TRL Reviews | Glassdoor

TRL Reviews

Updated September 6, 2017
13 reviews

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2.4
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Rob Wallis
5 Ratings

13 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Researcher"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at TRL part-time

    Pros

    TRL offers flexible working options.

    Cons

    Some business processes can be quite slow


  2. "Lack of vision at the highest level"

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

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

    Pros

    There is hardly any pros to mention, the recent changes have made TRL a very uncomfortable place to work. the only thing I can think of is a great historic brand.

    Cons

    Total lack of direction from the senior management. Since the appointment of the new senior management team, there has been ongoing changes and reshuffle and terminations of technical staff and increase in the number of admin and management staff. The performance of the company has been following a downwards trend that is likely to spiral out of control. Most of the remaining staff are disillusioned with the current management and where possible will move on.

    Advice to Management

    Clearly, there is a need for a new vision and plan for the business to stabilise the current turmoil and redirect the company to calmer waters. This can only be achieved through a decisive action by the Board to bring a strong management.

  3. "TRL cannot be trusted"

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

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

    Pros

    The location being in middle of nature and some very good ccolleagues

    Cons

    The management with help of HR seems only focused on finding faults with staff they did not like to pave the way to get rid of them. That is a pity as one expected this organisation to be more fair, and objective and not offer positions and have individuals resign from their previous employment and then look for finding faults with them even when they are working hard to learn and fit in.

    Advice to Management

    Start valuing every human being and support those you recruit properly and understand we human beings were created with different talents and styles and we all mean well and trying to do our best. Be aware of mental health and how each employee may be affected. do not rush to get rid of people because they do not walk and talk like the TRL mould


  4. "Great people, less great management"

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

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

    Pros

    The people are fun and interesting to work with, and some of the work covers interesting and useful topics

    Cons

    Staff seem to be expected to work long hours to do the work without any benefits.

    Advice to Management

    Be more open with staff and try to understand what they are telling you, rather then hearing what you want to. Also be more visible and approachable


  5. "Great heritage, terrible leadership"

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

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

    Pros

    Interesting and highly skilled individuals

    Cons

    Awful management and new cuture

    Advice to Management

    Resign! Because you have proven over and over again that there is no strategy, no plan, negative communication (if that exists), no client focus, no meaningful employee engagement and have created a toxic environment in a once great little company.


  6. "Senior Engineer"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Wokingham, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Wokingham, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Flexibility of working hours and great work-life balance. Access to historical reports is of great advantage...

    Cons

    Poor pay and management. Very poor training for the new and existing staff. Very difficult to grow within the company


  7. "Good for people starting their career"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Wokingham, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Wokingham, England (UK)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Generally a good work / life balance
    Good development opportunities for graduates who are starting their careers
    Good HR department
    Varied and interesting project work
    Lovely people to work with

    Cons

    Poor pay rises generally, and particularly poor in relation to promotions
    Lack of opportunities for people who have been there for 5+ years to develop further
    Few opportunities to specialise in a technical area (as the work is largely driven by client needs and there is little investment in personal development)
    Lack of consistency across groups and divisions
    Perception of unfair pay between existing and new employees

    Advice to Management

    It is very unsettling for employees when many business 'changes' are happening but with little clarity. Suggest a more open and honest approach from senior management.

    New employees, often with less experience than existing employees, appear to be paid much bigger salaries (differences of around £5k+). This is very demotivating for staff and pay should be fair across the business.

  8. "Interesting work but limited progression"

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

    I worked at TRL full-time

    Pros

    Most of the people are really friendly, and the work can be interesting.

    Working hours are flexible and there is the opportunity to work from home.

    Cons

    Progress and training is promised throughout a career at TRL, however being fee earning gets in the way of this. Ofter colleagues and I requested to attend courses or conferences that would help development and knowledge. The view of the managers seems to be that it would be too expensive to pay for and that the fact that the people would not be fee earning are far bigger factors than the benefits that would be gained from attending.

    Workers are micro managed and were starting to be treated more like children than adults, even after having worked at TRL for years.

    Advice to Management

    Treat people with more respect and members of the department fairly. When there are obvious favorites within the group, the moral and productivity of others in the group drops.
    Management must remember that they currently have experts in their particular field, of which there are few and their role cannot be done by any old person who may have read a book on it once. If people keep being treated how they currently are, they will leave and TRL will find it extremely hard to replace them with people that have such in depth knowledge.

    TRL pride themselves in having the best people and knowledge, however this is quickly starting to change as people who cannot be replace leave due to how they are treated.
    Higher management should look at how group managers are treating their team members as there may be a very obvious cause to some of the issues.


  9. "A really unique workplace, but one with problems"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Developer in Reading, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Software Developer in Reading, England (UK)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Excellent community and colleagues readily become close friends

    Decent work-life balance; weekends, nights and outdoor work is not unusual due to the nature of the business but employees are fairly compensated and obligated overtime is rare.

    Opportunities to learn and take responsibility if you look for them. The company is small enough and its skills specialised enough that often the only person available to do a job is the person who is prepared to teach themselves to do it.

    The company has good links with universities and other research bodies and sponsors academic development such as Masters' degrees and PhDs.

    Cons

    Inflexible and counterproductive charge-out system makes involving anyone outside your own group too expensive on the project budget so cross-team collaboration doesn't happen anywhere near as much as it should.

    Projects are often allowed to languish as critical decisions are left unmade and lessons are learned but not acted upon. Project managers should be more decisive and take a strong hand. The feeling of plodding away on the same thing and getting nowhere is common and demoralising.

    Long-serving employees who are set in their ways are rarely challenged and are not encouraged to learn from experience and improve their approach (and by long-serving, I mean that 35 years' service in the company is not unheard of).

    Pay is poor; part of the reason is that much of the work is so specialised that it is not very profitable and much of the business runs on tight margins.

    Advice to Management

    Divisional managers and group managers: The quarterly cascades are fine, but still have an air of distance to them. Consider ways to maintain more regular, two-way communication with the rank and file.

    Abolish the STUPID charge-out system!

    Apply firmer pressure to project managers to deal with floundering projects where necessary, but also support them with mentoring and tangible actions to unblock problems.

    Pay more. It's hard to live on TRL salaries in the home counties, whatever the salary review says.


  10. "A good stepping stone on your chosen career path"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at TRL full-time

    Pros

    There are some very knowledgeable people at the company who are world leading experts.
    The Wokingham office is a very pleasant place to work.
    If the future plans are fulfilled, TRL should be a fantastic place to work.

    Cons

    Salaries are poor, and pay rises tend to be worse.
    The work life balance is in favour of the company.
    Unless you are already very knowledgeable in your field, you will struggle to learn from others due to the own extensive workloads and you may find yourself doing something you were never employed to do in the first place.
    They don't like spending money on anything - it's all about profit.


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