit and retain young talent.


  9. Excellent place to work

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    Fun scientific projects to work on. Good work life balance. Great place to live if you love outdoor sports.

    Cons

    The town is simply too small. Santa Fe is better, but the commute is 40min each way.

    Advice to Management

    Reduce bureaucracy. Hire fewer management people, but more scientists and engineers.


  10. Reliable long-term job, hard to break into management

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

    I have been working at Los Alamos National Laboratory full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Large organization with very good and less good areas for work. Good government benefits, vacation, stability, although (unfortunately) with government stagnant wages.

    Cons

    Glass ceiling for those who stay at LANL long-term; management at division level or above is hired primarily from outside talent, particularly military.


  11. Postdoc Researcher

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The lab has a lot of flexibility in terms of time management. My supervisors don't micromanage, which is nice. The salary is very competitive, and the resources and research facilities are highly impressive.

    Cons

    Since I started, the postdoc conversion process to full time staff has been difficult to understand and navigate. However, they are updated the process now, and giving postdocs (at least in my division) regular reviews and feedback that informs about chances for conversion after the 2-3 year postdoc contract.

    Advice to Management

    I think the posdoc review process will be very valuable for keeping postdocs informed about their conversion chances, or help to consider alternative job options. It would be nice if there wasn't such a strict 3 year limit on postdoc terms, in case a couple more months could help the postdoc transition into another job.



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