Google Reviews

Updated August 28, 2014
Updated August 28, 2014
2,470 Reviews

4.4
2,470 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Google Co-Founder & CEO Larry Page
Larry Page
1,302 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Great work-life balance with adequate opportunity for career development (in 105 reviews)

  • Free food, amazing people, amazing vision - almost everything about this company is a pro (in 220 reviews)


Cons
  • This is one reason why maintaining a good work-life balance can be challenging (in 100 reviews)

  • You can feel that it's a really big company now - difficult to advance & a lot of red tape (in 71 reviews)

More Highlights

1,507 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1. 34 people found this helpful  

    Great balance between big-company security and fun, fast-moving projects

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Engineer III  in  New York, NY
    Current Employee - Software Engineer III in New York, NY

    I have been working at Google full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    * If you're a software engineer, you're among the kings of the hill at Google. It's an engineer-driven company without a doubt (that *is* changing, but it's still very engineer-focused).
    * The perks are amazing. Yes, free breakfast, lunch, an dinner every weekday. Aaaaaamazing holiday parties (at Waldorf Astoria, NY Public Library, MoMA, etc.); overnight ski trips to Vermont; overnight nature trips to the Poconos in the summer; summer picnics at Chelsea piers; and on and on and on. I don't see this going away unless the company starts hurting financially.
    * Speaking of which, the company is doing quite well, which reflects in bonuses and equity grants.
    * There a huge diversity of work ranging from defending independent journalism worldwide (Google Project Shield) to crisis response during disasters (see Maps during Hurricane Sandy or Tsunamis), to the best machine learning experts and projects in the world, to more mundane revenue-driving projects in advertising, there's really something for everybody.
    * It's easy to move around within the company as long as you're in good standing (the vast majority of engineers are).
    * The company is amazingly open: every week Larry Page and Sergey Brin host what's called TGIF where food, beer, wine, etc. is served, a new project is presented, and afterward there's an open forum to ask the executives anything you want. It's truly fair game to ask anything, no matter how controversial, and frequently the executives will be responsive.
    * No, nobody cares if you use an iPhone, Facebook, shop with Amazon, stream using Spotify, or refuse to use Google+. The company is amazingly open and flexible.

    Neither pro nor con, but general information on work-life balance, promotions, and advancement.
    * Work life balance can be what you want it to be on most teams. (Some teams are in more competitive sectors and require more crazy hours all the time - but very few of them). If you do what's expected, you'll be fine at least for a handful of years. Working a roughly 40 hour work week is possible, and many people do it. There are also people who are hyper-motived and work like crazy just because they love it, or because they're competitive, or they want to get a promotion. If you work 40 hour weeks without putting in anything extra, you'll fall behind them as they advance and you stand still - and maybe that doesn't matter, so it works out for everybody. But at least know where you would realistically stand.
    * If you excel and work your butt off, you'll be compensated and promoted. If you let yourself be a code monkey, and just sit coding with your head down all day, you'll be fine but won't advance. A big complaint from some Googlers is about not being able to advance "even at Google" with pure coding. Sure, if you're the uber genius who created MapReduce and Bigtable, you're going to advance like a rocket without having to do anything but coding; but if you're like most engineers at Google -- smarter than average, but just average compared to other Googlers -- you're just a good coder and not revolutionary. Code monkeys are important to actually get stuff done, and to be sure you absolutely need to be a good coder as a software engineer (it's the minimum requirement), but code monkeys won't advance because they're not leaders and they're easy to replace. To get promoted you need to lead and do more than just code. There are plenty of ways to lead other than being an official tech lead, so this isn't actually _that_ hard, so the real point is just that you can't just sit there coding what other people tell you to code all day and expect to advance.

    Cons

    * It *is* becoming larger, and with it comes growing pains: bureaucracy, slow to respond to market threats, bloated teams, cross-divisional tension (though nothing remotely approaching that of Microsoft's internal tension).
    * The quality of the engineers is possibly dropping, but possibly not. It's hard to get real metrics, because as the absolute number of people grows, naturally the number of bad apples grows; as a percentage it's supposedly the same as it ever was, but with larger numbers of poorer quality engineers it just _feels_ like things might be changing for the worse.
    * Also with growth means more internal-confidential data leaks (again, because of the raw numbers of people) -- product announcements being ruined, etc. That means the company has to be tighter-lipped internally to avoid leaks, which makes things less open. It's still an amazingly open place, but less so than it was even a couple years ago. The good thing is they recognize it and actively look to improve things because they know how important it is to keep the good culture.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep the focus on the user. Everything else will follow.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    It's Google

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

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

    Pros

    Smart people. Good engineering practices. Free food onsite three times a day is an essential convenience factor. Lots of opportunities for travel. Interesting projects. Compensation and benefits very generous. Lots of cool perks, fun offsites etc.

    Cons

    Capricious high-level management direction, some projects don't make sense. Working across many time zones in distributed offices is challenging at times.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Hard work, but worth it.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Site Reliability Engineer III  in  New York, NY
    Current Employee - Site Reliability Engineer III in New York, NY

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

    Pros

    One of the best companies in the world to work for.

    Cons

    If you want work-life balance, you have to be the one to take the initiative. It won't just be handed to you.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Smartest people ever

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

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

    Pros

    The people are amazing, everyone is super talented and smart. Food & other perks are generous. For a large company, has a superbly impressive culture and responsiveness to employees' desires.

    Cons

    Individual team/group culture varies widely, some are a lot more "fun" to work on than others.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Strategically: keep it up! Larry is doing a great job internally. From a communications standpoint, I miss the days of Eric as CEO, as he's just so great at talking to the press and representing the company externally.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Enjoyable

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

    I have been working at Google full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Experience in one of the largest and well know companies in the world in a great location and amongst similar minded people

    Cons

    the cost of living in the bay area and the long working hours make it tough to continue motivation and standards

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    expected job hours and expected love for the brand is sometimes unrealistic

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Amazing place, strong culture but not perfect for mid / senior level managers

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

    I have been working at Google full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Incredible culture; great transparency and excellent communication between senior management and the rest of the company. Very smart, motivated and fun people to work with. Incredibly fast paced and forward thinking company. Generally, very good products which are constantly improved on. Google is very consumer centric and also fast to learn and improve its products.

    Cons

    Google can be extremely competitive and is unrelenting in its pace. More importantly, for senior or mid level management you can hit a glass ceiling. The company is very product / eng driven which can at times be frustrating for sales & marketing people. Google is not organized structurally for employees looking for GM or P&L experience. It's too functionally structured for that. If you want to eventually manage a business then unless you're a product / eng person this might not be the right place for you.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Best company ever created in human history

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

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

    Pros

    Strong vision, execution, best pay / perks, seriously aiming to make the world a better place.

    Cons

    Internal competition, more top down these days than before, but still better than any other company outside.
    Too many Directors (compared to T7s), many incompetent ones, very difficult to move up in some part of the company, which serves as a reason why competent people leave.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the good work!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Great, once you learn to work smarter

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

    I have been working at Google full-time

    Pros

    Perks, benefits, pay, work-from-home policy, and really smart people. You don't run into morons here, and that makes life *so* *much* *better*. The tools available inside are better than anything that anyone can buy, and really have no equal.

    You have a bit of a raffle in terms of your manager, but really, just switch around when you can to find one that works well for you. Being at Google with a manager that you work well with is an optimal life situation

    Cons

    Some managers are great technically, but have no people skills whatsoever. Also, the level of work and output by your peers is very high. You have to learn to work smart to make your work-life balance fit. This means learning how to effectively use the tools (which takes time, but they're really good), to build discipline to avoid spacing out on random websites, and actively managing your time. You also have company policies (easy to work from home, flexible hours) to make that happen.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Make it easier for employees to switch groups when a manager has poor rankings.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    review

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Google

    Pros

    great place to work at, lots of perks

    Cons

    stressful at times, they would for you to completely move i

  11.  

    Google company review

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Program Analyst  in  Mountain View, CA
    Current Employee - Program Analyst in Mountain View, CA

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

    Pros

    Had an excellent experience working here, many great perks and amazing compensation working full of visionaries

    Cons

    The only con would be to have more opportunities for contracts to be full-time

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Just keep up the great work!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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