Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) Reviews | Glassdoor

Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) Reviews

Updated June 12, 2017
83 reviews

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83 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • This is a great place for your first internship and it has certainly opened many doors for a lot of the students who come into EPRI (in 7 reviews)

  • You can pretty much do whatever you want whenever you want, leave, go workout, work from home etc (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • Very poor involvement and understanding by the Board of Directors (in 4 reviews)

  • upper management infatuation with revenues (in 6 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "EPRI, a good place to work."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Engineer/Scientist III in Knoxville, TN
    Current Employee - Project Engineer/Scientist III in Knoxville, TN
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Good benefits. Stables career with opportunities for advancement. Many, many areas to work in in nearly every aspect of the utility industry.

    Cons

    Company is slow to adapt in some areas and being out competed. It can be hard to coordinate efforts with other groups in the company.

    Advice to Management

    The vision and direction of the company is never clearly presented to employees in a way that forms a cohesive driving focus to our work. Most of the time we are talked to with lofty ideals without the means to ensure those ideals are fully realized.


  2. "Great company to work for"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - QA Tester Contractor in Palo Alto, CA
    Former Employee - QA Tester Contractor in Palo Alto, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Near commute transit area, nice location with a hillview, good technology, friendly people, helpful staff members

    Cons

    Need more parking spaces for the company buildings

  3. "Student Inter"

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

    Pros

    Absolutely love the company. Management is fantastic.

    Cons

    No cons as of yet


  4. "Server Operations Intern"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Palo Alto, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Palo Alto, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Very knowledgeable co-workers and consistent work expectation.

    Cons

    Not very exciting for Information Technology

    Advice to Management

    Assess management styles frequently.


  5. Helpful (17)

    "One of the most disappointing experiences of my life."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manager in Charlotte, NC
    Former Employee - Manager in Charlotte, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Excellent pay and benefits. Unfortunately, no amount of pay can justify the excessive office politics, leadership hubris, non-strategic thinking, and "shiny object" projects one will endure.

    Cons

    Incredibly incompetent leadership who exercise their power without regard to the mission and principles that brought EPRI into existence. In my first year of employment, the organization stood for what it is supposed to do: provide objective research in the name of shaping the future of electricity. I was particularly impressed with the leadership exhibited by several individuals, and their commitment to fulfilling EPRI founder Chauncey Starr's vision. Unfortunately, these individuals and several others were removed "for cost"--at a time when targets were being met.

    Curiously, what followed these individuals' questionable removal was a slow descent into scattershot efforts that not only, in my opinion, jeopardized EPRI's standing as an objective Institute, but also raised concerns about the prudent use of members' dollars. It is no surprise that certain leaders' actions and pet projects drove employees into a state of poor morale that continues to devolve. Even in the face of hard metrics garnered from employee surveys, Leadership turned the cheek and even sugar-coated the lackluster results. Efforts to ameliorate employees' concerns were half-hearted at best, even when good employees offered hard strategies and options for leadership to take action.

    In addition to the woes of Leadership, there is zero accountability in place at EPRI. Misused dollars, failed projects, improper conduct with employees, and lack of adherence to the organization's mission plague the workplace. Whether it is a sense of entitlement because of their tenure at EPRI, the money they are being paid, or the special relationship they have with someone in power in the organization, many are able to get away with things that would almost always be punishable by demotion, termination, and in many cases, legal action in another organization.

    The one word, and ultimate reason for my departure, is disappointment. Disappointment because I intensely care about the mission that EPRI was founded upon. And while there are great projects and work still trickling out, the overall trajectory is poor. I believe it is only a matter of time before EPRI members realize the lack of return on their investment, and that employees leave en masse (which is indeed happening). It is my hope that the historically detached Board of Directors realizes the issues outlined in this review, amongst many others, and clears the decks so that one day, EPRI can return to the great company it once was.

    Advice to Management

    Listen to the employees and take real action. Begin to hold people accountable for their work and their actions. Recognize the talents of employees who aren't in the "inner circles," and better yet, stop creating the inner circles by stopping politicking. Finally, never lose sight of the principals that brought EPRI into existence.


  6. Helpful (4)

    "A good place for self-motivated project managers"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Engineer/Scientist in Knoxville, TN
    Current Employee - Project Engineer/Scientist in Knoxville, TN
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Smart people, some cutting-edge work, good opportunities for advancement in management, well-respected by utility industry. Somewhat flexible; a great place for self-motivated types. Very stable environment.

    Cons

    Offers poor resources for early-career employees to develop technical expertise.

    In a strange middle-ground between academic research and industry--can feel like an ivory tower (disconnected) while still feeling the pressures and corporate culture of industry (focus on productivity squashes creativity).

    Work-life balance can be easily overwhelmed in management roles.

    Conservative culture mirrors some utilities, with few women and minorities in technical roles.

    Advice to Management

    A serious effort needs to be made to foster professional development, especially for early-career employees in technical roles. Educational courses and externships would be highly valuable.

    Employee distrust of management will only increase as the use of corporate buzzwords in company communications increases. Executive absence from offices adds to the perception that they are disconnected from employees.


  7. Helpful (6)

    "Not a good experience overall...."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous in Charlotte, NC
    Current Employee - Anonymous in Charlotte, NC
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The compensation is average but high for a non-profit. Benefits are good. The company itself is pretty good but the cons listed below overshadow the admirable mission and good points.

    Cons

    Where do I begin? Culture is brutal. At the lower levels it is a pretty friendly collaborative culture but the bullying from the director level has gotten way out of hand. In spite of poor survey results, lost talent and feedback on the issues nothing really ever changes. If these issues were dealt with the company would be a great place to work. However, don't hold your breath. Leadership is rather out of touch so that may contribute to the management dysfunction that paralyzes the organization.

    Advice to Management

    You can't reach your potential if you don't have the right people. The company needs leadership. Stop assuming that just because they were hired or promoted they are the best fit for EPRI. Deal with your hard management decisions and let the company move forward. One bad manager is not worth your entire talent pool.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Fairly Good Research Organization"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Project Manager - Fossil Power Generation in Charlotte, NC
    Former Employee - Project Manager - Fossil Power Generation in Charlotte, NC
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Worked on interesting Engineering Research projects.
    Interacted with knowledgeable technical professional in the field.
    Learned research project management.
    Attended and participated in many different professional seminars and events.
    Good research environment.

    Cons

    Too much theory, more practical experiments are needed.

    Advice to Management

    Management need to let project team to practical experiment in the field to gain the inside problem of the participated members.


  9. Helpful (4)

    "No direction"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Project Engineer/Scientist in Lenox, MA
    Current Employee - Senior Project Engineer/Scientist in Lenox, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Challenging and interesting projects. Ok work and life balance. Good place to start or end your career if you are in the right EPRI circle. Not much advancement in the long run.

    Cons

    The management matrix is failing. The management is constantly reorganizing itself. I've seen a lot of good, very intelligent folks leave good paying positions due to poor management.

    Salary is stagnant for most while the upper management receives incredible bonuses for a non profit organization.

    Advice to Management

    Stop promoting caustic bullies to the director level. Realize the talented engineers and researchers that are carrying the organization.


  10. "Inspiring company mission"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Project Engineer/Scientist in Charlotte, NC
    Former Employee - Senior Project Engineer/Scientist in Charlotte, NC
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Company is true to their mission and values. They provide cutting edge research that benefits the entire power industry. The employees are very devoted to their research, but the company allows healthy work-life balance. Most employees work schedules are flexible enough to allow them to work from home as needed.

    Cons

    Very little training, and employees are expected to be subject matter experts upon hiring. Very few opportunities to advance in your career within the company.

    Advice to Management

    Upper management needs to encourage direct managers to develop their employees much more. Employees seeking advancement quickly become frustrated.


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