Petrobras America
2.6 of 5 9 reviews
www.petrobrasusa.us Houston, TX 150 to 499 Employees

Petrobras America Reviews

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Claudio Nunes


43% of employees recommend this company to a friend
9 Employee Reviews
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1 person found this helpful  

Please open your eyes PAI

Administrator (Current Employee)
Houston, TX

I have been working at Petrobras America full-time for more than 5 years

Prosgood health benefits does count for something

Consthe company does not keep the employees informed about what is going on. Also, it seems that the focus has totallly wend away from America and all they can talk about if the developments in Brazil.

Advice to Senior ManagementCheck the procedures that are currently in place to put a contract in place. It is absolutely absurd that it take 3 to 6 months to purchase anything.

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Working at Petrobras America is like working at the post office

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Houston, TX

I have been working at Petrobras America full-time for more than 5 years

Pros1. Job security - think of Petrobras America like the post office. If you are content with doing the bare minimum, having absolutely no career development, and don't mind taking orders from uneducated managers then this is the place for you.
2. Work and life balance - again think of it like your local post office. With the exception of 2-3 areas, most work 30 hours a week tops and HR closer to 20.
3. 401k - 401k is good compared to other industries but for the oil and gas it's subpar.
4. Bonuses- they can be good, about 20%. BUT keep in mind that when you get paid 25% less then the industry standard a 20% bonus still sets you well below the industry.
5. Dress code - by far the best benefit of working at PAI is the causal dress code. You can basically dress like you did back in you college days. There's definitely some monetary value to this benefit.(It's sad when this is the best benefit)
6. Health benefits- 100% paid for by the company

ConsOne thing that has to be kept in mind is that working for Petrobras America is NOT like working for "Petrobras" the oil giant in Brazil. I made the huge mistake thinking that it was and is the #1 thing I wish I would of known. PAI is more like a small 400-500 person mom and pop company with a handful of characteristics of a major. Management here does not realize that this is not Brazil. In Brazil, Petrobras is the "it" company. They have difficult tests (like the GRE) that everyone must pass in order to be considered for employment. They have many career developing programs and even their own university. In the USA, IT'S QUITE THE OPPOSITE. They think that everyone should be thankful for having been given the opportunity to work at Petrobras America. This mentality is due because a lot of management (not all) are under qualified, have 0 business acumen and never would have passed the test in Brazil.

1. Low salaries- salaries here for the most part are well below industry average. When I say below, I mean 25% below. All raises were taken away for 3+ years until recently and when we got them back, they didn't even cover the average yearly inflation rate. They say that all employees get evaluated by a external grading company that evaluates job duties. Problem is that the official "job duties" are far less than what you actually do so they get away with paying you much less. Some are as old as 7+ years.

1. Very high turn over - the turn over at PAI is unbelievable. In the last 3 years, PAI has lost so much talent. Management does not realize that one of their biggest assets are the local talent. Talent that is highly educated and experienced. HR is a mess and will not do anything about it.

2. Management - let me be clear, PAI has some excellent and brilliant expats and managers / supervisors. Unfortunately a large amount of the managers / supervisors are under qualified and have 0 business acumen. Again, not all but most are in the position they are in because they are all friends that do favors for each other. When it comes to expats, most of them are talented with the exception of some that are just here for their kid's college tuition (expats get free college tuition for their kids). The problem is that expats get rotated every 2-5 years and they are all in key positions. Most of them don't want to make any significant decisions because they don't want be held accountable for them, so they wait things out. This is true from operational to organizational issues. Also any progress made is lost when they are replaced and the process starts all over again.

3. Career development - does not exist, period. Unless your Brazilian or in HR. This along with low salaries are the main two reasons why turn over is so high. THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NO INCENTIVE TO DO ANYTHING MORE THAN THE BARE MINIMUM. No matter how hard you work, problems you solve, or advances you make for the good of the company, you will not see anything for it. Also, no training is provided. The occasional in house training usually has less than 20 spots and over 50% of the spots go to corporate support and HR. Every time. They don't even bother to "appear" to be fair.

4. Unprofessional environment - large amount of the brazilians are friends with each other, dating /or married, and related. Its common practice to hire a son, daughter, friend, cousin or any form of a relative of a manager or supervisor that have 0 experience over qualified candidates. What's worst is that these people start at a much higher salary than the people currently in the same role that have been denied raises for 3 years straight. Its a never ending cycle. Also, not the biggest issue but its something worth mentioning. People bring their kids to work all the time. It's beyond me why. I understand on occasion or emergencies but not all the time. They run around the hallways screaming and playing with each other.

5. Human resources - the HR area here is a total mess. From the bottom to all the way up to the top. They are puppets for the Brazilians with good connections in Brazil to get what they want. Only area in the entire company that have clear career paths and career development. They are absurdly big compared to the size of the company. Extremely bureaucratic so it doesn't show that they really don't have any power unless HQ approves first. Only area that have supervisors that don't supervise anyone! Yes that's correct. They make professional certifications mandatory and paid for to all corporate / HR employees but will not approve the same for other areas. As mentioned above, the little training that they do provide is half taken by them and their spouses.

**Now all of the above cons do not apply to you if you're Brazilian, know one or are related to one***

I feel like its important to share this information and experiences so people considering employment at Petrobras America can make educated decisions. I wish I would have known this when I was evaluateing multiple job offers.

Advice to Senior Management1. share business plans
2. At least try to "appear" fair

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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4 people found this helpful  

Worked at Petrobras America for 6 years

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Houston, TX

I have been working at Petrobras America full-time for more than 5 years

Pros- Good health insurance, open door policy, flexible schedule, up to 6% 401 match, people are nice most of the time, nice building in Westchase area.

Cons- Lack of career path and low salaries are my biggest complaints. Side notes: HR is a mess, Petrobras lost a lot of great smart people because HR can't negotiate. Management positions are mostly taken by expats who have been in company for a long time and people with no business acumen. Communication is delayed and full of bureaucracy, often due to brazilian management mind set. Portuguese is spoken 90% of the times in elevator conversations and halls leaving people who don't speak Portuguese clueless.

Advice to Senior ManagementIt's time to work on a clear career plan and promote from within.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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If you are not an expat from Brazil, you are not going anywhere within Petrobras America.

Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)
Houston, TX

I worked at Petrobras America

ProsGood health benefits. Nice "worry free" work enviroment.. If you are a lazy person, you will be treated as well as those you make an effort..

ConsNo career development. The management team has not realized yet, that Petrobras is not as important here as it is is Brazil. They still believe that working for Petrobras is the same as going to heaven, therefore you should forever be thankful, and need to have you mouth shut.. People in management are all friends and family doing favors to each other, here just to put their kids in college and hire them, as most of them will not pass the exam in Brazil.

Advice to Senior ManagementTry to utilize the local expertise, some of the guys you have there can run the company better than your cousin..

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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All decisions are made in Brazil... ALL decisions...

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Houston, TX

I have been working at Petrobras America

ProsGreat place to work if you have a family and your only concern is benefits.

ConsLack of communication from mid and lower management. You are only an employee... proactive behavior and enthusiasm is not looked upon favorably.

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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Challenging

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
Houston, TX

I have been working at Petrobras America

ProsNo routine, good benefits, good work environment

Conscareer growth, promotion police, salary police

Advice to Senior ManagementShare more of your concerns and also your impressions regarding your staff

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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Reasons to work at Petrobras

Human Resources Position (Current Employee)
Houston, TX

I have been working at Petrobras America

ProsGood benefits and salaries, excellent bonus

ConsVery political in decision making

Advice to Senior ManagementTraining in management skills

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workplace good for soon to be retiring or job-seeking experienced professionals close to retirement

Geophysicist (Current Employee)
Houston, TX

I have been working at Petrobras America

Prosrelaxed, laid back, fun-loving, worry-free from losing job

Conslimited resources and technical help sparse, when needed, communication (english) a problem and trust in local (US) employees not visible

Advice to Senior Managementcommunicate and trust

Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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4 people found this helpful  

Changing FAST, but to anything better.....

Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

I have been working at Petrobras America

ProsBonus, Benefits (excluding 401K matching) and sick leave, and an excellent place to gain Operator's experience

ConsNO room for advancement in the Company - especially if you do not connected and don't speak Portuguese! Job can be overly demanding at times. No retirement benefits, Lately, Communication and Transparency between upper Management and Employees are quickly fading away (FAST). Career Planning does NOT exist!

Advice to Senior ManagementWork will NOT be done without employees! You CANNOT depend 100% on contractors to keep your business up, as well as maintain it profitable and growing! Need to invest in a reliable capable core team and ensure you keep them content, included, and involved. Also, need to ensure your employees are allowed to grow and enhance their careers by investing in them, promote them, and provide opportunities…..

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Petrobras America reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Petrobras America CEO Claudio Nunes . All 9 reviews posted anonymously by Petrobras America employees.