National Park Service Reviews | Glassdoor

National Park Service Reviews

Updated June 21, 2017
239 reviews

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3.4
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National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis
Jonathan B. Jarvis
81 Ratings

239 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • NPS puts you in some of the country's most beautiful places (in 18 reviews)

  • really awesome outdoor work environment (in 17 reviews)

Cons
  • Very hard to find full-time employment (in 14 reviews)

  • Low pay compared to the private sector (in 13 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Awesome seasonal job, enjoyed every minute of it."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Trails Laborer in Healy, AK
    Former Employee - Trails Laborer in Healy, AK
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Working as a Trails Laborer is a great job. It's a 4-10 week, so you have three day weekends and paid federal holidays off. The crews I worked with were all great people, and the projects and skills that you learn are very valuable. A lot of fun, and the pay is good too.

    Cons

    If you don't like hiking or manual labor, this isnt the job for you. We work in a lot of areas where power tools aren't allowed, so everything is done by hand. I really enjoyed that aspect, but other might not. Be ready to hike several miles in and out of your jobsite as well.


  2. Helpful (2)

    "National Park Service- Beautiful Places to work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Park Ranger in Crescent City, CA
    Former Employee - Park Ranger in Crescent City, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at National Park Service full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    excellent places, committed people, helping people to enjoy the times of their lives

    Cons

    Seasonal work only: no benefits, no money, no retirement

    Advice to Management

    Hire your good people on a full time basis rather than have them jump through hoops for years as seasonals

  3. Helpful (3)

    "Best people, organization, and management I have worked with in my career."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Mission. People. Once you become part of the family, you can never get out... even if you try.

    Who doesn't like the National Parks?

    Cons

    If you are a thought leader, expect resistance from the entrenched old timers. The culture of the organization resists change, and that is likely for good reason being that they employ people in the business of preservation...

    Advice to Management

    Realize who is pulling the cart up the hill, who is sitting in the cart weighing it down, and who is doing nothing more than blocking it from making any progress at all. Give the pullers incentive, the sitters a reason to pull, and remove the blockers.


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Surfguard National Park Service - Sandy Hook"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Surfguard in Highlands, NJ
    Former Employee - Surfguard in Highlands, NJ
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at National Park Service part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great place to work ad lots of fun.

    Cons

    Too much paperwork and jumping through hoops.


  5. Helpful (1)

    "Coolest Job I've Ever Had"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Interpretive Park Ranger in Yellowstone National Park, WY
    Former Employee - Interpretive Park Ranger in Yellowstone National Park, WY
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great if you like the outdoors, historical lands and monuments. Also great if you are a history buff! Extremely fun job

    Cons

    Depending on what landmark, park, or monument you go to, could be difficult if you are handicapped.


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Awesome place to work"

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

    I worked at National Park Service full-time

    Pros

    Get great experience. Awesome people to work for and work with.

    Cons

    Only thing is most of these type of jobs are temporary. Its hard to get a permanent job unless someone retires or there is a person who leaves.


  7. "Friendly, stimulating place to work."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Park Ranger in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Park Ranger in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at National Park Service full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Great co-workers and visitors, decent benefits and housing, promotion potential is increasing as older employees retire in large numbers, living in a National Park is a wonderful, rewarding experience.

    Cons

    Pay could be a little better, training opportunities seem to be online only.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "IT Specialist"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - IT Specialist in Aztec, NM
    Current Employee - IT Specialist in Aztec, NM
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at National Park Service full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great place to work. People are passionate about their jobs.

    Cons

    Not enough IT training opportunities; no annual meetings/conferences with colleagues.

    Advice to Management

    Provide funding for more training opportunities, as well as funding for annual meetings/conferences.


  9. "Share America's natural and cultural heritage"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Park Ranger
    Former Employee - Park Ranger
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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

    Pros

    Not only do you get to work in a beautiful place with people who share the same values as you, but you get to do something that you are passionate about everyday.

    Cons

    A "pickle suit", uniform, is not a particularly wonderful item of clothing to wear, but a fair price to pay for a great job

    Advice to Management

    Protect our Wilderness designated areas diligently.


  10. "Great government branch to work with"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    Pros

    Locations, benefits, furlough, co-workers, staff, leadership.

    Cons

    uniform, seasonal employment, housing, slow processes.


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