Meso Scale Discovery Reviews

Updated April 11, 2015
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2.0
33 Reviews
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Jacob Wohlstadter
13 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. It was fun at first, now not so much

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

    I have been working at Meso Scale Discovery

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

    Pros

    The people I work with are fun. THe benefits we receive are great

    Cons

    You will not make much money. Most people stick around for a couple years then leave.

  2. Fast paced, challenging, endless learning opportunity. Impossible workload...

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

    I have been working at Meso Scale Discovery full-time

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

    Pros

    Company is financially stable so the chance of getting laid off is very low. Great colleagues who really cares about the company and have extremely high work ethic. Company is fast growing so there are endless opportunities.

    Cons

    The workload is almost possible...unless you put in 10-12hrs a day, and that is the expectation. The company culture is "do more for less". They frequently promise promotion, but the actual pay increase doesn't come until 6-8 months later. Bottom line is, this is not a family oriented place and there's absolutely no work life balance. Oh, and benefits are a joke.

    Advice to Management

    Please start taking care of your people, stop expecting them to work like machines.

  3. Helpful (1)

    Manufacturing technician

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

    I have been working at Meso Scale Discovery

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

    Pros

    very good place to work with, good employes, friednfly atmosphere

    Cons

    have to handle problem indepently

    Advice to Management

    Should interact more with employes

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  5. Stay far away from this company unless you are desperate

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

    I worked at Meso Scale Discovery full-time (more than 8 years)

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

    Pros

    MSD has a good reliable technology that fits into a certain market segment in the biotech industry.

    Cons

    It all start with the top leaders of this company. By far the worse anywhere. I've never seen management like this before. They are quite demeaning and degrading to employees and they micromanage like crazy. There are absolutely no checks and balances in place.

    Middle management isn't much better. They are a bunch of followers who are too scared to tell the emperor he has no clothes. This is an especially spineless group that lost their manlihood a long time ago. They get paid well so they happily stick around to beat on the subjects.

    Advice to Management

    Start treating your employees well and stop micro managing or your technology will never reach it's potential. Turn over is an issue an this could be solved if you started treating people with respect. Not everyone went to school at Harvard or MIT, get over it.

  6. Helpful (1)

    Upper Management has absolutely no business nor operational skills. DO NOT APPLY!!!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Meso Scale Discovery

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

    Pros

    Best technology in the market

    Cons

    Nothing happens or happens at a snail's pace since EVERYTHING has to be approved by one person.

    Advice to Management

    When you hire people allow them to contribute their knowledge and skill not ignore or fire them because they are trying to help the company succeed and do the job they were hired for.

  7. Helpful (12)

    A Paradise for Mediocrity

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

    I worked at Meso Scale Discovery

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

    Pros

    On a personal level, MSD care about your well being and family to an extent. For example, if you have a newborn or someone in your family passes away, they send flowers or condolences. However, they don't care enough to give you the pay or benefits that you are capable of making elsewhere. Overall, MSD employees are caring and friendly, possibly because they share the same pain as you do.

    Cons

    MSD is a very autocratic company as it's very tightly controlled by it's ownership. The ownership with the overall leadership (college buddies of the owner who have been with the company since it's beginning) has to weigh in on every single decision. If you want to buy a door stopper, it has to be approved by the leadership and then the ownership and that request may still not get approved (true story). The owner takes great care of the leadership and together they lead the company. There is a great deal of fear and paranoia among the ownership. Rightfully so, as one can read about all the past lawsuits and legal actions, so they are extremely careful with every action. Everything is reviewed and evaluated by the legal team and they also are well taken care of by the ownership. That leaves the rest of the employees in the organization. The ownership/leadership has a defined single role for the rest of the organization. Do what they tell you to do. You are not allowed to think for yourself, ask for changes/improvements, make decisions, question what you are asked to do, or speak up against policies. If you do, you should be prepared for your exit from MSD and find a new job. If you choose MSD, you can kiss your career development/advancement good bye. MSD is where careers go to die unless you come into an entry level position. The new trick by the inept HR is that they go around and promote how employees at MSD can laterally move around across departments and they claim it is as good as a promotion. MSD doesn't care about titles, because everyone plays the same role - do what the ownership/leadership tell you to do. At times, I wonder if the ownership/leadership don't want to empower it's workforce out of fear, just like they are afraid of everything and anything as everything go through legal reviews. Are they afraid that some of these employees may become better leaders than they themselves could ever be and they lose some of their authority? I was once asked by the leadership why I won't be happy just by being at MSD and work as part of a large team that MSD is without a proper title, career development, training, promotions...etc. I guess, some people are fine with that but I am not. If you are a dreamer that possess great passion, ambition, and competency, you will always be frustrated at MSD.

    On the other hand, if you do exactly what the ownership/leadership want you to do with a smile on your face and without questioning anything, then you are a perfect fit for MSD. If you want to be average or mediocre, MSD is THE place for you. You will have a long tenure at MSD. The ownership will give you a green jacket after 10 years of service and there are quiet a few people who have accomplished this feet. Granted, over those ten years, your career hasn't developed, your financial compensation hasn't grown at a rate similar to rest of the industry, and you haven't developed or evolved as an employee to reach your potential. In other words, your growth has stunted and your current market value is so much lower if you were elsewhere.

    How does ownership/leadership achieve their mission of employee oppression and stunted career growth? Assemble an appropriate HR and recruiting team and the present team has been stellar in achieving mediocrity. The HR/recruiting team mostly consist of members who do not meet the minimum qualifications or core competencies with no education or previous work experience that's appropriate for employment in a biotech/medical device company. Their soft skills are pedestrian at best. However, they can talk the talk and they are extremely self-confident, but they can't walk the walk and they don't care to listen to, learn from, or wanting to improve for the people they SERVE. They carry out the wishes of ownership/leadership in bringing in and retaining mediocre/average employees.

    As far as employees are concerned, the current MSD HR team is the epitome of ineptitude. They manipulate, back stab, bully employees around, and they don't give them the basic respect they deserve. Some of their code of conduct borders unlawful behavior and potential lawsuit waiting to happen. The HR team introduce themselves as an expert in aligning companies' HR plans with their strategic directions. Based on their performance, I have to say that MSD ownership/leadership wants a strategic direction of mediocrity and foster incompetency.

    You can network and identify a perfect candidate, conduct phone interview and hand the candidate over to the recruiters to move forward with the interview/hiring process and they will find a way to screw things up. They won't bring in candidates who are unwilling to put up with their strict demands and nonsense - it's pretty much their way or the highway. Hiring managers constantly get complaints from recruits about recruiters' lack of professionalism and rudeness. When recruiters are confronted, they blame everything on the recruits and make up stories about how difficult these recruits are to deal with and how tough their job is (even though they should have never been hired in the first place as recruiters as they are not qualified). The recruiters get away with all of this because they are protected by the HR department and together they are partners in bringing in people who can tolerate an oppressive and autocratic environment. There is no check and balance with this department and they are not held accountable for their actions, otherwise there would have been complete turnover as soon as they were hired.

    Advice to Management

    I know that you considered me as a highly valuable employee, but I grew tired of mediocrity. I have patiently waited for years to see some changes, but I learned that you talk the talk and don't walk the walk. Accepting the MSD offer was my biggest career mistake and staying there as long as I did was an even bigger mistake. That's fine, because we all make mistakes and sometimes we learn from them. It's too bad though, because I think the technology is great and I wish you have the vision and courage to take the company where it is capable of going or empower your employees to help you get there and lay out a vision for you. You probably have accumulated enough wealth for the next 10 generations of yours. Now, take a risk and aim for the stars and take your employees with you, so they can feel some success as an MSD employee. I was compelled to write this because I want to help recruits and maybe you will bring about some changes to make things better for current employees, the ones I have left behind.

  8. Helpful (17)

    The MSD Experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Manager in Rockville, MD
    Former Employee - Manager in Rockville, MD

    I worked at Meso Scale Discovery full-time (more than 8 years)

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

    Pros

    Coworkers - Very friendly and collaborative
    Ideal location
    Very sensitive ECL technology and products are best of it's type
    Relative job security
    Scientific organization
    Analytical thinking
    Very educated work force - Numerous Ivy league PhDs with excellent academic credentials and accomplishments
    Relatively easy and stress-free work as risks are always minimized/eliminated

    Cons

    In my opinion, MSD is a great place and fit for you, if:
    1) you want a relatively stable job and not a career
    2) you are a person of great patience and that's your biggest strength, because things take forever to happen. Even the smallest decision needs to be made by the selected handful in unison.
    3) you are OK with pay/benefit scale based on your limited role in the organization and not based on your true capability. At MSD, one's role is to simply execute orders from the selected few and nothing else, so, his/her value to the organization is minimal. As a result, employees aren't utilized or paid to their satisfaction, but both sides are justified.
    4) you are not greatly ambitious or you don't want to take risks at the present stage of your career and you are happy with the minimal role and status quo - no career mobility. The company itself is not very ambitious. It prides itself on keeping a low profile.
    5) you are OK with a very secretive organization and you have no visibility to anything and there is no organizational vision that's laid out.
    6) you are OK with selected handful of people to make all the decisions for you. Numerous well qualified department heads and VPs are brought into the organization, but they all leave within 1-2 years, because they are not happy with the level of authority given to them. People who do not question leadership and possibly unqualified for their roles get retained. MSD always have over 50 open positions due to the high turnover rate. On top of that, recruiting and hiring to fill an open position is a horrendous experience with the present recruiting team.
    7) you are OK with limited product/technology area. All products are around ECL based immunoassays and instruments to support them.
    8) you are not the type who like to take initiatives and you are not passionate about your job and you do not express your true feelings and hold everything within.
    9) you can tolerate an organization that's not well structured and no one is fighting for you. If you are outside of the chosen handful, everyone does everything (take orders and execute). The ever growing current HR department that prides itself in strategic organizational development is a joke, even "encouraging" employees to write positive glassdoor reviews and prepping hiring managers to address the negative glassdoor reviews the "approved" way, as opposed to taking initiatives to address the issues and making the MSD experience better for everyone involved. The current HR department does more clowning than human resource management, systematically lazy, lack the ability to take initiatives, unqualified for the job, and an absolute embarrassment to HR professionals everywhere. Maybe, it's all part of the "strategy" execution.
    10) you are a manager, you don't like fighting for your employees or disagree with the leadership. Managers talk about employees taking ownership and empowerment, but that's not a reality at MSD.
    11) you are OK with managers and leaders who are not qualified to manage or lead. My supervisor was the least qualified I have ever worked under (directly or indirectly) in my long career. At the same time, he is just an executioner of orders and that's what he expects from you; no questions asked and no push back. He gets completely pushed around by his own superiors. I have to say some department heads are better in this regard and better managed.
    12) you are OK with always being on a short leash. If you speak up against company policies or your superior, there will be consequences. Differences in personalities and behaviors are not tolerated.

    Overall, this is my MSD experience and it applies to the whole organization and it's governance and hopefully, this will help some prospective employees. As an employer, MSD is such a unique brand that a very few prospective employees will enjoy. This brand is not for me and that's why I have given it two star rating. I wish I knew more about the brand prior to joining MSD.

    Advice to Management

    The ownership doesn't need any advice as they know exactly what's going on and the state of the organization. Thus far, they have chosen status quo and I have a feeling that will continue. As the economy gets better and workforce becomes competitive, we will see if the company continue to enjoy the financial success with an even playing field. The company doesn't have the right philosophy or right personnel that promote growth, so status quo is probably what the ownership is aiming for. It's a privately owned company, do whatever...

  9. Helpful (5)

    Don' t waste your life on this place.

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Meso Scale Discovery

    Pros

    Some talented people, some that should never be responsible for even taking care of a goldfish.

    Cons

    don't care about the people, looks get you in no matter the skill, back stabbing, very unskilled poorly run HR Dept that waste time and money with no positive results, corporate culture is distant, tense and toxic.

    Advice to Management

    Sell the company to someone who cares and who will treat the employee with respect and care.

  10. Helpful (1)

    It's an ok place to work..

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

    I have been working at Meso Scale Discovery full-time (more than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    Closed Christmas to New Year's. Independent working environment. OK benefits.

    Cons

    No room for personal growth.

    Advice to Management

    pay us competetively

  11. Helpful (2)

    Decent place to work

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

    I have been working at Meso Scale Discovery full-time (more than 3 years)

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

    Pros

    Multiple challenges and opportunities to learn and propose solutions.
    Talented and helpful people in all areas of the company.
    MSD has been continuously growing for the last 10 years and never stopped the search for innovative diagnostic tools.

    Cons

    401K plan is not awful but has good potential to be improved.

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