KLA-Tencor Reviews in San Jose, CA

Updated September 25, 2014
Updated September 25, 2014
348 Reviews
3.1
348 Reviews
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KLA-Tencor President, CEO & Director Rick Wallace
Rick Wallace
218 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • The culture allows a good work life balance for those not demanding to climb the ladder (in 18 reviews)

  • Great opportunities for scientists to work on cutting edge technology (in 17 reviews)


Cons
  • bad work-life balance for some team (in 19 reviews)

  • Political and ineffective senior management led by a CIO who is a legend in his own mind (in 17 reviews)

More Highlights

34 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1. 7 people found this helpful  

    Mid size company with Big headed bullies

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Information Systems Analyst in Milpitas, CA
    Former Employee - Information Systems Analyst in Milpitas, CA

    I worked at KLA-Tencor as a contractor (more than an year)

    Pros

    Lots of good people and manager but terrible CIO

    Cons

    Though I was there for a short time it is true that this is about the worst IT department I have ever worked at. I have been working in IT for many years and this is thee most dysfunctional and obnoxious CIO I have ever met. It's unbelievable to me that people stay working there. There are some serious problems with his staff that just go along with whatever he says. Most of the CIO staff is just full of bullies. One of the senior directors even goes around firing people to show his leadership but what he is doing is just doing what the big bully tells him to do. Poor sense of judgement from the senior staff. Unfortunately the poor few that really know what they are doing are completely disregard for doing great work. I agree with the reviews and I wasn't even going to post but this is the worst place ever.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get rid of the CIO and most of his staff.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 8 people found this helpful  

    Looking for better opportunities

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

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

    Pros

    Great technical challenges. Great engineers / coworkers.

    Cons

    Bad middle management. Looks like middle management, at least in systems, is selected from engineers who are clueless about managing and listening to their reports. We are micromanaged and told to do whatever managers think would promote them.

    Atrocious IT preventing people from doing their jobs. Tickets are sent to India and nothing gets fixed. Friends in the Valley describe much better experiences. I cannot even access Google at work and IT couldn't fix that.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Fire IT managers.

    Train middle management. Enable engineers to pursue their ideas and don't shut them up.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 2 people found this helpful  

    You're just a number..

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Staff Software Eng in Milpitas, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Staff Software Eng in Milpitas, CA

    I have been working at KLA-Tencor full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Engineer colleagues are mostly create people.

    Cons

    Management has no clue how to manage engineers and projects.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get a grip and see what the ground troops are doing for you everyday.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Too much politics.

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

    I have been working at KLA-Tencor full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    It is a technology company that has advanced technology.

    Cons

    Management does not appreciate engineer's work and management is always superior to engineers.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Respect engineers and appreciate their's work.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    Good Benefit and Scientific Experience to get, Too much politics Place to Work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior, Design Engineer in Milpitas, CA
    Former Employee - Senior, Design Engineer in Milpitas, CA

    I worked at KLA-Tencor full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Good Benefit to get and great learning scientific experience

    Cons

    It is hard to work with a fully politic place

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    In order to attract more talents, create respectful workplace culture training and more technical 1st line manager (within his field) who can technical lead engineers instead of listening to Politic opinions

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 5 people found this helpful  

    IT Department is a cesspool - failures from other groups and divisions are invited to join the IT senior management

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

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

    Pros

    Smart and dedicated people at the rank and file level

    Cons

    Political and ineffective senior management led by a CIO who is a legend in his own mind.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Clean house- get fresh blood from outside. The IT directors are all politically motivated and insecure- that is why they are not able to leave and find another job even though they have tried- the good ones have all left and are doing really well outside.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Many smart ppl & internal opportunity improved But pay below industry, still some bad politics exists. IT is useless

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

    I worked at KLA-Tencor full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    - A lot of bad politics got cleaned up (those who got promoted were the ones who played the game and belonged to "the club"). Major clean up happened several yrs ago, just after current CEO took the position. The politics was so horrible back then. So great job on this one.
    - Internal hiring increased, improving internal career opportunities. This is seriously a major improvement from before! thanks a lot. (the company used to hire folks who got laid off, due to their poor performance, from our competitors into a high level positions. It always took more than 2yrs to get these low performers out. But often these ppl did a lot of damage that took more than 2yrs to undo the damage)
    - Many very talented, smart people. I've never met so many bright people at one place.

    Cons

    - Pay is below the industry (this is well known and was voiced to CEOs many times but nothing was ever done).
    - Truly smart people tend to leave the company (thereby reducing the benefit of working there), unless they are at GM and above.
    - Still bad politics exists, leading to some ineffective, some even toxic GMs~Sr.VPs who hang around and cause harm to the organization & operation. GMs who completely failed never get punished but instead they are always rewarded (I've heard so many people who do not know each other say this).
    - IT is a complete productivity killer and acts like a psychopath stalker. The only thing they can do is resetting passwords. Every call/chat with IT goes exactly like this.."may I remote control your machine?" in the first 2min of communication, and then they screw around for 30min-1hr without any sort of systematic approach, and then "you need to get the local IT to work on your system". IT then "follows up" by emailing AND calling you everyday, sometimes 2times/day, "Is it solved now? can we close the case?"... Doesn't matter if you tell them the issue requires monitoring due to the nature of it. They won't let go. Completely wrong kind of tenacity.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    - Get serious about performance reviews of GMs and above.
    - Make the compensation for people below GM at the industry level (at least). I've been told GM and above make too much money to leave. So no issue there.
    - Do total overhaul of IT (please, no more incompetent psychopath stalkers..)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Okay Place to work.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Product Development Engineer in Milpitas, CA
    Former Employee - Product Development Engineer in Milpitas, CA

    I worked at KLA-Tencor full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    - Smart People. Worked with one of the most brilliant minds out there in semiconductor equipment industry.
    - Leading Edge Technology
    - Better Job Security than other companies.
    - Challenging Environment

    Cons

    - Prepare to put in long hours
    - No career growth. If you do not hold a PhD it will take you forever to get promoted even with receiving high performance reviews each year.
    - Extreme low pay for the amount of work you have to put in. Other companies were paying 40% more for the same job. Have seen plenty of new grads leaving for something better within a few years.
    - Alot of old-timers. Do not hire that many fresh blood to help bring in new ideas and morale.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Learn to give back to the employees more or else all the new college graduates that you hire will leave.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 3 people found this helpful  

    Business units good. Corp functions lacking.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Human Resources in Milpitas, CA
    Current Employee - Human Resources in Milpitas, CA

    I have been working at KLA-Tencor full-time

    Pros

    Awesome challenges. Great business. Lots of opportunity. Many great people.

    Business unit leaders are great. Facing unique challenges with lots of opportunities to learn and grow.

    Cons

    Corp functions. HR is a bunch of functional silos that don't communicate. Too much politics. Not living core values.
    Within the HR group there is a lack of trust and communication. The various functions aren't working as a team and personal agendas at the VP level are creating friction and tension between the functions.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Change values to include mutual trust and recognition. Leadership change in some corp functions.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 2 people found this helpful  

    Disfunctional IT organization with poor leadership

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Milpitas, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Milpitas, CA

    I worked at KLA-Tencor

    Pros

    Easy work environment
    Low expectation from management
    Not much pressure as long as you play the political game

    Cons

    Poor leadership in the IT organization with lots of politics
    Senior management more interested in keeping their jobs than doing the right thing
    Management addresses poor execution by consultants by blaming the employees and rewarding the consultants with more business
    Having been at KLA for so long, did not realize how bad things were until I left and saw how other IT organizations function

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop believing you guys are very good and go see how efficient and effective other IT organizations are.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

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