Autodesk Reviews

Updated July 19, 2015
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Autodesk President, CEO, and Director Carl Bass
Carl Bass
85 Ratings

Pros
  • Work/Life flexibility is not be confused with work/life balance (in 85 reviews)

  • Also a fair amount of telecommuting / work from home options depending on the group you're in (in 23 reviews)

Cons
  • Work/Life Balance is not as good as it could be (in 14 reviews)

  • Poor job done by senior management to motivate employee base and create real momentum around business changes (in 22 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

179 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (4)

    Autodesk is good until you're exposed to the workings of management

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Manager in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Autodesk full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    If you're lucky and on the right team you will work with some really smart, inspiring and nice people! They can become like family, which is why some people have stayed at the company for a decade or more. This is a company that will support you if you are a working parent. Great benefits. Some great legacy products and a devoted customer base.

    Cons

    It's disappointing to see such a lack of vision and ability to prioritize and execute in a meaningful way in the management team between the C staff and the line managers - of what is after all a cool company with cool products and technology. The Director and above level at Autodesk tend to prioritize their own security and high salaries and bonuses over the good of the company and the employees. There is a group of cronies in these positions. If you are ever exposed to it, you will be demotivated and de-energized by the unjustified egos, hypocrisy, self serving agenda, and just plain foolishness of Autodesk management.

    Advice to Management

    One team has brought in a Jack Welch style of management coaching - for the line managers and individual contributors! This is not where your problem is. If you want company transformation you need to scrutinize those at the Director level and above - are they really providing tangible value to the company - or are they just doing abstract internal marketing to you and each other, and providing no product value? You have way too many yes people in the VPs and Directors. Not only are they yes people, but they say yes without trying for any deep understanding and so they are making bad decisions, which they then try to cover up.


  2. Helpful (2)

    Good and bad, just like any other company

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Program Manager
    Current Employee - Program Manager

    I have been working at Autodesk full-time (More than 8 years)

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The public perception is great because of the innovative things being done in places like Pier 9. It's cool seeing the Autodesk logo on video game splash screens. I am proud to tell people that I work for Autodesk. The benefits are incredible. Health, vision, dental, 401k, ESPP, stock gifting based on performance. Healthcare providers frequently tell me that they've never seen health insurance as good as ours. Vision insurance pays for an eye exam each year plus glasses or contacts for every member of my family. The PTO is generous and there is no limit on sick time. Every 4 years employees are provided with a 6 week paid sabbatical to be used at any time within the next 4 years. Employees are given the proper tools to do their jobs.

    Cons

    While telecommuting is available in certain situations, it is becoming more and more rare to hire someone not located near an office. It often seems as if good talent is being passed over in favor of having chairs being filled in offices. Opportunities for career growth are based on politics rather than performance. If you ask why then you aren't dedicated to your job. Some employees are able to jump from job to job and stay fresh, while others are overlooked and become stagnant. Middle management - my biggest gripe. Employee disbursements look like a bell curve. C Level is pretty standard for any corporation, Once you start going down the ladder into middle management it swells like a balloon. Leave middle management and go on down the chain and it tapers back off. Any given person may have to answer to a number of people, and most of them contradict each other. All hands meetings are mostly spent focusing on one subject that only appeals to a small segment of the audience. Any news delivered can't be 100% trusted because by the time the next one comes around the process will have changed 10 times. Middle management "interprets" what they take out of those meetings and regurgitates it in a completely unrecognizable form. Always being told that the division is making money on a scale never seen before yet expenditures at levels below middle management are so tightly restricted that you can't effectively do what you need to. Benefits and perks that are advertised heavily on the "look at why we're so great to work for!" employment site are either limited to specific office locations or left up to direct manager discretion. If you get stuck with a manager who is afraid to spend any budget on his or her direct reports then you can forget any extras. Work/Life balance is a mixed bag. It's easy to land on either side of this. Some people really manage that life part very well, while others can easily fall into the work part by saying yes one too many times. While employees aren't told that they live to work, the idea is implied. If you work hard you can't slack up because now your extra work is the norm and doing the standard amount is considered poor performance.

    Advice to Management

    Upper management: thin the herd. Look down from the mountain peak at the massive avalanche in the middle and the few people at the bottom with bucket trying to stop it. Which do you think is more business savvy: reduce the size of the avalanche or take the people with buckets? Those people at the bottom are juggling other "stuff" that flows downhill. Middle management, please just go. Stop driving your top talent away with your micromanaging and backstabbing.

    Autodesk Response

    Jul 14, 2015 – Intern- Social Talent

    Thank you for taking the time to write a thoughtful review. We want to assure you these reviews are taken seriously and I will pass along your thoughts to the necessary channels. If you have any ... More


  3. Helpful (1)

    Good Company

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Program Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Program Manager in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Autodesk full-time (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Opportunities exist everywhere as long as you establish a track record. You have to come in strong to get that necessary foothold. The career path is not clearly defined, but the opportunities exist. Flex time Sabbaticals

    Cons

    Management issues - leaders aren't held to the right standard and the impacts it has on teams is not considered enough. Passing a test to be a director doesn't prove you are right for the company. Some measurement is needed. Vacation time is limited so you have to plan your extra time off at the Christmas holiday.

    Advice to Management

    Focus on getting your leaders to the right level. Number one - make sure they are respected by their teams. If they aren't, you have a huge problem.


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  5. Helpful (6)

    Good company with lots of problems

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Autodesk full-time (More than 10 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Competitive salary, excellent benefits. Ability to be involved in many different types of projects and learn a variety of technologies. At the engineering level, ability to work with great people who want to work together to get the job done.

    Cons

    For all the talk about work/life balance, it's definitely more work than life. The longer you are there, the more you feel like there is a "target" on your back for termination. The company seems to be moving back towards more outsourcing. Opportunities for growth and advancement are there, provided you are extremely vocal about wanting them and willing to "push" yourself into those areas. For example, if you want to be involved in a project that offers new technology, but may not be assigned to it, you need to find ways on your own to participate and help with the project un-officially, hoping you'll be noticed. Also, there are too many meetings and too many org changes which do not provide any stability.

    Advice to Management

    Be more transparent to the engineers below you, information is often not sent down the chain. Offer the same opportunities to all employees that wish to learn and grow, it can only benefit the company. Work on morale, as it really affects the employees love of their job which can only hurt the company. Reduce the amount of meetings, you should not need multiple meetings to make a decision on the same topic. Reduce and simplify process.


  6. Helpful (8)

    Politics Rule the day

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Autodesk full-time (More than 10 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Benefits are second to none Flexible work hours, many work at home positions

    Cons

    Getting into management takes an act of god Company has started promoting more on "who you know" vs perfomance No leadership/ management advancement program

    Advice to Management

    Start recognizing people who do a good job vs


  7. nice company

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Summer Intern in San Rafael, CA
    Former Employee - Summer Intern in San Rafael, CA

    I worked at Autodesk (Less than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    good location, friendly environment, big title

    Cons

    boring, small working site, too much indian style


  8. Helpful (8)

    No focus, trying to keep up.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Product Marketing in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Product Marketing in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Autodesk (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    - Very relaxed, great work-life balance (depends on which team you're in) - Good benefits, great office location in SF - Stock does well - Access to making things, learning new tools (if that's your shtick) - Gallery has Design Night which is cool to attend

    Cons

    - Don't join this place if you're young, ambitious and want to make a career in marketing - Compensation is below industry standard - Extremely product driven - Way too many products, no singularity on vision - Siloed culture, no one knows what the other is doing, ten people doing the same job - Everyone thinks they are an expert at marketing - Lack of new fresh ideas - most of the team is made up of folks who have been around the company for 10 years - Lack of innovation means less skills learnt - No budget invested on things that really count. Product has the last say. - Reorgs after reorgs, after reorgs. - Did I mention reorgs?

    Advice to Management

    Innovate faster. Streamline your products. Trust your marketing personnel. Don't follow your gut, believe the data. Replace your VP of Marketing.


  9. Helpful (1)

    Autodesk - Visionary Company with Cultural Challenges

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Autodesk

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Inspiring Company Vision (ADSK really does help it's customers imagine, design and create a better world) Strong Ability to Execute on Vision (month after month, ADSK releases cool and important tools that are well used in the market) God Benefits Ability to Manage Work and Family Life

    Cons

    Fractured internal structure with pockets of function and pockets of dysfunction Lots of politics

    Advice to Management

    Ensure that the right people are empowered to make decisions and support those decisions across the company


  10. Helpful (4)

    If your over 40, don't bother applying anymore

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Rafael, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Rafael, CA

    I have been working at Autodesk full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good benefits, exciting and innovative changes happening with their products and solutions now. Some really great management who will really help you develop - depends on group and location.

    Cons

    Depends in which group you work for, can seem like completely different company. A lot of lip service and discussion time to development but real growth and opportunity only available to some in reality. All groups and divisions claim they are global but there is a lot of contraction now, hiring only in Bay area, young people lower payscales who don't have a lot of experience or skills. A lot of people with deep knowledge and experience - and higher paygrades - purged. Some VPs surround themselves with 'yes' men/women.

    Advice to Management

    Remember those in the trenches

    Autodesk Response

    Jun 30, 2015 – Talent Brand and Social Media Manager

    I'm sorry that you're had this experience. I can assure you that we pride ourselves on fair hiring practices with regards to all protected classes (age included) but it's important for us to be ... More


  11. Helpful (3)

    Innovative products and engineering but stifled business culture

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Autodesk

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Incredible products that inspire customers to design and create amazing things. 6 week paid leave every 4 years

    Cons

    Extremely siloed and a very limited traditional product development cycle that limits innovation. Huge emphasis on engineering (which is excellent) at the expense of good design and user research. This will be a huge problem as the company shifts to the cloud. The company needs to become more user focused. They are attempting but there are a lot of growing pains that need to be overcome.

    Advice to Management

    Overhaul the management structure. You need fresh blood. Too many people have been there 15+ years. Focus less on technical capabilities of your employees and instead reward people management skills (empowering people). Your company needs more leaders and fewer technologists.



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