HARMAN Reviews

Updated June 30, 2015
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HARMAN Chairman, President and CEO Dinesh C. Paliwal
Dinesh C. Paliwal
25 Ratings

Pros
  • Flexible schedules creating a good work/life balance (in 13 reviews)

  • Relaxed work environment all year round (in 6 reviews)

Cons
  • Work life balance is also not so good (in 9 reviews)

  • There is no work life balance in this company, they expect employees to work minimum 12 hours a day and most of the days it gets exceeds by 12 hours (in 6 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

34 Employee Reviews

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  1. Terrible management

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - Software Engineering in Farmington Hills, MI
    Former Intern - Software Engineering in Farmington Hills, MI

    I worked at HARMAN as an intern (More than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    I learned a lot, had very enjoyable coworker relationships and its a good workspace. I got the feeling that corporate was run well but lower management just ruined everything.

    Cons

    They laid off a huge amount of inters by gathering them all in a room and calling out the names of those who just lost their jobs. One of my bosses kept threatening to fire us if we didn't meet his wildly unreasonable expectations. I loved the job until he became my manager. He had little to none technical expertise and wasted a huge amount of company resources trying to retask QA testers to automation developers. Then when his terrible strategy crashed, they just laid off a bunch of people.

    Advice to Management

    Have a stronger grasp on how sub managers are treating their employees. I know communication is difficult in such a big company, but this manager should have been fired before he wasted the companies resources this way.


  2. Helpful (4)

    Great people, horrible upper management.

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

    I have been working at HARMAN

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Great harding working people. Compensation is good if you only work 40-50 hours a week.

    Cons

    People are overworked and not valued. No balance between work and personal life.


  3. Helpful (10)

    Senior Software Engineer

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

    I have been working at HARMAN full-time (More than 8 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Cool products, interesting technology. Great opportunities if you are in the H1B visa program from India or China. Flexible work times (you can work any 12 hours of the day you want). Lots of overtime available (unpaid). Lots of free lunches because you will be expected work through your normal lunch.

    Cons

    No work/life balance. Worst vacation policy in SE Michigan (you get your 4th week after 15 years of service). Constant fire fighting and new management team has no idea how to bring this under control. People are pretty disappointed in the current direction of the company and the company prospects. A few years ago, in a surprise move to most people, they laid off 50% of the audio group to send those jobs to India and China. Lots of customer dissatisfaction due to OEM yard holds. Management team works so many hours (including lots of weekend meetings) that they don't know how to appreciate your extra efforts.

    Advice to Management

    Sorry, you have a difficult problem to solve. Good luck.


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  5. Helpful (12)

    RUN!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Farmington Hills, MI
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Farmington Hills, MI

    I worked at HARMAN (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    There are good people at the worker bee level that try their best to keep up.

    Cons

    Dinesh is a basket case and incredibly selfish. The dynamic of the Stamford "Iron Fist" paired with the top leaders of the world wide organization would surprise any of their customers. Forget being innovative, sticking up for the good guy or doing anything the right way. Cheapening products and little salary increases, while Dinesh rolls in the money. They keep expanding buildings and dividing up the teams- collaboration is little. Get ready to have projects dumped on you, doing busy work because upper leadership want you to do things 300x over or slice the data over and over. No traction to move forward, it's always about who is the big guy with the loudest bark. Glass ceiling for women, take a look at how many women are in leadership roles compared to the men. It's disgusting.


  6. Helpful (8)

    Soulless Bloodsucking Corporation

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

    I have been working at HARMAN

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    I am not stuck here forever

    Cons

    The CEO is a sociopath. He says "stay paranoid" in almost every corporate newsletter her sends out and uses fear tactics to motivate employees. I feel like I live inside of a Dilbert cartoon - it truly is that ridiculous. If you are smart and talented please stay away from this company, they will chew you up and spit you out. Harman will not be around in the long term because they only care about short term growth - everything is smoke and mirrors.

    Advice to Management

    You already sold your soul to Satan if you are anything above a Director level - Directors are yes men. Either grow a backbone or get another job. Stop this insane corruption.


  7. Helpful (16)

    Sydney Harman is rolling over in his grave

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

    I worked at HARMAN full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    - Below C-level management, there are very talented, underutilized, and dedicated people.
    - Exciting innovation coming from Infotainment and Professional divisions.

    Cons

    * Horrible work/life balance. Say goodbye to family and friends. You bust your hump to help the company reach its quarterly earnings, only to have the CEO/Chairman tell you to work harder. Inspirational words from one of the highest and most overpaid CEOs in the world! No appreciation and/or morale boost from upper management.

    * It's all about the company bottom line. Cost cutting is painful and counter-productive as everything has been outsourced. The infrastructure is very thin with limited resources, which makes for a difficult work environment. It won't be long before employees are asked to use both sides of the toilet paper. CEO wants to take everything to China or India, except for the Stamford office, because he'll need to be close to his $8.5M condo in NYC. Harman employees would prefer that the CEO cut his salary instead of cutting jobs.

    * CEO/Chairman is great at cost-cutting, but terrible at motivating and being a great leader to his employees. The company intranet is filled with business articles that revolve around the CEO's self promotion. Despite the cost cutting, the company is very good at spending millions on worthless initiatives, which include obtaining outdated and irrelevant "brand ambassadors" with little or no return/value. The Branding/Marketing teams have no accountability, nor does the Shenzhen Business Unit when it comes to putting out questionable products that don't work on a global scale.

    * Harman is also extremely top-heavy when it comes to the growing number of VPs and Directors. The CEO loves to tell the media that he's all about listening from the bottom up, but he has yet to prove this statement. Stop cutting jobs and get rid of unnecessary titles and senior-level positions in Stamford and elsewhere. There is probably a VP in charge of overseeing corporate trashcans. You can instantly become a VP at Harman if you're a member of the same country club or spa as the CEO. Most of the C-level management in Stamford know nothing about CE, retail, or branding/marketing audio products. This may explain why many of Harman's brands have rotted and/or died. Either way, you are in good hands if you came from money or if your parents paid $200,000+ for your degree(s).

    * Products developed in Shenzhen sound terrible and have QC issues. The company brags about the success of particular products, but doesn't talk about the warehouse(s) filled with junked, non-functional products. The Lifestyle engineering team in Shenzhen refuses to work or collaborate with any other teams inside or outside the division. They believe they know everything about audio, design, and engineering, when in fact, their products are not very good. The company is quick to highlight the Lifestyle Division's success stories with portables, but they are failing miserably in the soundbar, headphone, luxury, and loudspeaker categories. Arrogance is the norm in Shenzhen's product development process which may explain why many of their products come up short.

    * One of the most political corporations out there. Rather than promote collaboration and innovation, the company likes to pit employees against each other. The company also tolerates and encourages negative and demeaning leadership/management styles, especially from the Shenzhen office. As other reviews point out, it's all about bullying and showing you who's in charge. You are nothing if you're not a direct report to the VP/GM of SBU as he encourages and allows his direct reports in that office to manage and lead by fear, power, and intimidation. The team in Shenzhen expect you to bow down to their holiness. It's them versus you and it's a culture you won't find elsewhere. It's the most arrogant office in the corporation. Perhaps they were picked on at school and this is their way of seeking payback or revenge. This type of behavior wouldn't be tolerated or allowed at any other company. This may explain the high employee turnover at that office. This also goes to prove that if you're not cutthroat, you may not survive at Harman.

    * The company wants to imply that it's ahead of the curve and technology like Google and Apple, but at least those companies move their employees around every couple of years and encourage mentoring and career growth. Harman would rather hire inexperienced personnel from outside the company rather than promote within. The company has a very difficult time recognizing potential, experience and talent inside its own walls.

    * It is widely known that Harman is one of the worst companies to work with when it comes to manufacturing. Harman churns and burns suppliers more than any other company in the industry. It's that bully "our way or the highway" mentality that makes people not want to work with Harman. Instead of building solid partnerships, this is the type of culture the CEO/Chairman has created and supported.

    Advice to Management

    Read this review.


  8. Helpful (7)

    Stay away - a completely dysfunctional mess and getting worse

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director in Stamford, CT
    Current Employee - Director in Stamford, CT

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

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Good benefits, some great people

    Cons

    Incompetent upper management who have no knowledge of the audio space and who are doing everything they can to devalue the brands. And new management hires are following this pattern.
    Mean and negative management who use bullying tactics and routinely engage in unprofessional behavior.
    Employees are depressed and anxious.

    Advice to Management

    Advice to the Board: replace the CEO


  9. Helpful (9)

    Good People Bad Management

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

    I worked at HARMAN full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Hard Working employees
    Brand Name
    History of high quality products

    Cons

    Management is worse. No proper planning.They can dump you any time.
    Most of the work is outsourced to keep the cost down.

    Advice to Management

    Value your employees. They are people too.


  10. Helpful (8)

    Avoid at all costs - miserable people led by blind CEO

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

    I worked at HARMAN full-time (More than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    You can get discounted electronics (refurbished sometimes).

    Cons

    Cost cutting of US work force for India. They have let go of all the good engineers and scramble when projects the engineers were working on suddenly go into crisis. Poor executive management that needs pinches pennies on individual contributors but fly half way around the world for a "meeting" . Poor company wide organization. Executives lead through fear - if you don't play ball or drink the Kool-aid then don't bother coming to work. CEO makes blind decisions and has blatantly lied in the press twice.

    Advice to Management

    Let CEO go asap and clean house.


  11. Helpful (9)

    Farcical

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

    I have been working at HARMAN full-time (More than 10 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    There are still some of the finest technical folks in the world on the payroll. If you're a VP at any other corporation, it'll be easy to get a job here. Just say, "Oh, your problems aren't so hard. All you need to do is...[Insert imaginary silver bullet here]". They'll pay you a lot of money. It's easy to vacation in your office.

    Cons

    No one in top management knows anything about the audio industry. Company is an ATM and entertainment provider for the CEO and his co-conspirators. Revenue generation by sales at any price and margin management by cost cutting isn't a recipe for success. Age discrimination rampant. Relentless focus on emerging market growth is a disaster waiting to happen.

    Advice to Management

    Take short positions against your own company, if you haven't already.



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