Micro Power Electronics

  www.micro-power.com
  www.micro-power.com

Micro Power Electronics Reviews

Updated September 1, 2014
Updated September 1, 2014
4 Reviews
2.8
4 Reviews

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
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Michael T. (Mike) DuBose
3 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Challenging in terms of workload but supportive management and great teammates.

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

    I worked at Micro Power Electronics full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Good teamwork and opportunity to learn different aspects of business. Management open and transparent with goals and plans. Interesting products and markets.

    Cons

    Difficult business model. High mix of products and customers generates tons of work that staff struggles to manage. Very difficult to create stability in priorities and planning.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Consider skill sets and aptitude more carefully when placing new responsibilities on employees.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Nice small company with great people and great products.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Beaverton, OR
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Beaverton, OR

    I have been working at Micro Power Electronics

    Pros

    There is no shortage of work to do. The company is in a diverse and dynamic field that adds value to mankind. There is a lot of room to make an impact.

    The location and pay are top notch.

    Cons

    There is not enough value put into communication between departments -- management could aid to better streamline this. Coworker-to-coworker mentoring could improve as well and would benefit the company greatly.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Dilbert Principle meets "Office Space"

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Engineering in Beaverton, OR
    Current Employee - Engineering in Beaverton, OR

    I have been working at Micro Power Electronics

    Pros

    Good opportunity to get a lot of interaction with top notch medical and military companies, wide variety of challenging projects. Generally a very competent design engineering group to work with, across two sites. Stays on the forefront of rechargeable batteries and charger design.

    Cons

    If you value engineering, creativity, or take pride in your work, Micro Power is NOT the place for you.

    First of all, the company is not expanding. The lithium battery market space might have grown in the recent years, but Micro Power's revenue today (post merger) is still just comparable to their revenue before the purchase of a competitor (selfCharge, in Redmond, WA). If management was smart, this ought to be a very good indicator as to how bad they are doing.

    So, where do these job vacancies come from? Either:

    A) The person in the said position was tasked with fixing something so broken in the company, that they failed and was terminated, -or-

    B) The person was just so fed up that they either quit or moved onto greener pastures.

    So what is it like working at Micro Power?

    Imagine a company where the sales guy would say anything to the customer just to complete the sale, then push it upon the engineers to deliver what he had sold. He might not even understand what he had sold, or quoted, but gosh-darn-it, here's the quote and this is how much time you have to get it done.

    Imagine everyone being loaded to 120%, or more, and management asks, no, expects you to keep putting in the overtime hours just to get things done. Then when the time bonuses roll around, they find the smallest fault and use it to deny you your bonus.

    Imagine that to add to this workload, everyone is shackled to a horribly inefficient system that some business degree guy who sits in an office all day dreams up with. It takes a room full of engineers and account managers an hour (x 8 people, x $75/hr, or so) to fill out a form, just so that the technician can build 15 prototypes. And if something is to go wrong, the answer is to find fault, throw someone under the bus, then apply more and more draconian processes.

    Imagine a place where no one really wants to work with anyone else from any other department, that after years of this mental conditioning is afraid to take calculated risk, afraid to be creative, afraid to question "is this really a good way to do things". As previous reviewer noted, the general mentality of the company is "Check the box" and "make sure I don't hold the manure bag when things go bad".

    Now to top all this off, imagine a company that treats their employees with absolutely no respect. People had been fired by phone calls, while driving home after a week long business trip. Some even found out that they've been laid off when they come in in the morning and their key card doesn't work.

    The ONLY reason Micro Power can afford to stay in power, with all this waste and inefficiency, is because of the incredibly inflated overhead that can be charged on military and medical products. But as other competitors get better, more and more business will go away, and the rot and decay of the organization shows through.

    If you are a young engineering graduate and can afford to bury your head and ignore these problems, come work for a while to get some experience. But don't plan on a long career here. If you are applying for any other professions (accounting, Q/A, etc) - don't bother. There are better places to work.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You pride yourself in your manufacturing, but go take a look at how modern manufacturing is done. Then go and look at your minimum wage assemblers welding things by hand. Take a look at the couple of pieces of tape on a wooden block that passes for assembly fixtures. Ask yourself if that really is on par with a world class manufacturing facility.

    Take a look at the processes involved in designing a new product. Take a look at how often a highly paid engineer is forced to do clerical work. Ask yourself who manages to, time and time again pick the most expensive labor resource to do what adds the least value to the company.

    Shadow one of your engineers for a day, and observe how they don't have the proper engineering tools in their cubicle, and how there isn't really a good workstation in the engineering lab. Think about how something as mundane as troubleshooting a circuit board and emailing some results requires multiple trips around the cube farm that you are so proud of.

    Try treating your employees with respect. Firing someone with a phone call while they are driving home, when they've been in your facility the entire week, is extremely unprofessional - and sends the message to the rest of the company how much everyone is really valued.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 2 people found this helpful  

    Micro Power Electronics, A.K.A. "Silo City"

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA

    I have been working at Micro Power Electronics

    Pros

    World class customers (Physio Control, Philips Medical), stay on the leading edge of rechargeable battery and charger technology, be as close to manufacturing as you want, work on multiple, short schedule projects.

    Cons

    I have never worked for a company that is more siloed and fearful of sharing information within. The CEO is one who often manages by fear and intimidation and makes decisions based on emotion rather than business sense. With a few exceptions, a very weak sales team in the field. Far too process driven and lacking flexibility. The engineering mentality is often "check the deliverables box" and not "does the charger/battery actually work right?"

    They bought a competitor company in 2007 (SelfCharge) located in Redmond and have decimated the remaining team. They eliminated manufacturing in Redmond in late 2008 which resulted in a RIF from ~65 people down to ~20 which was emotionally difficult to those who were left.

    Pay is not that great in many departments, many people are incredibly overworked due to downsizing.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Think about why you bought Selfcharge and the value in the people and how it has been squandered. Learn to be more nimble and flexible for your customers, share information across departments more, learn to manage and motivate professionally rather than through fear and intimidation. Embrace constructive criticism from your employees.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

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