Shell Reviews

Updated September 2, 2015
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451 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    Mixed feelings

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Engineer
    Former Employee - Engineer
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Shell full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Shell is a well established and prestigious company. It has a very diverse culture, so expect to meet very interesting people. The benefits they offer is average, but the healthcare is state of the art.

    Cons

    It is hard to provide precise feedback on a 90,000 employee corporation. I have seen employees who have absolutely loved their groups, but also employees who have absolutely disliked their groups. Everything ultimately comes down to the group you work. I didn't want to leave Shell, but I had no choice. I became jaded, lost motivation, so I had to try my luck elsewhere. I am much happier now. Shell is enormous. You often go missing, and don't understand what value you add to the company. It has so many complex bureaucratic processes that make it somewhat inflexible and inefficient. While you can always change groups or projects in theory, it is practically impossible to change groups until you finish your four years assignment. Even after you finish a four year assignment, there is no guarantee to find a new role. Younger engineers are frequently treated like high school students and are not given enough freedom to use their creativity. The claim is employees can create their own career path, but in reality, it comes down to what your discipline wants. If you are not hired in a discipline you desire, it is extremely difficult (almost impossible) to change disciplines. Higher level management are excellent, but the intermediate management are mediocre. Just because someone has a PhD or has been around for 25 years doesn't make him/her a good team lead. I came across very brilliant technical people who were total failures as managers. Unfortunately, there are many of them at Shell. The last thing you want is a technical manager with no people, organizational, or management skills. It RUINS your life. There are too many unnecessary practices at Shell. You often spend more time focusing on these unnecessary practices than focusing on work. Shell claims to be the most innovative company. They may be the leading company in deep water exploration, but the term "selective innovation" would fit them better. The IT infrastructure is appalling. They still use the slow Internet Explore, older versions of Microsoft Office, poor expense statement portal, etc. There are times that you spend days and weeks for an IT problem to get fixed. Safety is important at Shell. However, I always got the impression that there was a greater focus on carrying a hot cup of coffee with a lid than process safety. It gets annoying after few months when they treat adults like kindergarten students over little safety issues such as coffee, how to warm up food in the microwave, etc. I picked up an injury in my hand because of poor office ergonomics. Which one is more important, office ergonomics or carrying a hot cup of coffee with a lid? Some perspectives needs to be added. Shell also makes you believe that they are the only company taking safety seriously where in fact many of the safety policies they practice are common industry practices. Shell has become famous in industry for over-promising and under-delivering. I was with Shell from 2008 to 2015. Only one time a project met its deadlines and was under-budget. Projects often go over-budget with a huge margin. Something doesn't seem right when a company continuously goes over-budget and can't meet its deadline. Shell isn't the most competitive company in terms of salary and benefits. HR acknowledges it, and they openly say that they are not planning to be the most competitive company. I received a considerable raise after I changed companies. The gap between HR and employees is large, and people always complain about it. HR often provides little to no help to employees. Many “lessons learned” meetings are scheduled, but no follow up action is taken on them. This is a very common practice at Shell. Stay away from P&T unless you are well established in your role and have at least 10 years industry/ Shell experience. Shell P&T charges sites to do projects for them. See Shell P&T as an internal consulting company. The fact that Shell charges Shell makes no sense. Not only they charge sites, but the rates are outrageously high. Shell P&T claims that by charging sites, they keep the cash flow within the company. Sites claim they don’t care who they pay as long as they can get what they want at a lower rate. Third party contractors normally get the job done a lot less expensive than Shell P&T. This situation creates negative chemistry between Shell P&T and sites. Of course, managers in Shell P&T don’t see the tension because they don’t go to sites, but employees feel it on daily basis. If you work in Shell P&T, you constantly need to keep your eyes open for new projects because you don’t want to be in a situation that you charge overhead when your projects get cancelled. So not only you need to perform your daily projects but also need to be a good sales person to sell yourself to a group and keep your eyes open for other projects. This situation will easily distract people from their day to day job duties.

    Advice to Management

    Properly train intermediate managers. Walk the talk.


  2. Drilling Engineer

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New Orleans, LA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New Orleans, LA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Shell full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Competitive pay. Do not need to come into work every other Friday (9/80 schedule). People are friendly. Good benefits and training programs.

    Cons

    So many processes. So many acronyms. The work is essentially pre planned for you. The work flow for designing the wells is essentially laid out for you. There are essntially about 300 boxes that must be checked before certain deadlines, and as long as you do your little piece of the puzzle then everything will be ok. That may be true at other large companies, but it certainly doesn't make one feel like they're doing much on their own. Then there's the whole fact that we're drilling in the Arctic and all the corporate double talk that all the major O & G companies are guilty of.

    Advice to Management

    Cut out all the processes and forms, and flow charts and give the engineers more power to set the work flow.


  3. Great

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Shell full-time

    Pros

    Great culture with strong emphasis on innovation and forward thinking. Management really helps lower levels with their work and everyone chips in making it a real group effort

    Cons

    stagnant career paths at times people don't seem to recognize true talent when they see it; low entry level pay is somewhat of a dealbreaker for smart kids trying to get in

    Advice to Management

    Keep it close to the belt and keep taking it with a stride at a time; let us know more frequently what can be done to further the progress of SHELL


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  5. Buyer beware: this is a slow organization

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Operations Manager in Houston, TX
    Former Employee - Operations Manager in Houston, TX
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Shell full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    - Compensation is decent. - Some talented bright sparks - Some teams like Chemicals and some parts of Upstream are really great

    Cons

    I worked in the Lubricants division and I have reason to believe the rest of the company is much faster and more competent, but what I saw in the lubricants division was truly sad. - A slow moving machine. I have never seen an organization as sluggish as this one. There is little motivation to change things and make them any faster or better. Some departments are full of people who have been in "Lubes" since they started working and they are just riding it out until retirement - Little sense of urgency: if you think General Motors was a bureaucracy, or that the DMV is a slow place, wait till you get to Shell Lubes. - IT systems that are not suited for modern working. The IT team is effectively useless. You are better off looking for solutions from friends than by calling the Helpdesk. Any suggestions for simple software upgrades are met with stiff resistance - Under-utilization of talent: there are some talented people stuck in dead-end jobs here, basically wasting away. The mega-talented ones find a way out. - Very little diversity at the top: mostly just the usual straight old white male cowboys. Imports (from Latin America) are almost invariably white South Americans. Other imports to the top of the organization are white Europeans. At the bottom, it's a good mix, so the organization can make good claims about diversity. If you're a US-minority, it's unlikely you will get close to the top here: that's what drove me away. - Overstaffing: it is not an exaggeration to say that a good 20% of the team is pure fat: they can be trimmed without an impact to the organization

    Advice to Management

    There is a lot of wasted potential around you: if you would just open your eyes.


  6. Helpful (1)

    Workin at Shell

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineer in Houston, TX
    Current Employee - Engineer in Houston, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Shell full-time

    Pros

    You get to see first hand how " favored" employees are treated, vs. the "ordinary" employees every day.

    Cons

    Funding for projects is controlled very tightly. Recent travel restrictions make it nearly impossible to work effectively.

    Advice to Management

    Grow a pair, push back on foreign control.


  7. Helpful (1)

    Sr. Manager

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Houston, TX
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Houston, TX
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Shell full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Safety is their top priority. Great learning environment. Shell employs world-class technical people. Pay and benefits are well above industry average. Opportunity to travel and visit Shell operations around the world is beneficial.

    Cons

    Royal Dutch Shell is a group of companies and so, sometimes individual company "cultural norms" get in the way of a common RDS vision. Shell is a matrix organization, however, at times it lacks an ability to truly prioritize project work because of multiple inputs into the process. Consequently, everything becomes a priority which means nothing is a priority.

    Advice to Management

    Eliminate processes and push decisions lower into the organization.


  8. Helpful (1)

    No Loyalty to employees

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Logistic Coordinator in Houston, TX
    Former Employee - Logistic Coordinator in Houston, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Shell (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    High pay. Decent health Benefits.

    Cons

    Poor Business decisions, no loyalty to employees. Management is underqualified for positions held. Leadership is appointed by who they know, not what they know.

    Advice to Management

    What goes around comes around.


  9. Program Manager

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    great benefits, competitive pay, strategic advancement opportunities, leading in industry, cutting edge technology, knowledgeable staff, operationally efficient, optimal economic strategies

    Cons

    work life balance, diversity in senior leadership

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good woek


  10. Worst management ever

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Production Geologist in Houston, TX
    Current Employee - Senior Production Geologist in Houston, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Shell full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Decent benefits, good pay, every other Friday off. If you are lazy, you can pretty much do nothing and still get paid and you won't ever get fired.

    Cons

    Management takes forever to make a decision. You're just a number, they don't care about people. Poor leadership from the top down. Managers manage up and only care about making themselves look good. No security or stability because the company wants you to move every four years.

    Advice to Management

    You don't need so many managers! None of you can make a decent decision in a timely manner anyway!


  11. Time to move on

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Analyst in Houston, TX
    Current Employee - Financial Analyst in Houston, TX
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at Shell full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Above average Pay and Benefits,

    Cons

    They are downsizing US workforce for cheaper offshore workforce



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