Pros: educational and training, great benefits and salary, good cafeterias and workout faciities, medical department and physicals provided plus immuzinations, very diversified personnel, great career opportunities for science, engineering and computer majors.
Cons: unclear administrative levels, lack of promotions for administrative staff, sometimes very heavy workload, salaried attitude toward administrative staff
ORNL is one of the leading companies in East Tennessee to work, and if you get hired, consider it a blessing. I was an administrative assistant for many different groups and divisions. I worked on (overall overview of all jobs I had) procedures, operating guidelines, set up interviews and passes for interviewees, processed paperwork for new positions, had P-card responsibilities, proofed conference proceedings, tracted staff hours on projects, processed visitor passes and foreign national passes and paperwork, set up meetings and managed schedules for managers/group leaders, received guests, set up major meetings, worked as a user assistant in the user office where I entered proposals in the system and tracted statistics for DOE reporting, used all ORNL internal systems: SAP, AVID, PAS, and oher major systems, coordinated summer students orientation, set up filing system for and duplicated historic drawings into an engineering database, managed two fellowship programs and tracted statistics, assisted with conferences, took and transcribed meeting minutes for staff, and general administrative responsibilities. There is a great gap between weekly (administrative) and salaried positions where salaried are allowed extra privileges because they are salaried whereas weekly people are 40 hours a week. Attitudes toward administrative staff ranges from great respect to apathy depending for whom you work. There is not much advancement for administrative staff unless they bid out on higher ranking jobs. Your compensation level is not always clearly explained and many times you are just – more... told you are a group secretary. Some divisions leave too much authority to division secretaries which can become very political and can damage lower ranking administrative staff's reputation with higher management and chances of any possible advancement. Many managers have no clue what their admins do and do not prepare professional yearly reviews. You more or less have to toot your own horn. However, training and educational assistance programs are great. Benefits are excellent and overall the atmosphere is good. Again, it really depends on who you work for, and like any company you will have positive and negative features. Overall, I loved the variety of nationalities I worked with and the staff at the Lab are great. Most folks are just plain folks and good people. Overall, I worked for and with wonderful people and had positive experiences. There are also great cafeterias at 3 different locations of the Lab, plus workout faciilities. Also the cafeteria organization provides excellent catering for meetings and retirement parties. Also, when I was there, the Medical Division was a great benefit especially if you were sick and couldn't see a doctor. Also, I thought it was wonderful that they provided a dietician and workout specialist for employees. Also, you can have confidential couseling if needed. ORNL is a wonderful company for young professionals in research, homeland security, computer science and engineering fields. I would recommend any young people pursing careers in these field to apply for internships with ORNL. If you are administrative and not wanting to move up the ladder or out of the admin field, it is not so lucrative. But the salary is excellent and as previously stated so are the benefits. I do miss working there, mainly I miss the wonderful people. Also, ORNL is improving their programs for administrative staff. – less