Sun Microsystems Reviews

Updated April 17, 2015
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46 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (1)

    Sun, the place where talent is wasted and profit is squandered

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Program Manager in Broomfield, CO
    Current Employee - Program Manager in Broomfield, CO

    I have been working at Sun Microsystems

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

    Pros

    none, you had to be part of the insiders to do anything

    Cons

    No one listens unless you are on the inside. Work here at your own risk. Do not expect to make changes. This is the Borg.

    Advice to Management

    Quit and move on. You have killed a great company.

  2. Helpful (2)

    - Worst than government company...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Staff Engineer in Menlo Park, CA
    Current Employee - Staff Engineer in Menlo Park, CA

    I have been working at Sun Microsystems

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

    Pros

    - If you want to retire and enjoy working from home all the time without any interruptions.
    - if you are not interested in future growth prospects and/or jumping to other companies
    - like working for government companies with no accountability

    Cons

    - hopeless and beauracratic top management
    - directors and VPs and sr managers stay there for 10-14-20 years and don't even allow opportunities in management for other folks
    - no or simply extremely low morale
    - no one from other companies want to take you after working for Sun now a days..
    - absolutely no growth prospects whatsoever even for employees who stick around for more than 5 years

    Advice to Management

    - remove all ineffective directors and sr managers
    - stop working on all open source effort and instead channel those resources on actual sensible product solutions
    - close as many remote centers as possible (Colorado Springs, Austin, France, so many of them..)- these are all major cost centers
    - remove 50% of the program management staff
     - Finally, make people accountable for their products and revenues and fire directors, VPs and managers
    if they fail to meet goals. That's the only way, this company can progress..There is no other way except down if otherwise ..engineers here are very smart but management is hopeless...

  3. Helpful (2)

    A company that has lost its direction and relevance to the industry. Who needs it?

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Director of Marketing in Menlo Park, CA
    Former Employee - Director of Marketing in Menlo Park, CA

    I worked at Sun Microsystems

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

    Pros

    Compensation and benefits are reasonable

    Cons

    Confused business strategy, constant reorganizations, lack of relevance to market place, deteriorating morale

    Advice to Management

    Replace Jonathan, establish and communicate a business and product strategy that clearly demonstrates the value that Sun delivers to marketplace and how the company can actually monetize that. Jonathon's current message consistently says: "We'll give our software away for free so that people use it, and that will create an opportunity where we hope we can make some money." He doesn't articulate how the company will actually do that, and the company has a very poor track record of making money on the basis of software. It's not a very convincing message.

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  5. Helpful (1)

    If you have other options consider them over Sun Microsystems.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Program Manager in McLean, VA
    Current Employee - Program Manager in McLean, VA

    I have been working at Sun Microsystems

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

    Pros

    Sun is a large firm with ample resources to perform your tasks based on your own initiative. As with any firm performance against goals is paramount yet, management is so concerned about reaching goals they lose sight of employee support and retention. Management is quick to terminate should there be shortfalls.

    Cons

    Lack of managment support for employees. Layoffs are now part of business plan.

    Advice to Management

    Solicit and listen in an unbiased manner to employee feedback on management. I have observed that some exceptional employees were deliberately targeted for layoff such that revenue attainment was redirected to other employees that were more in favor with the manager's personal success. Sun has legacy employee pockets that need to be reengineered. i.e Storagetek

  6. Hungry for success stay away..work life balance and lifestyle a key reason to come in to work then Sun in a great place.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior, Engineering Manager in Burlington, MA
    Former Employee - Senior, Engineering Manager in Burlington, MA

    I worked at Sun Microsystems

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

    Pros

    If you want a place that will offer you low expectations, low stress, good lifestyle choices, and most of all a great work life balance, especially if you are raising children, then this is a good culture to be a part of.

    Cons

    Hungry to grow and yearning for growth, ambitious, then not a place. A zero to negative growth org will not offer you the opportunities for growth, unless the folks at the next level up leave or get laid off. Getting fired is even rarer than in the government, Want to be a part of a performance driven culture where you will be held accountable then not a place to be.

    Advice to Management

    Need new blood at the top. Look at what Michael Dell with his direct reports.

  7. The environment is poisoned so gauge your tolerance for unhealthy work places against your need for the job.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Program Manager in Broomfield, CO
    Former Employee - Senior Program Manager in Broomfield, CO

    I worked at Sun Microsystems

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

    Pros

    They have a work from home program for eligible employees that can save gas, time and frustration by avoiding the commute. Your ability to utilize the program is dependent upon the sentiments of your manager. There are some who don't seem to understand the value of the program, but most do.

    There are some very nice, hardworking and talented people there at Sun that makes working with the regular folks a pleasure. For those so inclined, there are some good opportunities to try new things and gain new experiences due to the constantly changing organization and lack of funding to hire outside resources.

    Cons

    Sun has been suffering since the internet bubble burst. Unfortunately the turnaround has been very slow with frequent layoffs since 2001 that continue to this day. That has led to a very depressing work environment. People are afraid of losing their jobs and as a consequence people agree to do whatever is asked of them, no matter how good or bad it may be.

    The efforts at making a turn around have slowly led to a small profit. The layoffs continue but the work load doesn't seem to lessen. In fact, as the work force shrinks the work load increases. There have been no raises for the majority of workers over the last few years with only the top 10% of the employees seeing raises (depending on the organization's policy).

    With the ongoing layoffs, lack of raises and work pressures, morale is very low. As can be imaged people are leaving on their own to escape the bad environment. Sun has had a great culture, but that has been nearly destroyed over the last several years.

    Advice to Management

    Sun management has two main problems: First, they need to slow down the reorganizations so that the people can learn their roles and relationships and get good at them. They need to have some consistency with front line managers so that employees have a chance to learn their managers (and vice versa) so they can have a better chance of getting a fair revue and career development.

    Secondly, Sun is barely scraping by with the current marketing plan that has us giving away the software. None of it's competitors do that, and they are all doing better than Sun. It doesn't appear to be a sustainable strategy for making money from customers, especially considering the inability of Sun to monetize the free software through services.

  8. Helpful (1)

    Don't even think about it.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Santa Clara, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Santa Clara, CA

    I have been working at Sun Microsystems

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

    Pros

    Great Technical Minds. There are good long term technical veterans who also happen to be very nice;.

    Cons

    Worst Management, right from CEO to Exec VP's to VP's to Directors to Middle level Managers. Every one is lost and insecure. All the attempts for making sun big was a failure. VP's donot stay for more than a year. Growth is stagnant, Every week good people leave the company. People who stay at Sun is not because of passion, its because of insecurity or a place they would like to retire.

    Advice to Management

    A clean removal of weeds in the system have to be done, right from the CEO to the middle level managers. People have to survive in a company by pure performance nothing else..

  9. Helpful (2)

    - Sun has potential, but keeps shooting own foot

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Marketing Manager in Broomfield, CO
    Current Employee - Marketing Manager in Broomfield, CO

    I have been working at Sun Microsystems

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

    Pros

    - Large company that gives a brand
    - Benefits

    Cons

    - Not a meritocracy; no good incentives for A players
    - Too many people at Sun for welfare benefits

    Advice to Management

    - Become more professional
    - Become more analytical
    - Refresh middle management

  10. Helpful (2)

    Prospective employees beware

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Marketing Manager in Menlo Park, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Marketing Manager in Menlo Park, CA

    I have been working at Sun Microsystems

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

    Pros

    You get a flexible work environment which allows you to work almost anywhere in the world. This gives you the option to live in areas that are affordable and/or are in line with your salary.

    Cons

    Serious problem in upper management. There is a major disconnect between individual contributors (who seem to bear the lion's share of the work) and upper management. There is no trust and if you voice areas of improvements, you are deemed a "negative person" which means you're in-line for the next RIF.

    Advice to Management

    Cut the crap, be honest. Stop the nepotism.

  11. Helpful (1)

    I wish it wasn't so hard to work here

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Systems Support Engineer in Rochester, NY
    Current Employee - Systems Support Engineer in Rochester, NY

    I have been working at Sun Microsystems

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

    Pros

    Steady paycheck, great customers, decent benefits

    Cons

    Bloated middle management structure, lack of leadership, lack of viable execution strategy

    Advice to Management

    Remove duplicate layers of middle management, streamline product line, empower sales force to make decisions, listen to customers.

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