United States Department of Energy Reviews | Glassdoor

United States Department of Energy Reviews

Updated January 28, 2017
10 reviews

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United States Department of Energy Secretary of Energy Dr. Ernest Moniz
Dr. Ernest Moniz
2 Ratings

10 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • Nice work-life balance (government hours) (in 23 reviews)

  • Great place for beginners to the Federal Government (in 10 reviews)

Cons
More Pros and Cons

  1. "Overseer"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Freelancer - Post Doctoral Fellow in Arlington, VA
    Former Freelancer - Post Doctoral Fellow in Arlington, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at United States Department of Energy (Less than a year)

    Pros

    None that I can think of

    Cons

    Big waste of taxpayer money ever conceived.

    Advice to Management

    Consider honesty


  2. "Worst employer ever"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Former Employee - Financial Market Development Lead in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Financial Market Development Lead in Austin, TX

    I worked at United States Department of Energy full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Some of the people were awesome.

    Cons

    The morale was lower than anywhere I've ever been. Leadership was management-challenged.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Program Analyst"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Program Analyst in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Program Analyst in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    The salary and benefits are good.

    Cons

    This is not a good environment for minorities.

    Advice to Management

    Stop overlooking bad behavior from management.


  4. "Loosey-Goosey with Employee Privacy Data"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Human Resources Director in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Human Resources Director in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at United States Department of Energy full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Access to some of the most impressive thought-leaders in the world. Impressive legacy re: Nobel Prize Winners. Great employees' cafeteria! HQ building is superbly located on Independence Avenue NW exactly 2 blocks from WMATA Metro system; across the street from the Smithsonian Institution's Castle and National Mall; and, 1 block away from L'Enfant Plaza merchants, food vendors, US Post Office, etc.

    Cons

    HORRIBLE leadership. Secure Access process was reinvented daily. Managed to allow a data breach that siphoned all employee privacy data collected over past 5 to 10 years for secure access badges. UNBELIEVABLE!!!

    Advice to Management

    YOU are the US Dept of Energy! YOU can manage nuclear codes and reserves, fossil fuel management, loan and grant initiatives, BUT, YOU cannot figure HOW to protect your employees from a devastating data breach???!!! REALLY???!!!! Get serious about protecting what's AS important as your THINGS ... YOUR PEOPLE!


  5. Helpful (1)

    "All Politics, No Real Work"

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

    I have been working at United States Department of Energy full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Pretty easy jobs and many folks do alternate work schedule with every other Friday off. You can stay here 30 years and not have to worry about job security or working long hours or too hard.

    Cons

    Politics drives the DOE, not mission requirements. The DOE SES community is a bureaucratic clique that looks out for each other, not regular GS employees. There are many many political (schedule C) appointees here and the turnover is quite high. It's a very risk averse culture that accomplishes little and lends itself towards backstabbing. The DOE has not had a clear mission in 20 years and does not have a new one in sight. Facilities are old and IT is ten years behind the commercial world. No thought towards succession planning or the next generation of leadership.

    Advice to Management

    Get rid of federal job "tenure" and get rid of so many schedule C appointees.


  6. Helpful (2)

    "Extremely Bureaucratic"

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

    Pros

    Dedicated underlings. Good place for getting your feet wet if just starting out in your career. Benefits are decent when compared to private industry.

    Cons

    Management manages in silos with little information sharing to do job. Negative feedback abounds. Was told by Human Capital rep. that many work groups repeat the parent child relationship in managing their workers and that when this work environment is discovered, DOE tries to eliminate it. Many in management have been in federal government for years and are at their highest grade level with no ability to move anywhere else therefore developing turf issues.

    Advice to Management

    Office of Personnel Management should take a look at how DOE managers manage their staff and implement change that would reflect best practices in private industry.


  7. Helpful (4)

    "Savannah River Site"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at United States Department of Energy full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    It is a stable job, stable pay, and the hours are decent. The towns around it such as Aiken, Augusta, and North Augusta are fine.

    Cons

    They pigeon-hole you into whatever role they need filled, regardless of what they brought you in as. If you work hard and do well in that role, you are left there with no consideration as to whether it is something you want to do, if it's something in your field, even if you hate it. There is no real in-company career ladder, so if you don't get that in writing don't expect you will have any upward mobility. They don't care if you're overqualified for the misc. crap they have you doing. They go based on seniority, so if you've been with DOE-SR forever then you may have more of a say...but seeing as how many people have been there for 20+ years, good luck with that one. They are short-staffed because retention is terrible and they overload the work on people that do produce and do nothing to those that don't because it's ridiculously difficult to fire under-performers in government.

    Also, there is strong age-ism bias against younger employees and slight sexism in some organizations. Strong pref. for Navy nukes, also; it shows up all the time, across the board at DOE-SR.

    Advice to Management

    Probably, don't go there to be management. The current management there has been there for a long time, and has their own little best-buddy circle worked out. They don't like "outsiders". Management attitude seems to be to bend to whatever the contractors want because the contractors are so big it's bad if they fail; makes the overseers look bad, is their opinion. Bad culture there of sweeping issues under the rug or watering down issues from Findings to OFIs.

  8. "Cool"

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

    Pros

    Involved in policy decisions frequently

    Cons

    Pay is not competitive like private sector

    Advice to Management

    Work hard


  9. "Comfortable but rewarding"

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

    Pros

    Balance offered is exceptional for everyone.

    Cons

    Sedentary for long periods of time.

    Advice to Management

    More engagement with its staff.


  10. Helpful (3)

    "A Moribund Bureaucracy"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • 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 United States Department of Energy (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Not many. There are many parts that make up the DOE: its Washington headquarters, labs, and field offices that are spread across the US. They sponsor some good and interesting basic research and there are pockets of smart folks throughout the complex. Some would argue that DOE like any federal agency is worth working at because of the federal job security and retirement system and DOE is known to pay employees better than the Department of Defense and some other agencies. There is something to be said for that, but IMO it's not worth it as the DOE culture will destroy your soul.

    Cons

    DOE is run almost entirely by crony and cutthroat politics. If you're not part of that clique you'll never be promoted into senior management. It also has a disproportionately large number of political appointees compared to many other US govt agencies. Headquarters operates entirely on a reactive basis and cannot think or act strategically. Every decision made is last minute and panicked. It's a very depressing place to work. If you have a good idea or produce a good product some political will snatch it and take all the credit for it. The agency is having trouble attracting high quality young talent and many of their workforce has been there 30 and even 40 years. They almost never get rid of anyone even the non-producers.

    Advice to Management

    The agency workforce could be cut by half and the same amount of work would get done. Figure out what the DOE mission is and make an honest effort to excel at it, it would bring in better talent. Get rid of all the schedule C appointees except for the Secretary.


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