National Instruments Reviews | Glassdoor

National Instruments Reviews

Updated May 23, 2018
1,150 reviews

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3.5
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Alex Davern
90 Ratings

1,150 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Work-life balance was easily achievable (in 209 reviews)

  • Wonderful work environment with very engaging work around amazing technologies (in 129 reviews)

Cons
  • Some times it gets hard to maintain work life balance (in 32 reviews)

  • Low Pay with really low salary increase potential (in 33 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Great Place to Work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Technician in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Software Technician in Austin, TX
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at National Instruments full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Spent a year and a half at National Instruments. The culture is laid back, everyone is friendly. And the work life balance is incredible! It's unheard of to have to work over 40 hours so don't expect to have to work for free here.

    Cons

    The only con is compensation. It's well below industry standard. It's literally the only strike against the company in my experience but even then, they've been working on rectifying that.


  2. "Senior Software Engineer"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • 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 National Instruments full-time

    Pros

    Challanging technical work
    Good people to work around

    Cons

    Low pay compared to competitors
    Slow moving.

    Advice to Management

    Start investing in employees

  3. Helpful (22)

    "The "New NI" is the "Old Dell" of the mid-90's."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in Austin, TX
    Current Employee - Manager in Austin, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at National Instruments full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Lots of great coworkers, an extremely smart group of people.

    Cons

    For 40 years, the major draw of NI had been NI's internal company culture. It had been a very family and employee focused thinktank, focused on innovation and unity. When the stock market tanked in 2008 and company revenue fell hard, the company voted to take a company-wide % pay cut in order to prevent laying off anyone, and once the market recovered restored those salaries back to normal.

    All of this began to rapidly change once the old CEO (Dr. James Truchard, commonly known around NI as Dr. T) retired in 2017. The new CEO, Alex Davern, is essentially Micheal Dell from the 1990's. He is a cold, hard numbers guy and the culture is changing to reflect that.

    Immediately after becoming the CEO in 2017, he ordered NI to release our "Next Gen" version of LabVIEW to show the investors "he was making progress", despite the fact that the platform was still 2 years away from being usable. The product was so unstable and premature that we had a number of meetings regarding what to call it because we were afraid people would think it was the same as LabVIEW (normal), our flagship product and therefore lose customers. We settled on LabVIEW NXG and shipped it, despite knowing it would likely result in problems for a lot of people.

    In April of 2018, to celebrate his one-year anniversary as CEO, he ordered an indiscriminate layoff of a couple of hundred people, to shave a % off the company's budget before quarterly result posting.

    Advice to Management

    Have some forethought before you turn NI into just another quarterly-driven widget factory. Once you do that, there won't be any compelling reason to stay at NI versus jumping ship to any of the other 10,000 better paying IT companies in Austin.


  4. "A great place to work, employee growth assured."

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

    I worked at National Instruments (More than a year)

    Pros

    NI is well focused on what the company builds and what it wants to deliver in the next few years. Hence, there is less uncertainty, and the kind of work definitely supports employee growth and learning.

    Cons

    If you end up with a smaller team, at times you might be required to handle more tasks than you wish to.


  5. Helpful (6)

    "Used to be a great place to work for."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at National Instruments full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    NI has innovative products and there are great people to work with.

    Cons

    However a lot of experienced employees left the company by their own will in the last 5 years. If this trend continues, I am worried for the future of NI.

    Advice to Management

    You can add head counts, but you cannot replace the experience from the employees. You should take care of the employees who are loyal.


  6. Helpful (8)

    "This place needs to get it's act together."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Software Technician in Austin, TX
    Current Employee - Software Technician in Austin, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at National Instruments full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Sick time and vacation time accrued separately.
    Lax about leaving during the day for appointments.
    Casual dress code.
    Good medical plan.

    Cons

    The technical interview for this position was easier than my first semester intro to programming class, and not reflective of the position. It seems the criteria used is for what the job entailed six years ago and is no longer good. They do not care about giving me the training I need to accomplish the tasks they assign me.

    The company is big on "ownership", but is terrible on following through. I am told constantly to fix issues that I come across in my work, and that it is what is expected of me as a technician if I want to get good reviews and advance. But the cause of most of these issues are the owners (engineers who have been promoted during their stay at the company) not following through on their ownership responsibilities. Hypocritical. Additionally, I usually lack the knowledge needed to fix those issues due to lack or training. If NI doesn't want to give new hires the necessary training, then they need to update their hiring criteria.

    Hardware, which is required for most of these tasks, is scarce. Supposedly, this is from other groups poaching from us so they don't have to use their budget code for hardware. So, eventually someone scrounges up some pre-production version that will only be for some of the testing you need to do, and you have to make do with that.

    Documentation is terrible. There are at least three different intranets that I know of where we document and no one updates any of it, so knowledge here remains tribal. You have to try and hunt down the people who know what it is that you need to know, and all of them are very busy.

    Advice to Management

    Enforce consequences for owners who fail to own.

    Enforce documentation updates.

    Give your new hires the training they need or fix your hiring criteria.

    All the deck parties and benefits in the world to compensate for the frustration caused by working in for a disorganized company where no one is concerned about doing things right.


  7. Helpful (7)

    "Change on the top led to change of culture"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at National Instruments full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    NI has a great history, and still a lot of smart and interesting staff

    Cons

    The new CEO (former CFO) does not care about the culture and the people of the company any more.

    Advice to Management

    Put people first again.

  8. Helpful (12)

    "It's a Job, but not much more than that."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at National Instruments full-time

    Pros

    Benefits are Good, not Great, but Good
    Health and Wellness programs are fairly well run- often they promote a heathly lifestyle.

    Cons

    No Trust, don't take peoples word, get it in writing.
    No Family culture, everyone is out for themselves
    Poor Leadership, often I am working on a project with the least ranking and least experienced person in charge. It is said that it a teaching experience, after a while figure out that nobody wants the responsibility due to most projects have high degree of failure- they are an easy scapegoat. Even when something small goes wrong, it turns into a huge issue, even thought it was seemlessly fixed.
    Poor headcount planning, instead of trying to accurately determining workload they are just concern with filling headcount, and often results in a hire then a fire later on.
    Little understanding and communication between different groups that work often together. Nobody knows what the other is truly doing even though it seem to be meeting often.


  9. "Pretty positive overall"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • 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 National Instruments full-time

    Pros

    Work/Life balance is really high, great first job out of college, great people to work with, learn a lot, lots of customer interaction

    Cons

    Tedious work, can feel difficult to find the value you provide to company, learn a little about a lot of different products

    Advice to Management

    Focus more on the people instead of the results. Focusing on people will drive towards results, focusing on results drive people away


  10. Helpful (4)

    "Marketing Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at National Instruments full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Open communication from leadership. Nice benefits.

    Cons

    Constantly changing the organization. Low pay.

    Advice to Management

    Pay employees better. For all of the employee engagement activities, actually do something.


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