Sandia

  www.sandia.gov
  www.sandia.gov

Sandia Reviews

Updated December 12, 2014
Updated December 12, 2014
195 Reviews
3.8
195 Reviews
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Sandia President Paul Hommert
Paul Hommert
69 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Great for work/life balance if that's what you are looking for (in 35 reviews)

  • salary level is among the top for post-doc, and very good work-life balance, the 9/80 work schedule give you every other Friday off (in 22 reviews)


Cons
  • Performance review can feel a bit arbitrary (in 13 reviews)

  • Performance Review Process: The performance (in 5 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great company to work for, but it can ruin you.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Production Trades in Albuquerque, NM
    Former Employee - Production Trades in Albuquerque, NM

    I worked at Sandia full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    The work/life balance here is second to none. The compensation is far above average, and management, for the most part cares.

    Cons

    This place can ruin you. Working at Sandia the many years that I did was great, but all I gained was "Sandia experience". In other words, the work I did there was VERY specific to Sandia. I became very complacent and when I found myself seeking other employment, I found that I had to settle for a lot less.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Value your employees, they are what make you who you are.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    Good postdoc

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Fellow in Livermore, CA
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Fellow in Livermore, CA

    I have been working at Sandia full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Great scientists, plenty of resources, great pay

    Cons

    Hard to advance as a postdoc, seems to easy to just retire in place, way way too many managers. Security restrictions and safety requirements are excessive.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The huge overhead makes it hard to do good science or engineering - no one wants to pay. Why not have a huge round of layoffs?

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great work-life balance.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Technologist in Albuquerque, NM
    Current Employee - Senior Technologist in Albuquerque, NM

    I have been working at Sandia full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Decent pay and has good benefits.

    Cons

    Work can be very slow paced depending on what organization you're in. Management plays favorites.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Experience is much more important than a persons GPA.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Great place to work!

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

    I have been working at Sandia as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Great mentors, great work environment, top notch scientists. Able to work with many projects to continue to interests in various areas.

    Cons

    I have no cons about working at Sandia National Laboratories. I would recommend this job to any scientist inexperienced or experienced.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Interesting work

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

    I have been working at Sandia full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Really interesting projects to work on. Sandia does a ton of interesting and important work and the people are generally high quality.

    Cons

    Sandia used to have competitive salary but that is not true anymore.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7.  

    Great place to work.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Graduate StudentTechnical in Albuquerque, NM
    Current Employee - Graduate StudentTechnical in Albuquerque, NM

    I have been working at Sandia part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    versatile work environment with lots of people that you can depend on. If you get a good manager everything will be great.

    Cons

    lots of people running around looking for projects. Also, the line to drive into work can be a real pain in the butt.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    IH Grad Intern

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - IH Grad Intern in Albuquerque, NM
    Former Employee - IH Grad Intern in Albuquerque, NM

    I worked at Sandia as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Lots of IHs to help you learn

    Cons

    Work pace could be faster

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Good internship

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Sandia

    Pros

    Work life balance is good.

    Cons

    Overall this is a great place.

  10. 4 people found this helpful  

    Sandia was disappointing but still a pretty good place to work.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Member of Technical Staff in Albuquerque, NM
    Former Employee - Member of Technical Staff in Albuquerque, NM

    I worked at Sandia full-time

    Pros

    Job security is the #1 pro of working at Sandia. Work/life balance is possible. In addition, the technical capabilities of Sandia are incredible as they have a lot of state of the art equipment combined with some of the brightest people you'll ever meet. The educational benefits are very good as well. The pay is good, but not that great when compared to the cost of living in the areas that Sandia is located.

    Cons

    1) Company mentality: There is a prevalent "that is what we've always done" mentality, even if "what we've always done" has repeatedly caused problems. There is also very little incentive to go against this mentality to try and improve things because it will likely not help your performance review anyway (see #2). In fact, trying to improve things can potentially negatively impact your performance review because improving something means it wasn't done the best way to begin with. This potentially requires someone, likely someone with more senior standing who has more pull in the decision making and/or influence on management, to in some respects admit that they did not make the best decision possible to begin with. Thus, improvement is almost non-existent.

    2) Performance Review Process: The performance review process, whether it be the old version or Totalcomp (the recently deployed performance management system), was rather bizarre. I found that myself and others would do excellent work and go above and beyond what management asked of us, only to be told we were 'average' at our performance reviews. In some cases, even 'below average' thanks to Totalcomp which requires a certain percentage of the population receive the lowest acceptable rating. This was very discouraging as it made employees feel like they were going nowhere, and reinforces the mentality that there is no reason to work hard as it won't impact your performance review, and thus your promotion possibility (see #3), anyway.

    3) Raises/Promotions: Raises are relatively low, and salaries are sometimes frozen due to federal budget circumstances. There is very little difference raise-wise between people who work really hard and people who don't, which compounds the lack of motivation to work hard. Promotions can seem rather arbitrary and I don't feel that management was very honest about what was necessary to get a promotion, so in some respects you can feel completely helpless.

    4) Salary Compression: People that come in at least a few years after you will likely make more money than you. My advice to new employees is to stay at least 3 years to get vested in your 401(k), but not more than 5 years if you don't get promoted unless you have personal reasons for staying in the area.

    5) Highly Political Culture.

    6) Living in Albuquerque: While I can't speak for any of the other sites, Albuquerque has a lot of room for improvement. There is a relatively high cost of living, high crime, bad school systems, and a somewhat rude culture. There doesn't seem to be much sense of community and by no means would I consider it a family friendly environment.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    1) Be honest and up front about what is necessary to advance.
    2) Put your neck out there and try to do the best thing for everyone, even if it is not the popular thing or what your boss wants to hear.
    3) Have integrity.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    Interesting portfolio of work, great researchers, managers can be tyrants

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

    I have been working at Sandia full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Important work, good benefits, smart people

    Cons

    My department was a snake pit, most unpleasant work environment I have ever experienced. Manager a petty dictator . Pay not as good as they pretend.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Don't be arrogant about your past success, have to be relevant to today's economy and work ethos

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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