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Invitrogen Reviews

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45 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    "A real mixed bag"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Carlsbad, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Carlsbad, CA
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Industry leader, extensive customer base
    Headquarters in a great location
    Very profitable, even during this serious recession
    Dedicated employees

    Cons

    Stock options only available to director-level positions and above
    Lots of uncertainties and confusion from acquisition of Applied Biosystems still being sorted out
    Some decisions on procedures, new initiatives, etc., seem to be made in isolation without any input from the front-line staff who'll have to actually implement them, so those initiatives tend not to be completely thought-through.
    Some surprisingly inexperienced people are put into positions of considerable decision-making authority.

    Advice to Management

    Involve front-line staff in the planning of projects/initiatives; don't just spring things on them saying "Here, this is how you're going to do X from now on".
    More accurately benchmark the total compensation program against similar companies (benefits, included); make stock options available to all employees, not just senior management.


  2. Helpful (3)

    "Lots of show but under the surface"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director in Carlsbad, CA
    Current Employee - Director in Carlsbad, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Profitable company that does a lot of things well.

    Cons

    Culture feels like a factory with a few bones thrown to employees every now an then. No natural sunlight in most of the buildings. Not a lot of diversity in senior management. Arrogance of management is biggest issue ans the fact the company has had over 20 acquisitions. That tells you they are use to high turn-over. Young employees keep the salary level low.

    Advice to Management

    Reduce the buy and cut model and make the list of admired employers. Really share the wealth. Be humble. Practice your values. Real diversity at Executive and BOD levels.

  3. Helpful (3)

    "For Buffalo, you can't beat it."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Inside Sales Representative in Grand Island, NY
    Current Employee - Inside Sales Representative in Grand Island, NY
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Excellent compensation for this position and area geographically. The culture is hardworking, yet casual and laid back. Good opportunities for advancement. Positive contributions to society through the advancement of scientific research.

    Cons

    There is protocol for EVERYTHING. Great ideas get bogged down with red tape.

    Advice to Management

    Streamline business structure and processes so more gets done efficiently. Communication needed downstream as well as upstream.


  4. Helpful (3)

    "IVGN: Life Tech"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director
    Current Employee - Director
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    GE-type culture with opportunities for doing different roles every 2 years or so. Fast-moving, aggressive and decisive culture. Satisfaction of getting a lot done in a little time. Successful, high-flying company with seasoned execs. Customer-driven and data-driven business strategy.

    Cons

    If you are part of acquired company, limited opportunities for visibility and advancement, above average politics, expect 60+ hour work weeks, rushing as fast as possible just to move fast (at potential detriment to overall quality).

    Advice to Management

    none


  5. Helpful (4)

    "If accountability and execution ranked higher on the priority list this company could be great."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Product Manager in Grand Island, NY
    Current Employee - Product Manager in Grand Island, NY
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The mission statement and goals are exciting. It is actually kind of cool to be a part of something that could potentially become really big and important in the future. Plus, if you know how to manage workload, this company is good for work-life balance. I've never had a probelm taking time off when needed which is nice. Plus all in all the company consists of generally nice people.

    Cons

    Too many people are promoted for the wrong reasons. Many people at this company seem to be promoted just because they've been around a long time. Unfortunately this puts incompetent people in senior roles. If someone has been doing the same job for 5+ years and they are still just an average performer, it's time to manage them out, not up. Also, many people are recongized for doing a great job by being promoted to a role that sets them up for failure. Just because someone is a brilliant scientist, doesn't make them a stellar people manager. The skillsets are completely different, and the career paths should be treated as such. When people are promoted for the wrong reasons nobody wins. The person who is promoted becomes overwhelmed and the people forced to report to these people become resentful.

    Advice to Management

    Know your strengths, your you weaknesses, and know your people. The biggest asset of any company is their people. If the wrong people are hired, fired, and promoted a huge opportunity is lost. Secondly, set the right goals and hold people accountable. People want to feel like they're part of something and they want to be recognized for hard work. By imposing mis-guided, vague goals on people and then compounding that by making a lot of noise, but never really enforcing accountability, morale and productivity both suffer.


  6. Helpful (7)

    "If not in Carlsbad, poor career progression"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Employee
    Current Employee - Senior Employee
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    - great work life balance
    - other people performing at mediocre level (makes you look good)
    - entrepreneurial spirit
    - you can make your own future to some degree

    Cons

    - having to work with mediocre people
    - poor career progression if you don't live in Carlsbad (HQ)
    - very bad HR: DEMORALIZING, doesn't pay for performance, not accountable
    - smart Senior Management, but not wise and very ego-driven

    Advice to Management

    - live the mission statement and truly value employees
    - hire the right person for the job and empower their success, rather than hire the wrong person, blame them, and then setting them up to be fired
    - don't do useless strategic reviews unless you plan to invest - save us the heart ache


  7. Helpful (4)

    "The company has poor leadership and no direction."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manager in Carlsbad, CA
    Former Employee - Manager in Carlsbad, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    If you can not find anything else. Its ok to go there till you get a job in real Bio-tech with real mission. They have good benefits, but Vac is below Bio_tech std. CEO is nice and smart, but I'm puzzeled, why they fail in leadership. You will find good/great employees poor leaders. Maybe he is herding cats all day.

    Cons

    No real mission or science. You did not pass P-chem or went to good Business schools to work here. Its 90% about low cost manufacturing of consumables with low margin and 10% Science. If you like to work for Kmart/office-max you love it here. Its all about pedeling 1000's of SKUs. Not in same level at all with pharma and Bio-pharma. High turnover, some depts as high as 20%. HR is even week, high turnover even in HR. Comp. can not find focus, continuously reorg. Re-Org fatigue is common. Closing sites and moving product lines often. Due to lack of vision and mature leadership, they only focus on cost cutting and M&A, which both are easy and most companies can do on drop of the hat. They fail in real leadership which is Inovation, organic growth, trend setter, game changer, best place to work, and emloyee empowerment. You have to go to Genentech/Amgen to see that. They have problem with letting go incompetent leaders and staff. Therefore the good ones take off sooner or later.

    Advice to Management

    Clean house. Take a real look at who delivers and who blow smoke. Who loses people and who innovates. Who complains all the time and who changes the game. M&A is not the solution to lack of organic growth and solid ROI for the R&D dollars spent. Why IVGN can not be the best place to work? Why HR fails in quality of hire? Why most leaders come from outside? If employees are so incompetent to move-up why are they kept. Hire people that have the potential to move up. Bring stock option to everyone, not just upper management. Clean out HR from incompetent YES-MAN staff that can not stand in front of poor leadership.

  8. Helpful (3)

    "Good stepping stone, but slow career progression"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Scientist in Madison, WI
    Current Employee - Associate Scientist in Madison, WI
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The benefits are competitive to other companies in the industry. Benefits include paid vacation, the possibility to purchase a week of vacation, tuition reimbursement, stock purchase discounts, and health/dental/vision.

    Cons

    The career advancement opportunities are poor. Promotions are usually based on time and not necessarily on the impact one makes. Career development and promotion largely depend on the negotiation skills and perseverance of an employee's manager. Atleast for R&D scientists, career opportunities for employees with PhDs are much better than for ones without. Despite of what is claimed in job postings, experience does not count as much as a PhD degree atleast on the scientific side. In addition, many employees feel that there is a disconnect between management and themselves, although recently efforts on part of upper management have been made to address this.

    Advice to Management

    The career development system should be improved.


  9. "Well done"

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

    Pros

    good working environment. nice management

    Cons

    pressure is little high (target).


  10. "Key Account Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Key Accounts Manager in Mumbai (India)
    Former Employee - Key Accounts Manager in Mumbai (India)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Excellent Product Line, Good Incentive Scheme

    Cons

    High Sales Pressure, Too much travelling

    Advice to Management

    Focus on product related training campaigns more


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