Vulcan Reviews

Updated January 24, 2015
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2.1
47 Reviews
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Vulcan President & CEO Jody Allen
Jody Allen
28 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. 3 people found this helpful

    Vulcan is a great place to work

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

    I have been working at Vulcan full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    I think of Vulcan as a large philanthropic machine. Pretty much everything that we do at Vulcan is with a view towards making the world a better place.

    Mr. Allen puts his money where his heart is, as witnessed by his large donations to causes such fighting the Ebola epidemic, researching the brain, artificial intelligence and the cell. As well as countless other smaller, but similarly important projects.

    Vulcan has gone through changes in recent past which were squarely aimed at improvement. Well done.

    Cons

    Career advancement opportunities are unfortunately limited. I rated it 4 stars because, while it is difficult to move up it is not impossible, and this limitation is mitigated by great compensation and benefits.

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

    Only@Vulcan

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Director in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Director in Seattle, WA

    I have been working at Vulcan full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Seahawks spirit. Diverse spectrum of work tied to the wide-ranging interests of the owner. CEO is gone and new COO seems to be trying to do the right things to fix a broken culture. Very nice employees at all levels.

    Cons

    Owner thinks he owns you. And perhaps he does. So things are changed on a whim and there is no clear set of business parameters. Extravagance coupled with penury around the work environment. But the worst is the micro management of very senior people who are treated like children by an owner who has none.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    COO seems to be good at managing up and needs to use that to lead the organization to a better place and to protect the people below her.

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

    it can be wonderful and it can be really difficult

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Vulcan (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    lots of great opportunities with the various departments

    Cons

    not always clear on direction or expectations

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  5. 4 people found this helpful

    Could be a great place, but isn't

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

    I worked at Vulcan full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Great benefits, competitive salary, interesting work

    Cons

    Poor people management; managers who suck up the best are the ones who keep their jobs, regardless of their skills or abilities.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to the employees - if enough of them are giving significant negative feedback over many years about a manager, there's probably a very real problem there. I had at least two coworkers who were told by HR that they needed to just quit complaining, the HR rep didn't want to hear about problems with that manager anymore - they either needed to suck it up or move on.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 5 people found this helpful

    Potential Vs. Reality -- an amazingly wide gulf....

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

    I worked at Vulcan full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Pay, benefits, and building amenities are great.

    Cons

    Where to begin? The Owners think they're really smart but when you own an environment in which you are never challenged (and pity the poor soul that does speak up...), the brain goes soft. There is no honest debate of ideas. The company has some amazingly talented people at all levels who have been attracted by the possibilities but the reality hits hard.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you're not an Owner, don't count on being here too long. The half-life of senior management has shortened dramatically. For the Owners -- trust people. Some will let you down but the vast majority of people want to achieve the potential they saw upon joining Vulcan. You'll be happier and the work will improve.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 4 people found this helpful

    Great for a few years

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Vulcan full-time

    Pros

    Great benefits and perks, really cool projects, lots of divisions that can make an actual real and visible difference in the world. I met so many high-powered and very highly intelligent people while working there.

    Cons

    Management is not always the most qualified. Basically you are serving a billionaire and his toys/ hobbies, and sometimes that leads to favoritism and terrible work-life balance.

  8. 5 people found this helpful

    I would stay clear

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Technology in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Technology in Seattle, WA

    I worked at Vulcan full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    The money, they pay well.

    Cons

    It was very frustrating dealing with HR, Legal, and most of the C - level management.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Advice would be to do a better job of communication. Do not play games with people's life and be a company about change not change the people every other year. The hiring tatic of a "possible bonus" then not giving a bonus is shamefull.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 7 people found this helpful

    Good people.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Administrative in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Administrative in Seattle, WA

    I worked at Vulcan full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Good salary & great benefits - medical/dental/vision, PTO, 401k matching, and cool perks you can only get working for the Allen family. I was fortunate to work with a great team of people. Most employees are smart and hard working. Chance to work on or get exposure to some really interesting projects.

    Cons

    Everyone has an "expiration date" - the longer you've been there and the higher your pay, the closer it gets. Lots of poorly thought out layoffs over the last years I worked there. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of dollars are wasted "just in case" the owners want to go somewhere/do something (they usually don't). People who go to HR with legitimate complaints are usually the ones who end up losing their jobs.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat employees with respect. Recognize the value of having knowledgeable & loyal long-term employees who make a little more money over the high turnover that currently exists.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 5 people found this helpful

    It's not worth it

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

    I worked at Vulcan full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Benefits and some of the talented people. There were some interesting and unique projects you may have a chance to work on.

    Cons

    I would give them 0 stars, but 1 star is for the benefits and perks. Everything else is a con. Upper management that won't listen or take credit for your ideas. As others have said, CEO is not available and doesn't interact with employees. There was also no clear direction from the owners. Directives could change on a whim and contradict previous ones.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Revamp your upper management completely. Some are hanging on and provide very little value and take credit for things they don't do.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 8 people found this helpful

    A "Family Business" with a wide breadth of initiatives and experiences to be had

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

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

    Pros

    The breadth of initiatives that Vulcan takes on is amazingly wide: the scope ranges from local to global, internal media projects to world-changing initiatives like climate change and ocean health. The compensation package is a good: salary midpoint targets at 60th percentile of the market, reasonable vacation and personal days that increase with tenure, private gym in the building, health club reimbursement, good health care coverage, and all kinds of fringe benefits that come with ownership of three major sports teams. The company is at the size where there's diversity of activity, but small enough where one could get to know almost everyone in the company, and the people working here are talented and great to work with.

    Cons

    Vulcan is after all a "family business", and there are idiosyncrasies that come along with that. Vertical communication, up and down, is not healthy: there is some "yes"-men/women mentality, and I think honesty in interactions suffer for that. Despite being an organization owned by a billionaire, there is an unreasonable financial austerity when it comes to HR that can sometimes stifle growth of employees and success of projects. In my opinion, the performance appraisal process here is very counterproductive. Employees are graded on a curve (remember college courses?) HR rejects the notion of "stack ranking", but under the hood, managers have to stack rank to determine how their teams members are distributed under the curve. The curve is determined by how well the company and department has been rated that year. The PA and goal-setting processes together extend over several months.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat employees as people, not human resources and focus on people's strengths more than their weaknesses.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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