Google Reviews

Updated September 15, 2014
Updated September 15, 2014
2,460 Reviews
4.4
2,460 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Google Co-Founder & CEO Larry Page
Larry Page
1,327 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

1,169 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1. 43 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. 2 people found this helpful  

    Good company to pursue career

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Google

    Pros

    Great culture and passionate people

    Cons

    Nothing negative. Just personal relocation.

  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great place to work

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Google

    Pros

    benefits, food, terrific co workers

    Cons

    crowded, competing for talent, remote offices

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  5. 3 people found this helpful  

    Insane workload but with almost no bureaucratic nonsense

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

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

    Pros

    Benefits are fantastic. People routinely ask if the internet rumors are true about the lunches, healthcare, etc.. well... they are. Further- you are encouraged to take advantage of them (including things like 12 weeks of paternity leave)

    People are, by and large, some of the smartest most interesting people I have ever met.

    Cons

    Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE wants to ask me questions about Google, if I like it, is rumor XYZ true, ... etc. Also, just about everyone within 3 degrees of me in places like LinkedIn have asked for jobs. Even the Barista at Peets asked for a job.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. 3 people found this helpful  

    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
  7.  

    challenging, supportive, focused, important

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

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

    Pros

    NYC, meals, soccer team, meals, benies,

    Cons

    don't know yet, will find out inevitably

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I had a great sit-down talk with someone outside my group about my long term plans. I hope everyone gets that talk,

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Great place to work at

    • 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 as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    Relaxed working environment
    Really talented peers who are ready to help

    Cons

    The company is too large to move fast

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Great

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Google as an intern for less than a year

    Pros

    Google is the best place to intern.

    Cons

    Nothing, everything was great. Learned a lot.

  10.  

    Great summer working on open source projects.

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

    I worked at Google as a contractor for less than a year

    Pros

    Highly smart and supportive people. Lots to learn from everyone.

    Cons

    Didn't get much exposure thereafter.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Red Badge... aka Temp

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Google as a contractor for more than a year

    Pros

    I really was amazed by all the amenities on campus.

    Even though I was just a temp... it was a chance to socialize & work with some very smart people.

    Cons

    For most red badges, (temps), there is absolutely no chance of them ever being hired on as a full-time employee.

    However, that doesn't stop some of them from trying with a "take no prisoners" approach.

    They will throw you under the bus & stab you in the back whenever possible.

    Always CYA !

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Say "hi" to some of the red badges when they walk by.

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