Netflix Reviews

Updated July 30, 2015
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Netflix Founder, Chairman and CEO Reed Hastings
Reed Hastings
204 Ratings

Pros
  • Freedom and Responsibility culture works the best (in 31 reviews)

  • Good Pay & Fact paced work environment (in 18 reviews)

Cons
  • You know you're in a culture of fear when the person training your group talks about how they were nearly fired (in 17 reviews)

  • The work-life balance is sometimes hard to manage (in 17 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

250 Employee Reviews

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  1. The job is full of freedom and responsibility.

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

    I have been working at Netflix

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    A super big plus is the vacation policy - you get to have unlimited paid vacation (they don't track it here).

    Cons

    I don't have any cons to mention.

    Advice to Management

    None.


  2. A great, fun place to work

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior User Interface Engineer in Los Gatos, CA
    Current Employee - Senior User Interface Engineer in Los Gatos, CA

    I have been working at Netflix

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The service/product is fun to work on, and my friends all know what it is. Netflix is very flexible in a number of ways (work hours and vacation time), my coworkers are competent, and the pay is very good.

    Cons

    Since we tend to hire experienced engineers in the first place, there aren't pronounced tiers among engineers, so promotions are very rare. Promotions seem much more common in management positions, and even those seem to be mostly in-place promotions (i.e. the employee's responsibilities don't seem to change with the promotion).

    Advice to Management

    Thanks for everything, and keep up the good work.


  3. Helpful (9)

    High performance culture; freedom and responsibility within

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Director, Product Management in Los Gatos, CA
    Current Employee - Director, Product Management in Los Gatos, CA

    I have been working at Netflix

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Freedom and responsibility. You're treated like an adult. You're part of a pro team that is highly functioning. The company is well respected and has a super positive brand awareness -- i'm never able to go anywhere without getting peppered with raves and happy customer comments, and i love wearing company logo gear when i'm out for this reason. You matter at Netflix. There is no dead wood, everyone is doing something very important to the company or they wouldn't be there. What you are doing matters and makes a difference, and that feels good. You can really make a difference no matter what your role. The company often repeats that as an employee, you're not on an olympic team -- meaning, you don't do this 24/7 with no life, with all focus on the gold. WE're more of a varsity team, playing to win, very good, but still have to balance with classes and learning. We need to have a good work/life balance and its very important to the company that we do. I think the best thing - and its subtle - is this no vacation/no holiday stuff. you work when you work. they seem to realize that everyone is working hard and all the time. nights. weekends often. a ton of hard work. so if you want to take time off for a vacation, a long holiday, a day off, whatever- it happens at your own discretion. you don't ask, you don't get permission. you just do what you have to do. no one is keeping track. i've never heard of this kind of policy and you cannot imagine what it doest for your morale, for feeling like you're being treated like a grown up. For that rule alone I think it stands beyond any other org.

    Cons

    Netflix is not for everyone. You don't get "direction" so much as everyone shares a common understanding of company strategy and goals. You are free to work, and some will find this harder than just being told what to do. Netflix doesn't have "average" workers - everyone is high functioning, highly motivated and independent, and expectations are enormous. There is nothing like a career position here. There is high turn over, and its unnerving to many. There is an understanding: "good average work and productivity does not get a modest raise, but a generous severence." It's a pro team, and the team fit is also as important as the individual performance. You could be excellent, but if you're not HIGHLY communicative, cooperative, egoless, you can get cut just in the team balancing of moving quickly and effectively. you must be able and willing to share early and often about everything. projects that are new and forming get debated and you have to defend your position and hear critique well. recognizing that criticism is of the work and not you is essential -- a thin skin won't work well. quiet hard work doesn't work well (for some engineers perhaps); you don't ask permission, but you must be able to clearly articulate why you do what you are doing, and support this position. you must realize that ideas are not fragile, and only through debate with smart people who share your understanding of company goals and strategy will ideas be improved. This is serious work. It's really fun, but make no mistake, it's hard and not for everyone.

    Advice to Management

    I have none. Senior management is fantastic. smart. focused. they lead by example and guide through real socratic debate with everyone. no one is unapproachable. everyone is candid. i couldn't ask for a better team of officers, and VPs, within the company.


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  5. Love it.

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

    I have been working at Netflix

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Clear values, good culture, and free dvd rentals

    Cons

    Location. Not in SF. I wish Netflix has wifi bus from SF.

    Advice to Management

    Stay on course.


  6. I love it.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Marketing Manager in Los Gatos, CA
    Current Employee - Marketing Manager in Los Gatos, CA

    I have been working at Netflix

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great colleagues -- incredible really

    Cons

    Domestic not global business -- wish we did europe and asia too

    Advice to Management

    Focus on the customer, not on Apple


  7. great place to work

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Gatos, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Gatos, CA

    I have been working at Netflix

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Freedom and Responsibility is real here.

    Cons

    Everyone is really smart, you have to keep up.

    Advice to Management

    Stay focused!


  8. Helpful (6)

    I wish I would've joined years ago.

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

    I have been working at Netflix

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Think of the people you've worked with in your career. Now imagine the 5 best of those on one team. That's what working on a team at Netflix is like. Frankly, there are no stupid people here. None. Everyone I've met is damn sharp, very sharing of their knowledge and time, and enjoys what they do. You are treated like an adult. You are not told what to do. Netflix is laissez faire, not command and control. With that comes responsibility and the potential for failure. If you fail often enough, you will not survive. If you don't expose yourself to this risk enough, you won't survive. Some people might consider this a downside, you won't like it at Netflix if you do. The Netflix time off/vacation policy is that there is no policy. They don't track how many hours you take. You take time off when you want to, you don't have to ask for permission or approval. This non-policy is one example of many of how thoroughly Netflix expects you to behave like an adult. I've spent many years at big name valley companies. Without exception, everyone of them claims that they treat employees like adults. All of them pale in comparison to Netflix in this regard.

    Cons

    I'm a developer, and the code base at Netflix has warts that demonstrate its laissez faire culture. There is no architecture group with veto power, so the code evolves organically - I personally think this is great, but it can be frustrating. Luckily, it never stays "ugly" for long, but it frequently feels like a ball of mud. There seems to be quite a bit of turnover. The first month I worked here, I counted at least 5 "good bye" emails. At least 4 of them were not voluntary. This can be disconcerting. But this is also not a company like Cisco, with regular annual headcount reduction quotas.

    Advice to Management

    Keep doing what you're doing. I've never been more confident that the sr. mgmt in a company was as intelligent and ethical as you are.


  9. Helpful (2)

    A straighforward company who knows who they are and are not.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Chief Talent Officer in Los Gatos, CA
    Current Employee - Chief Talent Officer in Los Gatos, CA

    I have been working at Netflix

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    We are committed, professionals who are passionate about creating a business that changes the entertainment landscape. Employees make a difference, results matter. The business model is relatively simple, but execution is very complex. There are interesting problems to solve for everyone. We aren't afraid to try something new or to stop doing something that doesn't work.

    Cons

    Management isn't sensitive. The team, noy family metaphore is true. Perks are minimal, but salaries are good. Career pathing is owned by employees, not management.. It's an opt in company, and not for everyone. If you are more comfortable with structure or guidance, this might not be your kind of place.

    Advice to Management

    Keep pushing the edge, don't get complacent. Stay open to new ideas. Make it a great company everyone will be proud to have worked at, even for a while.


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Freedom & Responsibility" for real

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Web QA Manager in Los Gatos, CA
    Current Employee - Web QA Manager in Los Gatos, CA

    I have been working at Netflix

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    We all have an incredible opportunity to change the way people discover entertainment. As our business has grown more complex, we've chosen to retain and hire only the best of the best. This has allowed us to deal with complexity through intelligence instead of through process and layers of management. We stay nimble and trust talented individuals to understand the context of the business. We make good decisions based on that context. We minimize chaos and maximize productivity. It's remarkably energizing to work with 'scary smart' people. It allows us to all reach a little farther because we know that if we stumble there will be people right there with us to keep us from falling. Screwing up doesn't get you fired, as long as you clean it up, learn from it and do it better the next time. Everybody has the freedom to do their jobs how they think it is best done. With that freedom comes responsibility for delivering on those ideas.

    Cons

    It's a lot of work. A lot of difficult, painstaking work. There's enormous pressure to always be getting more done, and doing it faster and better. Fortunately, there's also a lot of really reasonable people that will understand if something doesn't get done because of shifting priorities or unforeseen circumstances. The pressure is there, but it's self-imposed and everyone shares it.

    Advice to Management

    Push more information down, and push it down harder, because there's only so much that can be pulled from the bottom. It's impractical to still have Metrics out by the fountain, but seek and find an equivalent channel that captures that same immediacy and intimacy. Trading windows be damned, get the data into the hands of the people that need it to make decisions and plan their work.


  11. Helpful (1)

    Reed is a strong leader with a vision, and has gathered great people to help him make the vision real.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Engineering Director in Los Gatos, CA
    Current Employee - Engineering Director in Los Gatos, CA

    I have been working at Netflix

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    You should consider working at Netflix if you like to work with passionate and smart people in an environment almost devoid of politics. At Netflix, many decisions are data-driven. Collecting data to be able to be smart about the business is so ingrained into the culture and so obviously right that, after a while, one is amazed when friends or business partners in other companies tell you that it's not how it works in their world. There is a great sense of mutual respect among the people who work there. Things do change fast, and that can be a bit disconcerting if you don't like the thrill :-). On the other hand, hard, but necessary decisions are made promptly. If you're at a stage of your life where you want or must take it easy for a while, Netflix is not for you. The pace here does not allow for slacking, and you'll either stand out like a sore thumb, or you're pulled into the race.

    Cons

    You will be spoiled by all the common sense that wafts through the hallways. Netflix is probably not right for you if you're looking for a big title (e.g. "architect"). The organization is very flat, and there are not a lot of traditional career growth opportunities. However, you will grow personally and professionally even if your title stays the same for years.

    Advice to Management

    Keep rocking.



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