Microsoft Reviews

Updated July 26, 2015
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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella
Satya Nadella
444 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

1,912 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (629)

    Thoughts after 10 years....

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Redmond, WA

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

    Pros

    1. If you love tech, this is a great place. No doubt you'll talk tech (mostly the MSFT stack) from enterprise to consumer - from PCs to phones to Xboxes - from datacenter to desktop. 2. What were GREAT benefits are now VERY GOOD (took a small step down) but still probably better than you'll find at 99% of large corporations. If you've got family - the value of the benefits is even higher. 401k match is nice. 3. Even with it's struggles MSFT is still a cash printing machine. This means if you can keep your nose clean and do reasonable work, you can have a stable job, pay your bills, feed your family, and not worry (too much) about layoffs. The stock you own likely won't tank, but probably won't go up much either. You'll get a bonus each year and some stock. It's a decent life if you aren't looking to light the world on fire.

    Cons

    Brand on Your Resume: After many years of losing market share and struggling to be at the front end of innovation and the fact that there's 90,000 employees, don't think MSFT is necessarily going to be attractive on your resume to more agile and smaller companies. Managing Your Career: Make you say this out loud so it registers - 90,000 employees work there. Double that for vendors. It is VERY hard to "stand out" and move up in the company. Don't expect your manager to be much of an advocate or enabler to help you meet your career goals - they are basically trying to survive the stack rank every year too. Not familiar with the stack rank? Check out the 2012 Vanity Fair article called "Microsoft's Lost Decade".

    Advice to Management

    I'll type it here - but I don't they are listening... 1. Help proven talent move laterally in the company for new opportunities. 2. Kill/evolve the stack rank. Here's basically how it's viewed:. 30% of the company gets 1s and 2s - and they are happy. 50% get 3s and that basically feels like getting a "C" in school. This sucks for talented people when a multitude of UNCONTROLLABLE conditions keep you from getting into 1 or 2 range. The 20% getting anything below a 3 are walking dead. In summary, 70% of the company walk away from the review cycle feeling like crap. This is no good. After 10 years, I'm leaving - it's just a matter of time until I find the right opportunity. I need to find a company spends 90% of it's time building technology experiences, as opposed to 90% of its time building PowerPoints. And I expect to refuse the exit interview - because if you really cared what I thought, you wouldn't ask me after I decided to leave.


  2. Helpful (9)

    12 years at Microsoft

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior International Product Manager in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Senior International Product Manager in Redmond, WA

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

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Recommends
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Excellent benefits including health care insurance. Excellent work life balance.

    Cons

    Sort of an odd ball within the core product team because you are not Program Manager, Developer, or Tester. Demotivating and unfair review system. Managers are trying to find faults of their directs because they are forced to find low rating employees at each review. Not much of an innovation compared to Google, Facebook, Amazon, etc.


  3. A software giant

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

    I have been working at Microsoft full-time

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Microsoft is located in a beautiful place, is an American multinational technology company headquartered in Redmond, Washington. Most benefit are covered.

    Cons

    Microsoft was founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen on April 4, 1975. As a giant, it has a lot of similar or duplicate teams or organizations, and your cash seems are split.

    Advice to Management

    Microsoft is the world's largest software maker measured by revenues. To become a more giant, management should focus on one goal.


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  5. Microsoft

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

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

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Good pay. Good benefits. Exciting problems to solve.you get to work with smart people. You love in the edge of new technology.

    Cons

    Jobs are usually very Stressful. You suffer from very Low work life balance. No overtime given even when it's almost always expected that you work extra.

    Advice to Management

    I would advise management to not rush too much shipping products very fast. This ends up causing morale problems for workers as well as low quality products.


  6. Sr. Product Marketing Manager

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Product Marketing Manager in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Senior Product Marketing Manager in Seattle, WA

    I have been working at Microsoft

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    You get to know how to scale the business across the globe & also with Partners

    Cons

    Disconnected on engaging with direct customers

    Advice to Management

    Have less hierarchical structures and encourage more direct touch with customers


  7. Consulting at Microsoft

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

    I worked at Microsoft as a contractor (More than 5 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Really interesting work. Typically, consultants meet other potential people who they can work for in the future.

    Cons

    Since 2009, consulting roles have been downsized and it can be difficult to find quality engagements as a reasonable rate. Too many people are forced to hire underqualified vendors to conduct consulting roles.

    Advice to Management

    Decide what you are trying to achieve, and determine if your means to hiring in aligned to our goals, your leaderships goals and the goals of the company. If it's just to get powerpoints done, so be it. However, if it's to strategically move the company (time to market; enabling the sales force etc.), then invest in those who can help make this happen.


  8. Getting back

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

    I have been working at Microsoft (Less than a year)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Good benefits, health insurance, 401k, ESPP. Full tech stack, large campus. good work life balance. Microsoft is getting back.

    Cons

    Too big organization, and everything is slow. Salary and stock bonus is no longer competetive with other top companies.

    Advice to Management

    Continue the transform, and move more faster. Consider giving more stock.


  9. HR Director

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

    I worked at Microsoft full-time (More than 8 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Microsoft is a great company. When functioning at its best, you will absolutely have access to resources and to challenges that are unparalleled in the industry.

    Cons

    There is a unspoken cultural norm that facilitates risk aversion (fear). Leaders often speak about being bold and courageous, however, there are measures and processes (not just the performance system) that undermine the creativity that is fostered through encouraging diverse perspectives.

    Advice to Management

    My advice to management would be to unearth the deeply rooted assumptions that have built and continue to guide the company. As an innovative company, the organization needs to build a learning culture and acumen such that it does not continually re-create the wheel and then become enamored by the creation. The company is so insular that it is often surprised by the trends, practices, and solutions that already exist in the external market. This is the inherent weakness of a culture that presumes to have all of the answers, and frankly, this is an early signal of a company headed toward decline. Creating openness is a sign of humility and courage as expressed as curiosity. This is my hope and advice for a company that I love and one for which I hold tremendous optimism.


  10. Senior Project Manager

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

    I worked at Microsoft full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Endless challenges, creative problem solving, dedicated staff

    Cons

    Lack of process, high overhead of HR/Review system, unsatisfactory incentive plan

    Advice to Management

    Avoid meritocracy disguised as reviews and incentive plans. Focus on project value, personal investment, and meeting goals with time for autonomous, creative idea development.


  11. Technical Project Manager

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Redmond, WA
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Redmond, WA

    I have been working at Microsoft (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Professional environment, everything is process driven.

    Cons

    Not many opportunities to convert from Contract to Full time.

    Advice to Management

    none



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