SRA International Reviews in Arlington, VA

Updated July 9, 2014
Updated July 9, 2014
409 Reviews

2.7
409 Reviews
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Approve of CEO
SRA International CEO William L. Ballhaus
William L. Ballhaus
138 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • work / life balance, fexability, fellow employees support (in 34 reviews)

  • good benefits , although every year they are becoming less and less (in 28 reviews)


Cons
  • In short, the upper management doesn't seem to recognize there are people working for them (in 14 reviews)

  • Not quallifying for 50 Best Companies to Work For is justified (in 7 reviews)

More Highlights

60 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    We used to be great...!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Analyst  in  Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Analyst in Arlington, VA

    I have been working at SRA International full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Easy commute, nice people, flexible hours

    Cons

    lower pay, government clients (that's just the government though, not SRA), not challenging enough, boring work (secretarial)

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    talk with your employees, tell them what you want when you want it, give them something to strive for and something to work towards.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    Used to be the company you want to grow with, not anymore

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Systems Administrator  in  Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Systems Administrator in Arlington, VA

    I have been working at SRA International full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    any employment is better than no employment

    Cons

    company doesnt care about the employee anymore, there's always a cut here a cut there in employee benefits.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 5 people found this helpful  

    Cutbacks everywhere

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Consultant  in  Arlington, VA
    Former Employee - Senior Consultant in Arlington, VA

    I worked at SRA International full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    SRA provides a very relaxed atmosphere and places a focus on work-life balance. Coworkers are smart, driven, and easy to get along with. Hours and culture vary widely based on your client and business unit within SRA - I was part of the management consulting workforce, and had a good experience for the most part.

    Cons

    Salaries are stagnant and there are few opportunities for advancement. Repeated shake-ups at the top lead to murky strategy and subsequent execution. Win rates are low and core business is eroding, yet leadership continues to make severe cuts to the business development workforce. The company is also extremely top heavy and almost refuses to recruit consultants with less than 2 years of experience, so leverage and rate structures continue to be problematic both internally (no one gets a raise) and externally (losing proposals because SRA is too expensive).

    As a result, staff morale was at an all-time low when I left. I hear it has only continued to go downhill since then, due to additional contract losses. The company is shrinking at a fast pace - at the end of your contract you will find that it's like a game of musical chairs with fierce competition internally for the same position. If you're a top performer, you'll have no problem finding your next project, but salary increases, even when taking a more senior position, are nonexistent. As such, most of the top talent has already left or is actively looking for an exit strategy.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Have a clear win strategy, place more focus on the quality of proposals instead of slapping them together, and find ways to make employees feel appreciated.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5.  

    I worked for SRA for 3 years and loved it!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Cyber Security Analyst  in  Arlington, VA
    Former Employee - Cyber Security Analyst in Arlington, VA

    I worked at SRA International full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    SRA provided (at least in my Section) an abundance of Career Development and training programs for the employee
    Additionally , they had a super health and wellness incentive programs to ensure that employees were getting exercise and eating healthy
    Salary compensation seemed to be a bit above average and fair
    Ethics and company values were excellent and the tagline and slogan off "Honesty and Service" was for the most part put into practice.

    Cons

    The company seemed to be a bit top heavy with management
    When the company lost some contracts , placement and coverage was very scarce , facilitating major layoffs- I think maybe that could not have been helped....

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Trim the fat of upper management to keep more people employed .

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 4 people found this helpful  

    What will they take away next?

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

    I have been working at SRA International full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Having a job makes me not homeless. They give you a little money towards commuting expenses, until they take that away.

    Cons

    Incompetent management at contracted client locations. They brought the cap down on paid time off, they've taken away some paid holidays, the new health plans are inferior and more expensive than years past, no raises or raises that don't even keep up with inflation, they extended the amount of time you have to work at the company to get a few extra days paid time off, they went from matching 401k every paycheck to once a year, and you have to be an employee on the last day of the year to get it. They also seem to be winning new contracts pretty regularly, yet are doing absolutely nothing to reinstate any of the benefits that they've taken away over the past few years.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Everyone involved in slashing employee benefits should take a hefty paycut as well. You should also care about employee morale, as it's currently abysmal. And you need to do a much better job of hiring and policing (and firing) your program managers and other management at client sites because most of them that just have business experience (and sometimes not even that) and no technical experience are driving contracts and morale into the ground.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 3 people found this helpful  

    The longer I stayed the worse it got.

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

    I have been working at SRA International full-time

    Pros

    Depending on the team the dress code can be vary casual and there can be a lot of flexibility in hours.

    Cons

    Every time I turn around they are decreasing our benefits. Prices for healthcare go up every single year, they changed the amount of time you have to be there to get an extra week of vacation by adding another two years for that extra week (used to be three, now it's five), I've been there for 5 years and earned a TS clearance and don't even make $5k more than when I started. The last two years they've taken away a holiday each year. We used to have offices until they took those away and they made it an 'open floorplan.' Only everyone hates it so people are hardly ever there and telecommute instead, so they are saving even more money. They don't provide any in-home support for telecommuters whatsoever.

    Absolutely no room to move up. I don't know a single person who started in one role and is now in another role. Increased responsibilities DO NOT come with increased pay whatsoever.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Care about the happiness of your employees a little bit.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  8.  

    Sad but True

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - IT Specialist  in  Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - IT Specialist in Arlington, VA

    I have been working at SRA International full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Not too many, but the usual could be the safest way to say it.

    Cons

    Split loyalties required between parent and client companies.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to your employees recommendations and suggestions

    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great company when I joined -- Began a dive when new management took over

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Principal  in  Arlington, VA
    Former Employee - Senior Principal in Arlington, VA

    I worked at SRA International full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    Great people who work hard and collaborate well. There is a sense of pride in "Honesty and Service" and many in the company do considerable service work outside work time.

    Cons

    New management is more interest in protecting 7 figure salaries and caring for employees. Benefits cuts drove many people away include those who were very skilled in winning new business. Many of the changes are driven by management's wish to pay off the debt and sell the company -- if there is much of a company left to sell

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Give up your 7 figure salaries and bonuses and rebuild the company's benefits

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 4 people found this helpful  

    This company has the worst managers I've seen in my professional career.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Consultant  in  Arlington, VA
    Former Employee - Senior Consultant in Arlington, VA

    I worked at SRA International full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    Ability to move within the company to other projects, good benefits and a good 401k matching plan, SRA facilities are nice and they give their employees free coffee and tea on site.

    Cons

    I worked for this company over 8 years, and I watched each year as it declined. Under Ernst Volgeneau and Renny Dipentima, this company flourished. It was a company that felt like a family. Eventually Stan Sloane took over when Renny retired, and not many would argue that this move contributed greatly to the decline of this once excellent company. Stan drove it into sale and then took off. I can't think of one positive thing that he did for the common employee. Bill Ballhaus seems to be stepping in the right direction, but the tainted culture still seems to reside in many of the employees.

    You can be hired by SRA and literally do no work during your contract, and they won't let you go, if that's your thing. You are a money-making number and this company seemingly refuses to release non-performers. While it breeds contempt within teams, this doesn't seem to be an issue to management in my experience, so free-loaders may have found their haven here.

    I have witnessed some of the most unethical behavior imaginable during several years on a contract, and even though it was reported to the PM by several confidants, nothing was done. Even a full-scale HR investigation yielded nothing. The aforementioned Program Manager had no interest in fixing the issue and the team fell apart. He was single-handedly the most pompous, arrogant, and self-serving individual that I have come across in my professional career. The morale of his projects show this. Unfortunately, it seems many managers here display the same level of apathetic arrogance. Employees are constantly fed encouraging lines that promise the opportunity of upward growth, but in reality they like you right where you are. SRA is full of malcontent employees waiting to move up, while middle and upper-level management positions are awarded to outside hires.

    I had other experiences with managers refusing to address concerns and unethical behavior, that eventually lead to complete turnover of a full project within just 1.5 years. Yet another full-scale HR investigation was launched by co-workers but again, nothing was done. SRA lost the contract when the option year was not renewed by the government. Top-notch employees have/are left/leaving this company at a rapid pace. There really doesn't seem to be a value to their employee morale.

    I will caveat that I have met some great people within SRA, and this review does not cover all of its employees/managers. My overall experience has left me feeling un-valued and disenchanted, however.

    In closing, I've heard managers say that "SRA is known for its top-notch management." Maybe it used to be, but a reality check is in order. Celebrating oneself everyday may have played a role in so many "top notch" SME's taking flight from your company. I don't imagine it's beyond saving, but it requires a culture shift and a dose of humility.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to your employees. When project teams are telling you something is wrong, it probably is. I have watched SRA receive stop work orders because of issues that management chose to ignore. Gaining business does not constitute doing a good job at work. What ever happened to supporting the customer throughout the entire project? A lot of ground could be covered if SRA's managers lost the egos and checked back in with the foundation SRA was built upon.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 2 people found this helpful  

    Morale is very low...apply elsewhere

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant  in  Arlington, VA
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in Arlington, VA

    I have been working at SRA International full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Enjoy working with and being inspired by clients and colleagues

    Cons

    During 2012-2013, many benefits were significantly cut or eliminated in a piecemeal fashion so it felt like the pain was never going to end! Everyone was always on edge waiting for the next shoe to drop.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Please be more proactive to course-correct errors including those related to the performance and bad decisions of senior leaders and executives.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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