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Northrop Grumman

Mission: From families to the intelligence community, from our climate to our men and women in uniform, we're working together to make the world a safer place.
Location: Falls Church, Virginia
Employees: 75469
Funding: Public Company - Market Cap $56.78 billion

Company Q&A

Q: Is Northrop Grumman willing to sponsor a visa for international talent?

Q: In what ways do the varying disciplines across Northrop Grumman communicate with one another?

Q: What outcomes do you hope to facilitate with your new hire spin - up at Northrop Grumman?

Q: Do employees have a professional growth budget at Northrop Grumman?

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Darren Asaro
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Jobs At Northrop Grumman

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Northrop Grumman  •
Falls Church, Virginia
Northridge, California
Under close direction of a senior engineer, assist in the design,...
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Northrop Grumman Salaries

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What employees at Northrop Grumman think about working there

“Although the work/life balance is great, it can be very frustrating having to slow down my work because people just aren't as engaged. It often takes multiple days for people to reply to emails, and you often have to wait for people to finish their parts of the project before you can continue. I'm also not allowed to put in more than 80 hours every 2 weeks, unless a project expressly demands it, which is annoying because I want to work on some of the more interesting problems.”
“Northrop Grumman has great work life balance and an interesting 9/80 flexible schedule (or 8/80 - work 8 days in 2 weeks to hit 80 hours, 3 day long weekends are awesome). I've been working here for a few years now and although my starting salary was very strong, I've only had a 2% raise each year. Doesn't even keep up with inflation.”
“I left Northrop Grumman as an engineer because I got frustrated with the processes involved with solving problems. In general my work involved 30 minutes to an hour of actual coding and problem solving, followed by 3-4 hours of signing documentation and waivers. If we were able to just constantly work on the projects, Northrop Grumman would be a great company, but it seems like they only keep those roles for the very senior engineers.”
“Good, stable company that provides solid work. Day to day feels a little stagnant and communication with management isn't great.”
“I started working with Northrop Grumman coming out of university as part of their management rotational program. They have a very structured system so there's lots of opportunity to learn how a large company sets itself up for success. Some really cool projects going on and was able to meet a lot of great people.”

Northrop Grumman Glassdoor Themes

Job security

Great base pay, flexible work hours, opportunities for educational assistance to learn new skills, Northrop Grumman helps you along your career path and supports you in working for them. You can get the feel they want you stay with them for the majority of your career.
I like how there's many opportunities to work on different projects once every few months, but a frustrating thing is you can often get pinned by management for a certain role as part of a project, and only be given opportunities within that role.

Slow change

The company is slow moving and very much behind the curve in terms of top talent and technology. Don't feel like we significantly differentiate from our competitiors or able to move fast enough to innovate.
Your base pay is great but year over year your salary increase is only about 2%. To get a significant increase in salary you have to be promoted to a managerial position, but that can take anywhere from 4-8 years.

Older tech architecture

There's the benefit of having a life when you're working here, but that comes with being constantly bored doing not very challenging work. The problems we're working on are all older problems that have already been solved, and you can just reference past work for solutions.
Thought that working here would mean I'd have the opportunity to work on the most complicated and interesting projects an engineer could solve. Unfortunately the company is very technically behind, at least in the areas I've worked. We use 10 different systems to store source code and documentation, and Git isn't one of them. Have to spend time to learn older software that isn't used anywhere else.

What do engineers think of working at Northrop Grumman?

“"I'm going to chime in here with some pros and cons for working in engineering at Northrop Grumman. In my opinion I think that it's a great place to work if you have a family, and are looking for a low stress, well paid job with great work-life balance. It's a company where you can grow your career.

In general the best pro of working here is job stability. The company is constantly getting new large scale government and private contracts that require 6-8 months of work, with many moving parts. Each role you have is pretty specific, and so the technical barrier to entry isn't too difficult. As some projects close and new projects open, you can quite easily move around to open positions.

Another side pro is that the projects themselves are pretty interesting. We work on large scale weaponry/defense systems that get implemented in some of the biggest organizations world wide. To be a part of such large projects can be really motivating as you know that the end goal is a vehicle, weapon, system, etc. that has to accomplish a certain goal.

With these pros being said though, job comes with many cons. If you're just starting your career, this might not be the company for you. The tech itself is pretty out-dated compared to market standards, for example we don't even use github yet, instead we're still on some archaic system from the 90's, so many software or development skills you learn in modern classes aren't very relevant. It also takes some time to ramp up your knowledge to a point where you're comfortable with the systems since we lack lots of support documentation.

There's also not many opportunities for vertical career progression, so if you're looking to gain more responsibility quickly, this probably isn't the position for you. That being said, there's lots of room to move horizontally in the organization, so if you're unsure of what exactly you want to work in there are rotational programs that show you a wide range of the business."”

How do I apply to a job at Northrop Grumman?

“The most efficient way to apply to Northrop Grumman is through the careers site. Navigate to the Northrop Grumman website, and click on careers on the home page. You can search through all job postings, of which there are consistently thousands available, and each role will have specific instructions on how to apply.”

What is the work culture like at Northrop Grumman?

“Like any company of this size it really depends on the office you're working in. My office was highly politican and tribal, with managers only promoting those that would say yes to him. I've heard many people at my office call it an old boys club, stuck in the 1980's. I've also heard however that some of the other offices are forward thinking and egalitarian, specifically the cyber space.”

What kind of people succeed at Northrop Grumman? How can I make sure I succeed?

“The people who are able to move up to managerial positions are usually the extroverts and type-A personalities. To increase your odds of having a successful career at Northrop Grumman and being vertically promoted, I'd recommend someone to take time out of their day to engage with the crowd and make yourself known.”

What kind of projects will you be working on at Northrop Grumman?

“"I've had the opportnity to work on a few different projects at Northrop Grumman, and usually split their projects into 3 different types. There's the Aerospace Systems, the Mission Systems, and the Technology Services.

The Aerospace Systems, which is based in Redondo Beach, California focusses on producing aircrafts, spacecrafts, high-energy laser systems, and microelectronics. Usually these types of systems are for surveillance and reconnaissance, which means if you're working on a project within this sector you'll be helping the U.S. or other large organizations increase their ability to have protected comms, intelligence, giving them a better handle on strike operations as well as missile defense. Some of the aircrafts that came out of the Aerospace Systems sector are the B-2 Spirit strategic bomber, the RQ-4 Global Hawk, and the RQ-5 Hunter.

The Mission Systems, which is based in Linthicum, Maryland, focusses on projects that build military radar, sensors, and other related products. These products are used for air defense, and for informational gathering. Some of the products coming out of Northrop Grumman's Mission System center are the the AWACS aerial surveillance system, which we're constantly maintaining for use by countries like the US, the UK, Japan, and others. We've built night vision goggles, ballistic missile programs, and secure communications equipment as well.

In the Technology Services section, which is headquartered in McNair, Virginia, focusses on "the entire life cycle of civil and defense platforms and capabilities through a range of services". Some of the projects we've worked on include completely overhauling the state of Virginia's IT operations, and maintenance on the United Kingdom's defensive radar systems.

Honestly there are so many projects going on at Northrop Grumman it's impossible to keep track, and we don't have security clearence for the majority. I personally love going into work knowing I'll be working on something that does things like help our military fight in the war on terror and the war on drugs.”

How's the work life balance at Northrop Grumman?

In general it is very good. Most areas of work offer flex time (9 days in two weeks as long as the time adds up to 80 hours). Sometimes though, depending on the project, you have to work over time to hit the deadline. It doesn't happen frequently so I'd say the work-life balance in general is pretty good.

What do you wish you could change about Northrop Grumman?

Many of the policies of Northrop Grumman around things like health insurance and PTO are on the lower end of the industry. The 401k is vested over three years in an attempt to get you to stay, and the parental leave is only 2 weeks. I feel if they were more generous with these small benefits employees in generally would be happier.

How are decisions around promotions made?

For level 3 and lower the engineers are 'racked-and-stacked'. Each employee is placed on a board where they evaluate you from 1-9, 9 being highest probability of promotional opportunities (based on ability to lead and technical skill), and they only work the few who fit the diversity quota and are high ranking. There are no set promotions for level 4 and above, you have to apply to open job requests yourself.

What is the difference between working at Northrop Grumman vs. their competitors.

“"There are definitely some minor differences when comparing working for Northrop Grumman and their competitors, but the majority of these differences are pretty small and come back to individual team culture.

Many of the contracts that we're bidding on are the same projects that companies like Lockheed Martin and Boeing are bidding on. Things like developing new aircrafts for the military or secure communications for different states. The projects you'll be working on company to company will probably be very similar, and it's a skill set that you only gain from being within this industry.

Because Northrop Grumman hires for a skill set that you only really gain when you've been in this industry and working for either Northrop Grumman or its competitors, many employees of all the companies rotate between eachother. This is done because without moving around company to company, and leveraging the fact they'll lose your skill set if you leave, you can usually get a larger raise than is usually given.

For this reason I'd recommend picking projects that you want to work on in between these companies, instead of specifically choosing a company to stay at."”

About Northrop Grumman

Northrop Grumman is a leading global security company that specializes in providing innovative systems, products, and solutions or government and commercial customers across the globe. Northrop Grumman focuses on innovating the military and defense spaces in cyber, logistics and modernization, autonomous systems, C4ISR, and strike. The vision of the company is to be the leader in defining the future of defense from undersea to outerspace to cyberspace.

Founded in 1939 by Jack Northrop, Northrop Grumman was originally named the Northrop Corporation and was based in California. In 1985 the company was reincorporated in Delaware, and purchased Grumman in 1994 to form Northrop Grumman. Northrop Grumman works within the Aerospace and Defense industry having many competitors, the major ones being Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, and Boeing. Northrop Grumman has an estimated yearly revenue of $26.3 billion, and over 67,000 employees. Its headquarters are in Falls Church, Virginia.

Positive reviews from employees enjoy Northrop Grummans, flexible work 9/80 work policy (work 80 hours in 2 weeks however you like), the job security, the product based mission, and the fun and interesting projects. Former dissenting employees repor being frustrated with the slow pace of change at the company, the minimal yearly salary increases, the difficulty in progressing vertically, and the older technology systems used for projects. The company is seen internally as being much more reactive to industry changes instead of proactive, and must deal with high levels of beauracracy due to the government contracts.

Northrop Grumman has had consistent year over year growth in recent years, and with it being such a large employer, there are many opporunities for careers. Northrop Grumman is currently hiring for a wide range of jobs. There are positions within the career areas of Business Development, Business Management, Communications, Cyber, Engineering, CSR, HR, IT, Legal, Manufacturing, Project Management, Security, Strategy, and Supply Chain.

Values and Beliefs

Northrop Grumman has 6 core values to their orporate governance. They take reponsibility for quality and take pride in being the best in class, they deliver customer satisfaction respecting customers goals. They provide leadership as a company and as individuals for internal and external purposes. They have integrity in hold eachother personally accountable to the highest standards of behavior. They value people, respecting and taking pride in eachother. They also value their suppliers, and regard them as essential team members.

Interview Questions

What brought you to apply to Northrop Grumman?

How do you work in groups/alone?

What was a challenge you faced?

Describe a time you worked on a team to accomplish a goal.


The Northrop Corporation was founded in 1939 with headquarters in Hawthorne, California. All the way from 1939 to 1994, when the company merged with Grumman to become Northrop Grumman, they were the leading aircraft manufacturer in the United States. One of the planes that had the most success was the F-5, designed in the late 1950s, which spawned many duplicate lightweight desigs in the 1970s and 1980s. After the merge with Grumman, Northrop Grumman continued to grow and expand into different sectors. Northrop Grumman has been reported on in the media for environmental problems in its past, being known for hazardous waste sites. Since then they've built strong CSR initiatives to build a positive company image.