Cymer Reviews

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Cymer Chairman and CEO Bob Akins
Bob Akins
8 Ratings

Pros
  • Cutting edge technology, smart phones would not exist with out them (in 6 reviews)

  • Competitive pay and benefits package (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • Lopsided work life balance causes burnout and high employee turnover (in 4 reviews)

  • Upper management has a hard time because the technology is so difficult and changing so rapidly (in 6 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

10 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (9)

    Great people until you get to the Executive Suite

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Engineering in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Engineering in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Cymer full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The intelligence and energy of the people make this company a very special place. There is a strong work ethic and desire to do the right thing.

    Cons

    This company is being led by one person, the President and COO who insists on approving everything including simple briefings. If you are willing to be a puppet and let him pull your strings then you will be greatly successful as a leader at Cymer. If you have a mind of your own or any expertise at all he feels threatened and attacks by sabotaging your ability to be successful. When I first joined the organization, I was excited by the vision and the opportunities. That is until my first meeting with the President who let me know clearly that he did not care about my background, experience or opinions. He simply wanted me to do what he told me to do and would not approve anything else.

    Advice to Management

    Realize the damage that one person can make in an organization that has so much potential and do something about it.


  2. Helpful (6)

    Large, disorganized, confusing

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Cymer full-time

    Pros

    There are good-hearted, helpful people at Cymer that truly care about the technology and about others. The work is fast-paced and there can be lots of travel opportunities with the merger and emerging technology. There is also a lot of opportunity for networking and education.

    Cons

    There is no organization. Difficult personalities. It is hard to see the true reward of working in the industry when you are buried in corporate administration. Overabundance of meetings get in the way of completing anything. Most real engineering is done by contractors. Matrix management yields too many people in the chain of command. The HR department is completely incompetent.

    Advice to Management

    Great company in some ways, but lots of cons in terms of organization and people.


  3. Helpful (9)

    Sr. Manager

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Manager in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Cutting edge technologies, work colleagues and educational opportunities. Company celebrations and moral building cookouts.

    Cons

    Wouldn't need moral building cookouts if the company respected and valued its employees. "What have you done for me lately" mentality from management. Unfair management supported by HR department.

    Advice to Management

    ASML needs to clean house and eliminate Cymer's director and senior director level. ASML already has superior directors making Cymer directors redundant and costly


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  5. Helpful (6)

    Run now unless you really need the money.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rancho Bernardo, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Rancho Bernardo, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    They were great in the early days. Lots of golden handcuffs in the form of stock options. They were all cut out and then in came the Applied folks. Went down hill through the Pascal days.

    Cons

    Now they are just another semi place with way to many mid and upper management. They need to be spoon feed information instead of getting in there and working the issues. Spent more time doing weekly reports than working. They do not implement the best designs, only the ones that barely meet spec and change as little as possible. Their lasers could be much better if they wanted to do the engineering and let the engineers do the work. They waste a lot of material.

    Advice to Management

    Get a clue, hire the best and get out of the way. Leave them to do the job and you go around to feed the info upstairs.


  6. Helpful (8)

    If you're thinking of working at Cymer....think again!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Many of the employees of Cymer are incredibly intelligent and very dedicated. Cymer pays well (both salary and bonuses).....because they have to. The technology is very complex and interesting. It's very much an engineering oriented company. Despite how upper management views and treats its employees - the company continues to do well financially. This is mostly due to having only one competitor. The GM of TCZ has integrity, is a great leader, and treats employees with respect.

    Cons

    COO has a huge ego and is a micromanager to the extreme. No matter what you do or accomplish it is never good enough. CEO still has the founder mentality and believes that people should eat, sleep, breathe Cymer at all times. This is understandable when you are a start-up company and the risk/rewards are high, but Cymer is not a start-up company. Employees are asked to travel internationally with only a day or two notice, over holidays, on weekends, etc - but are not given any comp time. The expectation is that you work, work, work period. Executive management has no respect for the employee's work/life balance, yet executive management is nowhere to be found at 5PM. The mantra is anticipate, plan and flawlessly execute which is laughable as the executive team does not follow this at all. It's a constant reactionary environment which is mostly driven by the COO's whims. If you are going into the company as a indivindual contributor you may be okay, but if you are considering any kind of management position - RUN THE OTHER WAY! You will have no authority to get anything done and you will have no budget. You may get a plan signed off on and will be in the process of execution when your VP tells you that the COO is claiming he has not heard of this project and as a result won't support it (even though he has indeed been previously briefed on the project, but just doesn't remember). And no matter what you and your team accomplishes it will never be good enough. Almost the entire executive team is from Applied Materials. Good luck trying to implement anything that isn't the "Applied" way. At last count there were over 60 executives at the Director level and above had left the organization within a 4 year period. Executive management is big on hiring VP's but not giving management headcount for individual contributors. HR is ineffective - not because they don't want to help or try to help but because the COO keeps tieing their hands and then blaming them for everything. Cymer's 2 customers completely rule them - there is not customer management, requirements gathering, in many cases no good product roadmap in place, no documentation, etc... Although Cymer claims they are a technology driven company - this only impacts their product. Their products are very complex and technical. Operations is an absolute mess. Expect an outdated version of Lotus Notes for email, manual time cards for non exempt employees, a home grown system for performance management, the www.cymer.com site is from the dark ages, the intranet (Cymersource) is a joke. And good luck trying to get the COO to approve updating operational systems. The communication to employees (or lack thereof) is a joke. There is an irrational fear of information getting to the customers. As a result, information is rarely shared with the field organization. Many times field employees hear about decisions that were made by Cymer management from the customers.

    Advice to Management

    No advice to executive management - as they would not and do not listen. The board should request that an anonymous employee survey be administered. They should take a hard look at the attrition numbers, especially at the engineering and management level. Advice to the board - it's past time to make a change at the COO and CEO level. Since bonuses were just paid out - be prepared for some serious attrition.


  7. Helpful (3)

    Better Understand Their Business Model

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Manager in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Manager in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Cymer has great facilities and does not skimp on improvements that are needed to advance the technology. Change happens quickly, are you ready for it? Above average compensation in many cases.

    Cons

    Sr Management drives good people to leave HR is completely ineffective and is a whipping post for Sr Mgmt Turnover is high Wellness and concern for employees Machievellian environment

    Advice to Management

    Need better customer management and address the turnover issue. The greater SD area knows what it is like to work there and many won't!


  8. Helpful (3)

    A company with little growth unless you are part of the club

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Technology leader. Pay is reasonable. Good experience for someone fresh out of school or just want to get a paycheck.

    Cons

    No career growth. Decision is made by 1-2 people at the top. Very slow and painful decision process. Extremely short term focused.

    Advice to Management

    Trust VPs, Directors, Managers, and group leaders can make the right decisions. Given them authority. Focus on long term growth


  9. Helpful (3)

    Here is a corporation in desperate need of a hostile takeover.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Current Employee - Engineer in San Diego, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Cymer once had an upside. Before the pay cuts, they offered fair salaries. With their reputation, they had to. Cymer is worth considering if you're out of a job and have bills to pay. It might also be worth considering as a first job to pay off your student loans and car loans until a real job comes along. On the bright side, you might learn something about the technology that you can use in your next job.

    Cons

    Cymer is run by and for the senior scientists. If they do not have the answers, then the problem can not be solved at Cymer. This frustrates both the mid-level managers, engineers and technicians. That fact might be alright if the senior scientists were not insulting in how they treat others. I have never seen a group of brilliant young PhD scientists treated so badly... and that says a lot.

    Advice to Management

    Retire as soon as possible.


  10. Helpful (4)

    Just an awful, awful, company to work for.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Good location in San Diego Interesting technology in a dynamic industry, which is clearly striving to keep up with Moore's law.

    Cons

    Highly incompetent, egocentric executive management, with an extremely poor ability to make decisions. They treat employees very badly, burn them out with excessive workloads, impossible schedules. There is a strong blame culture and individuals are not rewarded for good work. No real opportunities for career path, except if you leave the company and come back. No willingness to show an degree of reasonableness. Seems to get worse with time. Reliability of technology is extremely poor from a chipmaker's perspective.

    Advice to Management

    Start to value and respect your employees, and reduce the no of personal attacks on individuals, and obvious favoritism. Employ individuals at the senior management level who clearly have ability, and not because they are friends with VP, or senior director.


  11. Helpful (4)

    Not a place for any software professional. No software leader has ever lasted longer than 3 years.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineering Manager
    Former Employee - Software Engineering Manager
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    If you understand the cyclical nature of their work, you can make some money on the stock options. If you are a physicist, this can be a great company to work for.

    Cons

    Arrogance of senior management is huge. Only valued skills are physics and finance. No concern for employees, layoffs are a common event. Death Marches are encouraged, no concern for the bodies left behind. When things are not going well, senior management just gets out their whips.

    Advice to Management

    Retire.



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