Glu Reviews

Updated March 16, 2015
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4.0
17 Reviews
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Glu President, CEO, and Director Niccolo De Masi
Niccolo De Masi
8 Ratings

17 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    Very friendly and open culture

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

    I have been working at Glu full-time (more than a year)

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

    Pros

    I joined as a senior engineer in the team and worked at Glu for almost 2 years and was overall satisfied with the culture and openness of the top management who would reach out to employees and convey the goals for each quarter out on a timely basis. Good health benefits and other perks including lavish bonuses at times when the company is really doing well. Lots of free snacks, drinks and games to chew upon when you feel you want to take a break from work. Some people in certain departments would stay long and dedicated but most would honor their work-life balance. Merit-based promotions and raises. Overall a great learning environment for newbies and freshers.

    Cons

    Intolerance for mistakes. Even a slight one could make you walk out of doors. Grumpy bosses who think they are the only authority and would not hesitate to shout at people even in meetings. Too much unnecessary power assumed by management and lots of unwanted meetings would take place even to discuss trivial things which would be a complete waste of time. HR slow in responding and things can take a long time to materialize even if its important to you simply because it wasn't important to them, so less caring. Managers holding certain positions can make a big fuss out of ordinary questions or situations and would be reluctant to share knowledge because they think that could endanger their hold on power. Control is what they want to assume even if it appears unreal or unnecessary. And layoff rounds would occur once every six months.

    Advice to Management

    Mid-tier management is something that needs a drastic makeover or training on how to manage their people better and provide some autonomy in jobs to those who are held responsible for the same. In other words autonomy and responsibilities are highly imbalanced and top management should take steps to align these across departments.

  2. Helpful (1)

    Good company with opportunity

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

    I have been working at Glu full-time (more than 3 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Good company that is not shaken by the economy in terms of job security. I have been here through the good and bad and still had a job (considering I am a stellar employee). There are good chances of moving around within the company.

    Cons

    The reason for most co-workers have left for - below competitive pay. There are many similar companies in the area offering up to 40% larger salaries for the same positions.

    Advice to Management

    Be competitive.

  3. Helpful (2)

    Wonderful game development studio with excellent work/life balance (Bellevue office)

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Artist in Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Artist in Bellevue, WA

    I have been working at Glu full-time (more than 3 years)

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

    Pros

    Work/life balance: Employees are encouraged to have a life outside of the office.

    Positive studio culture: In general, everyone here gets along very well, and we regularly have fun activities. We decorate team areas to suit our individual personalities.

    Successful products: While we are not making Candy Crush numbers, we have a successful product that allows us to pursue fun and interesting projects without having to lay people off.

    The studio takes care of its employees: Managers and directors do everything they can to take care of the employees. There is genuine concern about everyone's well-being.

    Transparent communication: Where applicable and possible (I understand there are legal areas we can't touch), communication is totally open and transparent. I rarely feel "in the dark" when it comes to studio and project statuses.

    Flexible working arrangements: It's very easy to work from home if needed. This is especially beneficial for people who live in Seattle and areas far outside of Bellevue.

    Cons

    Communication between departments is rocky and needs work. For all the efforts made to unify the teams, there is still an "us and them" approach to things.

    Career paths are unclear. Many people are unsure of how they can progress in their jobs.

    Managers are often overtasked and spread too thin. Some employees are expected to be both a manger and an individual contributor on their projects.

    There is a constant push of doing things faster and cheaper while maintaining high quality standards. This often results in fast and cheap and lowering the quality of our work, because, in the end, it's all about the money.

    Too much focus on hitting our bonus targets. Yes, bonuses are really nice to have, but constantly using that as an incentive and reminder to do better/more work makes me uncomfortable.

    Advice to Management

    Get out into the general team areas and talk to the individuals on each team. Don't stay in a silo in the director's area. Don't just stick with your respective disciplines/specialties. Branch out and get that "cross-func" thing going that you talk so much bout.

    Balance out salaries, especially for the employees who have been with the company/group for years. There are many people who have been promoted into positions with more responsibilities, but their pay doesn't match. People in lower-ranked positions can often be paid more.

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  5. Great, but always room for improvement.

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

    I have been working at Glu

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

    Pros

    Hard working people producing and maintaining quality games.

    Cons

    Don't ask questions - a lot of people aren't interested in taking the time to answering them. Everyone's time here is so valuable...that attitude makes it hard to be efficient.

    Advice to Management

    You have some amazing remote employees that work 24/7 in Customer Care, yet they work through a temp agency. Please consider hiring them as actual Glu employees.

  6. Helpful (1)

    Great mobile game dev, going places!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Engineer in Bellevue, WA
    Current Employee - Engineer in Bellevue, WA

    I have been working at Glu full-time (more than a year)

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

    Pros

    Glu has done a great job at recovering from their 2011-2013 troubles, and they're making great games. They maintain a small-team feel in a medium-sized organization, and they have a strong customer focus. Outstanding open communication from studio management about the business.

    Cons

    There's a bit of whiplash from project and priority shifts, that can affect careers and add stress.

    Advice to Management

    Build career advancement into the corporate culture, not as a bonus but as an expectation. Improve relationships between regional offices.

  7. Great Management = Rapid Turnaround

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

    I have been working at Glu full-time (more than a year)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    I've never worked with such talented, professional developers. The teams are carefully built to balance skills and personalities and the result is an incredible work environment. HR, IT, and our Office Coordinator are all amazing, making working here pleasant and engaging. The executive team makes smart decisions and are actively engaged with the teams, not only finding ways for the teams to get stronger but consistently dedicated to becoming better managers and leaders themselves. There is an incredible amount of transparency regarding the success of the studio's titles - everyone knows how well the studio is performing financially, and there are many opportunities for the average employee to be a part of the ongoing effort to improve our operations. Finally, the studio has a balanced approach to business intelligence, using the incredible amount of data the studio gathers to hon the expertise of our devs without stifling creativity.

    Cons

    The review processes change every year and reviews are often carried out late and in a hurried manner. Career paths and positions are very poorly defined, leaving you stuck wondering how to advance or how to gauge your performance against a studio standard. While the leadership at the top is very strong, some teams and some disciplines suffer from weak leadership/management. All of this combines into a frustrating experience for someone who is focused on their development and advancement. Finally, the working relationship with the head office in SF isn't always a positive one.

    Advice to Management

    Quality over quantity. Management does a great job at identifying the areas of improvement, but they tend to respond by adding more steps, rather than working to improve the quality of what they're already doing.

  8. Long term stability in a volatile game industry

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

    I have been working at Glu full-time (more than 5 years)

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

    Pros

    Few game companies have been operating for over a decade. Glu is amongst the very few that has successfully navigated the ups, downs and shifting tides of a business that is challenging but very rewarding. Creative freedom is on offer within pre-agreed boundaries. Strategic vision for the firm is often prescient and always solid.

    Cons

    I have been here a while and feel we get the strategy right, and often early, but then can't execute on it fast enough or as well as other firms. Seen this a couple of times now. I feel senior mgmt knows and is acting - hopefully the benefits of recent hiring come through later this y ear.

    Advice to Management

    Keep hiring fresh blood that has the precise expertise we need to execute. More team building events would be beneficial.

  9. Helpful (1)

    Good Experience So Far w/Seemingly Strong Upside

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

    I have been working at Glu full-time (more than a year)

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

    Pros

    Management team is aggressive and makes decisions with a multi-year view. Personally have been afforded multiple opportunities to expand my role and responsibilities in my own areas of interest; not just disciplines that need support. Receive competitive compensation and benefits, which has been confirmed through recent conversations with head hunters. Encouraged by Glu's commitment to maintain tight relationships with key mobile platforms and deliver first to market technologies.

    Cons

    The fast pace and lean teams can jeopardize work-life balance. Company also has a bit of a corporate feel for a gaming company, although seems to be improving with recent hires.

    Advice to Management

    Focus on new and innovative gameplay, not just current chart toppers.

  10. Good people, good work, good fun

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - QA Tester in Kirkland, WA
    Former Employee - QA Tester in Kirkland, WA

    I worked at Glu part-time (more than a year)

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

    Pros

    good people, good work, good fun

    Cons

    laid off before contract end date

  11. Helpful (1)

    The place to be in the mobile game developing industry

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

    I worked at Glu as a contractor

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

    Pros

    fast-paced environment, with some of the best minds working together to developing leading freemium games. Friendly co-workers that knows how to get work done with needed, and relax when needed.

    Cons

    finance, marketing side very separated from software side; lacked unity and open communications between the two sides.

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Game Developers Conference 2013
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New hire initiation costumes.

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