Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories Employee Reviews

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Cheep management
Engineer (Former Employee) –  Pullman, WA20 October 2016
If you dont mind about salary, dont have family to balance your life, you are not minority to be discriminated, dont mind to live a small college town in middle of no where, dont have experience or you need work visa, it is an OK place to start for a short term. They dont lay off people but stress them out to leave!
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Company Goals and Objectives, also the social things are great, very good environment to work
Associate IT Analyst (Current Employee) –  Khobar, Saudi Arabia1 October 2016
Very good , friendship relations and social , good environment to work, learn, build your experience, good place to have an excellent experience, good benefits
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Fun and Productive work place
Training Coordinator, Child Care Intern (Former Employee) –  Pullman, WA 9916327 September 2016
This is an amazing employee owned company. I worked for them as a summer high school intern and it was one of the best experiences I've ever had in the work place.
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Dishonest supervisors and poor management on the manufacturing floor. Excessive disciplinary actions against employees and bullying from bosses.
Assembler (Former Employee) –  Pullman, WA7 September 2016
As an assembler your work is based on numbers.
The worker is required to produce a certain amount of units.
Working in little cells with other people can be fun. However managers and supervisors hover.

SEL touts to be a great company to work for.
In the manufacturing plant part SEL managers and supervisors hover over workers.

Workers are singled out and used as an example if they speak about an issues and the supervisors and mangers don't agree.
Favoritism, dishonest reviews on evaluations are standard operating procedures. In the plant work, I found bosses say one thing and do another. They are not held to SEL standards, though they preach them all the time.
It feels a lot like a military environment. Be seen and do the work but don't talk and we don't want to hear what you have to say.

Line leads, supervisors and managers push assemblers to reach for training and for being certified in depts yet they do not offer this when an employee ready. Tough to get advancement and recognition. it seems as though this is based on if the employee is liked.
I saw many people passed over for advancement when they were ready for training because they were not liked or did not kiss up to the line lead or supervisor.
SEL old managers on evenings have a rep for being bullies. I found this out from several employees. Some stories involved, disciplinary actions that were trumped up.

SEL is good at publicity and marketing but these human rights violations on the manufacturing floor are serious and not discussed.
HR when told about these issues does not take them seriously.
  more...

I would not work for SEL again as an assembler nor will I refer someone to them for that work.

Assemblers are treated as a number.Furthermore, assemblers are constantly being hired because there are problems on the manufacturing floor that HR has not dealt with. It is too bad because there are some good things about SEL. However the bullying and prejudicial decisions towards employees is a huge problem.

The most enjoyable part of the job was getting to know people in the cells.
There are many hardworking and kind assemblers at SEL. Some enjoy there job and managed to avoid the landmines there. Many have chosen to ignore the issues and survive regardless.
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Pros
Free lunches, but you have to choke down the food while listening to rhetoric SEL's greatness.
Cons
Games, bullying by managers, dishonesty, oppression and favoritism is a live and well at SEL.
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SEL is not a great company.Dishonesty, hostile work environments, bullying mngrs & line leads. HR knows and ignores this.
Assembler (Former Employee) –  Pullman, WA3 September 2016
Typical day at work: EST test walk onto the floor into the dept and sit down and begin work.
Work consists of reading work instructions and following computer directions how to assemble or complete a task.
This is not hard work but it is boring at times.
Work instruction are not always updated and your work is slowed because of this. Workers are judged by how much they produce.
Lack of updated work instruction results in the worker getting poor numbers and getting in trouble with supervisors. Its disorganized.

There is unprofessionalism by managers, and power plays with bosses and line leads against employees.If a worker works better than a line lead the line lead can stop there training and deny the work job progression If the manager receives a complaint about a line lead from a assembler they tell the assembler to 'don't talk about this, I will handle it." The employee does not know what has happened.
Or issues are ignored by upper management.
This happen to me and several people I know. I asked about it and was told, "we always support our line leads, no matter what."
The managers walk around a don't do anything they just watch workers work. Its menacing and stalkerish, the cameras and hovering of bosses is ridiculous.

I was given excellent feedback from my trainers on my work, they wrote weekly reviews on my progress.
'Good attitude, great work, quality etc'...then when my evaluation came this feedback was ignored. Not even discussed.

I was top builder in my dept and still given poor review, equivalent to a C-.
My review said, "Does not meet standards."
  more... I had no absences and no tardiness, perfect attendance and great trainer evals.

None of my work mattered.
The supervisor and managers wrote what they wanted about my work.I had made this mistake of going to HR about the very manager who wrote the evaluation. This was never changed.


This particular manager told me (in a evaluation) when I persisted on examples of why I was given a poor score on a work detail that:
"No one likes working with you. No one likes you.That's what you need to know."

This was unprofessional.

I inquired further saying, "I do not understand what is going on in this review. I have not been given this feedback about my work, I was told my work was great. I don't understand this please explain where this is coming from?"

This manager said, " Do you understand English? I mean you do understand English don't you?" "Are you gonna cry now?"
I was tearing up and shocked to be spoken to like this.

I got up and went to HR. They listened but didn't do anything.
To my knowledge he was not reprimanded.
I never had my questions answered and my review was not changed or addressed.
I was told, "This is great opportunity to learn from this feedback."
Incredible. He is still working there.


One man I talked to had been at SEL for 15 years. he hated the managers, he had been denied training and progression so much that he had given up trying. He said he was on a disciplinary action for 3 years. He now was working as the head trainer in the cell but not promoted. Not paid more money and not credited for training others. Not given a raise for that amount of time.

There are good people working as assemblers. Lots of great assemblers there and kind people. But many will not say anything bad about a manager, line lead or supervisor for fear of retaliation. They are scared.


In the meeting to cover the results of the greatest places to work survey at SEL the HR rep did not answer employee questions about what SEL was prepared to do about the negative feedback given about supervisors and the unfair treatment towards employees. In particular, a 75% overall negative approval rate was given about Managers and Supervisors. Some of my colleagues asked what was gonna be done since the feedback was so poor about management and supervisors.

The HR representative responded:
"Well we are not going change our systems at this time. We feel we should stick with our way of doing things and see our processes through. This is a survey for feedback, only. "

People in the room were shocked.
Some employees said, "So why ask for a feedback if you are not willing to learn and Identify Measure and Improve?'

(SEL Value) Which is a business model SEL preaches daily and at all friday lunches.
The HR rep repeated they same statement. She was of course non responsive to everyone.

Schweitzer spends money on painting a great picture about itself. The marketing and public relations can be seen by the platform they sell on every advertisement all over the Palouse and Spokane area.

SEL is not a great company.
Its assemblers are miserable and scared to speak up about issues. There is retaliation, dishonesty, oppression, bullying and unmonitored game playing from bosses, a lot is bad things are happening there to good people. Its too bad that there is not a union there. It would alleviate the games and hold SEL accountable.

SEL goes through assemblers and hires many assemblers because they cannot keep them. IT IS A TERRIBLE WORK ENVIRONMENT.
They fire people all the time. They treat their employees like they are are expendable.

(True story)
I saw one young father get fired, he has cancer and a family of four. Just finished his third chemo series. He had been there 5 years, I was told he was a outstanding employee by several people who worked with him. He was fired for writing a small smiley face on a tag.)
I know a employee who was written up for hugging a friend who received some bad news about a family member. The employees had known each for 7 years.

All the nonsense there and bullying destroys the morale of assemblers, leaving them feeling like nothing they do is good enough. Eventually, they settle for the oppression or get fired on some trumped up charge.




If you want to work for a fascist military company....work at SEL. You can expect prejudism,dishonesty, favoritism and lack of advancement.

Do not work for SEL.
Underrneath the 'greatest manufacturer in the US" neon sign SEL tout's and advertises themselves to be is the hidden, big fat check SEL writes to keep the public from knowing the truth. The assemblers are bullied and treated badly. No money or benefits can change the gross negligence of the administration to identify, measure and improve their management antics.

IT IS A GROSS WASTE OF YOUR TIME AND SPIRIT TO WORK AT SEL. SEL does not appreciate their assemblers.
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Pros
Free lunches, but you have to choke down the food while listening to rhetoric SEL's greatness.
Cons
Games, bullying by managers, dishonesty, oppression and favoritism is a live and well at SEL.
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A Fantastic Place to Work
Equipment Programmer (Former Employee) –  Lewiston, ID2 September 2016
SEL is definitely a fantastic place to work. They live and breath their corporate objectives and values.

Management is especially great. They do business like our mothers would want them to. Truly care about developing employees.

Overall, great place.
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Stable job with annual increase in pay
General Assembler (Former Employee) –  Pullman, WA 9916328 August 2016
A good place to work with lots of young people. A workday consists of following relatively easy-to-understand instructions and acting on them. The pay is good and one of the best places to work in manufacturing and in the Palouse area. The only cons for manufacturing workers is the long hours (when I left, 65 hour workweeks were becoming the norm) and the constant shifting in break schedules. One day you'd be at break at 5:45pm and others past 7pm.
Pros
free lunch every Friday, easy labor
Cons
Short breaks, lots of overtime
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A workplace that is both productive and caring about your own personal career
IT Technician Intern (Former Employee) –  Pullman, WA27 August 2016
SEL is an amazing company to work for. Great people, strong values, productive teams, career growth, positive work ethics, and a overall great company
Pros
Friday Lunch, great people
Cons
none
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Great Place To Work
Project Manager II (Former Employee) –  Pullman, WA24 August 2016
This company is a fast growing organization who invests in their employee's and challenges them to grow/improve.They truly care about their employees and encourages a healthy work/life balance.
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Poor management, middle of no where town, not open to diversity town, isolate foreigners
Engineer (Former Employee) –  Pullman24 August 2016
You feel you work in military based company; everything is confidential and based to need to know, no honesty and transparency. Politics Politics Politics. Management make fun of competitors in meetings and Friday lunch. They pretend they are the best. Low salary. They fly you for interview and pay all expenses and moving but when you stuck they bit you up, One mistake is end of the world. They look for family employer rather than single.
Pros
Free Lunch
Cons
Small village
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Poor management, hidden discrimination
Engineer (Former Employee) –  Pullman8 August 2016
Poor management, hidden discrimination, lack of honesty, lack of opportunity for families, too much advertisement for company
Pros
Low salary
Cons
Miniorities are suffering
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Totally an Awesome Place to Work on !!
Engineer-I Automation (Former Employee) –  Bangalore, Karnataka7 August 2016
Got into SEL through my Previous employer in contract basis.
With respect to my Career Performance over a year,I was recruited directly by SEL which was never in my dream and I was given a lot of opportunities to explore the knowledge in Substation field.
I had wonderful days working there & my colleagues were awesome both on & off officially.
Pros
Friday Free Lunch, Office Outing
Cons
Travel
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Good work environment
Mechanical Engineer Intern (Former Employee) –  Pullman, WA3 March 2016
Schweitzer was a very good experience for me. It gave me a introduction to engineering after college in a manageable way that didn't overwhelm me. The other employees were very personable and easy to get along with. I quickly developed a respect for my superiors in a constructive way that didn't make me fear them but rather made me want to live up to their expectations.
Pros
Free lunch every Friday, and great benefits for full time workers
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The company is wonderful
Mechanical Engineering Intern (Current Employee) –  Pullman, WA3 February 2016
The company is run by a group of well educated people who care about the success of all of their employees. The culture is amazing.
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ok work
Associate Chemist/Project Manager (Former Employee) –  Alpharetta, GA23 January 2016
not your best work place. no team work or trust. you just there to do your job and go home. little support if you ever needed one. the pay ws very average.
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Failure to estimate was made up by employees, unbalanced culture and poor management
Electrical Engineer (Former Employee) –  Pullman, WA21 November 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.
Pros
Employee lunch, small town atmosphere
Cons
Small town atmosphere, imbalanced culture, management that doesn't live up to its own values
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very good place to work
New Delhi as Application Engineer (Current Employee) –  New Delhi, DL29 July 2015
Good place to learn
Quality products
Good co workers
Good management
Good growth
Good place to show your talent
Good place to create new ideas
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Worked in field office
Executive Assistant (Former Employee) –  Trinity, FL16 July 2015
I worked in one of the field offices. The headquarters is in Pullman, Washington. Good solid company. Working in field office is different from working at headquarters. Less access to some resources but more relaxed environment.
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engaging environment. challenging. and fun.
Assembler/trainer (Former Employee) –  Pullman, WA10 May 2015
I loved this company not only for its stellar product development and mission but ultimately on how well they treated their employee's. the benefits were incredible. lots of on the job training and great chances for advancement.
Pros
great pay, excelent benifits, good working environment.
Cons
not much I can think of.
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Great place to work!
Project Manager (Former Employee) –  Charlotte, NC31 March 2015
This is an outstanding place to work. The people the advancement and everything is geared around keeping their work force.
Pros
Everything
Cons
Nothing
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Overall rating

4.0
Based on 43 reviews
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Ratings by category

Work/Life Balance
3.8
Salary/Benefits
4.1
Job Security/Advancement
3.7
Management
3.7
Culture
4.1