Volvo Trucks Engineer Reviews | Glassdoor

Volvo Trucks Engineer Reviews

Updated March 3, 2017
47 reviews

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Engineer

3.1
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Volvo Trucks President & CEO of Volvo Trucks North America Dennis R. Slagle
Dennis R. Slagle
14 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • As a large corporation the decision making process may be lenghty (in 13 reviews)

  • Consensus driven, slow decision making (in 10 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Working as Engineer at Volvo Trucks"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineer in Greensboro, NC
    Current Employee - Engineer in Greensboro, NC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Volvo Trucks full-time

    Pros

    -friendly environment
    -lots of opportunities
    -great benefits
    -High pace (mostly)

    Cons

    Being based in Greensboro is my only complain.


  2. "Macro Developer Co-Op"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Intern - Computer Engineer in Greensboro, NC
    Current Intern - Computer Engineer in Greensboro, NC
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Volvo Trucks as an intern (More than a year)

    Pros

    The culture is great, it really is a stress free, positive environment. Management does a great job of giving you visibility for full-time employment, encouraging you to explore all groups within the company, skill development, and assisting when necessary.

    Cons

    The designs are 10 years behind car development, so there aren't as many opportunities to work on innovate technology.


  3. "Best Place that I have ever worked"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Lead Special Vehicle Development Engineer in Greensboro, NC
    Current Employee - Lead Special Vehicle Development Engineer in Greensboro, NC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Volvo Trucks full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Lots of Vacation, They respect your personal time, They encourage personal health and fitness, As a global company there are global opportunities, many departments and divisions for job opportunities, good benefits

    Cons

    The negative side of most of the pros: lots of vacation means that it can be a challenge to get your work done when key people are out on vacation or personal time, As with any large company - you are a small cog in the machine and you can not affect real change alone and the company and the processes take their own time

    Advice to Management

    It would be great if the separate Silos could find a way to work together better and to streamline the work flow.


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  5. Helpful (3)

    "Horrible Company Culture"

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

    I have been working at Volvo Trucks full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Broad exposure to engineering trucks - controls, applications, performance, and manufacturing. If you express interest, you are likely able to move to get to doing it. Pay is higher than national average.

    Cons

    Diversity is nonexistent and, therefore, inclusion is nonexistent. Racist, sexist and ignorant comments are said aloud without hesitation. Little to no professionalism.

    Advice to Management

    Realize that there are huge benefits in diversifying your work force. Stop only hiring people who "live and breathe engines" because you don't feel like training people. All of the work can be learned. Perspective and respect should be present in a work environment during all hours.


  6. Helpful (5)

    "Mediocre Multi-National Company"

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

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

    Pros

    The people at the company for most part are nice (there are few exceptions). Working for Volvo is like working for Uncle Sam, i.e you have a job for life. No one gets fired here (you have to be beyond redeemable to get fired). Work pressure is almost non-existent and dead-lines are just as they sound ...."dead". If things don't get done by time, there will be a new deadline with no repercussions. Salary is about average, but company provided health insurance is good. Employer contribution in 401k is $0.75 for every $1 upto 6% (i.e 4.5% Volvo contribution for 6% employee share). Volvo has a cash balance plan where company pays a fixed amount (formula based on age of employee, years of service etc) to a fund that you can cash out when you retire or leave the company (This is around 4-6% in 35-45 year old). Volvo gives exceptional vacation. For white collar employees it is called Earned Time-Off and a bucket for holidays, sick days & vacation (use as you like). New employee starts out at 31 days and gets 36 days at 5 years. From 6th year employee gets 1 additional day every year maxing out at 41days at 10th year. At 20th Anniversary, 5 additional days are added for 46 day ETO. There is some profit sharing occasionally and the max. I saw was $1500 paid into 401k account.

    Being a huge company, there are lot of job opportunities and within USA one can choose to move to Hagerstown,MD/Dublin, VA/Macungie, PA/Greensboro, NC. If you are into finance, logistics etc there are other places like PA, MS you can move to.

    Cons

    Hard Work gets name sake recognition. Lot of employees are lethargic and there are some hardworkers (~15%-20%) who carry the load of others. Some Engineers and Buyers spend 6-7 hours per day moving around chatting with various people and browsing internet or on the phone attending personal business. Sometimes employees disappear for hours and can be seen coming back through gates later. Since there is no clock-in and clock-out for white collar employees no one is held accountable.

    Hard work does not pay here. One cannot expect to be promoted and even when promoted you will max. out after certain level. All the upper level Management positions are reserved for Swedes and French and some leftover positions are reserved for White Males. It is a matter of "who you know" than "what you know". Office politics are galore and promotions are based on advancing someone's ideology. People with Master's and Ph.D's working as Engineers for-ever and some with Associates degrees promoted to Project Managers and Group Managers.

    Volvo boasts big-time about diversity but most of it comes from hiring few Swedes, French and some Brazilian Chinese and Indians (~5% of work force). In Hagerstown-MD,on the Product Development Engineering side out of 270 Engineers, Designers, Managers, Mechanics & Technicians there are almost no Black employees in the rank and file.

    There is very little real Engineering done here. Most of the Engine & Transmission development is done in Sweden and Hagerstown is Application Engineering site for US emission compliance. You might have some luck doing some real Engineering with Chassis Engineering in Greensboro, NC but the politics and career progression is very identical over there.

    Manufacturing is not a place to be and most of the Mfg. Engineers have no clue about Manufacturing as we have mostly become an assembly plant. There are lot of Supplier Quality "Engineers" with high school diplomas or Associate Degrees and have hard time reading or interpreting a drawing.

    Advice to Management

    The best advice would be to stop tolerating mediocrity and adapt American mentality for developing and retaining skilled work force (Swedish processes work when you have motivated work-force). Come up with a better "Performance review system"/Personal Business plan. Incentivize hard-work.

    You should have realized how bad we are performing when Navistar screwed up with Mega -EGR and there market share dropped from 39% to 12% in 2011-2016 timeframe. You were claiming we are going to eat their lunch and combined market share on Mack/Volvo went form 13% in 2010-2011 to 19% in 2015 while Paccar went from 12% to 25% during the same period. We were no. 3 position as % of market share in 2011 and we are till no. 3 inspite of Navistar dropping from no. 1 to no.4. Now that VW bough 16% of Navistar they are getting ready to take their market share back. With our mediocrity we will be no.4 pretty soon. You better get your ducks in a row.


  7. "Excellent Employer"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Systems Engineer in Hagerstown, MD
    Current Employee - Systems Engineer in Hagerstown, MD
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Volvo is a great company to work for

    Cons

    Not to many growth opportunities


  8. "Very hard work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Process Control Engineer in Dublin, VA
    Former Employee - Process Control Engineer in Dublin, VA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    good pay
    great benefits including, health, dental and especially vision
    mid-level management

    Cons

    Union contract is not the same for all hourly employees,
    job security, lay-offs every other year,
    security guards are lax,
    line leads will try to force you to do their pets' work,
    older and more senior women will try to implicate new workers with allegations of sexual innuendo as a means of getting moved to an easier job,
    security cams do not function,

    Advice to Management

    may need to CONTRACT with an efficiency expert , then follow thru with their assessments.


  9. "Solutions Designer / Architect"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Network Solutions Architect - Senior Network Engineer in Gastonia, NC
    Current Employee - Network Solutions Architect - Senior Network Engineer in Gastonia, NC

    I have been working at Volvo Trucks (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Great place to work out, good challenges, nice people to work with.

    Cons

    Far from home, long commute


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Understaffed, Training ground with a toxic enviornment"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Engineer in Hagerstown, MD
    Former Employee - Engineer in Hagerstown, MD
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

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

    Pros

    IF you manage to get a full time position with benefits the benefits are good. Location is petty good as well.

    Cons

    You'll be hired as a consultant with no benefits and be told you'll be converted to full time within 6 months. 5 years later you will leave still a consultant, still making the same hourly wage. All senior management positions are filled by Swedes or French who don't understand the US market and make the wrong decisions. You'll work 60+ hours a week and only hear about how you need to do more or just make it work (when it physically can not). There's no good order to workflow and you'll often perform your own testing, validation and verification despite the fact there are groups responsible for these tasks.

    Projects are always behind because the PME's don't trust the engineers requesting the testing, or resources. Low level managers can't enact any change or reduce work load for their employees, the Projects drive the whole organization if the projects want something it has to happen regardless of the effort required, just make sure to do it cheap and quick.

    Get your experience here and then take a full time position anywhere else with big pay raise.

    Advice to Management

    Trust your low level managers, trust that the US site can meet the US needs and stop trying to force European ways on the market. Take a look at VW and realize how strong they are in the EU and how weak they are in the US. Stop reminiscing on the old Mack days and invest into better OBD development.


  11. "Contracted engineer, good hours, not great pay."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Former Employee - Engineer (Contract)
    Former Employee - Engineer (Contract)

    Pros

    Good Hours
    Empowered to make decisions
    Good location
    Good middle management
    Happy workers

    Cons

    Not great pay
    No pathway to become permanent employee
    Not a lot of overtime opportunity
    Bad upper management