Kiewit Power Constructors Reviews | Glassdoor

Kiewit Power Constructors Reviews

Updated January 18, 2017
73 reviews

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Full-time Part-time

3.0
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Dave Flickinger
21 Ratings

73 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • 401k match of 5%, nice offices, good benefits (in 12 reviews)

  • Great Benefits, highly competitive salary, great training (in 9 reviews)

Cons
  • Moving every year; Work/Life balance was nil; its seemed as majority were out of the "good ol'boys" click (in 11 reviews)

  • If you are on a project, long hours and you will be expected to move every 1-2 years (in 15 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Too many chiefs"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Director in Boulder, CO
    Former Employee - Director in Boulder, CO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Kiewit Power Constructors (More than a year)

    Pros

    401k match of 5%, nice offices, good benefits

    Cons

    Too many decisions based on politics. Shareholders can do no wrong.

    Advice to Management

    Stop letting good people fall through the cracks because of poor leadership.


  2. Helpful (4)

    "Honest Review"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Field Engineer in Lenexa, KS
    Former Employee - Field Engineer in Lenexa, KS
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Kiewit Power Constructors full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Benefits:
    * Medical, dental, vision plans are among the lowest in corporate America, and the quality of these plans is excellent.
    * Life insurance and other insurances are incredible. For young people, this might not be as important, but individuals with families do appreciate it.
    * PTO – It’s great, Entry level employees start with 2-weeks then it grows with time. Unused PTO rolls over to the following year which is great.
    * After a VERY HARD LONG LONELY hours, you COULD become a stockholder. Being a stockholder is basically the true American Dream (You would put a lot of blood, sweat, tears, health, divorce, etc in order to get that).

    Pay:
    * For young employees, pay is slightly higher compared to other firms.
    * Yearly raises are usually based on performance which promotes great work ethics.

    Reputation:
    * Kiewit’s greatest strength is it’s reputation. The majority of people come to work here for few years, just so they can have an established name on the resume.

    Projects:
    * Diverse, challenging fast paced, even joint venture projects.
    * High profile projects.
    * Responsibilities are given to staffs quickly and management would give any responsibility to anyone depending who they know.
    * Work is excited especially for someone who’s a recent college grad and is willing to learn.
    * With high profile, complex, and different project personnel comes EXTREME STRESS LEVEL. I find this a pro, because it prompted me to be a calm and patient person who thinks carefully before he speaks or act.

    Relocation:
    * Must be willing to be relocated whenever and wherever.
    * With relocation comes exposure to more projects thus gain more experience.
    * Will experience seeing different locations and knowing various people. Some will become lifelong friends. I met people that I respect tremendously and wish all the best.

    Personnel:
    * Depending on the person’s personality, but you should be able to get along with people during work hours.

    Culture:
    * Kiewit’s culture is a sink or swim culture.
    * This culture is definitely for ambitious people.
    * Sky is the limit within reason for motivated people if they’re given the right opportunity and were fortunate to work for the right manager.
    * Constantly changing work environment and it’s uncomfortable for most people, but it will allow people to adapt and change their perspective in life to either the better or the worse depends on the individual’s personality and morals.
    * You are given all the responsibility you can handle and then some so you are constantly being challenged.

    Training:
    * Kiewit has a top tier training programs. I find Kiewit invests and dedicates a lot of time on training.
    * Culture School is a great training asset. e.g. Field Supervisory School and other technical training.
    * I wish I saw more technical training on how to do specific things. Visual and practical training would definitely setup individuals for success.
    * The learning curve is rather steep so if you enjoy a fast pace environment.

    Team Building Events:
    * Great way to know the coworkers and ease work tension.
    * Kiewit provides plenty of team building events that does help people become friends.

    Cons

    Benefit:
    * Unfortunately, if you’re not a stockholder, you’re not viewed as valued employee at Kiewit.

    Pay:
    * After a while, the pay becomes unimpressive.
    * When working at a job-site, the pay is extremely low, especially when broken down into hourly wage. Personally, in the office, I worked 60-70 hours/week doing Ops. I worked 90 hours/week estimating. At Jobsites, my life was dedicated to the projects even though I’ve personal responsibilities.
    * It’s widely known that anyone who gets hired after you would make more money than you.
    * Yearly raises are extremely unfair. You could get 2-3% raises while the people you would train would get 10% raises. This is very unfair and it does bring motivation level and ambitious people down. Such practices shows people that their hard work is unappreciated and this world is nothing but dark crucial place where they’re just being used, abused and underappreciated.

    Reputation:
    * Kiewit’s reputation could be a resume builder, but it’s also affecting the company negatively.
    * Kiewit’s reputation outside is not the greatest. People get treated badly and end up leaving the company to work somewhere else and end up becoming successful people.
    Projects:

    * Work-Life balance is a big issue
    * With the long hours spent at various projects, it’s very important for people to get along with each other so the experience can be enjoyable.
    * Engineers unfortunately, especially the ones that don’t know people in power are used, abused and unappreciated, while the people in power get most if not all the credit. However, this would depend on the morals of the manager.
    * Poor choices of leadership leads to projects being run by inexperienced people who don’t make wise decisions.
    * No recognition of others.
    * Communication is big con that I have seen at Kiewit as a whole:
    1. Huge miss communication. That’s because it seems like everyone for themselves whether they realize it or not.
    2. The management team across Kiewit as a whole is inexperienced. Some managers were promoted way too early. Some other have never managed people or high profile projects previously.
    3. People are scared to communicate effectively. When people are asked a question in meetings. Usually job security is what's feared.
    * People are just numbers on various projects. Such key role players are usually pulled away from projects suddenly. This cause turnaround process issues as well as closeout issues.
    * Common goal:
    1. People are not working for the same common goal. From what I’ve seen, people are throwing people under the bus in order to make themselves look good (I’ve been through this over and over) - reason? save their jobs and run away from their actions.
    2. When FE from other disciplines are not cooperating with each other, there’s a loss of production.
    3. Major LFE and other FE only care about being on the center of the spotlight instead of completing the project the right way and take care of their assets.

    Relocation:
    * A little to no notice is given to people before they get relocated. This makes people feel as if they’re just numbers. Also, most people have personal life, families and their own issues. Such practices add more issues to the individual's life
    * COLA is insufficient for SOME projects.

    Management:
    * There is a 50/50 split on the types of managers you will encounter. You might get a great mentor, one who pushes you the right way and will request you for all of their projects. You might also get a manager that micromanages, belittles you, curses, demands that you do your job and theirs, forgets the chain of command, treats field engineers as slave labor. This type of manager, the one you would expect to be fired, actually get promoted. The company acts on the "good old boys club" promoting based on who you know, not what your skills or accomplishments are. You will have to become buddy, buddy with a person from said group to get acknowledged for the stock program.
    * All companies have a good ol' boys club and Kiewit is no exception. Sometimes you get into this club via merit and sometimes it's because you kissed the right rear-end. Unfortunately, this is just how the world works. Not every hardworking employee doesn’t recognized, but it seems like the majority are some other’s drinking pals.
    * Management is out of touch, for example, if nothing gets reported, no one would realize something is wrong whether it’s quality, ethic, or personnel issues.
    * Management team seems to be focusing only on the negative side. I could do 10 things right and 1 thing wrong, however what would get remembered is the negative.

    Personnel:
    * Almost everywhere I went personnel issues was a big issue which impacts projects sites and offices negatively. For the future, project’s personnel should be chosen carefully so the chemistry can be better.
    * Big reason why employee leave is because of the management’s ARROGANT PERSONALITY. I was belittled almost everywhere I went. Such practices really put a burden on individuals and cause the high turnover that Kiewit has (over 50%).
    * From what I’ve seen HR is just a face, I haven’t thought about going to HR regard anything, because I know they won’t be able to help me when the work environment is obviously a known hostile environment.
    * Advancement seemed to be available only to those in leadership positions or who are connected with people who are in powerful positions

    Safety:
    * Safety is preached widely, but not followed, because the leadership cares only about its own success instead of the overall common goal.

    Advice to Management

    Start treating people like you would like to be treated. Put yourself in their shoes, the ones you forgot about. Young folks are not going to endure your company for longer than 5 years if you do not change the way you think and act. Act as professional as you would to a client to ALL of your fellow employees. Learn humility. Be more open minded to employees with families. Do not talk down to your staff, talk to them…

    Put ancillary initiatives on the back burner and focus on re-building employee proficiency with core skills. Proficiency with core skills will develop itself over time if Kiewit allows people to become good at their job before changing it. Get rid of the mentality that employees are either moving up in the company, or moving out. Kiewit needs specialists in specific roles to be successful. Right now, talent is diluted because people are not given the opportunity to employ the lessons they've learned from their mistakes before being moved on elsewhere to make more mistakes. Some people will survive this sink or swim culture and be successful.

    Most will not. The stock program is no longer a motivating carrot because it's not as profitable, and generation Y doesn't think long term. Drastic changes to the compensation structure are needed as a result. Pay is top-heavy and senior management does not contribute to the bottom line as much as Kiewit has convinced themselves that they do. Front-load compensation by instituting a bonus culture at low levels. Reward proficient specialists equivalently to those with management roles. Get rid of deferred pay increases for those entering a new role. Reward top talent appropriately before they leave. Drop the ego that Kiewit is the best at everything. Kiewit may once have been the best at everything, but it's not anymore. Resting on laurels and a "too-big-to-fail" mentality will be Kiewit's biggest downfall. Try to keep the new culture of politics, bureaucracy, and corporate BS to a minimum. Talented people don't have time for that.


  3. "I would never work for them again."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - CDL Driver in Lusby, MD
    Former Employee - CDL Driver in Lusby, MD
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Kiewit Power Constructors full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Pay is decent. Most of the co-workers are good.

    Cons

    One is set up for failure from day one. Communication is lousy, Safety is a joke. If you speak up or report a Safety issue you will have a taeget on your back. Half of the management team is incompetent. A very Negative environment to work in. One needs to be in the "Good ole boy club" and a "Brown noser".

    Advice to Management

    Better communication and skill level. Employees are your most valuable asset. Without good workers, the job and company will suffer.


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  5. "Empty promises"

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

    I worked at Kiewit Power Constructors full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great benefits and services to employees in a cultural aspect. Good opportunities to lean at a fast pace environment and are continuous of being green

    Cons

    You are just another number who can be replaced. Need to be willing to devote your life to the company; not a good work life balance job.


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Field Engineer"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Field Engineer in Lenexa, KS
    Current Employee - Field Engineer in Lenexa, KS

    I have been working at Kiewit Power Constructors full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great company to work for with regards to training and career advancement. There are many opportunities to advance your career - you get out of it what you put in. The people at Kiewit are a plus. I'm always able to find colleagues that I like a lot and look up to.

    Cons

    Long hours can be a bummer. Either moving your family to remote locations or working away from your home and family can be a bummer.

    Advice to Management

    The hours expected on projects are not sustainable for a happy family life. It's the 'culture' that expects you to put in 12 hour days on projects, often not including a 30-60 minute drive, and sometimes work weekends. This culture comes straight from management, and should be changed through better/different planning to reduce turnover and improve quality of life for staff.


  7. "Project Manager"

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

    I worked at Kiewit Power Constructors full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Good benefits for the area. Free coffee and plenty of free lunches during internal meetings.

    Cons

    Kiewit ia a stock holder driven company. Meaning if you aren't a stock holder, then you are very expendable. It doesn't matter how much experience you bring to the job or value you add to the company. You cannot become a stock holder unless you have been at the company for 5 years and then that ia only if your elected by other stock holders. Must be willing to overlook a lot of favoritism and learn to such up a whole bunch. That wasn't my cup of tea and definitely not in my nature. The bright side is if you are married to a favored Superintendent, CM, or PM, then you can have you pick of the nicest job locations. Plus it won't matter if you are even educated as they will again favor a spouse over an educated and more seasoned employee.

    Advice to Management

    Look yourself in the mirror and ask yourself is really worth ruining other people's motivation day in and day out life for some stock. Don't sell yourself out.


  8. "Field Engineer"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Field Engineer/Estimator in Lenexa, KS
    Current Employee - Field Engineer/Estimator in Lenexa, KS
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Great benefits, good group of motivated people

    Cons

    Long hours, now work/life balance, move every 2-3 years


  9. "Rewarding Challenge"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Electrical Superintendent in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Electrical Superintendent in San Diego, CA

    I have been working at Kiewit Power Constructors (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Great Benefits, highly competitive salary, great training.

    Cons

    Long hours, frequent relocation, high demands on personal life.


  10. "Construction Site"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Lead Field Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Lead Field Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Kiewit Power Constructors full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Great experience
    Learn all aspects of industry
    Job training
    Education reimbursement

    Cons

    Political
    Lack of appreciation

    Advice to Management

    Treat your people better. Recognize talented employees. Promote according to talent.


  11. "N/A"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - N/A in Lenexa, KS
    Current Employee - N/A in Lenexa, KS
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Kiewit Power Constructors full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    -Large, complex projects
    -Room for mid level career growth
    -Opportunity to work in different facets of construction
    -Good benefits

    Cons

    -Disparity in compensation program
    -Lots of moving/travel (pay not consummate with expectations)
    -Lack of accountability

    Advice to Management

    -Work on compensation and recognizing your key players
    -More accountability across the board (don't be afraid to fire)


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