Approximately 1,900 devoted Nebraskans leverage their skills, talents, ideas and enthusiasm to provide our customers with reliable, low-cost energy and outstanding customer service. We work together to create a dynamic, healthy and safe work environment where diversity is valued, individuals are respected, and where innovation and teamwork are recognized and rewarded.
So you may be wondering, "What is it really like to work at Nebraska Public Power District?" Continue reading to find out.
“First and foremost, NPPD is a company that legitimately cares for its employees.”
Growing up, I had always been told NPPD was a fantastic company to work for. However, it wasn’t until I got to know some of the NPPD staff while working at a previous job that I realized how dedicated they were to their jobs, and they genuinely cared for the customers they served in Nebraska. When a position came open in the Environmental Department, I submitted my application. Through research of NPPD and my interview, I knew that this was the place that I wanted to be. Pay and benefits are excellent, but even more than that the supportive environment of NPPD immediately shows. Knowing that I would be working for a company that would not only support me but encourage me to grow in my position made the decision to work for NPPD an easy one.
The most rewarding part of my job is the people that I work with. From the day that I first arrived, I felt like part of the NPPD family. Everyone in the Environmental Department knows they are on the same team, and it shows in the way they work together and support each other. I have always been encouraged to ask my co-workers for guidance, and they have always been eager to provide me with opportunities to learn – even when it may take more of their time. Having this level of support from co-workers, as well as all other departments within NPPD I have been able to work with, has been invaluable in helping me learn and grow in my position at NPPD.
I generally do not have a “typical work day” which was a big draw for me in my decision to work for NPPD in the Environmental Department. The Environmental Department oversees all aspects of environmental compliance for NPPD which means that we are always working on something new. During any given week, Environmental staff may be involved in fish tissue sampling, permitting, water sampling, exhaust stack testing, dam sluicing, coal ash storage, stormwater control, etc. The list goes on. The variety of projects that we work on means that I am always having new experiences and learning about new aspects of NPPD.
NPPD has a great benefits package, including vacation, holidays, and medical leave benefits that match or exceed most companies. What really sets NPPD apart though is the retirement plan. A 2-to-1 match by NPPD for your 401k is a benefit that is rarely seen in business today. On top of that NPPD has excellent insurance options, including a wellness incentive program and term life insurance, and an Employee Assistance Program (EAP). The NPPD benefits package is the best offering from an employer that I have experienced.
First and foremost, NPPD is a company that legitimately cares for its employees. I learned that on my first day in the office. NPPD considers its employees part of a “family,” and it really shows. On top of that, NPPD encourages its employees to learn and grow. A great example of that was my opportunity to attend a two-week leadership development workshop put on by NPPD. The presentations were fantastic, and the skills I learned from the workshop will be instrumental in my professional development. Finally, NPPD is stable. Stability in an employer is important to me. NPPD has been around since 1970, and although the world of energy generation has changed drastically since then, NPPD has shown that it can continue to adapt and stay ahead of the curve in ensuring that it continues to meet the needs of its customers.
“NPPD cares about you and your family, and in ways your co-workers become a second family.”
When I was preparing to graduate college and was attending multiple job interviews, NPPD was the best when it came to pay, benefits, and work hours. I had companies I interviewed with tell me they would not be able to compete with NPPD.
When you see the lightbulb turn on, and you know the student gets it and will be successful performing the task in the field.
As an instructor you are either in the classroom or labs with your students or you are preparing classes. Preparation for classes could range from updating an existing lesson to writing a lesson from scratch, developing exams, building lab mockups, and gathering equipment necessary for labs.
NPPD is always looking to improve benefits or ensure the benefits you have are competitive with the industry.
Within NPPD there is possibility for future career growth and personal development. NPPD cares about you and your family, and in ways your co-workers become a second family.
"I’d say the most rewarding part of my job is just being able to work for everyone in the State of Nebraska."
At the time that my position came open, I wasn’t really looking for another job. My cousin worked with one of my now co-workers along the way and that co-worker ended up at NPPD. He had mentioned to my cousin that NPPD was looking for a surveyor so I took a look at the position. I had surveyed four years for a private engineering firm after college and then switched over to the utility construction industry for 1.5 years when this job opened. At that time I was working an average of 60 hours per week with no benefits, vacation or any of the things we take for granted. When I interviewed for the job and saw what they had to offer me, I knew it was my chance to get back into surveying and to better my life with a great company. It was a no-brainer.
I’d say the most rewarding part of my job is just being able to work for everyone in the State of Nebraska. We all enjoy the day-to-day work and take pride in what we do, but I think most of us who work in the field really take pride in what we do when there is a storm and everyone is looking at us to do our best work possible to get their power restored as quickly and safely as possible.
My typical work day varies a bunch working for NPPD. We have three field surveyors, with two working out of Columbus and one out in Kearney, to cover the whole state so we stay busy and cover a lot of ground. I tend to float between helping both locations depending on what our workload is.
My day usually starts off with checking emails in the office or meeting a co-worker at a local office or heading straight to a project from the hotel if I’m working out of town for the week. If I’m in the office all day, I’m usually working on AutoCAD drawings, processing data from previous field projects or meeting with engineers to discuss future projects. On days we go to the field from Columbus, it means heading downstairs from my second floor cubicle to the garage area to grab my work truck and load any materials and equipment we may need. Once we are loaded up, we head to the project.
Our projects vary greatly, and, as I mentioned earlier, could be anywhere in the state. When you get Christmas cards from a hotel, you know you stayed there too many times that year! We survey anything from new powerlines to refurbs on existing powerlines. We do similar work for substations also. We also do monitoring surveys at our hydro facilities and dam structures. We work at our various power plants to do different projects, at their request, and we do a lot of work with our canal systems that serve GGS or various irrigation needs.
Another project that we usually have that starts around harvest time until spring planting is doing clearance checks on various powerlines across the state. These are done to make sure that landowners and especially farmers have enough ground clearance under a powerline’s conductors to safely do their work. As our linemen patrol or check our powerlines they also come up with pivots where there might be a clearance issue with our line.
That’s a good portion of what we do, but I’m sure I missed things, still, and we even get new requests for work that we’ve never done before. Like, can you guys tell me how plumb a wind turbine tube is? The variety that we have for field work to do makes for a far more enjoyable day than sitting in a cubicle all day long!
I’d say probably one of the biggest differences is that we have a 2-to-1 match on our 401k. NPPD also does pretty good on our vacation and medical leave accrual time and depending on where you come from our health insurance beats most places, too.
NPPD is a great place to work with great pay and benefits and long term stability.