US Patent and Trademark Office Reviews

Updated August 23, 2015
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162 Employee Reviews

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  1. Great people and benefits, boring job.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Patent Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Former Employee - Patent Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at US Patent and Trademark Office full-time

    Pros

    Benefits, salary, promotions every year.

    Cons

    Boring work, each boss likes your work to be a little different, policies Chang depending on current office goals which are based heavily on media and public outcry.

    Advice to Management

    Clear cut goals cases assigned at begging of a biweek by automation including amendments that way examiner knows what needs to be done.


  2. Patent examiner

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Junior Patent Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Current Employee - Junior Patent Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at US Patent and Trademark Office (More than a year)

    Pros

    Pay, flexibility, bonus, overtime pay, bonus The position is evaluation is based on metrics, not in personal opinion of your supervisor. Since the performance goal is all set, you know exactly what you need to do. You won't be ever left wondering if you are doing well or not.

    Cons

    Extremely boring and repetitive. If it's not boring and repetitive, you know you are stuck in a very difficult technology area, in which case you better switch to a boring to repetitive(240) 481-8076 AU.


  3. Helpful (2)

    Patent Examiner Mechanical

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Alexandria, VA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Alexandria, VA
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    Very flexible, you know what you got to do to get the next promotion, no random deadlines, and obviously better salary than other GS pay bands...

    Cons

    ...its all about the numbers ... and like they say its case by case basis....the interpretation of the same claim might be different from one primary examiner to other.


  4. Is this helpful? The community relies on everyone sharing – Add Anonymous Review


  5. Helpful (1)

    Patent Examiner

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Junior Patent Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Former Employee - Junior Patent Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at US Patent and Trademark Office full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great opportunity to learn about intellectual property. 1 year academy training. Build research skills. Learn an industry landscape and technology. Excellent place to practice time management skills. Flexibility to manage assignments, workflow. On-site gym. Realistic expectations. Work among incredibly intelligent technical experts.

    Cons

    Room without windows for a year or two. In some cases, primary examiners and managers with mechanical backgrounds working in business methods finance banking and insurance lack prior work experience and therefore some expertise when it comes to claim interpretation and application of prior art.

    Advice to Management

    Clarity as to what Quality means.


  6. Patent Examiner

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Patent Examiner in Arlington, VA
    Former Employee - Patent Examiner in Arlington, VA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at US Patent and Trademark Office (More than a year)

    Pros

    Flexible Low Pressure You can work when you want to

    Cons

    Boring Lack of Social Events System is broken


  7. Patent Examiner Externship

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - Patent Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Former Intern - Patent Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at US Patent and Trademark Office as an intern

    Pros

    Very Flexible and convenient environment and schedule.

    Cons

    Sometimes feels isolated and boring.


  8. Awesome if you love your technology

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Patent Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Current Employee - Patent Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    - Flexible schedule - Gym on campus - Cool culture

    Cons

    - Can be stressful - Count Monday can be stressful to manage


  9. Helpful (2)

    It's a job

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Junior Patent Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Current Employee - Junior Patent Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at US Patent and Trademark Office full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    It pays money and it's not hard. Exposure to patent prosecution issues.

    Cons

    Too much time is spent bothering with things that don't make the patent process better.


  10. Helpful (1)

    Internship Great

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Extern in Alexandria, VA
    Former Employee - Extern in Alexandria, VA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Very easy going job, not much stress, you get your work done and no one asks questions.

    Cons

    gets a little boring just sitting in the office all day behind a desk, as an engineering major I wouldnt want to sit and work on patents, so it must be something you are interested in.

    Advice to Management

    Stimulate your employees


  11. Helpful (7)

    Rated as one of the best places to work in the federal government.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Primary Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Current Employee - Senior Primary Examiner in Alexandria, VA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at US Patent and Trademark Office full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    I am a primary examiner and have been working at the US PTO for over 12 years. The common comments I see are "stressful job", "monotonous", "production oriented", etc. Well, one has to realize that this is a job that requires a lot of reading and comprehending, as well as analytical skills. The material can be drab. Often times patent applications are translations from foreign languages. A significant number of references are in foreign languages and the translations available are machine translations with their own limitations. New and novel ideas are scarce. Most applications have subject that has small, incremental changes from the state of the art. The examiner's challenge is to determine the minute difference from the state of the art that makes an application patentable. An examiner has to work through all these difficulties. Therefore, this is not a job for everyone. It requires a special kind of skill to succeed as a patent examiner. To me, this is my dream job. I love it. I would recommend it to anyone, who has the attitude and the inclination to do this type of work. The pay is good. The benefits are excellent. Flexible work schedule. Allowed to work from anywhere in the country, where a good broadband internet service is allowable. Great and continued work related training as well as financial and retirement training and various other social and developmental help. Job security. This is also one of the most independent jobs one could find. Other than occasional quality audits, the primary examiner is independent in his/her work. No supervising. No approvals. Job promotions and other activities are available without any discrimination. I joined the PTO after several years of industrial experience, and I found the job to be a welcome change. Irrespective of the position one held, one has to start at a lower level and then get trained on the job. However, please do not consider this as a deterrent. I took more than 50% pay cut when I joined as a Junior examiner but in a few of years, I started getting comparable or better salaries than what I had in the industry. I say, if you are up to this challenge, then join the PTO.

    Cons

    This job is not for everyone. In requires patience, good ability to read and comprehend, and analytical skills. It is a desk job. Most work is online. Irrespective of what experience and qualifications, one gets only a lower level position and must get rigorous training before one becomes a primary. But then, that is why a primary examiner is paid a good salary and all that great benefits.



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