PNNL Reviews

Updated July 24, 2015
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3.5
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PNNL Director Dr. Steven Ashby
Dr. Steven Ashby
2 Ratings

Pros
  • The work-life balance is fantastic (in 9 reviews)

  • Collaborative working environment, flexible working hours (which is similar in any national lab), aggressive research goals, (in 8 reviews)

Cons
  • None if you live in the Tri-cities; if you are off-site it is a major negative strike (in 4 reviews)

  • the city is small, not many fun (in 2 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

94 Employee Reviews

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  1. R&D PNNL

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Richland, WA
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Richland, WA

    I worked at PNNL

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Great bunch of folks there. Great cutting edge technology and work is appreciated.

    Cons

    Politics can be a pain. At the laboratory, software engineers are grunt work. Everything depends on publications and software engineers are not in position to publish.


  2. Helpful (1)

    Professional/Nontechnical Staff//Brutal Politics

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

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

    Doesn't Recommend
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    Pay was pretty fair compared to national markets. Benefits were outstanding, particularly healthcare and flex time/scheduling. The Tri-Cities are nice if you like a small town feeling.

    Cons

    After a four-year run, I left largely due to the astonishing politicitical environment. I worked on four primary projects while there; half were toxic with the backdoor dealings among project staff. Twice, I accepted internal jobs with increased levels of responsibility--but last-second politicking from pet staff displaced me from those roles. I had high reviews and received several performance-based raises and cash awards. I exceeded criteria for promotion. Despite these factors, I kept being passed over for pet staff members. I saw similar treatment of engineers/researchers and other staff members who also weren't part of "the club."

    Advice to Management

    Implement and follow policies against fraternization. Reward proven ability and manage poor performers appropriately.


  3. Helpful (3)

    Good Place to Work better for retirees and newbees

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Richland, WA
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Richland, WA

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

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Very flexible schedule (BEST THING ABOUT PNNL), pension, great benefits, lots of roles for every interest, low cost of living in surrounding areas, great people.

    Cons

    pay is low, things move very slow, bad behavior is not addressed swiftly (and mostly not at all), too many people just collecting a check, PNNL perpetuates insubordinate behavior by moving troublemakers instead of getting rid of them. Seniority plays too much of a role in overall decisions.

    Advice to Management

    Recognize you are losing younger talent because of the seniority/pay your dues mentality. People will work harder and better if they can be rewarded today. Not in 25 years. There is too much competition to do that these days.


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  5. Helpful (1)

    Awesome research experience

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Tech Intern IV in Richland, WA
    Current Employee - Tech Intern IV in Richland, WA

    I have been working at PNNL

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Started as an intern with little experience and have had nothing but good experiences with my mentors and other Co workers. Everyone is willing to share their knowledge or help with problems.

    Cons

    The pay isn't the best, but the cost of living in richland is much lower then other places.. making it work pretty well.

    Advice to Management

    I believe a better relationship with HR and managers would be very beneficial to the company. Otherwise, managers are awesome and are always willing to help.


  6. Helpful (2)

    Great Temporary Place

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

    I have been working at PNNL

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Great co workers great facility

    Cons

    It is a temp position and everyone is alaways looking for grants


  7. Helpful (2)

    Postdoc review

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Richland, WA
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Associate in Richland, WA

    I have been working at PNNL full-time (More than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Great facility and state-of-the-art instrumentation.

    Cons

    Less freedom to conduct my own research.


  8. Good place to begin a Policy Analyst Career

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

    I worked at PNNL

    Pros

    Assigned to work for the Department of Energy. Management micro-managed at times, but for the most part provided the space and flexibility to meet the needs of the DOE program office I worked for. Benefits were unparalleled

    Cons

    Pay was below average. Richland isn't an ideal location for young professionals.

    Advice to Management

    Stay committed to the Seattle campus. It is a great draw for young professionals and make PNNL much more competitive for hires.


  9. A flexible work environment surrounded by other intelligent people who get to work on tough and challenging projects

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Sustainability Engineer in Richland, WA
    Current Employee - Sustainability Engineer in Richland, WA

    I have been working at PNNL full-time (More than 8 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    collaboration with other people on interesting and leading edge technology

    Cons

    The age gap and collective bargaining are somewhat of a burden, along with not enough resources where they should be at the field level and less middle management.

    Advice to Management

    Less paperwork and more collaboration opportunities along with merit pay


  10. Helpful (1)

    intense work load vs flexible work time

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Scientist III in Richland, WA
    Former Employee - Scientist III in Richland, WA

    I worked at PNNL full-time

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

    Pros

    You have the flexibility to arrange your own work schedule, as long as you deliver on time.

    Cons

    Need to work really hard to raise money.

    Advice to Management

    None


  11. Helpful (1)

    Business Oriented

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Richland, WA
    Current Employee - Research Associate in Richland, WA

    I have been working at PNNL full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Good Resources. Smart Team. Role for individual play.

    Cons

    It feels like work is never ending.

    Advice to Management

    Individual contributions should be recognized.



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