Ultra Electronics

  www.ultra-electronics.com
  www.ultra-electronics.com
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Ultra Electronics Reviews

Updated September 16, 2014
Updated September 16, 2014
74 Reviews
2.2
74 Reviews
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Ultra Electronics Chairman Douglas Caster
Douglas Caster
27 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • has some potentially interesting projects (in 5 reviews)

  • Good pay and benefits, great people and work environment, flexible work schedule, challenging and interesting work, nice commute, business rebounding (in 3 reviews)


Cons
  • Upper management doesn't know how to run a company (in 9 reviews)

  • The company is being driven into the ground by the decisions of the senior management team (in 8 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Pathetic.

    Former Employee - Worker  in  Philadelphia, PA
    Former Employee - Worker in Philadelphia, PA

    I worked at Ultra Electronics full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Good lessons in how not to run a company.

    Cons

    Ultra bought failing companies with the idea that running lean and mean with crack management could save them. It didn't work - and due to the distance between management in UK and NA divisions, the NA Divisions are in a horrible state of mismanagement. AMI, USSI, Prologic the list could go on - failures.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Resign.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 4 people found this helpful  

    Valuable lesson how upper management can tear a company down.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Software Engineer  in  Westminster, MD
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Westminster, MD

    I worked at Ultra Electronics full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Hard to think of any good things to say about this company.

    1) A pay check every two weeks.

    2) If you have no idea how to actually engineer a valuable product or service this place is for you.

    3) If you can smile everyday and stay positive when the President and VP's treat you like dirt and with very little respect, then this place is for you.

    4) Upper Manager is comprised of employees that have no tech background, no previous jobs in management, and were previously admin folks, so you will probably easily impress them, but it won't matter cause they will still take all the credit.

    5) If you have no real engineering skills, but like saying words like cloud-computing, innovation, and are willing to constantly remind the few remaining actual engineers that you don't speak "low-level" talk (like it's a bad thing), then this is the place for you.

    6) Flex schedule

    7) Decent pay if you can mingle, smile, and agree with the terrible decisions your manager makes. If you want a salary increase it's very important to never question upper-management in and outside of meetings.

    Cons

    1) The company is headed down really fast and you will wonder if you will have a job the next week.

    2) Very little accountability for anyone. As long as you can bill hours to the government contract that's all that really matters.

    3) If you can't fill out your timesheet and bill the entire 40-hours to the government customer, you better be ready to use vacation or sick time to fill in the gaps, even if you were working, because you are not allowed to bill more than 1 hour of admin-overhead.

    4) Even though you have been emailing your manager and your manager's supervisor everyday for a week explaining to them you have no work to do and receive no response you better have your timesheet done on time and have the entire timesheet billable to the government customer, otherwise use your vacation time. I saw a co-worker burn through 40 hours of vacation time filling in the gaps every week al while he was working.

    5) Upper management is mostly comprised of folks who came from administrative positions, because they were able to mingle with the VP's around the water cooler. Those folks eventually hire some of their buddies and you have a technology company headed by ex-security managers, secretaries, HR reps, and general managers, with barely one or two actual engineers making decisions.

    6) The harder you work the more a project or program manager will try to take credit for your work.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Ultra-Prologic,
    My co-workers, supervisor, and I all used to enjoy coming to work. Please don't purchase another small company just to ruin them. Please find a small business in another industry and ruin them instead. I hear the U.S. needs more bakeries.

    If you insist on staying in the technology industry:

    1) Your company should not be comprised of admin-staff leading engineering teams.

    2) Get rid of the severely overpaid dead weight by looking around you (even in the mirror) and realize who is truly contributing to the company.

    3) Empower your engineers to make decisions. Be willing to admit and state that you don't know a certain technology and actually listen to your engineers.

    4) Solve the timesheets issues. Employees dread coming to work not knowing how to fill out their timesheets and wasting their vacation and sick time, because you refuse to give them guidance.

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

    Learned a great deal in a short amount of time. It's just too bad the company is imploding from the top down.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Engineer/Scientist  in  Belle Vernon, PA
    Current Employee - Senior Engineer/Scientist in Belle Vernon, PA

    I have been working at Ultra Electronics full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Good people to work with at and below the Program management level.

    Cons

    Well below industry standard pay. No bonuses, unless you are at the top. Poor communication. Engineers, the pillars of any engineering company are leaving or being fired at a staggering rate, all so good numbers can be reported to foreign owners.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you do want this company to be more than a snappy title on your resumes, start taking care of the Engineers you have and create a culture that strives for success.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    If you want to be a scapegoat, please work here.

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

    I worked at Ultra Electronics

    Pros

    Benefits were decent and we had luncheons.

    Cons

    I worked here for almost a year and there was no on the job training. The first day I got there my manager handed me a stack of papers and said here do this! We had multiple people quit within my department and because of that all of their work got piled on my desk. I asked for training and didn't get it then when I made mistakes I was written up. I'm sorry, but if your employee is begging for training and you never provide it to them how do you suppose them to do a good job? Also, nice that I received an excellent yearly performance review then subsequently get written up and put on a performance improvement plan because they said I wasn't performing throughout the year.. then why did I get an excellent yearly review? I ended up quitting because I couldn't take it anymore and my manager and CFO spread rumors about me that I was fired. Nice company. I would NOT recommend anyone to work here.... not unless you like being a doormat and love being stressed out.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 3 people found this helpful  

    There's a Silver Lining - The CEO, CFO, COO and all the VPs are out the door

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

    I have been working at Ultra Electronics full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    There aren't any right now. If the company survives another 18 months and the powers that be manage to get rid of every last member of senior management that gutted the company, it may regain SOME of its previous business, but they've done a lot of damage in the last year. They may never recover.

    Don't take a job here.

    Cons

    What can you say? Seven years ago this was an incredibly profitable company with cutting edge technology. It wasn't uncommon to have a NASA engineer stop by and work on something for a month or two. We beat much larger companies to the punch on a number of projects and managed to attract incredible talent in the areas of program management, engineering, implementation and change management.

    Then the founder of the company retired, the President retired and in came the new CEO, CFO, COO and a few blatantly incompetent VPs in the areas of security and resource management.

    After R&D projects that produced nothing, hasty acquisitions, angry customers, abusive policies (basically abusive senior management), all of the talent in the company either took off or was laid off.

    Now they've closed most of the offices, shrunk down to 1/5 the workforce they had when I started and it doesn't look good.

    BUT - someone does seem to be finally getting their ducks in order.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    For the ones that outright resigned, thanks. For the ones holding out for a big package, just quit already. You already squandered every last resource in the company. Leave and start a new career outside of this industry. Take the words, "strategy," "leadership," and "success," off of your resumes.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    Sad

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

    I have been working at Ultra Electronics full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    The employees work very hard.

    Cons

    Management does not appreciate their employees or see their value.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 2 people found this helpful  

    unrealistic goals

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

    I worked at Ultra Electronics full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    large company with plenty of assets and large portfolio

    Cons

    financial goals totally unrealistic= disillusioned employees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    dont lose touch with the reasons you are where you are. groom your personnel from the ground up, rather than just sitting on the throne looking down.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 3 people found this helpful  

    In the beginning it was dynamic and forward thinking and then managers were brought in who lacked the ability to lead

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

    I worked at Ultra Electronics full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    The company started as an employee oriented company. It was bought into by people who initially had a plan to grow ProLogic beyond what they were into a business that would challenge the larger corporations. People were taken care of, engineers took part in the decision process for how the customer would best be supported and they were often sent to the customer's site to get first hand knowledge of what they really desired

    Cons

    Managers were hired from outside the core group when they weren't really needed. These managers were inept, frequently told employees one thing and the upper management somethig different and this started the downslide of the company. Selling to ULTRA Electronics was a move solely for the financial gratification of a small few who quickly moved on with their profits. Those who remained managed to help grease the skids for the downward spiral. Because there was no real thought into the negative side of selling to a foreign investor this contributed to the loss of numerous classified contracts which resulted in the elimination of entire groups and their employees let go. Rather than sorting through who the better workers were across the company and downsizing through the elimination of lesser performers while retaining the better ones a chain saw approach was used to eliminate groups wholesale.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Rubbing shoulders with other "fast burners" in a box seat sporting event only strokes your ego and no one elses. The good ol' boy network only works if you have good ol' boys outside of the company you can draw upon to expand business through. The fact that you couldn't/wouldn't listen to employee complaints about leaders who were lying to you and to them prevented you from seeing the truth of what you had unleashed on a company with potentental. This contributed significantly both yours and the company's demise.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 3 people found this helpful  

    Leadership is non existent below VP level

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Technical  in  Belle Vernon, PA
    Current Employee - Technical in Belle Vernon, PA

    I have been working at Ultra Electronics full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    At one time we were a great company with cutting edge technology.

    Cons

    Some people squandered money that was supposed to be for development of new products. What's really funny, some of those people still work at ProLogic.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get a grip on production leadership as it is currently non-existent. Start listening to the jr level people, you know, the ones that make you money.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 3 people found this helpful  

    Sad state of affairs, but fitting and well deserved due to a lack of character and class

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Manager  in  Uniontown, PA
    Former Employee - Manager in Uniontown, PA

    I worked at Ultra Electronics full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    While you would think that every company has a 'pro', here are the sad facts about this company's current predicament:

    1. In the last 18 months they have closed more than half of their offices. There are only a few left and they've all dwindled.

    2. In the last 18 months, they have had to let go of 3/5 of their work force.

    3. The CEO and CFO just resigned (that may be a good thing).

    4. They have one remaining contract and it isn't all that much.

    5. The clock is ticking on the only product they ever managed to get to market (that they owned). I won't go into detail, but its success depended on the amount of time that other organizations needed to get their versions 'approved,' by certain entities. That window is closing.

    If you absolutely need a job, then you have to do what you have to do, but if you have wiggle room, keep looking because you will be looking again in a few months no matter what you do.

    5.

    Cons

    Based on the other reviews here, this must be the complaint and blame section. In my five years at this organization I worked with some very talented and dedicated people, so blanket complaints won't do. These people included a few engineers, field service technicians, manufacturing personnel and a program manager or two.

    So, if there were some very talented people, many of whom managed to do a very good job, why is this company circling the drain?

    I can only give an opinion, but I think anyone that worked there who has the slightest amount of intelligence will agree - Prologic has, for many years, had a culture of insecurity, disdain, paranoia, abuse and just plain entitled laziness.

    For every 1 person that went in wanting to do their job and do it well, willing to put a foot forward and try, there were ten people standing back waiting to criticize, hoping desperately that they could get a job where they got to make schedules for other people. It was almost as though the 'in' crowd at Prologic thought that making "schedules," and "plans," was the greatest achievement anyone could ever accomplish. That and sitting in meetings talking about fictional products they would 'some day,' make was and is how a great many people filled their days.

    This insecurity (the complete and utter inability to believe that they could succeed in accomplishing something) together with the constant need for management and their underlings to stroke their egos and treat everyone around them as 'lesser than resources,' led to a company where very little got done well and usually nothing got done at all. There was no vision. No follow through on a large scale and most importantly, no honesty.

    When you have a 100 million dollar contract, it doesn't matter how you got it. You either satisfy it and work to get more of them or you don't. If you don't, word gets out and you find yourself in the position that this company is in.

    These problems of character ran from upper management all the way down to administrative assistants and I can guarantee that a lot of the people on here crying now had their hands, through sheer do-nothingness, in the failure of what was once a promising company - a company that one man started from absolutely nothing.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Be ashamed and have the decency to not go out and ruin another company.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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