Oak Ridge National Laboratory Employee Reviews

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Productive station
Graduate student user (Current Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNFebruary 8, 2017
Staff in ORNL is super nice and willing to assist you to fulfill your project. Tools there is cool for researchers. I feel happy to be an user during my Ph. D. every time I went there and become very productive, which means that I obtained 50 more devices than the number of devices I usually work at my university.
The scene at the ridges are nice and sometimes you can jog or run along the lake, especially when you have a long day for device fabrication.
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Great Pay and Benefits
Post-doctoral Researcher (Current Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNFebruary 7, 2017
It's a really nice place to work. We get a 2 percent raise every 6 months, just like the staff. However, they usually limit post-doc appointments to 3 years without a lot of flexibility which can be tough around job transition time.
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Enjoyable work environment
First Sergeant (Current Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNDecember 27, 2016
Enjoyable work environment. Flexible work hours and good benefits. The most enjoyable part of the job is interacting with Emergency Management professionals across the state,
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Good place for research
Research Scientist (Former Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNNovember 30, 2016
It is a wonderful place for research. You can focus on your project with your team members. Research project will change with five years.
Pros
good for research
Cons
funding challenge
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great place
Postdoctoral Research Associate (Former Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNNovember 29, 2016
Great place to meet smart people and you have chance to investigate the interesting science using the most powerful neutron instruments.
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Good resource for research
Research Assistant (Current Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNNovember 15, 2016
Depend on what position you are in, your life is different. Also, you work is stressful or not is depend on your boss. As a post-master or post-doctor, you can learn a lot from your mentor. But, this is only a temporary job. Whether you can hold this job is not depend on your performance, it is depend on the funding.
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Provides a new opportunity to learn something new
Engineering Technician Assistant (Former Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNOctober 31, 2016
A typical day consisted of a 10-15 minute morning meeting to discuss our most recent projects. I learned a lot about the different types of drafting (electrical, structural, HVAC/Plumbing, Mechanical). The managers I had were very knowledgeable and easy to communicate with. My co-workers were very enthusiastic and eager to help me at a moment's notice. The hardest part of my job was staying focused on one task. The most enjoyable part was being able to walk around campus and learn about the process of splitting neutrons
Pros
on-site cafeteria
Cons
short breaks
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a very fast paced and quick learning place
Summer Intern (Former Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNAugust 21, 2016
I loved the place with the people and the environments that are involved with it. I enjoyed my coworkers so much and I gained a honest understanding of the situation and how I can learn from the medical field.
Pros
great learning
Cons
NA
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Great experience with great benefits for students.
Research Intern (Former Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNAugust 9, 2016
Exposure to professional work environment with high pay (for a student with limited availability). Flexible work hours and close collaboration with fellow peers is highly desirable. The mentor assigned to you can greatly affect your experience though. Most mentors are down to earth and practical but there are some that could be considered workaholics. This case leads to blurred lines between job work and personal life due to the great volume of work required. Don't stretch yourself beyond your means and never be afraid to speak up when you need something (whether it be time or resources). Mentors are understanding of how demanding a student's curriculum is and are swift to ease of the throttle once reminded of this.
Pros
flexible hours, good pay
Cons
can be demanding
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Fantastic work environment full of dedicated people.
Accounting/Finance/Operations Intern (Current Employee) –  Knoxville, TNMay 31, 2016
Everyone here is extremely talented and helpful. It's a comfortable environment with an analytical, result-oriented team.
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Secure Job, Lonely Culture
SULI Intern (Former Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNMay 10, 2016
The pay was good, the work was interesting, but more often than not, I felt like I was working completely alone. For a time, that was okay, but eventually it got to me, and it became a very depressing place to work. If they're office culture changed, it would be a wonderful place to make a career.
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Great Place to work.
SYSTEMS ADMINISTRATOR (Former Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNApril 20, 2016
Great place to work. The research that is done at this lab is amazing and fulfilling work. Work life here is wonderful, everyone is smart and easy to get along with.
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Intern's Perspective
Chemist Intern (Former Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNMarch 28, 2016
In the program I participated in, I learned how to be an active researcher in accordance to practicing safety. I highly recommend this to students who are looking to advance their career in the STEM fields
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Great place to work
Data Evaluation/Administrative Support (Former Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNFebruary 17, 2016
Retired from excellent company. Great management from top down. Learned many new skills. Great attention to paid to safety and employee health. Good benefits.
Pros
Flexible work schedules
Cons
None
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Innovative Workplace
Conference Coordinator - Business Services (Current Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNFebruary 15, 2016
ORNL is focused on cultivating Science to increase the sustainability of our world. I learned project management strategies and techniques to assist in the organizational development and success of the company.
Pros
Learning environment
Cons
Difficult to break into a differnt ladder
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Interesting & creative work for many years
Senior Research Scientist / Engineer (Former Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNFebruary 9, 2016
The variety of work over the years kept things very interesting. It was like I could change jobs every couple years but didn't have to move.
Pros
large company with great diversity in projects
Cons
Government oversight meant a lot of waste
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Great place to work
Higher Education Research Experiences Intern (Former Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNDecember 22, 2015
Amazing experience with some of the smartest people in the world working along side you. If you are looking for an experience that makes you stand out here it is. This job really catapulted me into other positions that I currently hold and has not stopped benefiting me.
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Good pay, slow pace
Postdoctoral Research Associate (Current Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNSeptember 22, 2015
Bureaucratic but very reasonable pay/benefits plus structure/resources for R&D.
Gives opportunity for developing and applying own ideas/interests.
Flexible and great work/life balance.
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Bring your own objectives
Post-doctoral Research Associate (Current Employee) –  Oak Ridge, TNSeptember 10, 2015
This is a highly undirected research environment. There are no deadlines, very flexible hours, and no clear goals. Your only mission as a post-doc is to produce papers to make the lab a success and aid in the approval of future grants. You need to be someone who is very driven and motivated about your research. Otherwise 75% of post-docs end up leaving the lab after their two-year tenure.

If you are good at reaching out to others in an environment where almost everyone is flying solo, if you are good at writing papers, if you are good at driving yourself, if you can avoid getting stuck in a slow line of research, if explaining what you do at conferences excites you, if you need to be working at the highest-levels of understanding .. then this is the place for you.

On the other hand, if you want clearly defined goals, if you aren't interested in being stuck in a single line of research for years, if you want fast-pace, if you want to feel an immediate, broader impact to society, if you want job security .. then this place is not for you.

Also, it's a government lab. So the services can't be too bad and they also can't be too good. No one wants to see government employees getting free lunch or having google-style perks. It's definitely better resources and pay than a university post-doc though.
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R&D engineering
Engineering Contractor (Former Employee) –  Oak Ridge,TNAugust 31, 2015
Great place to work. Great staff. Great facility. Great place to build relationship and personal development. Only downside is location bit out of town
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Overall rating

4.4
Based on 86 reviews
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Ratings by category

Work/Life Balance
4.2
Compensation/Benefits
4.2
Job Security/Advancement
3.6
Management
3.9
Culture
4.1

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