General Atomics Engineer III Reviews

Updated Jun 25, 2020

To filter reviews, or .
3.8
68%
Recommend to a Friend
99%
Approve of CEO
General Atomics Chairman and CEO Neal Blue
Neal Blue
17 Ratings
  1. Helpful (2)

    "Great Place for First Job Out of College, but You Hit Walls"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Developer III in Poway, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at General Atomics full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    If you are hard-working, you do get promoted here. You need to be ambitious and willing to take on more work than expected if you want to get opportunities to work on different projects. Work life balance is great (if you do the bare minimum, see cons below). The pay was decent (low considering the cost of living in CA), and the benefits are okay. There are a few senior-level software developers there that have a passion for what they do, and you can learn a lot from them, but the ones with talent, you need to seek them out. I got lucky and was able to get on several different projects that allowed me to gain more experience and become more marketable for searching for other software engineering jobs. For a while, it kept things interesting. The 9/80 schedule is nice and there is some flexibility in your start time as well, which you cannot argue that.

    Cons

    There are far more terrible senior software developers there than there are good. You cannot look at the current code base to see how things should be done. You will see plenty of examples of how poorly something can be implemented, which helps absolutely nobody. "But it works!" ... yeah ... about 95% of the time. The other 5% of the time it falls apart, and the 95% of the time it is up, it uses astronomically more CPU and RAM than should be necessary to accomplish the same task. The excuse is that the logic is a small piece of functionality, or it does not get used often enough, but the problem is, this mentality exists in almost virtually all code and it compounds into a mess. You need to spend a lot of time researching and reading material on your own time in order to actually learn how to do things the correct way; otherwise, you will wind up hurting your chances to move on to another software company. A lot of the times you are thrown into a project and not given the proper training nor the time to do the job properly (going back to research and reading on your own time). The company and senior management loves people that get the job done the fastest, even when the job is done poorly and inevitably requires a complete redesign and code refactoring. There are too few good, passionate senior-level software developers, and you will likely have to seek them out if you want to see how something should be done. It is highly probable you will only work with them on one or two projects, then go your separate ways and be apart for a long time. It took a few years before I got to start working on a project with one of them. This means that, inevitably, you will hit a wall where you are no longer learning anything new, but are stuck fixing other developer's terrible, terrible code to get things working efficiently and properly. Every great senior software developer there spends most of their time fixing garbage. The only exception is when you are starting a project on your own time or from scratch. The first part of my career I had plenty of opportunities to work on my own projects or start new projects (and some of those are terrible because I was forced to use a design that was inherently flawed, even when I brought up what issues it would cause). The last few months there, I was doing nothing but fixing other developer's poorly written code. If you hit that point, it is time to bail. You will not learn anything valuable, and all you will accomplish is falling further behind in your career, which would make looking for a job outside of defense more difficult.

    Continue reading
  2. "Great"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Department Specialist III in Poway, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at General Atomics full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Benefits are great, growth is possible

    Cons

    Once you negotiate your salary it is difficult to climb the ladder without applying for internal positions

    Continue reading

  3. Helpful (4)

    "Great Company, just wasn't for me"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Manager III 
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at General Atomics full-time

    Pros

    Good salary, good people, and nice facilities.

    Cons

    Cubicle work and no end in sight to tasking.

    Continue reading
  4. Helpful (1)

    "Low Pressure but not a lot of growth"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Biotechnician-III 
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at General Atomics full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Not too much pressure in my position and management was nice, though can't say the same for everyone.

    Cons

    Management often had mixed signals and were unfairly harsh to some.

  5. "Great"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Propulsion Intern III 
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at General Atomics full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Work is interesting and challenging

    Cons

    Location is terrible, 40 min from anything fun

  6. "Designer III"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - DESIGNER III in Poway, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at General Atomics full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Good all around place to work.

    Cons

    I do not have any cons.

    Continue reading
  7. Helpful (1)

    "Project Manager"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Manager III in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at General Atomics full-time for less than a year

    Pros

    Great benefits package to include a pension after 3 years and 401 K Matching.

    Cons

    Hours are “tracked” and our 80 hours worth of work is merely a minimum of expectation and pay. More than 80 hours doesn’t get you overtime or extra leave hours. It is pretty much expected

    Continue reading

    General Atomics Response

    October 8, 2018JWT

    Thanks for your feedback! We’re glad you’re happy with your benefits package, we want you to grow as we do. Different kinds of companies work with their Project Managers differently, but we also want you to be on a career track that you’re excited about. So please make sure to speak to your manager about the steps we can take to make that happen.

  8. Helpful (4)

    "Engineer III. Pretty good overall."

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Engineer III in Poway, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at General Atomics full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Good pay and benefits. Facilities are nice. Location in Poway is nice. Management seemed fine for the most part. Work pace is nice. Variety of work was nice.

    Cons

    Communication between departments was utterly missing. People were too reluctant or non responsive to help you on a project if their boss didn't approve of a Job Number first. Even a couple easy questions. So i was basically on my own for several projects where I wasn't a subject matter expert. Very weird isolation.

  9. Helpful (1)

    "Great Company"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    A&P Specialist III in San Diego, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at General Atomics

    Pros

    The benefits at GA are unheard of! The managers and my co-workers are all great and the support from my HR and Admin divisions are great.

    Cons

    I do not currently have any complaints.

    Continue reading

    General Atomics Response

    June 2, 2017Systems Administrator

    Thank you for taking the time to leave your review about your experience with General Atomics and affiliated companies.

  10. Helpful (1)

    "Great plus yet challenges"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Technical Writer III in Poway, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at General Atomics for less than a year

    Pros

    Benefits. Pension plus 401k w/match. Good work plus tech.

    Cons

    Slow decisions and fast demands.

    Continue reading
Found 41 reviews