Engineering Consulting Services Employee Reviews | Glassdoor

Engineering Consulting Services Reviews

Updated March 16, 2017
93 reviews

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Full-time Part-time

3.4
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Henry L. Lucas
19 Ratings

93 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Great benefits, paid time off, comfortable corporate atmosphere, good people (in 7 reviews)

  • There is lots of room to grow, move, and for promotions (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • Low pay, hard to reach engineers or project managers for answers despite having cell phone numbers, equipment is not kept in good shape (in 11 reviews)

  • money,use your own vehicle, long hours (in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "This is a great company to work for."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Administrative Assistant in Wilmington, NC
    Current Employee - Administrative Assistant in Wilmington, NC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Engineering Consulting Services full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    My co-workers are very friendly. Working in a laid back office environment helps ease the tension of a stressful day.

    Cons

    There are not many opportunities for career advancement within the administrative staff thus pay in this field is not the best.

    Engineering Consulting Services Response

    Mar 17, 2017 – Human Resources Clerk

    Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback regarding your experience working at ECS. We regret that you feel that compensation is not the best within the administrative field. We strive to ... More


  2. "Not a typical engineering or consulting firm"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Project Manager in Chantilly, VA
    Former Employee - Senior Project Manager in Chantilly, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Engineering Consulting Services full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Overall, the folks who work at ECS are the most down to earth and nice group of folks you will meet. Across the various offices in the eastern US you will find an array of helpful people.

    Cons

    Below are some of the cons I saw after previously working for a few large national engineering companies. These are in no particular order.

    1. Poor work/life balance. For starting employees and even mid/senior level employees there are 2 (0-5 years) to 3 (6-10 years) weeks of leave. There is no specific sick leave, it is all an accruing leave balance. For professional staff, you can make this work when you have a sick kid by working at home. For junior or tech staff, you cant and run out of leave quickly. Professional (salary) staff is expected to put in 50 hours per week on the timesheet or you will get reprimanded. You get a company phone that you will be answering and replying to emails on when you are on vacation. In my experience at a professional company, you get 3 to 4 weeks of vacation plus sick leave. ECS is far behind in this aspect.

    2. Project Manager training. Although you get to watch some videos during your orientation, it is woefully inadequate training to start using the management systems such as ALF, IVAN, proposal registration, project registration and other systems. You are basically flying blind at the start. There are supposedly PM training programs, but I never saw or heard of any. It is likely that the home (Chantilly) office has PM support but outlying offices do not.

    3. Professionals pay scale doesn't seem professional. At ECS all professionals get a salary and a bonus. Unlike other companies, the bonus is an integral part of your pay. Say at company X they pay $75K plus a bonus if things are outstanding. At ECS the position would pay $61K with a 22.5% bonus . So, part of your salary is deferred to the end of the year. The bonus % can escalate up to 40% or more with seniority, so the bonuses can be huge. However, this creates all kinds of shenanigans as well as regular old hard work at the end of the year to make sure all the billings and collections are done by fiscal year end as this directly affects the bonuses (its based on actual collected monies, not billed). Does this work to get money collected, yes. Does this give the place a "boiler room" feel, yes.

    4. IT and accounting systems are very antiquated. ECS is trying to modernize its 90s era systems, but it hasn't happened yet. A webtop called ECS 360 was rolled out that essentially repackaged the same old systems with a new face. The basics of project management systems and cost accounting any large firm has just don't exist at ECS. Starting at the beginning, proposal hours are not tracked to the proposal #, proposals do not get a margin % evaluation, proposals do not have concurrences other than a principal review, etc., etc. Once a proposal becomes a project, there is no real margin %, just a gross margin %. This is because there is no real overhead # factored in at this point (good for the PM) and since there is no project non-billable time allowed in the system, project budget overruns hit the project at billable rates vs. actual cost (bad for the PM). Also, contractors and service providers do not receive POs, much less POs that stipulate line items and quantities.

    I may add more to this later.

    Advice to Management

    1. Get rid of the 70s TV show acronyms to business systems programs. It doesn't make sense (Alf, Ivan, Fred, etc.).
    2. GRIT? Back in the 70s Grit was a small paper you sold to make money. Today Grit is widely viewed as a racist construct. Ditch using that term.
    3. Wolftracks (weekly PDF of who did what that week) I dont know how much time is spent each week preparing this to pat folks on the back for doing their jobs, but we could do without it.
    4. Henry, please retire. We all love you, but upper management consensus is the company will progress much quicker when you retire.

    Engineering Consulting Services Response

    Mar 23, 2017 – Human Resources Clerk

    Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback regarding your experience working at ECS. We are sorry that you felt that the work/life balance, project manager training,professional payscale and ... More


  3. "Engineering technician"

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

    I have been working at Engineering Consulting Services full-time

    Pros

    It paid every other week

    Cons

    Awful place to work, extreme overtime

    Engineering Consulting Services Response

    Mar 17, 2017 – Human Resources Clerk

    Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback regarding your experience working at ECS. We are sorry to learn that you felt that there were few positives aspects to your position and that the ... More


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  5. "Great Career Opportunties"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Principal Engineer
    Current Employee - Principal Engineer
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Engineering Consulting Services full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    ECS provides a wealth of opportunities to its employees. It is one of the few engineering firms that allows junior engineers to participate in business development and client relationship activities as well as project management. ECS has a future leaders program that prepares its younger generation for leadership opportunities at the department, office, subsidiary and corporate levels.

    ECS is an employee owned firm that also has an ESOP (Employee Stock Ownership Program). After two years of service, employees start becoming vested in the ESOP! At the same time, ECS offers a 401k match dollar for dollar up to 4% of the employee's compensation. In a time when most companies are cutting back on employee benefits, ECS continues to be generous.

    Cons

    This job isn't for everyone. The geotechnical and construction materials testing are tough industries. Time is money. Clients expect problems to be solved and progress made during construction. Summer work days can be long and hard. Engineers and scientists should not expect to sit at a desk all day.

    Those without Grit need not apply.

    Advice to Management

    Continue to take care of your people. They are ultimately the driver of ECS' continued growth and success.

    Engineering Consulting Services Response

    Feb 14, 2017 – Human Resources Clerk

    Thank you for your positive feedback about working with us at ECS. We are excited to hear that you have taken advantage of and are enjoying several of our benefits, including our ESOP program. ECS is ... More


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Love/Hate Relationships"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Engineering Consulting Services full-time

    Pros

    Very lively, fun place to work.

    Cons

    Stress can be overwhelming sometimes

    Engineering Consulting Services Response

    Feb 1, 2017 – Human Resources Clerk

    Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback regarding your experience working at ECS. We are excited to hear that you have enjoyed working here and think it is a fun place to work. We are happy ... More


  7. "Great Job Experience"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Field Technician in Chantilly, VA
    Current Employee - Field Technician in Chantilly, VA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Engineering Consulting Services full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great entry level job for Civil Engineering, Construction Mgmt, Geoengineering, any related careers. Excellent work experience. Training is provided by ECS for your certifications, lots of learning on the job, and a friendly work environment.
    Recommended for those who don't mind getting their hands (and car) dirty by working in construction fields and are self motivated to learn more about the construction process.

    Cons

    Provide your own transportation to construction sites (be mindful of possible damages to your car due to bad weather, debris on site, construction equipment, etc).
    Testing equipment can be burdensome at times (require a vehicle with plenty of trunk space)
    Be mindful of weather conditions, will need to work outside during weather conditions on either side of the spectrum (prepare yourself for cold/hot weather)
    May not get full 40 hour work week due to rainy/snow days

    Engineering Consulting Services Response

    Mar 24, 2017 – Human Resources Clerk

    Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback regarding your experience working at ECS. We are happy to hear that you are taking advantage of all the training offered here at ECS and are ... More


  8. "Field Technician"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Field Technician in Chantilly, VA
    Current Employee - Field Technician in Chantilly, VA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Engineering Consulting Services full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    A company with well reputation .

    Cons

    Some of the Technicians are spoiling it

    Advice to Management

    Please be cooperative with your field technicians they are the asset of the company if any technician is leaving company give him/her respect and thanks for his work with ECS.

    Engineering Consulting Services Response

    Mar 24, 2017 – Human Resources Clerk

    Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback regarding your experience working at ECS. We are happy to hear that you think highly of our/your company! We strive to respect all of our employees ... More


  9. "Field Technician job"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Field Technician in Chantilly, VA
    Current Employee - Field Technician in Chantilly, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Engineering Consulting Services full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Free training and industry certification classes. Travel is reimbursed fairly (driving time plus mileage).

    Cons

    Mediocre wages. You must use your own car to go to construction sites. Work schedule can be unpredictable and erratic. Sometimes you will work in a different location every day of the week.

    Engineering Consulting Services Response

    Mar 24, 2017 – Human Resources Clerk

    Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback regarding your experience working at ECS. We regret that you feel unfairly compensated. We strive to provide competitive pay and excellent working ... More


  10. "ECS"

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

    I have been working at Engineering Consulting Services full-time

    Pros

    The people are passionate about their roles and supportive of growth. Work life balance is very good.

    Cons

    Pay scale does not reflect career growth. Employees do not stay long term because pay rarely reflects experience

    Advice to Management

    Treat employees with more value in terms of pay rates to retain employees and decrease turnover.

    Engineering Consulting Services Response

    Jan 24, 2017 – Human Resources Clerk

    Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback regarding your experience working at ECS. We regret that you feel that compensation does not reflect career growth. We strive to provide competitive ... More


  11. "Nice, but not good for long term."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Environmental Scientist in Hanover, MD
    Current Employee - Environmental Scientist in Hanover, MD
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Engineering Consulting Services full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great people in my particular office though I've heard other offices aren't as nice. The workload varies by office, but it isn't too bad.

    Cons

    Terrible pay. Not competitive in the areas market. Will pay for training but doesn't give you raises as you get more certifications.

    Engineering Consulting Services Response

    Jan 20, 2017 – Human Resources Clerk

    Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback regarding your experience working at ECS. We regret that you felt unfairly compensated during your tenure with the firm. We strive to provide ... More



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