Cisco Systems Reviews

Updated October 1, 2014
Updated October 1, 2014
4,973 Reviews
3.6
4,973 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Cisco Systems Chairman & CEO John T. Chambers
John T. Chambers
3,506 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Cisco does a wonderful job of allowing its employees a superb work-life balance (in 597 reviews)

  • It is very flexible environment where most people can work from home if they desire (in 338 reviews)


Cons
  • No part-time options for professionals wanting work-life balance while raising a family (in 176 reviews)

  • The result is a dilution of culture and a race towards big company mediocrity (in 159 reviews)

More Highlights

1,927 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1. 6 people found this helpful  

    In Transition

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

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    Culture of decency, intelligence - a place where most of the employee base is collaborative, well-wishing, open and focused on mutual success.

    Cons

    Transformation today pressures most departments to execute while still figuring out what they should execute, and even as transparency in diminishing relative to past times. Coordinated strategy-building is difficult with this amount of change, and without more open communication about in-the-moment navigation.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Act more like Millennials - open the curtains, talk out loud, be super-transparent and a lot braver. Open yourselves to criticism, and move forward with confidence and moxy. This is not a time to say "we need to become more current and vital", while narrowing communication and holding the cards so close to management's chest.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 3 people found this helpful  

    Decent, challenging, high pressure, job insecurity, tight deadlines

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Hardware Engineer  in  Raleigh, NC
    Former Employee - Hardware Engineer in Raleigh, NC

    I worked at Cisco Systems full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Challenging work atmosphere, brand name, facilities such as gym, health care, 401k, work from home, flexible

    Cons

    Job insecurity, tight deadlines, too much policitics, very asian atmoshphere, creative ideas not really welcomed, need to work as a soldier or slave driven

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop the constant re structuing

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 3 people found this helpful  

    My experience at Cisco has been filled with invigorating career challenges and great people.

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

    I have been working at Cisco Systems as a contractor for more than a year

    Pros

    The best reason to work at Cisco is that you can really grow your career, challenge yourself, and learn new things.

    Cons

    They do not hire many full time employees. The workforce is made up of mostly contractors. The have/have-not dynamic can be difficult on one's sense of self worth.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
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  5.  

    Great company overall.

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

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

    Pros

    Great, smart, talented people who push the envelope in advocating and using technology for a 21st century workplace.

    Cons

    Sometimes you feel like just an employee ID number, not a person. It does tend to feel like a huge corporation, remote and distant from colleagues.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Overall a great company

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Cisco Systems

    Pros

    Excellent training opportunities, great people, big company so lateral opportunities exist. Flexible work hours in most cases. Great benefits as well.

    Cons

    Work life balance is out of whack which is par for the course in the valley, heavy outsourcing. Frequent reorgs and realignments are chaotic.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Frequency of workforce reductions are puzzling, trading valuable talent for bottom line. Too many reorgs, few of which show any real measure of success.

  7.  

    Cisco is one of the best employer to work for

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - IT Manager  in  Research Triangle Park, NC
    Current Employee - IT Manager in Research Triangle Park, NC

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time for more than 10 years

    Pros

    People - Cisco employees one of the brightest in the world, so get to work with the smartest
    Culture - Cisco is one the best place in the world to work for if you are looking for work/life balance.
    Salary - Its competitive with good benefits including bonus
    Technology - Cisco has diversified into various technology play, so you are always work on cutting edge stuff

    Cons

    Too much fat in the upper mgmt. Company has been recently trying to cut the fat and become more lean and thin
    Making decisions takes a long time and this slows down overall projects/programs
    Too many layers causes growth to slow down i

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Move faster and award folks who can really making the difference

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Great for most engineers, not for world changers

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

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time for more than 8 years

    Pros

    It's a large company, so there's not a lot of opportunity to change the world in engineering, but there is plenty for changing your career through parallel roles, management positions, and training. Of course the work is completely flexible with little travel, so the day-to-day can be very predictable. They really make it "comfortable" for every employee, if you want two monitors, a separate chair, late working hours, and a predictable annual review, then it's a not going to be problem. That's great if you're looking for just this.

    Cons

    Cisco gets all it's innovations through acquisitions (or so upper management believes), so there's not a lot of risk taken within the company to do so. Therefore, any mature technologies are in sustaining cost-cutting mode. That means lab budgets are reduced, annual lay offs are common, and the cube space is downsized towards open environments. If you just work to get your work done, this is okay, but if you want your work to be fun and exciting, this is a serious downer. That's why there are fewer young people applying.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Dear Upper Management,

    Grow a backbone! Take some risk and change the world. Your peers will thank you, your engineering teams will love the opportunity, and your group will grow. Stop saying "yes" to your VP boss and think for yourself. Your unyielding commitment to keep your own high paying job has made your decisions slow and conservative, and you've pushed the intelligence to a higher and even less qualified power.

    Thanks.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Great team!

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

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

    Pros

    Great team, lots of talented people. Never had a better experience with such knowledgeable and approachable co-workers. Big company with lots of resources. Great benefits and time-off. Good work/life balance.

    Cons

    Upper management makes arbitrary changes in organization and goals that rarely improve the business and often frustrate or efforts. Very little internal R & D. Prefer to acquire or spin-out then spin-in new ideas. Office facilities are out of date, grungy carpets and cubicles.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Invest in the employees you have. Plan for long term growth not just from one quarter to the next.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10.  

    Worth it for your career.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Network Engineer II  in  Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Network Engineer II in Austin, TX

    I worked at Cisco Systems as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    Good training access, equipment access. MOST importantly working at the mother-ship opens doors up for the rest of your life.

    Cons

    Low pay unless you use a Indian recruiting company who can have razor thin margins and pay you more. The Indian companies are VERY VERY shadey though. Not advised to use them.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Lower HR background policies in back-woods states like Texas which treat charges the same as CONVICTIONs. Keeps good engineers from working for Cisco.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Generally A Good Company To Work For

    Current Employee - Software Engineering Intern  in  San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineering Intern in San Jose, CA

    I have been working at Cisco Systems as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    There is a big push for innovation within the workplace. There appears to be a good work-life balance and compensation is also up to par with other companies. There are also many opportunities to work from home and flexibility depending upon the group. Because Cisco is so large, there is a breadth of positions available.

    Cons

    Employees don't always share that same vision as the CEO. Certain teams and groups appear to have an unequal share of work. This also comes in light of the bi-annual layoffs that happen.

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