Solar Turbines Reviews | Glassdoor

Solar Turbines Reviews

Updated July 18, 2017
191 reviews

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191 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Flexible with schedule, good work life balance (in 16 reviews)

  • great benefits when you are full time and you get a big end of the year bonus check (in 18 reviews)

Cons
  • Oil and Gas Industry that is facing headwinds (in 10 reviews)

  • The cost of living in San Diego is spiraling upward (in 6 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Supplier Technical Engineer"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Supplier Technical Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Supplier Technical Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Solar Turbines full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    -Excellent People
    -Great Employer Retirement Contributions

    Cons

    -Conservative culture
    -Oil & Gas Industry is Having a Rough Time


  2. Helpful (17)

    "Sr. Manager At Solar Turbines"

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

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

    Pros

    Good work/life balance. Still a place where people can spend their entire career at (if you're OK with the constantly worsening compensation package)

    Cons

    Culture promotes cohesion over everything. This means that nearly identical raises are given to people who do the absolute minimum and the highest performers. This is done to keep everyone "happy". Company states that it pays in the 75th percentile (without sharing any of the data with its employees) and deceptively includes "at risk" pay (incentive compensation) as part of this baseline. Executive management have tied managers' hands from giving out large raises to high performers, and made it so that most new employees are unable to advance in the salary grade and are constantly near the bottom of their salary grade. Company is slow to adapt to market opportunities, and is conservative to a fault. Most of the highest performers have left for better opportunities, as the pay structure is a give and take (in order to give more to one employee, you are required to take from another employee). In order to keep everyone happy (which is the most important Solar value), despite discouraging high potential/higher performer employees, managers tend to give nearly identical raises to all their direct reports regardless of ability and potential.

    Advice to Management

    Look at your pay practices. There is a reason why more high performers have left in the last year than in the previous 15 years. In a time where promotions are capped at a 5% pay raise, no raises were given in 2016, there was no/insignificant bonus in 2016 and 2017, and merit percentages are dictated by corporate to ensure that everyone gets the same amount of money, it is no surprise why so many of us have left or have plans to leave in the next year.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Excellent Culture, Competitive Environment, Good Work-Life Balance"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great culture: Friendly people and emphasis on work-life balance.
    San Diego is an excellent location and there is a lot to do after work hours.
    Clear career ladder potential. You could work here your entire life.

    Cons

    A little casual in some areas, not much of a sense of urgency or importance (there are exceptions, of course). Compensation isn't up to par with competition. Some groups run very lean and very easy to find yourself overloaded.

    Advice to Management

    Open yourself and your team to change, try new things, fund more research and universities.

    Try to keep the work environment updated and fresh or it will get stale and people will go elsewhere.


  4. "Great Company Great Internship"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Engineering Intern in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Engineering Intern in San Diego, CA
    Recommends

    Pros

    Great company culture with a lot of talented individuals.

    Company parking lot downtown and free. Very useful for socializing after work or on the weekends.

    Cons

    I didn't quite get enough work. I spent a lot of time waiting for new assignments.


  5. "Great company to work for in a slowly dying industry"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Supplier Technical Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Supplier Technical Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Solar Turbines full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    -Lots of learning and development
    -Work in Supply Chain and work with cross functional teams
    -Great People who want to help and respect others who work hard
    -Excellent management team

    Cons

    -Oil and Gas Industry that is facing headwinds
    -Many layoffs at parent company (Caterpillar, Inc.)
    -More conservative industry compared to other industries (tech industry for example)

    Advice to Management

    N/A


  6. "Stable"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Solar Turbines full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    People seem to like working here, sense of community

    Cons

    Hard to move up, too many managers, quality of benefits have gone down

    Advice to Management

    Reward top performers,


  7. "Manager"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

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

    Pros

    Great People, Variety of work,

    Cons

    too much centralizing to Corporate

    Advice to Management

    keep the company flexible

  8. Helpful (5)

    "Lost Touch with What's Important"

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

    I have been working at Solar Turbines (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Good people, fairly stable place to work. Used to have a lot more pros

    Cons

    Very dependent on oil prices, so now with low oil prices, they are cutting cost. This has come at the expense of healthcare (much more expensive now with poorer care), bonuses, raises, and every minor perk that we have previously been given. They seem to be trying to lean out so much that they haven't noticed that a majority of employees are actively trying to leave. Politics are overwhelming, you need to kiss the right butts to make it anywhere.

    Advice to Management

    Value who you currently have...cost cutting doesn't do any good if you don't have any employees


  9. Helpful (2)

    "Good but needs work on Fairness"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Channelview, TX
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Channelview, TX

    Pros

    There are a lot of good people to work with who are good at their job and willing to be helpful to others. The plant has new equipment in some areas and improvements to the work areas. The shops are clean and mostly organized.

    Cons

    Some employees are not treated fairly. Job opportunities are sometimes not opened up to all the employees. People are selected and put in positions. Management shows favorites. This effects trust in the management there.

    Advice to Management

    Be fair and communicate to employees what is going on.


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Strong Legacy, Questionable Outlook"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Solar Turbines full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The company has a strong legacy of performance and interesting products. The culture values and rewards product knowledge over process knowledge compared to Caterpillar at large.

    Cons

    Some employees are overly complacent, and in general the company enjoys a comfortable dominance in the market. The company needs to develop new products and markets to diversify away from its heavy dependence on the energy industry responsible for much of the cyclicality in the business. The culture can be very politicized, which makes it difficult to stay agile and make quick decisions.

    Advice to Management

    The company needs to find ways to recognize and reward (financially) its employees even during downturns. No bonuses, merit increases, and equity for hourly employees has made it difficult to retain talent in the organization.


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