MBDA Employee Reviews about "defence"

Updated 13 Jul 2020

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4.1
85%
Recommend to a Friend
93%
Approve of CEO
MBDA CEO Éric Béranger  (no image)
Éric Béranger
37 Ratings
Pros
  • "Flexi time, Resources; support; experience you gain; variety of jobs;(in 30 reviews)

  • "Very flexible working hours ("flexi-time" allows you to work flexible hours as long as you work your required 37hours a week)(in 24 reviews)

Cons
  • "Suffer from the repurtation of defence business(in 8 reviews)

  • "Very heavy on middle management and other parts of the company are controlling(in 6 reviews)

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

Reviews about "defence"

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  1. Helpful (1)

    "Great Place to work"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineering Apprentice in Bolton, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at MBDA full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    - Flexi Time - Annual Bonus - Yearly Pay Reviews - Clear Career Path - Opportunity for further qualifications - Good benefits

    Cons

    - Lower salary than other defence companies - Lower overtime rate in engineering than on shop floor

  2. "Excellent"

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

    I worked at MBDA full-time

    Pros

    High level of technicity Facinating environment Very good salary and advantages

    Cons

    Suffer from the repurtation of defence business


  3. "Incredibly interesting work, lower than average pay and progression"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Mechanical Design Engineer in Stevenage, England
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at MBDA full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Varied work Great skills development Exciting subject

    Cons

    Large, unwieldy company Lower than average pay/pay progression Long product life cycle (standard for defence)

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  4. "Benefit heavy, salary light"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Stevenage, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at MBDA full-time

    Pros

    Nice place to work with great colleagues in my team. Lovely modern site to work on. Lots of leave, and flexible working. Company is keen to learn and improve. Subsidised restaurant, cafe, gym on site. Output oriented rather than "time at desk" oriented.

    Cons

    They seek to pay average salary but often come up a bit short. No cultural diversity due to restrictions on defence projects . Offices are all quite an inspiring grey (not a major gripe, but since you asked)

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  5. Helpful (1)

    "Principle Electronics Engineer"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Principal Electronics Engineer in Stevenage, England
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Excellent facilities and training. MBDA support career development - this was the main reason for me joining. Good flexibility to moved around with in the company.

    Cons

    1) Very difficult to get large salary increases once joined. It is recommended to negotiate a good salary during your interview. 2) Technology that MBDA is very outdated compared to the other defence primes. However MBDA are slowly changing as the older generation are retiring. 3) If you come in as a manager you will spend over 60% in meetings that are sometimes pointless. 4) Lack of training provided on company processes.

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  6. Helpful (9)

    "Trying hard, but so far behind the times"

    3.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
     
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at MBDA

    Pros

    Interesting work. Genuine opportunities to develop, if you put the effort in to take them.

    Cons

    Very, very, slow progression! Because this is a defence company, there is a long history defining "how things are done". That experience is important to deliver on current business, but MBDA needs to transform its approach in lots of areas. This is crucial so they can be competitive and win future business, and also in attract and retain the future workforce. MBDA are trying to strike the balance between retaining knowledge and making the transition I mentioned. Right now, they're not getting this balance right and middle to upper management are at the root of this. Senior leaders identify the problem I describe, but they are effectively powerless to do anything. They've devolved all of their influence and power into a layer of problem managers who can always justify their approach with "the way we do things" thus keeping things the same. All of this means enthusiastic and ambitious young employees are almost certainly going to feel hindered and that they can outgrow MBDA. Just give it time.

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  7. Helpful (14)

    "Interesting work, very slow pace"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Stevenage, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at MBDA full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    The work and challenges available for anyone with ambition are vast in scope. You can build your knowledge and expertise through both your work in almost any way you please. I came through the graduate scheme and your placement outside your department can be with any department willing to take you on in the company, and the support from HR and training opportunities is much better than my current employer. Stevenage and Le Plessis canteens provide the finest work food I have ever eaten (again as much as lifers who have never worked elsewhere may moan otherwise) On site gym is good Overall site is pleasant Vast array of social clubs and sports teams

    Cons

    A lot of the middle management and lower level execs appear to have got to their positions through time served, rather than ability. Perhaps not surprising for a military contractor with such a good pension scheme that pays good salaries (as much as some employees who have never worked elsewhere may think otherwise), with little true focus on cost and efficiency at operational level. These people are able / allowed to put their own interest ahead of that of both the company or customer. It is difficult to influence or achieve real change. Cost is not of great importance to middle management, also not of great interest to middle management are poor performance of lazy gravy train employees, or excessive expenses. The scale of politics in MBDA UK and between the different national operating companies can at times be demotivating and constraining upon work, but equally is a great challenge for anyone looking to make a long term career in the defence industry (in which politics are of course fundamental and to be expected, but none the less can be grating). For anyone looking for an opportunity to make a lot of money and fade into the background whilst doing very little work, with no repercussions, then maybe MBDA is the perfect company for you, but it is not for me.

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  8. Helpful (23)

    "Is MBDA right for you? This is the review that counts."

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee -  in Stevenage, England
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Flexible working hours. Salary is paid on time. There are lots of gardeners and cleaners. The lights turn off automatically.

    Cons

    Before you read my review of MBDA, please appreciate that I have given this much thought and even re-written this a few times before posting. This is not the mad rant of a disgruntled employee like so many reviews are; it might seem negative but this is the truth in my opinion. I have worked for MBDA (Stevenage) for somewhere between 18 months and 2 years. MBDA employs a large number of contractors and they get paid substantially more than permanent staff (some of them brag about it), many are lazy and the rest just don’t have to work that hard, they have the least amount of responsibility and are generally given less interesting jobs and fairly light workloads. If you are a contactor and you’re just looking for an easy ride then this is the place for you. If on the other hand you are permanent staff such as a project lead or team leader, expect to be worked to death for less pay and virtually no recognition. Tip: negotiate a good pay rise before you join because they are quite desperate and once you’re in it doesn’t matter how good you are or how hard you work, you are never likely to get better than a 'good performance' rating. You will need to have god-like abilities to get better than a good rating. Work load varies hugely between different departments and different roles. Some people (mostly contractors) will spend their time internet shopping or watching iplayer for hours on end, while others have the work load of at least two people (as a minimum) with peaks on top of that (no exaggeration). We are promised more resources and the company has a big recruitment drive, yet there are many times the number of people retiring than there are new starters. The company advertises vacancies like 'principal engineer - lethality and warheads' (Google it). MBDA is the only UK company that designs and manufactures Missiles; how many people do they think are going to apply for this job! If the location is good for you and you just need a job and you can tolerate a lot of nonsense, then MBDA is for you. If you are seeking career advancement then I recommend looking elsewhere. MBDA is hugely inefficient and I just hope for MBDA's sake that its foreign competitors are no different or MBDA is going to find itself priced out of the market; it already has a well known reputation for selling the most expensive Missile Systems. The culture here sucks; it seems to maintain an outdated defence company's mindset of knowledge is power; in general there is little collaboration or knowledge sharing, there is a tendency to quickly reject good ideas due to nonsensical political reasons or because its seen to be just too difficult to do anything different. People are generally guarded and tight-lipped; either worried that they are going to find themselves opened up to be criticised or that somehow giving up knowledge, reduces their importance/status. There is endemic misconception about what can or cannot be done; indoctrinated staff try to bolster their own self importance by attempting to enforce rules and practices that are unfounded. If you are an ambitious, talented and progressive individual then you will feel defeated here regardless of how good you are as an individual.

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