Riverbed Technology


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Riverbed Technology Reviews

506 Reviews
506 Reviews
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Riverbed Technology Chairman, President, and CEO Jerry M. Kennelly
Jerry M. Kennelly
435 Ratings

    Dedicated Organization of People, But Losing Focus of Overall Vision

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

    I worked at Riverbed Technology full-time


    - In my experience, I worked with quite a few smart, dedicated, and friendly groups of people, although some of these qualities are mutually exclusive depending on the department and what people want.

    - Some of the company’s products (not the ones from acquisitions) are still top performers in the WAN optimization industry.

    - Customer service folks are very helpful and knowledgable in the appropriate subject matter.

    - Although at times it can be an exercise in indulgence, the marketing people know how to get your attention for Riverbed's products, services, and company values. They definitely know how to get your attention.

    - Salary and perks are quite good.

    - San Francisco office is at a decent location for food and public transportation.

    - Some of the best employee training ever offered.


    I learned a lot from working at Riverbed, but I should also stress the following fundamental problems that highlight the current state of the company.

    - About the San Francisco office location:

    680 Folsom was a modern makeover for the office, but I seriously questioned some of the design and floor layout decisions made for the company. My office floor was disturbingly sparse about a third of the time I was there, every week. Many office cubicles were empty, and a lot of departments moved to cubes with window views without needing facility approval. My former department was oftentimes one of the few departments present on the floor. It was a very quiet workspace in our part of the floor. If you manage a department that is all about cross-functional team collaboration, it would be best to move to a more populated area in the building, if the company is all about the open-office policy.

    - Stock options that are of little to no market value and worth. I've never worked at a company that had as big of golden handcuffs (a.k.a. RSUs) as this place.

    - Some departments thrive on processes, and others work with little to none. Developers that did not follow processes were, not surprisingly, the most difficult to work with.

    - Poor vertical communication across departments, and sometimes within a single department as well. YMMV.

    - Witnessed quite a lot of politics getting in the way of relationships between employees and managers. This impacts the willingness to grow in your respective field for career advancement.

    - Product and project managers that lead and kick off projects based on anecdotal stories, as another reviewer pointed out. Not on actual, fact-based data. There were many meetings in the beginning of a project's development cycle that wasted other team members' times, and concluded with more questions left unanswered, delaying the overall project schedule and fleshing out the product roadmap. I sympathized with the program managers that worked tooth and nail to run these meetings successfully for all involved.

    - No clear vision of where the company needs to go.

    - The nature of the work environment encourages micromanagers to wear multiple hats and work in projects to completion, and take most of the credit because of their official job title.

    - The company presents itself as a hybrid mix of startup/corporate values. I think this is a poor way of explaining the company culture overall to those who want to work at Riverbed. Riverbed is not a small company--telling job candidates about the hybrid mix is really covering up the chaotic nature of how the company operates. You either are a startup, or a small/mid/large-sized corporation. Don't pretend to be both. Savvy job candidates know how startups operate.

    - I honestly think that within the next year or two, from watching the public stock ebb and flow, that Riverbed should be bought by a bigger, more structured corporation. Going private would also be good for the company and the engineering organization, but that only means the company leaders need to work thrice as hard to re-strengthen the product portfolio so that the company stock would be desirable and profitable again. Highly unlikely, given the growing competition with other WAN optimization products.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I agree with other reviewers. Riverbed needs to start over as an organization. Stop living in the past. If you don’t want to be bought out by the likes of Cisco, you need to strengthen your current product portfolio and re-evaluate your team leadership. If you’re a manager and don’t know where to take your department, get your employees on board and create ideas together.

    Doesn't Recommend
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    Disapproves of CEO

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