Caterpillar Reviews | Glassdoor

Caterpillar Reviews

Updated June 25, 2017
2,416 reviews

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Full-time Part-time

3.2
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Jim Umpleby
94 Ratings

2,416 Employee Reviews

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  1. Featured Review

    "By far the best company I have worked for."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Decatur, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Decatur, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Each experience will be different, but this is the best place I have worked for. My boss encourages a work life balance and is more than happy to remain flexible for when the kids get sick or something else comes up. Even working remotely is an option.

    Cons

    The market is cyclical and as a result there can be and sometimes will be layoffs. This of course isn't desirable, but it isn't personal.


  2. "Overall nice place to work with plenty of opportunities."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Engineer in Aurora, IL
    Current Employee - Senior Engineer in Aurora, IL
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Globally growing company with plenty of opportunities, reasonable compensation & benefits package

    Cons

    some of usual big corporation issues

    Advice to Management

    Need to do more to satisfy growing demand


  3. Helpful (2)

    "Caterpillar...there's more than corn in Illinois"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior IT Analyst in Peoria, IL
    Current Employee - Senior IT Analyst in Peoria, IL
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Caterpillar compensates very well while expecting no more than a 40 hour work week. That's not saying there aren't any work/life balance issues, but we can flex our time accordingly. Caterpillar will provide (2009) a more flexible health insurance plan that will allow employees to choose more preferred hospitals. Typical new-hires will see promotions within 1.5 - 2 years, with probably a total of 3 promotions in a 6-8 year span. Employees will have more lateral job moves thereafter (i.e., different job with no extra pay), so climbing the corporate ladder is easy the first couple rungs, but gets very difficult later.

    Cons

    From an IT perspective, there are fewer jobs above management unless you decide to become a 6 Sigma Black Belt or Project Manager. Really brilliant IT people aren't rewarded/recognized very well. The farthest an IT guy can go while still being a "techie" is Senior IT Analyst, maybe an IT Specialist. However, when most IT people at Caterpillar hit that glass ceiling, they end up changing careers and become some supervisor or a project manager. Thereafter, we lose a technical person who could really rock if allowed to do so. What I'm trying to say is, Caterpillar is stuck in the Stone Age when it comes to developing software.

    Advice to Management

    Management is doing a great job, however sometimes we get managers making sweeping decisions over minor issues. Staff becomes greatly inconvenienced and bogged down with non-value add work. Maybe not unique to Cat, but mind boggling.


  4. Helpful (2)

    "You will stay your entire career!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - IT Analyst L in East Peoria, IL
    Current Employee - IT Analyst L in East Peoria, IL
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Caterpillar has excellent benefits. 401k matching, and is one of few companies still giving employer paid pension plans. Excellent opportunities for learning and professional growth. Promotions come from within. Friendly midwestern workplace. Senior management is excellent. CEO Jim Owens has a doctoral degree in economics. Company is focused, successful and growing. People often stay with company for decades.

    Cons

    The company is very bureaucratic. Like most large companies, change comes slowly. This is more a symptom of size and not the company. The workplace can be very political. Getting projects, and spend approval can be exhaustingly difficult.

    Advice to Management

    Streamline bloated processes.


  5. "Cool place to work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - IT Analyst II
    Current Employee - IT Analyst II
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    We build big things, what could be cooler than that? Lots of interesting people to work with. Great opportunity to travel and see the world if you are a hard worker. Great to talk to people who have worked there for a very long time, great to hear stories of 'back in the day'. Related to that, lots of retirement parties as some of the old timers begin to retire.

    Cons

    Tight deadlines always..no one seems to know how to plan anything. Training budget seems to get cut earlier and earlier every year, but then EOS results say training stinks....related much?

    Advice to Management

    Besides give me a raise? Quit cutting training so early, maybe that will help EOS results.


  6. Helpful (2)

    "Caterpillar - world leader that is highly ethical and values people."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineering Manager in Peoria, IL
    Current Employee - Engineering Manager in Peoria, IL
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Caterpillar is a global leader in its industry, and invests accordingly in people. People generally have opportunity to grow their careers in direction of their choice, have global mobility options, and I feel have genuine respect from top management. In addition, Caterpillar is extremely ethical, with management required to annually disclose any actions or situations they are aware of that are possibly in violation of their code of conduct. Every year, employees complete employee surveys that provide opportunity for anonymous feedback. Managers are evaluated on these results, and so are 'held to the fire' to be responsive to employees concerns,

    Cons

    The majority of locations are not in high profile urban areas, and so it is not convenient to include some of those advantages in personal life. For instance, Cat's global headquarters are in Peoria, Il. Peoria has 300k people and 1M in 60 mile radius, So, they only have minor league hockey and baseball, and arena football, and a university (Bradley) that doesn't have a football team. It is 3 hour drive to Chicago, St. Louis, or Indy. Other major locations are Decatur, Il, Lafayette, In, Raleigh, NC, and Aurora, Il. Intl locations are Grenoble, France, Geneva, Gossellies, Peterborough, UK., Sagami, Japan, and Piricicabo, Brazil - nice places, but again for the most part, are not the major metropolitan centers.

    Advice to Management

    Balance is they key. CAT management seems to trend toward the long term view in regards to strategic goals. However, it seems like short-term issues drive tactical decisions. 4th quarter restraints on hiring, travel, and capital investment are really counterproductive when it only serves as a bottleneck that forces people to compromise their progress for the sake of a couple months hold-back in progress.


  7. "Great company with good values, good pay, and lots of opportunities"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Black Belt in Peoria, IL
    Current Employee - Black Belt in Peoria, IL
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Lots of opportunities to work in various work groups. Overseas opportunities and several work locations throughout the US as well. The pay is great, 95th percentile for most jobs.

    Cons

    Diversity quotas sometimes hurt internal applicants who don't meet those criteria. Diversity is a great thing, but a lot of companies, including Cat, have swung the pendulum far left. It's a difficult balance.

    Advice to Management

    Right people for the right job, based on skill sets.


  8. "Caterpillar is the best company to work for!!! A+++++"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Electrical Engineer in Peoria, IL
    Current Employee - Electrical Engineer in Peoria, IL
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Amazing pay. Great location. Stable job. Great opportunities to advance. Everything good in general!!

    Cons

    No downside. Highly recommend. Come join us and see!

    Advice to Management

    The senior management staff is great. They listen to your concerns and will do everything they can to help you.


  9. "Best Company for a mechanical engineer"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Engineer in Peoria, IL
    Current Employee - Senior Engineer in Peoria, IL
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    salary, training program and latest technology

    Cons

    three year comitmment after training

    Advice to Management

    to improve cultural activites


  10. "Caterpillar is a down to earth company that uses high tech and innovation with a long term vision for growth."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Six Sigma Black Belt II in Peoria, IL
    Current Employee - Six Sigma Black Belt II in Peoria, IL
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Stable, high tech company that is a bit conservative in its business model. However, the company has taken an active stance to plan for the downward portions of a business cycle (the trough) where it can still be profitable. The company has good common business sense for the long haul. Consequently, Caterpillar is a world leader for heavy machinery and manufacturing.

    Cons

    Wall streat considers Cat to be a cyclic company. This may be the market we work in, but Caterpillar is on the leading edge of technology.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to take a long term vision. Do not sacrifice the long term vision for the short term issues we face


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