Microsoft Reviews

Updated July 26, 2015
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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella
Satya Nadella
52 Ratings

Pros
  • Work-life balance is what you make it; always been fine for me (in 859 reviews)

  • You will work with some incredibly smart people (in 991 reviews)

Cons
  • Work life balance can be very bad (in 552 reviews)

  • The performance review system is broken (in 400 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

218 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (2)

    Great place to Intern. Disheartening as a full-time job.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer In Test Intern in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer In Test Intern in Redmond, WA

    I worked at Microsoft

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

    Pros

    Great place to intern. Advise against pursuing as a full-time job over the long term. Rewards, promotions, reviews are political - not merit based. More importantly, job satisfaction has hit rock-bottom because very few groups focus on building a truly successful products. Most everyone else is following another manager's orders. Very disheartening.

    Cons

    The company lacks a well-defined direction. Most groups are too large and organizations are too complex that a lot of effort is being wasted. This hurts because the impact of your work ends up being fairly negligible. Too many times, when saving a project from ruin, you might contribute immensely, but it's not a feather in anyone's cap and you won't receive credit for it.

    Advice to Management

    Please make this a tight running ship with a clear, focused path towards increased revenue. Honor good design, pay utmost attention to usability and end-user satisfaction. Stop jumping on the latest bandwagon, and be very clear on what not to do. Lastly, weed out the PM culture that impacts work, reduces the overall quality of your product and simply wastes resources. Your developers and designers have a lot of talent - listen to them. Everyone else in the group is a liability and is only slowing Microsoft's progress. Then again - this advice may or may not be in line with your goal of a bigger promotion/paycheck/bonus. It shows in the final product if a company is truly passionate about making something worthwhile. Learn from Apple.


  2. Helpful (1)

    Felt like just another number.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - PM Intern in Redmond, WA
    Former Intern - PM Intern in Redmond, WA

    I worked at Microsoft as an intern (Less than a year)

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

    Pros

    -Great products -great opportunities -PM roll rocks

    Cons

    -hit or miss with management. i had really bad luck with a manager that rejected her last 3 interns. -no personalized attention really -- off on your own and expected to figure things out completely (my experience, my friend had different experiences) -traffic if commuting from downtown Seattle

    Advice to Management

    -Invest more in your employees -Try to keep groups seem smaller


  3. Helpful (1)

    A big company with little pay to intern

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - Intern in Taipei (Taiwan)
    Former Intern - Intern in Taipei (Taiwan)

    I worked at Microsoft as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    A chance to learn and work in international IT business.

    Cons

    the pay in Microsoft ,Taiwan is way lower than in the US


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  5. Internship at Microsoft

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - Intern in Çankaya, Ankara (Turkey)
    Former Intern - Intern in Çankaya, Ankara (Turkey)

    I worked at Microsoft as an intern (Less than a year)

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

    Pros

    They give a salary and breakfast. You see how to earn money without doing nothing.

    Cons

    You feel disappointed. People in general are rude and as a work environment it is really boring.

    Advice to Management

    go fishing


  6. Helpful (1)

    Good place to be an intern, but maybe it's better to work elsewhere...

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer Intern in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Software Development Engineer Intern in Redmond, WA

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Disapproves of CEO
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    - Great technologies (you know that you are working on products that affects the life of millions of people) - Good benefits package - Opportunities for career growt and advancement - Great colleagues to work with, very intelligent and talented

    Cons

    The managers don't care for what the employees have to say about what's wrong...In the long term, this will destroy the company. Actually, sometimes they even complain with you if you talk to them about what you think is wrong in the company... There isn't a very good Work/Life balance

    Advice to Management

    Take your time to hear what the employees have to say...


  7. Helpful (3)

    Best or average, depending on whether you have passion for technology and ready to take the initiative all the time.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Development Intern in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Software Development Intern in Redmond, WA

    I worked at Microsoft

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The benefits were decent. The pay for a summer intern is above the industry standard. There is a lot of respect shown towards the work of all employees and interns alike. Everyone is doing real work. No micromanagement at all. I was only told once in the beginning I was kind of expected to be at work from 10 to 4; however, I repeatedly showed up at work at 1 p.m. and there was not a single remark about it. (Of course, it was my problem when I had to work on some weekends to have the work done, but again, nobody was counting when I was working and for how long.) Very open structure, a lot of communication going on (not necessarily a plus for me, but Microsoft is very communication-oriented). Great technology. Everything is optimized. Like, you think it might be a good idea how to improve something: signs in your building, meeting schedule, some internal rules - you send an email, and you immediately get a friendly response, and people start working on implementing your suggestion (or disucssing it) as long as you want it. Seems to be very fair for reviews, promotions, salary increases, etc. If you are invited for an on-site interview, you will get reimbursed for everything. You can negotiate another day in the hotel, negotiate where you want to fly from and to, ask for another 5 free taxi vouchers, etc. They don't care what you where for the interview (or when you work there). They don't care if you have a weird haircut or sexual orientation. Only your skills, your passion for technology and for the customers, and your enthusiams matter. A lot of appreciation for the good work you do.

    Cons

    Work was not challenging or interesting enough. A lot of code that is just doing routine things. It is not just Microsoft, however, it is necessary by the nature of the work. I am just not so much of an engineer, my background is in math and theoretical computer science, so I enjoy interesting things where you have to think, not just seeing technology work. You have to be excited about your work. You do not have to work 14 hours a day (or even 10, really), but you do have to be excited and want to learn new technology, get a better developer (or a better Microsoft developer, more specifically) or getter tester, or manager, etc. This may seem like a good thing (and it really is!) --- but this is also somewhat forced. You have to identify where you want to grow (when you work there full-time) in a written form, then the company will help you - coach you, move you to another project, etc. You cannot just say "I just want to work here for my 40 hours and get paid". You have to find out yourself what you want to do. You have to load yourself with work, come up with new ideas, take the initiative, etc. This is required. So they are requiring and taking some of your emotional or spiritual energy in this way. Too much admiration for Microsoft. Gets annoying to see all those monitors and posters and emails, advertising, how happy is everyone is at Microsoft. Even though it is not far from truth, a lot of people are very happy and very excited from working there.... - but this also gets annoying. Seriously, I cannot stand some many people claiming to be excited about their work every day, everyone from smiling drivers of the shuttle cars on campus to those working in the cafeteria, to researchers, developers, managers... It looks too good to be true, made me feel uncomfortable. During my internship I was not given enough information on what was expected of me. It took me some time to understand that people just expected me to take the initiative. For example, they may not tell you "you have to do it by next Friday" --- but you will have to ask "what do I have to do and by which date?" If you don't, they will think you don't know what's going on (because you don't care to ask around) so not interested, or you are not a productive worker. They will find somebody else to do the job, or the project will move slower (they have many projects; sometimes 2-3 teams, doing the same thing, so at least one can succeed :)), and you will get a not-as-great review and may be eventually asked to leave. Although, I admit, this is fair in a way. If you have the initiative, go for it. A lot of emphasis on getting the work done (which is good), but not as much on making people do what they are good at. The responsibility is totally on you. You have to figure out what you like and what you don't, what you are good at or not good at. You have to take the initiative. (Then, in many cases, you will actually be able to move to a position that you want.) Many developers, testers, etc. are, it seems, not too great in terms of their skill, as Microsoft is a big place. However, talent is always recognized, and people are always trying to get better. If your background is limited and you need to learn a lot, but Microsoft still takes you --- then prepare to work a lot, too. It may actually be a lot of hours every day. (Yet again, nobody will count, and you can do it at home.) Redmond location - there are some commute issues. Microsoft is working on that (like their "the connector" is a great thing), yet this will always be an issue. So-called starbucks coffee is no good, and cafeteria food is average (I have seen pretty much their best cafetereia during the on-campus interview.)

    Advice to Management

    Don't repeat all the time how great is Microsoft. There is already enough enthusiams from below.


  8. Helpful (2)

    Comfortable but boring

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer Intern in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Software Development Engineer Intern in Redmond, WA

    I worked at Microsoft

    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    - Good pay/perks for the area, job stability. - Not as many long nights as at a startup. - Company has a lot of resources.

    Cons

    - Boring! Other companies in industry are doing much more interesting things. - It's a huge company, don't expect to feel much camaraderie with coworkers or be kept informed of (the few) interesting things going on in the organization. - Very top down (compared to startups and other companies in the software industry).

    Advice to Management

    - Innovate more.


  9. Helpful (1)

    MBA Internship at Microsoft

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Product Management Intern in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Product Management Intern in Redmond, WA

    I worked at Microsoft

    Approves of CEO
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    1. People The people at MS are amazing in how much they are willing to help out with anything and everything. They are very smart and very passionate about what they do. It is fun to meet them and work with them. The Kellogg alumni at MS are especially helpful and nice. 2. Networking/Company Culture The company encourages a lot of networking and exchange of information. It allows you to meet people from other groups and learn about their projects. It is nice to know that the work you're doing does not stay in a vacuum and that you are able to leverage other people's knowledge and best practices, so that you're not spinning your wheels. 3. Opportunities It is encouraged to rotate and spend 16 - 18 months with different groups and doing different things, so it gives everyone a great opportunity to network within the company and try different things.

    Cons

    1. Team Culture My team had an intense culture, due to all being ex-consultants and due to working on the strategy of the flagship product. It was a different culture than I expected and was therefore disappointed. However, I did enjoy working and collaborating with them. It was more of a personality and style issue. So my advice would be to interview the team as they are interviewing you during the second round. 2. Size of the Company The company felt really big and it felt like it could swallow someone who was not doing the "right" things (e.g. networking constantly, changing jobs every 18 months, working intensely on side projects, etc.). I felt like it added an extra step on the responsibilities that came with the job. 3. Seattle Seattle was a fun city to be over the summer. However, I could not see myself living there over the long term. It felt too small and much less urban than I had imagined.

    Advice to Management

    I wish there was closer monitoring of managers who are already known to be "difficult" when interns are assigned to them. I don't know if this would be through GMs or the HR contacts, but I've found it to be necessary.


  10. good experience, not enough support for growth

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Intern in Redmond, WA
    Former Employee - Intern in Redmond, WA

    I worked at Microsoft

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    You have access to information about so many new products that are coming out Career path is explicit Compensation is very good

    Cons

    Many of Microsoft's products don't win in the market Being in the company is very competitive and work-life balance hard to achieve

    Advice to Management

    Offer the interns more space to learn before throwing them into the fire. The transition from college to new hire seems very rough.


  11. Summer internship

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Engineering Intern in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Software Engineering Intern in Redmond, WA

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Possibly the most structured internship on the planet. Summer camp for college students

    Cons

    ummmm.. It really depends on who you are - I just felt kind of lost in the company. However, it really is a great company - they treat their employees really well

    Advice to Management

    try and relate more to the new hires



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