Solar Turbines Design Engineer Reviews | Glassdoor

Solar Turbines Design Engineer Reviews

Updated Apr 23, 2019

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Found 19 reviews

2.6
StarStarStarStarStar
Rating TrendsRating Trends
11%
Recommend to a Friend
1%
Approve of CEO
Jim Umpleby
2 Ratings
  1. "Family Enviromnet with Great Team Support"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Design Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Solar Turbines for less than a year

    Pros

    Very knowledgable staff and team members. Everyone was very helpful and polite. People were always willing to teach you what they knew.

    Cons

    There wasn't much room for upward mobility. It seemed like it would take a very long time to move up the ladder.

    Advice to Management

    If you see a young engineer with a ton of potential and drive. Try to challenge them so they can grow. If people have to do the same tasks every single day and find they aren't continually learning, it gets old and boring.

    Solar Turbines2019-03-19
  2. "Great Company Culture"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Mechanical Design Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Solar Turbines full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Great people and flexible hours

    Cons

    Lower compensation as a contractor

    Solar Turbines2019-04-23
  3. Helpful (12)

    "Die In Place"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Design Engineer in Mabank, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Solar Turbines full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Really flexible schedule and no need to work overtime. It lends itself to great work-life balance No deadlines, really easy work, no real need to be smart, proactive, or competitive. Standard benefits, good amount of vacation, really laid back job. For technicians is a great place to work focus on safety. Great place to work if you are not passionate, do not want to innovate, and want to slowly decay in a silo becoming...

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    Cons

    No possibility to growth. Only "good old boys" get promoted. Must be part of a click in order to be consider for promotions or a different job. The company still operates with a dated structure with no chance of mobility. Top management doe snot believe in rotation, or using the talent instead relaying on "perceive" image of a employee to determine the worth of an employee. Upper management is sales based and does...

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    Advice to Management

    You hire smart people then do not use them until they get bored and leave. You need to grow your employees instead of waiting until older tribal knowledge retires and then hire them back at a premium as consultants. Pay attention to erosion in the middle and new employees, soon there will be only employees that like the toxic, demotivated, depressing work environment. Change your culture and promote team work, and...

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    Solar Turbines2018-09-20
  4. "Good overall company"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Controls Design Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Solar Turbines full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Normal company, used to be great, still is decent. Overall a good choice in San Diego. They clamped down a bit on things after the Caterpillar buyout.

    Cons

    After the Caterpillar buyout they started cutting perks, it used to be a quirky and interesting, fun, place to work. During my 3.5 years there I saw it getting more and more corporate. If you're looking for a good job, it's a good option though. Though not a huge amount of room to grow.

    Advice to Management

    Buy Solar back from Caterpillar. Focus on innovation and making Solar an interesting place to work, with a vision behind it. Right now the vision is just to help Cat's bottom line.

    Solar Turbines2018-01-01
  5. Helpful (4)

    "Salary Compensation is Lacking"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Design Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Solar Turbines full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Great people and locations (Kearny Mesa & Downtown). The flexible time is nice, and managers are starting to implement working from home options. Three weeks vacation and holiday shutdown at Christmas helps.

    Cons

    The compensation for talented employees and hard workers has deteriorated over the last 4-5 years. Competition is pretty fierce for a 3% raise. They have taken the CAT corporate mentality and made it near impossible to move up without befriending a certain manager or director. Management and department heads definitely have their favorites.

    Advice to Management

    Like many other reviews have stated, management needs to change their corporate view mentality. Work with your employees more, and become an actual manager instead of focusing on your pet projects. Stop moving from one manager position to another. If you want employees to stay in positions for 3-5 years, then require managers to stay in positions 5-7 years and have them actually help train and develop their employees....

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    Solar Turbines2017-08-25
  6. Helpful (2)

    "Great company to work for in a great location"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Mechanical Design Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Solar Turbines full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Growth, stability, experience all aspects of engineering. Lots of opportunities to move up with the retirements of many long term employees.

    Cons

    Limited salary increases compared to previous years. Lack of innovation, but that's starting to change. Lack of urgency and pressure to get projects complete by management and supporting departments, mainly supply chain.

    Advice to Management

    Recognize the wage gap between your relatively new hires and experienced engineers. Remove old policies that prevent promotions based on time served. Reward your top performers.

    Solar Turbines2017-06-14
  7. Helpful (1)

    "Caterpillar"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Design Engineer in San Diego, CA

    I have been working at Solar Turbines full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    The work to life balance is good

    Cons

    Caterpillar owns them, which makes it a less exciting place to work. The cat ways are outdated, yet still forced upon Solar.

    Solar Turbines2016-06-30
  8. Helpful (14)

    "Engineer at KM San Diego"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Design Engineer in La Jolla, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Solar Turbines for less than a year

    Pros

    The benefits and pay are decent. Most people that work at the company are easy to get along with. The company is stable, or at least has been traditionally. There is no longer a pension, but that is pretty typical across most private companies currently. In terms of overall compensation, I would rate Solar on the upper end of the spectrum (for an engineer) in the San Diego region. -401k for salaried employees...

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    Cons

    Industry: Market outlook is questionable. Solar makes gas turbines and other associated equipment. The outlook for the gas turbine industry is supposed to be good for the short to mid term, tapering off long term due to renewables, newer technologies, regulation, etc. With the 2015-16 oil bust, Oil & gas Capex is way down, dragging turbine sales with it. Will it come back? If it does, how long will it be back for?...

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    Advice to Management

    Solar has a deep history adapting to technology and business climates as they have changed throughout the 20th century. Find a new strategy and develop new R&D now, so that you remain profitable 10/15/20 years from now and can attract and keep the talent that will put you there.

    Solar Turbines2016-05-14
  9. Helpful (1)

    "Comfortable Place to Work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manufacturing Design Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook

    I worked at Solar Turbines full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Good salary, great team, and a place you can work for the rest of your life

    Cons

    Stressful, and the underutilize talent. Oil and Gas engineering is back about 30-40 years compared to other technology based industries.

    Solar Turbines2016-03-24
  10. "Good company with bad pay"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Composite Design Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Solar Turbines for less than a year

    Pros

    Generally good people. Room to grow. Laid back atmosphere You can pretty much set your own hours as an engineer.

    Cons

    Pay is rather poor. At the mercy of the volatile oil mining industry. To get in the company you are forced to e a Volt temp for years until they take you on. Many of the skills gained here will not apply to other companies.

    Solar Turbines2016-02-25
Found 19 reviews