Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Employee Reviews

Found 56 reviews matching the search
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Excellent National Laboratory
Senior Project Manager (Former Employee) –  Tacoma, WAJune 16, 2017
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is one of 10 national laboratories in the US. Their scientist provide leading edge research and innovated technology.
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Great quiet place to work
Student Technician 2, Research Intern (Former Employee) –  Richland, WAMay 23, 2017
It is a great place to work. They try to engage the large staff as much as possible with so much going on. Some labs are state of the art, and people are very friendly. I would say it is a nice calm place to work with options to grow and a great area to raise kids in if you are into that sort of thing.
Pros
Science
Cons
Science
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PNNL not a bad place but not great
Master's Level Intern (Current Employee) –  Richland, WAMay 21, 2017
PNNL offers a great place to learn and develop skills but can be very competitive to be long term. The people are nice and the atmosphere is great but be ready to not stay there long.
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Enjoyable if you can accept poor management
Cyber Security Analyst (Former Employee) –  Richland, WAMay 8, 2017
Lots of freedom to do your own research and find unique solutions to problems. Getting those solutions implemented is nearly impossible due to management road blocks and constant budget constraints. Allways being asked to do more with less has been the theme for past several years which keeps bumping up the stress level. I worked there for 15 years and it was awesome the first 10. Good life balance and benefits. Take the flex time policy with a grain of salt, the good parts are being eroded by management.
Pros
Great opportunity to use your mind to research and create
Cons
Management, staff are becoming a number rather than a person
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Great Internship
Hydrology Technical Intern (Former Employee) –  Richland, WAApril 18, 2017
A typical day for me would be to come in and do prep work for upcoming projects. The management was understanding and the work was flexible to my position as a student. As long as meetings/group work was prioritized, I was able to choose my own hours to do my work. The workplace is very relaxed but everyone gets their work done. Luncheons and picnics are scheduled every now and then which is a nice break to be able to have to get to socialize with other workers.
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Flexible Work schedule
Administrator (Current Employee) –  Richland, WAApril 8, 2017
PNNL has a very flexible schedule and a very dynamic workplace. There are many opportunities for growth and furthering both your career and education. Their flex schedules give you the ability to accommodate appointments without having to use your vacation or sick time.
Pros
Flex time, tuition reimbursement
Cons
Difficult to advance in certain positions
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Good Work Environment
Post-Bachelors Research Associate (Current Employee) –  Richland, WAApril 5, 2017
Everyone is very outgoing and you will make a lot of friends.
PNNL is a conglomerate of diverse groups working together or working on totally different projects. You are hired into a specific group, but sometimes you can work on different projects in other groups. It helps you widen your knowledge base.
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Good place to work
Post Doctorate Research Associate (Current Employee) –  Richland, WAApril 4, 2017
Relatively small area (compared to Seattle), but it's a great place to work.

The most enjoyable part of the job is the people, who are really nice and competent. Most have an open door policy.
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Family friendly, great work, great people
Sr. Communications Manager (Current Employee) –  Richland, WAMarch 31, 2017
Wonderful organization. I worked there for 12 years and had an amazing career and experiences. Everyone, from management to staff absolutely tries to do the right thing, every time.
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pension
Manager Compensation, Benefits & Relocation (Current Employee) –  Richland, WAMarch 23, 2017
its a great place to work depending on who is your manager great benefits, pension and good pay but the con is management they are nit willing to change with the times and i think that is a big red flag for millennials and gen x folks
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Interesting research, great atmosphere
PhD Intern (Current Employee) –  Richland, WAFebruary 18, 2017
The two things that I love about working at PNNL is that the work is generally very interesting. It is easy to self-motivate, because I am genuinely interested in the projects and invested in their success. In addition, my managers promote a great atmosphere in the workplace, people are sincere, helpful, and very supportive--but at the same time set high expectations.
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Intern
Technology Student 4 Intern (Current Employee) –  Richland, WAFebruary 7, 2017
Great experience, coworkers and mentors are all very helpful and the work is constantly changing and always interesting. Events are held on campus frequently.
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A wonderful place to work at, wonderful people
(PNNL), Masters Intern (Current Employee) –  Richland, WAJanuary 11, 2017
Really nice to work here... a lot of space for advancement, management is awesome, coworkers are awesome and helpful. Work life balance is good and the coffee is the best
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Great Working Community
Business Student (Current Employee) –  Richland, WADecember 30, 2016
All colleagues are very friendly and helpful, never had a issue with a supervisor . Pay is great and work schedules are pretty flexible. he community of the workplace is great the company provides several lunch ins through out the year.
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Productive and Collaborative Work
Postdoctoral Research Associate (Former Employee) –  Richland, WADecember 27, 2016
Excellent work experience in PNNL which has good work and life balance, great management and enjoyable working schedule.
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Intern
Project Intern (Former Employee) –  Richland, WADecember 19, 2016
I worked as an intern for a summer at PNNL and learned a lot from the work I was given. I was also allowed to go and listen to talks given by traveling faculty and was able to gain valuable work experience.
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Poor managed; but with sometimes exciting work
Research scientist (Current Employee) –  Richland, WAOctober 28, 2016
Depending on your group, you can have very interesting work. But in many parts of the lab, funding is very tough. And a long-term career path (at least in the sections with which I am familiar) is extremely hard - I know many senior staff who have left.
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mediocre environment due to toxic management
Postdoctoral Research Associate (Current Employee) –  Richland, WAJuly 19, 2016
Management wants to have its cake and eat it, too. They treat scientists/engineers like hourly employees, enforcing charging policies not sustainable for any reasonable work/life balance while expecting salaried work. Definitely a political minefield, as well. Look at the wrong person with a perceived wrong look, and good luck finding work in that group again.

On the other hand, if you know the right people, you can make moves around the lab to do virtually anything you would want, given someone is paying for it.

Another problem is that they expect post-graduates to be short term help, not really expecting them to stay on as permanent staff. This is in direct conflict with promises made at job interview.

Perhaps I had a bad experience, but other people have said similar things.
Pros
"flexible" work hours
Cons
unreasonable rules for "flexing" hours, unclear and difficult to convert to full staff
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A very results focused research environment
Postdoctoral Research Associate (Former Employee) –  Richland, WAJune 23, 2016
The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is very good at producing results, but not very good an retaining researchers. There is a significant turn around because people are hired without a plan to pay them. This would not be a problem if there was a way for those with funding to find employees that fit their needs, but there are not so people with funding will hire new people.
The facilities are excellent and there is plenty of opportunity to do some real science. Initially things will be a bit slow because there is nobody who's job it is to train you in the use of the equipment and you are not allowed to use the equipment until you are trained. I recommend turning to people who are in your group. They will be able to help you navigate the minor pittfals there are and avoid internal politics if it should ever become relevant.
Overall it is not a terrible place to work, as long as you are realistic about you situation.
Pros
Great facilities
Cons
Terrible internal structure
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Department of Energy Facility
Director, Safety and Health (Former Employee) –  Richland, WAMarch 28, 2016
Innovative operation-EH&S served all Directorates, Excellent EH&S staff. Enjoyed providing solutions to EH&S challenges across the organization.
Pros
Staff
Cons
Over regulation by DOE
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Overall rating

4.1
Based on 57 reviews
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Ratings by category

Work/Life Balance
4.2
Compensation/Benefits
4.1
Job Security/Advancement
3.4
Management
3.5
Culture
3.6

CEO Approval

87%
16 ratings
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