Rincon Research Corporation Reviews

Updated April 13, 2015
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3.6
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Steve Ziehmer
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Employee Reviews

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  1. Member Technical Staff

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Rincon Research Corporation full-time

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Interesting projects
    Intelligent co-workers
    Casual environment
    Good benefits
    Stable company

    Cons

    Modest pay and raises
    Not much training or mentoring
    Unclear how to advance

    Advice to Management

    It's understandable that management has been trying to get rates down to be competitive. There are many very bright people at Rincon and the government used to understand that for stellar work you have to pay a little more. But recently they've seemed to have forgotten that and are of the mind that all contracts should cost the same, regardless of the difficulty of the task. After a few years of reducing overhead it's about time that Rincon make raises and salaries more commensurate with the type of talent they want to attract and retain. They are aware of this problem and working on it.

    One benefit of working here is you can stay technical in your career. However there is often a lack of mentoring and training if you wish to take on more technical lead or management roles. As the company grows a little more structure might be in order.

  2. Fantastic Benefits - Intelligent Team - Great Future

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

    I have been working at Rincon Research Corporation

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

    Pros

    * Highly-motivated, hard-working, intelligent coworkers - challenges me to do my best and learn from the best every day
    * Awesome benefits - think free insurance(!); Retirement plans - 401k and ESOP; Paid time off; Holidays paid - week off between Christmas and New Year's
    * Competitive wages
    * Small company - Employee-Owned - not a lot of red tape to get thru
    * Opportunity for advancement

    Cons

    * Not many documented processes (this can be seen as a 'Pro' to a lot) - small company
    * Lack of dress code (again could be seen as positive) creates a somewhat less than professional feel at times

    Advice to Management

    :) Keep it up!

  3. Helpful (1)

    Rincon is a decent place to work.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Advanced Engineer/Scientist-1
    Current Employee - Advanced Engineer/Scientist-1

    I have been working at Rincon Research Corporation full-time (More than 5 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Solid, stable company with a good back log of work. Good life/work balance. Some interesting projects, typically short duration (~1 year). Lots of very intelligent people with a variety of skills to work with and learn from.

    Cons

    Sometimes you get stuck on a project because you are a warm body, even though you have no particular interest or skill. Low raises, the company is constantly harping on lowering overhead.

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  5. Helpful (2)

    A good place for a few years of your career.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Employee in Tucson, AZ
    Former Employee - Employee in Tucson, AZ

    I worked at Rincon Research Corporation full-time (More than 5 years)

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    • Free benefits – medical, dental, life insurance, STD/LTD, Long-Term Care insurance (medical and dental premiums are paid 100%, even for family coverage)
    • Great pay
    • Free coffee/soda/bottled water
    • Tuition reimbursement
    • 50% reimbursement for internet at home as well as the cost of certain electronic devices
    • Paid holidays include the week between Christmas and New Year’s
    • Private or semi-private offices (no cubes)
    • Covered parking
    • Elaborate employee morale events (holiday party, company picnic, etc.)
    • Whatever office supplies/tools you need to do your job
    • Great 401k match and ESOP – both vested on day 1
    • A ridiculous amount of PTO can be carried over each year and there is comp time.

    Cons

    • Free benefits – The move to HealthSmart was a bad decision. When you tell people you have HealthSmart, they look at you like it is insurance for low income people or something. Doctors’ offices and pharmacies are confused when they hear that RRC’s insurance is through HealthSmart, but that they are using Cigna’s network. Also, HealthSmart has been a real pain to deal with in general.
    • Internal equity when it comes to pay is non-existent.
    • Company spends its money frivolously (elaborate employee morale events, elaborate catered lunches, Long-Term Care insurance, never-ending office supplies, unnecessary company travel, etc.)
    • No sick time, just PTO
    • ESOP – No one has ever been able to give a straight answer as to what happens after the founder is bought out completely.
    • Lack of professionalism. Dress code and core hours are non-existent. People are frequently MIA (e.g. out for a midday jog, etc.). And what kind of business lets their receptionist leave at 3pm?
    • Lack of communication. Problems are ignored (they will go away on their own?) and e-mails are not responded to (famous line – “Oh, I haven’t seen that e-mail yet.”).
    • The janitorial service just empties your trash. If you really want something cleaned, you have to do it yourself even though that is what the janitorial service is paid to do.
    • The building is old and falling apart. It is also in the ghetto.
    • Upper management has either spent their entire career at Rincon or they came from a company where they were technical staff; it was not until they came to RRC that they became managers. Unfortunately, the result is a lack of management with real leadership skills.
    • A ridiculous amount of PTO can be carried over each year and there is comp time – employees have abused this.
    • There have been years where New Year’s Day is a floating holiday, but not an actual holiday. Really?
    • No advancement opportunities whatsoever, so employees just stay because of the great pay and free benefits.
    • The Board of Directors is a joke – not the concept itself, but rather how it is run. It is the same people on it every year. The voting process is therefore a waste of resources, both time and money (printing, copying, the cost of envelopes, Payroll’s time stuffing envelopes, postage to and from, BeachFleischman’s charges to tally results, etc.).
    • There are a handful of employees that are dead weight. Management needs to clean house like they did in Office Space.
    • Management is reluctant to try anything new. Just because it has been done such and such way since 1983 doesn’t mean it is still the right way.

    Advice to Management

    See above. Regarding below – Yes, I would recommend Rincon to a friend (for a few years anyway). But I wouldn’t plan on staying there long-term because it is uncertain how long they will be in business.

  6. Helpful (4)

    Smart people, hard problems, poor quality results

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Scientist/Engineer in Tucson, AZ
    Current Employee - Scientist/Engineer in Tucson, AZ

    I have been working at Rincon Research Corporation full-time (More than 5 years)

    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Compensation is 1st class. Good salary, great 401k matching, ESOP (essentially another retirement fund), great medical coverage.

    These are some of the smartest people I've worked with. But they also have very strong opinions and are difficult to convince that there is another way. I learned a lot about technical subjects (from peer knowledge and positive examples) and project development (mostly from shortcomings and negative examples).

    Cons

    There is very much a cowboy approach to development. A good candidate for the company mantra is "Smart people always will get the job done". While often the job gets done, it may be difficult to support/maintain or poor quality. Most work is very ad hoc and not planned or consistent.

    Many times I encountered unusual means of implementation because of a particular lead developers belief. Broad unfounded statements such as "I don't believe in comments" or "Databases are no good" were common and acceptable.

    It appears that management believes team work either happens or doesn't, and that very little can be done to help foster good collaboration. If it's not working move people around.

    Advice to Management

    Improve leadership. Work on team communication and getting teams to work together. Early project planning should supply a frame work that is flexible but still strong enough to give some structure.

  7. Helpful (2)

    Hire great people, treat them well, and get out of their way

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Member of Technical Staff in Tucson, AZ
    Current Employee - Senior Member of Technical Staff in Tucson, AZ

    I have been working at Rincon Research Corporation full-time (More than 5 years)

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

    Pros

    - Company depends on good people making good decisions (instead of process)
    - Focus is on creating great solutions (instead of cutting costs)
    - Freedom and responsibility, even for entry-level engineers
    - Creativity encouraged (often required)
    - Solve challenging problems and deliver solutions that are used immediately
    - Small teams and short project timespans mean lots of opportunities to learn new things
    - Benefits are amazing (top-notch medical 100% covered for family, ESOP, comp time, many perks)

    Cons

    - Poor company communication
    - Some primary tools required for the job are industry-specific (e.g. X-MIDAS)
    - Sink-or-swim environment is not good for people who need a lot of direction

    Advice to Management

    Communicate strategic decisions and chain-of-command more clearly.

  8. Helpful (3)

    Downhill from here...

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

    I have been working at Rincon Research Corporation full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Small teams with very strong technical staff.
    Benefits are good, but declining every year.
    "Employee Owned" Company.

    Cons

    Rincon Research prides itself on hiring the best of the best, however they insist on treating employees like they are idiots. As Rincon grows, they have promoted engineers into management positions, engineers who are unprepared and untrained in how to actually lead and communicate with employees. Worst of all, these managers have no accountability for their actions because Rincon does not have or believe in a 360 degree review process or even a reverse review process. What ensues is a hostile and unmotivated work environment rampant with micromanagement, intimidation, and fear.

    Rincon began as a brilliant start-up by Dr. Mike Parker, with a mission to provide innovative solutions to an every changing problem. But since Dr. Parker's ease into retirement and relinquishment of control of the company, the company has steadily become less of a great company to work for... with an increasing employee retention problem.

    Advice to Management

    My advice to the current President and CEO of Rincon Research, who I believe is a good-intentioned leader, but with the fast growth of the company the last few years may have lost touch with employees - is to do an internal audit of Rincon's leadership. Implement a review process that holds all level of management accountable for their actions. And when considering future management out of the engineering ranks, consider those who are not ONLY technically proficient, but also emotionally and mentally capable, as to not create more ego-maniacal dictators, allowed by their directors to berate and intimidate employees.

    Also, when considering contracts and direction of the company, keep the employees in mind. Rincon is afterall, an "Employee Owned" company, so part of "pleasing the stockholders" is not solely in monetary form, but creating a work environment enjoyed by those stockholders.

  9. Helpful (1)

    Rincon Research

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Rincon Research Corporation

    Pros

    Strong technical staff.
    Great compensation and benefits (including ESOP).

    Cons

    Resistance to change.
    Many feel that advancement opportunity is limited.

  10. DSP Software Engineer

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - DSP Software Engineer in Tucson, AZ
    Current Employee - DSP Software Engineer in Tucson, AZ

    I have been working at Rincon Research Corporation full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Small-teams, talented engineers, innovative technologies, competitive benefit packages

    Cons

    There are no cons to this company.

  11. Helpful (3)

    Very strong technically but the administrative staff made it hard to stay.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Tucson, AZ
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Tucson, AZ

    I worked at Rincon Research Corporation

    Pros

    The company has some of the strongest technical staff I've worked with. They are the best at what they do. The benefits are outstanding.

    Cons

    Many of the administrative staff are entirely incompetent. They mire much of the work in utterly unnecessary process. They totally nullify the excellent benefits and technical work.

Rincon Research Corporation Photos

Intern Field Trip 2013 to the Very Large Array Facility

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