NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory - Amazing science and brilliant minds-- but combined with horrible management that takes credit for your work. | Glassdoor
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There are newer employer reviews for NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory

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Helpful (3)

"Amazing science and brilliant minds-- but combined with horrible management that takes credit for your work."

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  • Work/Life Balance
  • Culture & Values
  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Pasadena, CA
Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Pasadena, CA
Doesn't Recommend
Negative Outlook
Approves of CEO

I worked at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory full-time (More than 10 years)

Pros

The scientific discoveries and the feats of modern technology and engineering have come from some of the most brilliant minds today, and these discoveries happen all the time at the laboratory, and make it one of the mot fascinating places to work, at least some of the time.

Cons

There are almost too many to include here. Management in several divisions throughout the laboratory treats its employees liike they were in fifth grade. If, due to office politics or funding issues, a manager wants you gone, he/she will make that happen, regardless of employee wrongdoing or not. It is a ridiculous place to work when months can go by and none of your management has taken the time to utter one word to you. (And yes, this includes "hello.") Very little respect or time to speak with direct supervisors- they are always too busy or too cowardly to tell you what is really going on. Ugh..

Advice to Management

Be leaders and mentors: not babysitters. Have some respect for the people who work very hard for you, as many of them might have more degrees and experience than you do. Please give credit o the people who have done the work- PLEASE stop reporting to higher-ups and taking credit for others' work.

Other Employee Reviews for NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory

  1. Helpful (5)

    "Incredible history with stale and weary management"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Systems Engineer in Pasadena, CA
    Current Employee - Systems Engineer in Pasadena, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    - It is the only place I have ever worked where (and it is up to the individual's effort and contribution), the opportunities and lessons are extraordinary and unique.
    - The talent, dedication and commitment of some of the people have been inspiring and motivating. The knowledge and experience of some of the folks who have been around create fantastic mentoring opportunities.
    - The technology and mission studies are cutting edge.
    - Relatice to industry, the pay is "comparable", it's not as high but they don't work you to death. Very relax hours and flexibility in schedules. Excellent benefits package and retirement through TIAA-CREF.

    Cons

    Although one can learn a lot, career growth is limited, as well as compensation. JPL does not reward on performance. You are ranked based on performance but actual raises are based on the availability of funds by divisions.
    After more 10 years, you have to find a personal reason to want to make the effort. I fall in the group of folks who see this place as a way to gain experience and improve my resume. I have people around me who show up (and that's a big if), do the minimum and contribute only when necessary. It can be demoralizing sometimes.
    And as a woman, this place is sexist. It is still very much an old boys club and those inside, work very hard to keep others out. I see some incredible leaders and some are women, but the pervasive sexist mentality is what brings the place down.

    Advice to Management

    Stop building a new layer of management to accommodate existing managers who don't "have" a specific role. You are paying someone to create and attend meeting, how many "deputies" do you need?
    The current morale is low, compounded by the bullying by some of the managers. If an employees brings an issue up, the answer is not, if you don't like it, leave. Ethics has been a joke and no help.
    You are firing those with experience and frustrating the younger people who want to contribute. All you have left are people who give you lip service, the worker bees are leaving the nest. Take heed!


  2. Helpful (3)

    "Excellent, challenging projects with brilliant people to work with but not perfect."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Mechanical Engineer in Pasadena, CA
    Former Employee - Mechanical Engineer in Pasadena, CA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Excellent infrastructure, good benefits, rewarding and challenging projects, great resources.

    Cons

    Whispers and back room office politics and work 'clicks' make it difficult to climb the ranks, compensation, promotions or salary bumps minimal. Flight projects require long hours w/ minimal overtime pay/compensation. Culture of arrogance runs deep through all levels and divisions, especially through management ranks.

    Advice to Management

    Give people outside the usual work 'clicks' opportunities to succeed or fail before excluding them from positions or projects. It's fine to be smart and have confidence but reduce the arrogance it is unnecessary and your employees will resent you less and work harder and may even stick around longer term.

There are newer employer reviews for NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory
There are newer employer reviews for NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory

See Most Recent

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