US Coast Guard Reviews

Updated October 30, 2014
Updated October 30, 2014
351 Reviews
4.0
351 Reviews
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US Coast Guard Commandant of the Coast Guard Admiral Robert J. Papp, Jr.
Admiral Robert J. Papp, Jr.
193 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Job security can be a great incentive, especially in these trying times (in 17 reviews)

  • Free training, steady pay and benefits (in 9 reviews)


Cons
  • Time away from family was the biggest drawback, missed weddings and holidays (in 14 reviews)

  • Time away from home (3 month in/ 3 month out patrol schedule on the ship I was stationed on) (in 12 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Made many friends and had life experiences that otherwise would have been impossible

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Reserve ET2 in Lake Saint Louis, MO
    Current Employee - Reserve ET2 in Lake Saint Louis, MO

    I have been working at US Coast Guard full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Get in shape, make really good friends, travel to places you normally couldn't. I lived in California for 10 months in my time in the Coast Guard. Coming from the midwest, I wouldn't have otherwise been able to go there.

    Cons

    The service is constantly changing policy, so depending on your job, you will constantly be adapting to the new rules. This could also be viewed as a pro if you like the idea of constantly doing things in a new way. Time away from family was the biggest drawback, missed weddings and holidays. Even then, it wasn't too bad.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Trust in the lower ranks more. When there are too may managers, they start to change things just to justify their own job position. It causes friction at the unit.

    Merge the reserve retirement program with the active duty to give the incentive for people to transfer to SELRES to unblock the path for advancement. Have a specific training program for the reserves, because they come out of A school having no idea what their actual purpose is. Bring back tuition assistance.

    And create an ET to warrant officer direct commission engineer program.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    USCG great job satisfaction & benefits

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

    I have been working at US Coast Guard full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    The missions of the Coast Guard are great and yield a high level of job satisfaction. There's also fantastic benefits and competitive compensation.

    Cons

    While it varies manager-to-manager, it can be hard to find the right work-life balance. Also, the up-or-out policy for certain ranks causes the loss of many great employees with high future value.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Fix the Officer Evaluation System. Everyone hates it and it seems that no one really understands it completely.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    It is a great place to work

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

    I worked at US Coast Guard full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    You get a lot of training, see some great places, many diffrent oppurtunites great benifits and retirement

    Cons

    some places have issues with the cool guy club getting taking care of themselves and friends and the others get the left over jobs.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    take care of all your crew the same

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    USCG HQ

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Performance Manager in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Performance Manager in Washington, DC

    I have been working at US Coast Guard full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    One of the most transparent services/agencies in the Capitol Region and the first to pass a comprehensive agency audit leading to the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2010. I work with a dedicated team of intrepid professionals driven towards pro-active collaboration and product/service excellence.

    Cons

    Due this critical period of Sequestration and Reduction of Forces, we are now experiencing increased levels of competitiveness in both the commissioned and enlisted ranks which hinders professional achievement and team/personnel recognition.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Commandants' 1st principle "Steady the Service"... we must return to a sustainable state... and 4th principle, "Respect our Shipmates".

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    It is what you make of it

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

    I have been working at US Coast Guard full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great opportunities to serve your country without going to war. The work is valuable and challenging, and if you stay long enough, the benefits will set you up for the rest of your life.

    Cons

    Hours can be long without additional compensatio. When you first come in regardless of your rank, the compensation will start low. To tjose below, senior leadership can sometimes appear mired in tradition and old-school thinking.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Practice what you preach. Diversity really does include diversity of thought which is nurtured many different ways including how one became successful in the organization.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    A profound growth experience that allowed me to improve my leadership, technical skills, and respect for life & country

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

    I have been working at US Coast Guard full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    The Coast Guard, like all military services, builds leaders and dedication in individuals. It also provides excellent training that will help anyone become successful even after they decide to leave the military. Service to you country give individuals an extreme amount of pride and respect in their communities.

    Cons

    Military service does require some sacrifice but in the end those sacrifices are outweighed by the benefits military service affords its members.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    DEAD END

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

    I have been working at US Coast Guard full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Job security can be a great incentive, especially in these trying times. The jobs here can be very rewarding IF you are willing to stagnate for years and retire at the predetermined maximum of the position you hired in at.

    Cons

    Some jobs are dead-end in the civilian workforce, and its hard to receive recognition for major achievements. Each workplace set of rules are different when it comes to advancement. The stock answer to these issues is "You can't get there from here" and "no one knows". If you intend to further your career, a civilian job won't get you there unless you know someone (nepotism runs RAMPANT).

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Provide ALL of your valued civilian workforce with a path to improve themselves and advance upward BASED ON MERIT, NOT THE GOOD OLE BOYS CLUB.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9.  

    Job with a purpose

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Maritime Enforcement Specialist in Staten Island, NY
    Current Employee - Maritime Enforcement Specialist in Staten Island, NY

    I have been working at US Coast Guard full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Benefits, sense of purpose, service to country... Nothing is more gratifying then saving someones life. The long hours, bad pay, time away from family all seem to fade away. If you seek adventure, this is a great "company" to work for. With all the job opportunities and duty locations, there is hardly a dull moment. There are also numerous opportunities to work outside of your rate. This not only adds to the adventure, but enables one to learn new skills.

    Cons

    pay, work life balance (at times), relocating every few years... Take this with a grain of salt, as everyone knows this going in. This is more so for someone with a family, as the adventure is hard to sell to a child losing friends every few years.

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Operations Specialist

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

    I have been working at US Coast Guard full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Involved in almost every aspect of CG operations.

    Cons

    Duty rotation sometimes doesn't allow for much family time. Staying up all night is very taxing on your body. Due to not many understanding everything you do, efforts go unnoticed quite frequently.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Outstanding opportunity. Absolutely loved it.

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

    I worked at US Coast Guard full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Travel, prestige, opportunities are endless, merit, chance to make a difference in your life, or someone else's life.

    Cons

    Politics, change for no reason.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to your people, don't drink the Koolaid.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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