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I have been working at Optek Technology
Pros – Requesting time-off is hassle-free and you won't have problems getting it when you need to take it. Managers understand if you need to take time off and you won't generally be denied. The people who are left after all the
lay-offs and re-organizations (one or the other has typically occurred every year or 1.5 years in the past few years) generally get along well with each other. There is no backstabbing or petty office politics amongst co-workers that you might find commonplace in other companies. This is partly due to the fact that there is virtually no reward for hard work... going the extra mile, putting in long hours during the work week....to speak of. Micro-managers aren't found because most of them have already been laid off.
The people who work here are talented and good at their jobs. It's a shame that management treats them as worker ants who are grateful to have a job.
Cons – Be careful when negotiating your salary for a position here. If you have little experience, it will seem like the company is trying to low-ball your ass. But don't take it personally. One of the fundamental problems with this company stems from the fact that they are operating off of a pay scale that was last updated through market research in done in 2000. Even with experience, you probably won't get a salary that is close to the average for what your position should be compensated at other similar companies in the same region. Once in the door, you have little chance for promotion or monetary reward. Salary adjustments don't happen every year and when they do, you might be lucky if the company gives you a 3% cost of living adjustment. Some people have received less than that. Employee reviews may or may not happen on an annual basis. In the past, some employees have filled out their own review and submitted it to their manager.
Management exists in a virtual vacuum. During working hours they can usually be found locked away in meeting rooms with corporate management or if they are not, they are usually glued to their computer screens typing up status reports to send up to the powers that be. Little communication is handed down from management regarding events in the company. Feedback from employees regarding work resources and time management usually go in one ear and out the door. Management offers little support. They are more interested in having product ship out than whether or not the product that shipped out was of good quality. Case in point: product failures that are RMAed back to the company are given to a single employee working in Failure Analysis. Some of the most important equipment in the lab was purchased by the employee, not by the company.
Morale is lower than a snake's ass in mud. On most days in the office you could fall asleep at your desk because you feel like you are working in a tomb. Many employees are overloaded with work and most are frustrated with the way the company is being run. .
From 2008 - 2009 management at the company instituted a rolling series of salary reductions in addition to having shut-down weeks and reduced work weeks in 2008. In order to receive pay for these shutdown weeks or during the reduced work weeks, employees had to use vacation time to cover the time away from the office. If you did not have sufficient vacation time, you had to take the financial hit. By the end of 2009 the company had lost almost a third of its workforce due to lay-offs and salary reductions for employees increased up to 38%. Employees who did not have sufficient vacation time accrued had to take the financial hit in their paycheck. Some honest effort was made by the company to pay back the lost wages and time, but this new precedent is still on the minds of those who are still working there.
The company is undergoing restructuring and re-organization so things might change in the future, but no indications are given that this will be true. Employees aren't holding their breath on this by the way.
The company is reactive and not proactive. Contingency plans do not exist in the culture of the leadership that is in place here (partly due to the fact that corporate management keeps them occupied with filling out reports). Training once you start your new job here is akin to being told to sink or swim.
The talented employees with good skills will start leaving once the economy starts picking up sufficiently.
If you can survive the lay-offs, company politics, and accumulation of work piling up on your desk, you might be able to make it to retirement here. But don't expect to get rewarded for your hard work or be given any empowerment to do your work well while you are here. The take away message you get is that you should be happy to have a job and that is the greatest reward you will get.
Advice to Senior Management – Communication. Communication. Communication. There are reasons why listening is good for the bottom line. You cannot hope to retain good talent in your organization if you allow the atmosphere at work to be filled with exceedingly poor morale and unmotivated, burnt-out employees.
Consider how it must feel to ultimately be controlled by a handful of people who are located on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean. While your resources are slowly chipped away in the name of saving company expenses, the ones in power also decide that what you, a thankful dependant worker, really needs for motivation is a big stick. This method will work for a time as long as everyone is afraid of losing their jobs. But eventually things change.
If you don't have a clue what I'm talking about, go read up on the events that took place on the eastern seaboard of North America in 1775. Take a look at what's been going around the world in the Middle East this past year and on Wall Street. Given enough time and enough pressure, people eventually take action.
No, I would not recommend this company to a friend
2011-10-08 15:10 PDT
I worked at Optek Technology full-time
Pros – You can take naps at your desk quite often because it's so quiet in the office.
Cons – Not enough space in field to list all the negative and detrimental characteristics of this company. Senior management is running this company into the ground. The leaks have already sprung and the water level is waist deep. You either stay with the sinking ship or you buy into the delusion that management hands down to you.
Advice to Senior Management – Management is using project timelines to threaten individuals with termination.
Who is the next person to fall out of favor? Who is the next to be terminated?
Management at this company is engaging in intimidation games to forcibly remove employees and has no concerns how this affects other employees who are aware of what is happening.
Plans are in motion to outsource all technical capabilities of this company either across the border or overseas.
No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company
2013-02-06 10:52 PST
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