Canadian Nuclear Laboratories Employee Reviews about "cnl"

Updated Dec 19, 2020

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3.7
70%
Recommend to a Friend
57%
Approve of CEO
Canadian Nuclear Laboratories President and Chief Executive Officer Mark Lesinski
Mark Lesinski
62 Ratings
Pros
  • "Good sense of community, good pay scale(in 10 reviews)

  • "Interesting work and projects to work on(in 10 reviews)

  • Cons
  • "Politics, red tape below standard pays(in 10 reviews)

  • "During my time at CNL I was mostly working remotely(in 8 reviews)

  • More Pros and Cons
    Pros & Cons are excerpts from user reviews. They are not authored by Glassdoor.

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    Reviews about "cnl"

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    1. 5.0
      Former Intern, less than 1 year

      I loved this job

      Dec 19, 2020 - Assistant Health Physicist in Chalk River, ON
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      very engaging, nice people, beautiful location

      Cons

      During my time at CNL I was mostly working remotely

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    2. 1.0
      Current Employee, more than 5 years

      CHAOTIC MESS

      Aug 10, 2020 - R&D Scientist in Chalk River, ON
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      money; some departments function most do not; infighting and silo-ing

      Cons

      Current and Long-held practices of dysfunctional departments: -Sexist to female employees -Male majority; masochistic -Bogus Performance Appraisals -HR disaster: Underemployed staff (too educated for their roles) Overemployed staff (under educated, under trained staff) -Poor succession planning -Poorly mismatched skills of employees to employment positions -Toxic Work Culture -Company that is a consistent under performer (little to no profit) - $ 750 million dollars of Canadian taxpayer money is wasted every year; with little to show for it -Promote under skilled people to management/ influential roles resulting in gross incompetence and mismanagement -Little to no mentorship of new staff -Little to no acknowledgement of staff doing jobs -If staff do something well, they will not get credit for it -Colleagues steal others' ideas and claim them as their own -plagiarism -Micromanagement- little trust of staff who are capable of doing their jobs -Exclusion and alienation of the intelligencia of the company (communist management - style) -Vision+ (company "culture shift") program brought in to flip current culture is a hoax with little management support -American management has no vested interest to the stakeholders. -Lebanon ammonium nitrate explosion is a reminder of why a country should never let dangerous material into the hands of cowboys. At CNL there are plenty.

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      5 people found this review helpful
    3. 2.0
      Former Employee, more than 10 years

      If you're into Nuclear Waste, this is the place for you. Otherwise, avoid at all costs.

      Jan 30, 2020 - Cube Dweller in Chalk River, ON
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Waste Management and Facility Decommissioning are ramping up. If you're in either of these fields, this is the place for you. Given that most of the waste is radioactive, the location and associated work will be around for many many decades. Management is moving towards the contractor model for a large percentage of the work it needs. Great if you're a contractor. Get in do your work, and then leave. Winters are very cold with a ton of snow. Some view this as a pro, some as a con. You decide. The area has natural beauty. Housing is comparatively cheap. Cost of living is low. If you decide to reside in Deep River the commute to/from work is less than 15 minutes. Free parking.

      Cons

      Very dirty site, contamination wise. If you work here, even if it's outside of the secured zone, you will receive dose. Something that doesn't happen at other nuclear facilities. Science and Research are stagnant. They like to present an image to their staff and the world that they are a nuclear research organization but that's just words. There is some work in this area but this organization has "jumped the shark" in that area. SMR work is likely their last gasp and if they don't succeed in the SMR field, they are done. There is a stated goal to reduce overhead and this has resulted in cuts to training and development of staff as well as cuts to staff levels as well. Overhead areas are viewed as encompassing Financial positions, HR positions, IT positions and all administrative positions in the Waste Management and Science/Research sections. Management has stated they expect further reductions in overhead costs over the next 2 - 3 years. Not surprizingly, there was little reduction in management. They ran employee surveys for 3 years, trying to understand how they fare compared to other organizations. The first survey showed a disengaged and demoralized organization that didn't trust management and which was substandard in all comparitor organizations. As an outcome of the survey findings, executive management devised a training program to educate staff on how to operate. Basically attitude adjustment training. It was compulsory for line staff but optional for management. Given that most employee attitudes arose from negative middle management attitudes and actions, not educating management undercut the effectiveness of the attitude adjustment initiative. Small gains were made, but generally it didn't succeed and the 4th round of employee surveys was not done. There are 3 groups of people in the organization: exec's, middle management and line staff. The exec's want employee effectiveness to improve but they don't interact with line staff directly at all and they are in a constant state of flux given they are employed under 3 year contracts. Middle management ensures line staff stay in line and presents glowing reports and statistics to the execs which don't really reflect reality. They grew up in a legacy environment where the messenger with bad news was blamed so they hide issues. Employee reports to middle management operate in the same "shoot the messenger" mode so middle management is out of touch with line staff as well because line staff don't need the agro. Most training is in-house and required for generalized topics such as fire extinguisher usage or human dynamics. Depending upon which section of the company you occupy a seat in, developmental training may exist but is more than likely to be non-existent. Training costs are deemed overhead. In my section, the training budget was zero for my last 3 years. In other organizations I was employed at, and in the industry I operated within, this was heresy. Not here. If you are considering working for CNL, ask what the training budget for the last few years has been for the section you are considering joining. Otherwise you will find yourself falling behind career wise due to a lack of training. I spoke to a neighbour who left the organization a year or so ago and they said they left because it was a toxic workplace. I hadn't thought about it that way but in reflection, that persons perspective was 100% accurate.

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      3 people found this review helpful
    4. 5.0
      Former Intern

      Co-op Experience

      Jan 2, 2019 - Anonymous Intern 
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Very friendly people and a great environment.

      Cons

      There are no cons about CNL.

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    5. 1.0
      Current Employee, more than 5 years

      Stay away if you care about your mental health

      Feb 5, 2018 - Officer in Chalk River, ON
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Nice area and plenty of jobs. Good employee training and acknowledgement that harrassment is a systemic problem at CNL and that they are trying to eradicate it! Some nice colleagues and project manager, but they are the surviving minority there

      Cons

      A lot of bait and switch. I was offered a job and learned that I will report to a different person on the first day of the Job. When I raised my concern about it , I was told not the worry this supervisor is very nice. The truth of the matter that this supervisor fired at least 3 people and had received several complaint from current and previous employees for harassment . There is no respect to employees and treated as a second class citizens once they know you are not from the area. Racism is alive at CNL and they consider outsiders ( anybody not from the Ottawa Valley) as job stealer hence the racism. High turnover due to lack of respect, bigotry, culture of silo and entitlement of some old employee who believe CNL is nothing without their participation. An employee committed suicide on campus last year. Check it on internet ! No happy employee commit suicide on campus! I leave it there...... If you ask a question, it means you are stupid and inexperienced. You are not allowed to say “ I don’t know” because for them it means you lack experience! And they will use it against you during the performance review. If you make a complaint about your supervisor to Hr., then start counting down for your firing because they will dig very deep to find you a mistake or a weakness and they will use to tell you why your performance is weak when other employees who are locals are allowed to do the same mistakes or have the same weaknesses without any consideration...hence first and second class employees ! If they do not find a weakness, rest assured, they will invente one! This management is very similar to trump style management. Ignorance, narcissism and obliviousness are the main feature of many of the managers who never went to University and started as office clerk at CNL lonf time ago. Through attrition and retirement, they were able to go up the ladder and because they work well together all coming from the small town and sharing similar “ threats” . Most of them are neighbours and married to each other. I know an entire family working there: the husband, the wife and their 3 children.. is that normal? Many directors and managers have no linkedin profile because they never worked outside CNL and have no education or credential to justify their positions.Look for Linkedin of CEO and you will find nothing! If you suggest an improvement or mention a negative fact about your group to your boss , word will spread quickly and will be amplified by 10! You will be then chastised for committing an unforgivable sin by your superiors and colleagues… No help whatsoever, no team work, you are on your own in a survival game...if you blame others and backstab your colleagues, you will strive and survive...this is how the culture is...no appreciation for integrity and honesty. Flip flop and short trouser during summer ! Screaming and yelling on your colleague is normal there! if you ask them not to do it, they will tell you, this is not small town here and things are different here....they will make believe that is an acceptable norm... Many ex and current employees are suing CNL and their managers for harassement and unlawful firing ....this is why they seek to hire locals mostly and because it is way to bribe the local population on accepting dangerous polluting projects like NSDF. Some employees will go on long sick leave ...and many are actively looking for another job.... I am sure there is enough stories to write another Fire and Fury CNL version book !

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      9 people found this review helpful
    6. 5.0
      Current Employee, more than 5 years

      Technical Services Engineer/Professional

      Dec 4, 2017 - Technical Services Engineer in Winnipeg, MB
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      I specialized in energy and power through my professional studies as a mechanical engineer in Thermofluid and Turbo machinery filed.

      Cons

      I am so happy with CNL and I do not have any Cons towards my job. I got very well technical and management experiences there.

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    7. 4.0
      Former Intern, more than 1 year

      Engineering Student - Infrastructure Projects

      Aug 2, 2017 - Engineering Co-op Student in Chalk River, ON
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Enjoyed working with Infrastructure Projects division and the Sanitary Sewage Treatment Facility project team. They were all very friendly, accepting and cohesive group. I have yet to experience a working environment like CNL elsewhere! As a engineering student, I was given exposure to various technical aspects of project management - procurement and contract administration. I also had an opportunity to take tours of nuclear reactors, receive radiation protection training and showcase what I learned at the annual Summer Student Exhibition.

      Cons

      None in my opinion. Nothing but good memories from my 4 month summer experience in Chalk River. Although some may consider the location to be remote (I lived in Petawawa), there were about 80 summer students in total in 2016. There is also ample tourism opportunities, especially if you are into nature.

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      1 person found this review helpful
    8. 1.0
      Former Contractor, more than 1 year

      Beware the IT organization at CNL

      Jan 26, 2017 - Project Manager in Deep River, ON
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      If you are a pure technical IT resource then working in Deep or Chalk River is not such a bad experience. They are very small towns very limited entertainment facilities.

      Cons

      In DevOps terms the IT organization at CNL would be categorized as "pathological". Their motto should be "we shoot the messenger". Managers live in fear of the bully CIO and the working atmosphere is highly toxic. Honesty at the management level is in short supply. Any consultants working at a manager level would be well advised to look elsewhere for work.

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      3 people found this review helpful
    9. 1.0
      Current Employee, more than 10 years

      Depressing place to work

      Oct 22, 2016 - Decommissioning Specialist in Chalk River, ON
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      Virtually nothing really other than home life and personal time opportunities.

      Cons

      Treat people very poorly, particularly those who are trying to bring change to the organization and overhaul poor practices and waste. Lots of business going back to the new private sector managers of CNL. Some really high profile staff have been bullied and forced to resign.

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      9 people found this review helpful
    10. 4.0
      Former Employee

      Co-Op term

      Apr 26, 2015 - Engineering Co-Op in Chalk River, ON
      Recommend
      CEO Approval
      Business Outlook

      Pros

      The location is beautiful, the people are friendly, and the work is interesting. Canada is well known for its nuclear technology, and CNL is the place to be if you want to be on the cutting edge of nuclear science.

      Cons

      There is a noticeable disconnect between the management and other staff. In many cases, the main body staff has little respect for the "higher-ups", and the management does not seem to recognize this. The location is also a little remote if you are used to a metropolitan life style, and gets very cold in the Winter.

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      2 people found this review helpful
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