Plexus Reviews | Glassdoor

Plexus Reviews

Updated May 29, 2017
197 reviews

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Full-time Part-time

3.3
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Plexus President, CEO, and Director Dean A. Foate
Dean A. Foate
96 Ratings

197 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • Leadership does not seem to care about work/life balance of employees (in 9 reviews)

  • Then when you get everything done upper management gets all the credit (in 7 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (2)

    "A place for a job; but not a career"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - (Technical) in Neenah, WI
    Current Employee - (Technical) in Neenah, WI
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    a paycheck
    people in the trenches as well as low level bosses are generally friendly & helpful
    no micromanaging (management probably just too lazy; otherwise they probably would)

    Cons

    My experience with plexus has been very disappointing. The old timers tell about how good it was years ago when plexus was a small local company. Now it is just a standard soulless American corporation where $$$ is almighty and the workers are looked upon as just money sucking nuisances. Workers benefits have slowly eroded over this last recession despite having record sales for many of the quarters. Last week we got the news that they are going to start issuing demerit points for being sick; even if you have sick leave left! The corporation doesn't utilize their talent base as many people are way over qualified for their job responsibilities. Management is reluctant to giving internal promotions or even letting people transfer from the Neenah, WI plants to the Appleton, WI plants because they are overly afraid of filling the holes with someone worse. And woe to the general low level factory worker. Not only have their jobs become scarce do to the abuse of over using temps, but their wages are barely enough to live on at best.

    My advice is to skip this company unless you really need a job and to continue to look for a place to have a real career.

    Advice to Management

    1) Stop treating your workers like little children. The policies of the company toward their workers look more like they were written by a vice principal of a high school verses a corporate HR department. We are suppose to all be adults here. If your workers are that immature, why did you hire them in the first place?!
    2) Really empower your workers. Don't just pay lip service to this. I have never been involved with such a top down company in my life. Even the focus factory managers seem to be powerless and have their hands tied by upper management! Your workers are the ones that should know their own job the best and how to make it more productive. Not you!

    There are many more. But I doubt you will listen to the two above and make any serious changes.


  2. "Treated like a 2nd grader"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Quality Engineer in Neenah, WI
    Former Employee - Quality Engineer in Neenah, WI
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Plexus full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Fellow employees are good people.

    Cons

    Treated like you're in 2nd grade. Tick sheets for idiot bosses to look at to see what you're doing throughout the day. Maybe they should really get to know you and your job. Technicians are red headed step children. Management complaints are always directed at test department. Something went wrong? Let's just blame test. Way too many overpaid cube staff that don't have a clue but their good to go because they have a 4 year degree right? Turnover ratio is just unbelievable. Never seen anything like it. All the good employees leave. The people who suck up move up. CEO is arrogant.

    Advice to Management

    Communicate with your people and start really caring instead of pretending to.


  3. "John and Pete's vision destroyed by Dean and his minions"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Management in Appleton, WI
    Current Employee - Senior Management in Appleton, WI
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Plexus full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    in the 90's - a great place to work where ALL workers were treated well

    Cons

    NOW it's only the very top view who see stock options, bonus and increases in salary. Only the very top will be given the chance to retire from Plexus. When you reach a certain level they will let you go before giving you a chance to retire. In the 25+ years Plexus has been in business - you can count the number of retiries on two hands.

    Advice to Management

    Dean and especially Mike.... Time to Retire - let someone who knows how to grow a business take over AND nurture TOP clients.


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  5. "Big marketing company but Pool Management from top to the bottom"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Jose, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Jose, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Plexus full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Can not find any good thing about this company. Sorry

    Cons

    As the title mentioned, Spent a lot money on the marketing and package the company. But, very pool management from the HQ to site, from CEO to site production supervisor. Particularly the San Jose (Fremont) site. There are large turn over rate, specially on the project / program management role. There are 9 PMs left in the past 2 years.

    Advice to Management

    No advice to the management, they should know better than me as management.


  6. "Hard working employees are not respected and underpaid"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - QA, Preship in Neenah, WI
    Former Employee - QA, Preship in Neenah, WI
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Plexus will hire just about anyone for the production floor. If you really need a job and overtime. It is a good place for someone to start out of high school.

    Cons

    Often the production staff would come into work very negative because it didn't seem to matter how hard we worked. It was never enough in quantity or quality. The upper management really had no idea of the workings of the production floor.

    Advice to Management

    Please hire supervisors who are "people" persons. The work environment would be so much less negative if there were more supervisors who would treat the production staff as if their input mattered.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "OK, if you get in good with the right managers"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Engineer in Buffalo Grove, IL
    Former Employee - Engineer in Buffalo Grove, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Plexus full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Smaller company, more small social activities.
    Coffee in breakroom.
    Nice outdoor picnic area.

    Cons

    Very political. You have to play the schmoozing game.
    If you can spin a story, you can excel.

    Advice to Management

    Start seeing what is really going on, not just what some employees are spinning to you.


  8. Helpful (1)

    "The only job I've had that has taken me away from my family"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Production Associate in Nampa, ID
    Current Employee - Production Associate in Nampa, ID
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Decent benefits, somewhat happy with what I do. Opportunities to move up if you're willing to go the extra mile.

    Cons

    A work week consists of 50+ hours. Management is very arrogant. Only a number not an individual unless you are part of their continuous improvement team. Only care about a warm body filling up space. Don't care about family values at all.

    Advice to Management

    Get of your butt and see what really goes on in the production floor. it's not all about money.


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Yes people only survive"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director in Neenah, WI
    Current Employee - Director in Neenah, WI
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Plexus full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Great leaders in the past that really grew the company to be a true leader in their industry. They had a great model and really capitalized on creative thinkers.

    Cons

    Engineering in charge of sales and it is their way or the highway. They are only hiring yes people and do not encourage creative thinking.

    Advice to Management

    The people who really make a difference are often those who don’t quite fit in. The ones who don’t act in the same way as everyone else and take risks rather than following the status quo. So it is important to get the right mixture, and to delegate tasks to people with the correct skills sets.


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Used To Be a Great Place To Work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Neenah, WI
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Neenah, WI
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    -Most of the co-workers were friendly and helpful
    -It was close to my home.
    -I had the opportunity, under the right circumstances, to learn a lot about electronics and the assembly process.
    -The first five years I worked there was great. It was like one big happy family. Upper management actually cared. Then it went downhill.

    Cons

    -When I started working there, they promoted more from within. When I left, they'd hire someone off the street with no experience in electronics over a person with 20 years of work experience because the in-house person didn't go to college.
    -They pay lip service to work/life balance.
    -Management doesn't care about quality of the product they put out until the customer is unhappy.
    -People in management with no experience in electronic assembly make promises to customers that can't be met and they are too arrogant to ask the production floor for their input.
    -Don't value the experience or input of their long-time employees, many who have worked building boards when some of the current management was still in kindergarten.
    -Having to take unpaid days and then work mandatory overtime in the same quarter despite the fact that our department was still behind. We had to do this because another building was slow.
    -Not using the down time to get caught up and/or to work on the quality issues.
    -Management is very reactive and not proactive.
    -They hire temps for when it's busy, but they do not give them the proper training. Then when it slows down, they let them go. The cycle starts all over again when it gets busy. Then when they have a shortage of people who can solder, they bring in people from Buffalo Grove & pay for their hotel and all that instead of taking the time to train people here properly and train them to solder.
    -The last department I worked in was micromanaged to death, which just made things worse. You were treated like a five year old instead of an adult.

    Advice to Management

    Value the people who work on the production floor and take the time to listen to them, especially the people who have been around longer than 10 years. They are the ones who work on the product and know the processes. They are the ones who work in the trenches. Your business and your customer satisfaction depends on them. When people feel like management doesn't care, then they stop caring and then the quality and productivity go downhill. Ask for their input on production issues. Stop being reactive and start being more proactive; if someone slits your jugular vein, you won't stop the bleeding by putting band-aids on the wound. Promote more from within. There is a very deep and rich well of experience that is untapped because a degree is valued more than experience and knowledge. Stop paying lip service to work/life balance. You will not attract and retain good workers if people don't feel valued. When I started working here, I felt I was valued and my input was also valued. When I left, I felt like just another cog in the machine.


  11. Helpful (3)

    "Constant OT,Poorly managed, Incompetent direction, No feedback system, No real advancement APPLY INSIDE"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Production Lead in Neenah, WI
    Former Employee - Production Lead in Neenah, WI
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    +Career length employment once you get in the door. Worked their for 8 years in 3 different buildings, 4 different departments. First 6 years were good. Last 2 realizing I should have moved on sooner.
    +They never seem to run out of work unless its the beginning of each quarter. Its bright, like supernova bright, if you have trouble seeing in low light this is the place for you.
    +Place employs so many people you get a good cross section of the Fox Valley.

    Cons

    -Zero real planning means OT balls to the wall 6-days a week or 10 hour days or BOTH MANDATORY! Be here or ur fired. NO JOKE. This can go on for up to a year or more all depends what area you end up in.
    -In 8 years worked 3 mandated stretches of 6 months or more in a row without a weekend off except for holiday and my meager vacation benefit.
    -Management downsizes employees with years of service every other year, depriving company of its culture and know how.
    -Quality culture replaced by numbers culture
    -When I first started Feedback was taken good or bad. As time went on the policy of openness means feedback marks you for "counseling" or "reassignment".
    -Managers are brought in off the street with no technical know-how and usually leadership abilities. Those that have "real skills or are the real deal" find themselves on the fences and move on rather quick. Usually in under a year.
    -Advancement without a degree is possible. There you are not well supported and you are held accountable for "hourly priority shifts or HOT lists" on products with lead times of several weeks (really months with the way things are so poorly managed)
    -Turnover is comparable to fast food which is clearly not good in sophisticated manufacturing.
    -Poor quality results from turnover + lack of feedback handling.
    -Hitting "numbers" and ensuring on time delivery is the only thing that is checked daily at the end of shift. Quality constantly suffers and it shows.
    -Fail rates in some inspection processes are worse then they have ever been, to the tune of more often than not, product fails basic inspections. Guess its human aspect of the working conditions, new building is not the problem.
    -Leaders are too focused on what their supervisor wants rather than what their team needs to work effectively.
    -Providing constructive criticism is met with "not a priority today" rather than lets fix that right now.
    -Support staff is not held accountable. Example... making sure working conditions are safe and productive.
    -Only way to get hired by Plexus as an associate, technical assistant, or production lead is to do a lengthy "Contract employee stint" Wont be less than 6 months, 12-18 months is typical, 22 months is the record. If you get hired on.
    -Company constantly recruits and hires, over hires sometimes, and then is forced to fire in bulk at the end of a quarter.
    -Employees are not appreciated except at the big meetings after we get "frequently challenged to not have to work the holidays that we are supposed to get as part of the big benefits package" because we are so appreciated.
    -Company has revised its own company wide internal goals downward since last state of company meeting because it could not meet its own goals.
    -Employee benefits have been cut
    -Employees who take health insurance must now do health assessments, this data is supposedly confidential, if you do not participate or meet the goals for health improvement, you pay more for your insurance benefit. (A lot more)
    -Leadership is more interesting in looking good than is good.
    -Morale is poor.
    -Assigned seats is a new thing that is contributing to lower morale and the ridiculousness of working in an already broken factory.

    If this sounds like the place for you. Go ahead and contact Kelly services they have a job for you unless you use drugs. Well you can use them and work there just pass one time drug screen.

    Advice to Management

    You have lots of pretenders in your ranks.

    On time delivery while important is not the only reason customers buy your services.

    Your employees know what is going on and when you BS them at the quarterly meetings they also know that too.

    At least one weekend off a month for everybody should be an expectation the company can execute for every staff member as it is both good for the company as well as the employee and in turn the customer.

    Being months behind on production is NOT your employees fault or your customers fault. It is leaderships fault for failing to create the conditions for success. Leadership have all the means to create those conditions, but leadership typically does not take the responsibility to ensure that those conditions are created proactively and instilled, welcomed and aggressively promoted within the culture of the workforce.

    Middle level managers need to be audited. The company needs a real level by level external auditing and consulting work up to identify where the real opportunities for improvement exist and what the real problems are.

    The ability to build quality profitably and on time to the customers request is the bread and butter of Plexus and the actions of the company's leadership in Neenah is causing that to slip away.


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