SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory

  www.slac.stanford.edu
  www.slac.stanford.edu

SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory Reviews

Updated November 6, 2014
Updated November 6, 2014
76 Reviews
2.8
76 Reviews
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SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory Laboratory Director Chi-Chang Kao
Chi-Chang Kao
30 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Cool, interesting, cutting edge science (in 8 reviews)

  • Fun work advancing human knowledge, working with smart people on hard problems is always rewarding (in 9 reviews)


Cons
  • A number of non-scientific departments are allowed to be arbitrary, heavy handed and dictatorial (in 4 reviews)

  • HR and upper management are oblivious to management problems (in 4 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Interesting fun place to work.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Electronics Engineer in Menlo Park, CA
    Current Employee - Electronics Engineer in Menlo Park, CA

    I have been working at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Interesting science. Decent work environment. Cutting edge science occurring. Great benefits. Access to Stanford facilities. Tools to get the job done are available. In addition, you get to work with some very smart folks.

    Cons

    Physicists rule the roost. Engineers are often seen as second class citizens. Management is mostly inept and often doesn't understand the technical complexities of what is being done by their minions.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pay attention to morale. Listen to what your employees are saying. Value your employees.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Work here if you plan to retire in 2 years

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous in Menlo Park, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous in Menlo Park, CA

    I worked at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    If you are a scientist, this is the place to be. Very good benefits like generous 401k matching and vacation. Salary ok.

    Cons

    If you are in operations, you will never feel further from the excitement of the science being done here. Layoffs seem to occur continuously. Poor quality management overall. No management strategy. High turnover of management. Aging IT infrastructure. Everything feels incredibly outdated. It takes forever to move projects forward here because many of the people you will work with are lazy or have outdated skillsets. If you care about what you do for a living, this place will eventually drag down on your soul.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Fewer mid level managers, more workers. Hire young people with passion and modern skills.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    Challenging scientific environment

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Mechanical Engineer in Menlo Park, CA
    Current Employee - Mechanical Engineer in Menlo Park, CA

    I have been working at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great research. 4 weeks of vacation. College grant. Great benefits. Labs closes for 2 weeks around Christmas which gives a real break to everybody.

    Cons

    Great inequality in the distribution of work. Some work 60 hours a week under a lot of pressure while others take it easy. Career opportunities are scarce. Performance reviews have little effects on advancement or salary raise. Expectation to be always connected.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Encourage hard working people with real incentives.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Working at SLAC

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

    I worked at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory

    Pros

    Laboratory was a decent place to work depending on the department and manager. Overall it was a good place to work

    Cons

    Some manager should not have been in the position they held, more concerned with their own careers than the good of the laboratory or the department

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Advance Science, Stone Age Mentality

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Menlo Park, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Menlo Park, CA

    I have been working at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Working on cutting edge science, able to have a family work life balance, and being part of Stanford University are the best parts about working at SLAC. If you are a scientist, SLAC is heaven!

    Cons

    The lab operates inefficiently due to resistance to change. The pure research environment is at least 15 years behind the private industry. The diversity at SLAC includes predominately white and European male men. Inferior scientists are rarely laid-off, same as inferior managers. Very few managers on big projects are decent in management, so there are few options for employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I encourage the lab director continues to purge a good portion of old management team, anyone who has not proven his or her effectiveness and are surrounded by ineffective lower management team as well. Sam advice for anyone who barely puts in half-a-day effort for a full-time job and pay.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Fascinating science, dedicated researchers, insane management (not in a good way).

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Menlo Park, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Menlo Park, CA

    I worked at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Some of the most interesting research in a variety of fields. Truly groundbreaking. Diverse, dedicated scientific staff.

    Cons

    Move away from the scientists and you run into some horrific managers. Controlling, vindictive--they'll label you once and write you off with no second glances or second chances. No opportunity for growth. Dead-end job anyway. Very high turnover in my particular area--so high it's starting to draw attention.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you want to be seen as an "Employer of Choice," act like one.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    SLAC is good, but can get better

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Student in Menlo Park, CA
    Current Employee - Student in Menlo Park, CA

    I have been working at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Cool, interesting, cutting edge science

    Cons

    hours are terrible, management could use some improvement

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    An Interesting Place to Work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Visiting Physicist in Menlo Park, CA
    Former Employee - Visiting Physicist in Menlo Park, CA

    I worked at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory as a contractor (less than an year)

    Pros

    Cutting Edge Science
    Smart People
    Good Benefits

    Cons

    Becoming a more corporate culture which stifles scientific work. Being more and more run like a business with more management than is warranted.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Run more like a laboratory instead of a business. Too much red tape and bureaucracy.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    A good place to work for those accustomed to government type jobs. May be tough to adjust for others

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

    I have been working at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory full-time

    Pros

    Benefits, good pay, slower work pace, flexible with time off. Lots of diverse training provided (first few months for some are all training) Those involved in trades get tools provided and work vehicles. Lots interesting people and things going on around site.

    Cons

    Difficult to adjust to for those who are eager to "jump in" and start getting things done. It's required to obtain endless permits, signatures, documentation & safety releases to handle something that on the outside is routine. Tasks that normally take a few hours can stretch out for weeks if area managers are on vacation, a different trade is involved, ETC... You will be drilled on safety protocol & paperwork DAILY! so be prepared! Most of the time your last concern is the job itself. It's more of crossing the t's and dotting the i's for fear of being put on the spot.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    To reward the people who have a clear understanding of the lab's goals, rather than the ones who over analyze the rules and set the lab back. SLAC used to be a place where people got things done and science grew leaps and bounds. Now its a tangle of confusion & uncertainty

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Great people and science

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

    I have been working at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory

    Pros

    Highly motivated, extremely intelligent colleagues. Excellent science.

    Cons

    Low compensation, long hours and government bureaucracy.

    Approves of CEO

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