Failure to estimate was made up by employees, unbalanced culture and poor management
Electrical Engineer (Former Employee) – Pullman, WA – November 21, 2015
I found that the company had a set of core values that felt applied to the employees, but not the top most management, verses employees were punished for doing things in direct alignment with those values. Innocent and simple mistakes were punished through severe means like termination, often months or even years after the acts occurred.
Employees were often made to pay for poor estimating by making up schedule gaps with forced overtime. I recall many late nights where engineers worked until late to get a product out, often against their will. They were, of course, told they were free to go home, but the unspoken consequences were well known.
The company has a culture of intellectual elitism, where employees don't respect others unless they can trump them at a game of engineering analysis, hence whiteboards proliferate every desk, so employees can self-appoint themselves as teachers on the fly. Information exchange and learning is important, but at this company it pervades in a constant sense of intellectual one-upsmanship. This was confirmed when working at other emngineering companies, where the general impression of SEL is that they have great customer service, but don't really seem to value true diversity, as you don't fit the culture if you're not an uber-analytic type, and hence maybe great at engineering, but perhaps contributing to an imbalanced culture.
Employee lunch, small town atmosphere
Small town atmosphere, imbalanced culture, management that doesn't live up to its own values