Norfolk Southern Reviews

Updated July 23, 2015
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Norfolk Southern Chairman, CEO, and Director Wick Moorman IV
Wick Moorman IV
5 Ratings

Pros
  • pay and benefits, if you brown nose management will leave you alone (in 8 reviews)

  • The company has a great benefits package and pretty good salary (in 10 reviews)

Cons
  • Work life balance is horrendous (in 8 reviews)

  • They expect you to bleed railroad 24/7 (in 9 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

19 Employee Reviews

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  1. Money isn't everything

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Operations and Service Support Representative in Atlanta, GA
    Former Employee - Operations and Service Support Representative in Atlanta, GA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Norfolk Southern full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Money. That's about it. And they have pretty good benefits.

    Cons

    Negative work environment. The employees here are rude and bitter. Management is aware and they will quickly tell you that they can get 100 more people to fill in your spot. Everything is unorganized and everyone will tell you to get run off insurance. Its crazy. Not a career.

    Advice to Management

    Please make changes. Some of your seniority employees will run off the new employees.


  2. Helpful (3)

    College Graduates Stay Away!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - General Foreman
    Current Employee - General Foreman
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Norfolk Southern full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    They try to sell you on the retirement benefits and that they have an aging work force. They are hiring management trainees like crazy because they can not keep young talent. They treat you poorly and expect you to suck it up. They expect you to up and move for every promotion.

    Cons

    Stay away from this company! Toxic work environment. NS is of the opinion they own you. NS doesn't care about your personal life. 60 plus hour work weeks are the norm. You do not get any holidays off. You do not get any comp. time off. When you start you will be on off shifts (Third/Second) with Tuesday/Wednesday rest days for years. The operating departments are always playing the blame game rather than actually trying to solve problems. Upper management only cares about rules checks instead of moving freight!

    Advice to Management

    Treat your management staff better don't just talk about it actually do it!


  3. Helpful (1)

    Horrible Management

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Illinois in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Illinois in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Salary, benefits some of the employees.

    Cons

    Management is very cliquish and racist.

    Advice to Management

    Get better management. Diversity is the key to a successful business when your rail yards are in predominately black and Latino areas. Yet, you have very few black and Latino employees.


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  5. Helpful (4)

    Decent company, but CORRUPT Human Resources Department

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Human Resources in Virginia Beach, VA
    Former Employee - Human Resources in Virginia Beach, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Norfolk Southern full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Decent benefits, competitive retirement plan, and challenging work. The company as a whole, aside from Human Resources, is not too bad.

    Cons

    The Human Resources Department is highly unethical, to the point it is truly appalling. Recruiters are required to review candidates first and foremost based on sex and race as the Board has placed extreme focus on hiring females and minorities, so much so that highly qualified white males are often overlooked solely for being white males. The HR Department is run by fear, intimidation, shady practices, and "making examples of people". There is next-to-no work/life balance, and the expectation for recruiters is weekly travel out of town, often 6 days per week with no additional compensation. Stay far far away from this HR Department if your values, morals, and ethics are of any importance to you.

    Advice to Management

    Do a thorough and in-depth investigation of the HR Department - there are some truly shady and unethical practices at work, and some of the most awful people in leadership roles.


  6. Run , run far away

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Engineer
    Former Employee - Engineer
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Norfolk Southern full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Railroad retirement , railroad retirement other than that , there's nothing really good with the ns

    Cons

    poor management, first jobs out of school , no knowledge of railroad operations. No family life , managers hiding in the woods to try and fire you for rules violations . Unions in company pocket

    Advice to Management

    How about, some managers with experience, northern management for the northern operations, this is 2015 and the mason Dixon line can be crossed


  7. Miserable experience to say the least....

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Revenue Accounting Customer Service in Atlanta, GA
    Current Employee - Revenue Accounting Customer Service in Atlanta, GA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Can't think of one positive thing to say about this dept.

    Cons

    Management, Salary (for what you put up with salary is not worth it), Work/Life balance,

    Advice to Management

    Treat people with respect and dignity. Past culture of the railroad is still very present and its horrible.


  8. Helpful (3)

    Management Trainee - Network and Service Management

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Norfolk Southern full-time

    Pros

    Department Rotations and traveling in the first part of the program; food, hotel paid for Salary Retirement Business is good Responsibility

    Cons

    They took away the Department rotations and traveling during the program Office Culture: Very negative. If you ask someone how their day is going, common answers are "Another day in paradise..." or "X years until retirement" or "You know. Just another day." Managers talk bad about some of the reps' capabilities and personal lives behind their backs. You'll be in a cubicle all day. If you are in the OSS department, you can be working 12 hour shifts, 6p-6a or 6a-6p or sometimes both in the same week. You will also have to work weekends and holidays. So when you divide your salary by the number of hours, it isn't worth it. If you value family, don't work here; especially if you would be relocating. You won't be able to go home for holidays. Work also comes home with you, as you have a cell phone and have to answer and review emails throughout the night. Expect to get 500 emails a day, literally. There are easier ways to make the same amount of money by working less. OSS provides opportunity to grow and move up in the company. If you work in NCSC, you will not be able to move up as fast if at all. The managers try to keep them down there instead of trying to advance them. Many people come from "railroad families." So if someone introduces you to someone important in the office they say, "This is ______. Her grandfather was a conductor on the Piedmont Division." That can get annoying. Company Values: Retirement- When it comes down to it, retirement is what keeps people there. Safety- They take their safety values too far in the office. For example: you have to knock on the door to enter the public restrooms on each floor. This isn't such a big deal, but its just kind of strange to report a paper cut or bug bite. New CEO coming in. Lots of changes. They closed down the building in Roanoke. I approve of Wick, not happy with Squires so far. Work here if you want to work really hard for a good retirement. Don't work here if you care about family values or want a nice work culture.

    Advice to Management

    Needs more direction.


  9. Helpful (1)

    Conductor, RCO, Locomotive Engineer, Yardmaster

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Locomotive Engineer
    Former Employee - Locomotive Engineer
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Norfolk Southern full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Great money for the amount of education.

    Cons

    Horrible working conditions. Hostile work environment. No organizational skills in daily operations. Waste of resources. Promotes toxic employees to remove them from departments. Business model preaches safety but safety is only a concern when someone gets hurt or breaks a rule. Bosses head hunt to reach bonus. Unpredictable management expectations. Resembles a Nazi Regime. Back stabbing is a must to survive. Unsafe work environment. Double standards. Family is 2nd work is 1st, no matter the emergency. Accelerated programs are designed to push people thru even if they're not technically qualified. Equipement is sub par or has mechanical band-Aid to get it to the next destination.

    Advice to Management

    Upper-management should reconsider their business culture and/or model and current managerial staff and make the proper cuts or changes needed. Treat people with respect. Practice what you preach. The cut throat model isn't working. That's why you have the ratings, the horrendous work attitude, and your turn over rate is so high. NS could be so much more than what it is. I love the job but dislike the supervisors I work next to not for. Oh and have a promotion structure. Promote from within and quit hiring college kids who have 0 experience and expect them to solve railroad problems. You're basically employing glorified clerks that cause problems for your operation.


  10. Helpful (4)

    Transportation

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - Locomotive Engineer in Birmingham, AL
    Current Contractor - Locomotive Engineer in Birmingham, AL
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Norfolk Southern as a contractor (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    The retirement benefits are great and and fellow transportation employees become a brotherhood or family. Every little boys dream to be engineer!

    Cons

    Only work culture where where management tries to fire you every day after investing so much in hiring you. They try to build a record of rule violations in order to intimidate you into violating your working agreement and never speak up about real safety issues if it's going to cost money. The fading benefits in order that upper management and share holders can get a bigger bonus when the make record profits every year yet take something from you every new contract. Only railroad that forces promotion to engineer and loses great employees due to not passing promotion tests and are great at their job as a conductor. Finds loop holes in contract in order not to pay you the money you are entitled , contract says you are due a certain amount of money yet never says when to pay it and they pay contract claims when you retire in hopes you die first or quit claiming your money because you don't ever think you will be paid because that's corporate good business. High turn over rate due to these practices in lower management and transportation and corporate side loves this because it's cheaper to pay new employees than older more experienced employees.

    Advice to Management

    Pay the money the contract says your entitled and employees wIll not abuse the FELA laws in order to feel that's the only way to recoup their money. Treat us and humans with families that try to come to work everyday and do a great job instead of a employee number. Treat your lower management and contract employees with respect you would treat your fellow upper managers and not like we can be replaced at any time or any place. Happy employees are safe employees so quit figuring out loop holes in order not to pay us money or bonuses we think we are entitled. Treat us like we are shareholders because we are invested in our profession instead of treating us like we third rate employees. Transportation makes the money for everyone so act like it! You can still make money with happy employees


  11. Helpful (2)

    Demoralizing

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    The company has a great benefits package and pretty good salary.

    Cons

    If you are a family oriented person then stay away from NS. They expect you to bleed railroad 24/7. You are always on call and heaven forbid you do not answer your phone in the middle of the night. For those of you who are military be it reserves or coming off active duty, the railroad is nothing like the your branch of service. NS says that they are military friendly when they are not. I was told by my asst superintendent that I could not go to my regular drill weekend because I had to work, his operations took priority. After a major phone call, I was able to attend drill that weekend.

    Advice to Management

    Your A.D.I. process doesn't work because no one buys into it. Before you turn a trainmaster loose make sure he or she knows how things work, his territory, and understands that people are going to work but if you hover over them they are going to slow down. When finding a replacement for a superintendent or what ever the case may be, look at the persons track history. Not just his rule violation history but, what his previous and current employess have to say about him or her. The good old boy system plays a hughe role in NS. I will never ever recommend this company!



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