Oak Ridge National Laboratory Employee Reviews
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I really enjoyed working for my supervisor and all the members of our research team in computational physics. It was a very supportive and welcoming environment in my team, though I recognize not all groups at ORNL are so your mileage may vary. I found the pay to be great, though the benefits a little lacking for postdocs due to their treating you like a dual full time and temporary employee. Hours and working from home were extremely flexible. Overall I liked working here and would very much like to land a permanent staff position.
Awesome research; supportive teams
Long commute; benefits depend on position
At Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the research experience is second to none. You are working with the brightest minds in their fields. However, the lack of goals and organization can severely slow down the pace of scientific achievements
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Management is not forthcoming about potential toxic work environments woking under certain division directors.
I left a position I loved to accept a position with ORNL that offered much more compensation, better opportunities and growth. What I unknowingly walked into was an extremely toxic environment working under a director that had been reported to HR several times for mistreatment of employees. I dread work every day and am desperately trying to move to another division or on to another organization altogether.
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The grounds are beautiful with a campus look and feel. There is a lot of diversity with interns, researchers and employees from all over the country converging in Oak Ridge. There are mind-blowing cool things that the lab is involved in (public/private partnerships, collaborations, the world's biggest supercomputer, new materials innovations, etc.). They are active in the community and have several volunteer projects designed to give back. There is a culture of innovation, pride and funding in the research areas, supported by executive management. Not so in the IT Division. IT in general did not seem valued by Management and it's a shame."The system" bred a culture of mediocrity in a group of really good, hardworking people who wanted to do more. 1. When there is not enough personnel to support the basic services and functions, it is impossible to innovate. 2. When there is not enough funding to implement (properly) the tools and software needed, it is impossible to be proactive instead of reactive to the changing IT landscape. 3. When employees are told (literally I was told this) that the annual performance ratings given are going to be mostly mediocre across the division no matter how hard they work, it breeds mediocrity in otherwise stellar employees. 4. When some of the mid-level managers do not keep up on new technology, are afraid to hire people smarter than they are and then let the smart people advise them (rather than the other way around) it is impossible to innovate. (This is slowly being fixed through attrition as the 'old timers' retire out - more...
Daily status reviews insured you never got stuck in a rut. Given freedom to tackle hard projects. My boss did not only care about getting the work done right, he also wanted us to develop our hard and soft skills. Emphasis put on team work. Great experience for an intern.